GOD OF WAR III
The terrific trilogycapper scales new heights, as Kratos pulverises his pop
Every God Of War entry seems to be made with one clear mission statement: make its predecessor look bad. Take the second game’s incredible Colossus Of Rhodes battle. Pretty impressive, huh? Not next to some of the seismic scraps Kratos gets into in his PS3 debut. Compared to the Titans the Spartan tackles in his quest to scale Mount Olympus, that brassed-off statue is little more than an irked garden gnome. Size really does matter when it comes to God Of War III. Hell, it’s everything. Scaling the largest mountain in the world in order to reach (and horribly murder) Zeus. Fighting your gargantuan grandad, who just happens to be a Titan so incomprehensibly large, grandpappy’s fingernail is bigger than every single boss from the previous game… combined. Oh yeah, and helping rain down a very literal apocalypse on the whole of Ancient Greece, all in service of PlayStation’s musclebound mascot getting revenge on his pop. Seems reasonable.
“THE ENTIRE GAME IS ESSENTIALLY ONE PROLONGED PIECE OF MURDERY MOUNTAINEERING.”
Suffice to say, Kratos’ threequel doesn’t do small moments of quiet character introspection. With 2013’s Ascension acting as a prequel, it’s left to GOW III to close the book on the Ghost Of Sparta’s original trilogy. And hoo-boy if that paperback doesn’t get shut… then burned to cinders in the Underworld’s bubbling lakes of lava.
While the finale opens the door for Kratos to live on – you wouldn’t be eagerly anticipating the upcoming PS4 entry if it hadn’t – God Of War III definitively ends the ashen-skinned killer’s connection to Ancient Greece.
Why? Because Kratos tears the world apart in his quest for vengeance against the Olympians. Cities are washed away by the tsunamis brought about from Poseidon’s death – the Spartan squishes the lord of the sea’s eyeballs like godly grapes. The sun is extinguished when he rips Helios’ head off, in a scene that serves up both a hugely gruesome death, and a chance for Sony Santa Monica to show off the game’s disgusting ‘Zipper Tech’, as the god of light’s neck muscles are torn to sinewy pieces. And if all that flooded, sunless misery wasn’t enough, Kratos even releases every one of the Underworld’s damned souls upon murdering the hell out of Hades. What. A. Jerk.
Admit it, though: he’s your jerk. It’s kinda tough to stay mad at Kratos, partly because his combat reaches supreme, sociopathic highs in God Of War III. Fights shift across the screen with such an persuasively punchy flow, you can’t look away from even the most horrific acts of violence. Gutting a centaur and seeing its intestines spool out over the floor may be visually repugnant, but damn does it ever look badass. Kratos’ increased armoury takes combat encounters to new heights. By the end of the game, you’ve acquired four unique weapons – the Blades Of Exile, Claws Of Hades, Nemean Cestus, and Nemesis Whip – and each one is a delight in the right circumstances. Hooking the ground and dragging Kratos’ bulky frame around to evade attacks with Hades’ claws feel great, but nothing quite matches the pugilist pleasures of the Nemean Cestus: GOW III’s lion-headed answer to modern-day boxing gloves. And as Hercules’ horribly caved-in face will attest, the angry Spartan certainly doesn’t pull his punches. The technical heights Sony Santa Monica took PS3 to still staggers. Gorgeous in motion, hugely satisfying to control, and bolstered by a tremendous sense of urgency – the entire game is essentially one prolonged piece of murdery mountaineering – GOW III’s brilliantly paced powers haven’t dimmed. A true PlayStation titan.
Perses the Titan is watching us fight. Thanks a lot, you big lump of uselessness!
FORMAT PS3 RELEASED 2010 PUB SONY DEV SONY
Your first boss battle is with Poseidon. Where do you go from killing the God Of The Sea?
You’ll find Harryhausen-esque Cursed Remains on Cronos and in the Pit Of Tartarus.