Well, better late than never I suppose. I never owned the originals on the PS2, but at least I’ve got myself the re-released versions in their HD glory. Apart from the graphics being updated, the games are exactly the same as the PS2 versions. I only really got into God of War when we went to the Eurogamer Expo in 2009 and I got my hands on the demo of God of War 3, and I was annoyed with myself for never having played these games before, so getting a chance to play them as the God of War Collection was great.
God of War see Kratos 10 years into his service to the Gods, and they ask him for one more favour. To bring down Ares, the God of War. Throughout the game, you get glimpses of Kratos’ past and how he came to be the Ghost of Sparta.
Throughout God of War II, Kratos is out for revenge on the Gods, particularly Zeus and has the help of the Titans this time around. I preferred GOW II as I thought the story was better and had a bit more depth to it. Not that the first one wasn’t great fun.
The game is really simple to jump into as you start off the game with limited combos which you can upgrade throughout the game. There is a lot of button bashing with the square and triangle buttons at times, but it’s still great fun. What else do you expect from a hack and slash game like God of War? You still have to be aware of your surroundings and use the dodge skill with the right analogue stick to good effect, otherwise, you can find yourself in quite a sticky situation.
If there’s a part of the game where you keep dying, it will give you the option to lower the difficulty setting so you can carry on with the game, or just keep plugging away like a Spartan and not know when you’re beaten. There’s even a trophy available for dying so many times in a row and being offered Easy Mode which is aptly named “Getting My Ass Kicked” which is a nice touch. Reminds you of just how weak you really are.
I did find certain parts of the game really tricky and leaving me really frustrated but I liked the game for this as it was a challenge at times and not just a straight walkthrough game. It’s a very linear game, but you don’t expect a game like God of War to be a massive sandbox game where you can walk around where ever you want. Plus it’s much better when you’ve got a horde of undead legionnaires and minotaurs all heading for you in a confined space……it makes the blood splatters seem more satisfying.
You can really rack up your combo hit scores and unleash your powers from the Gods/Titans (depending on which one you’re playing) which is great fun. You can upgrade all of your weapons and magic by collection a ton of red orbs so that later enemies became a bit easier to send back to Hades in the Underworld.
Trophies have been added to both games so will keep you coming back for more after you’ve completed it once over. Like you’d need an excuse to come back and give it another play through. There’s even a trophy for finding some half-naked women and giving them some of the magic Kratos Spartan love. He’s quite a laid back guy is Kratos. In the middle of a war and he thinks “I’ll just nip in here for two minutes and make sure these lovely ladies are ok”.
I was really impressed with how good the game looks. The visuals from the PS2 really had a bit of an overhaul and the game looks really polished and runs incredibly smoothly in HD, with hardly any screen tear in sight. So when you’re in the moment and decide to rip out the eye of a cyclops and grab a legionnaire and rip him in half, it looks superb.
I loved playing the God of War Collection and can’t wait to get my hands on God of War 3. The storyline was much better in the second game and from what I’ve heard, GOW3 finishes it off nicely. I’ve played God of War: Chains of Olympus on the PSP and was extremely impressed with Ready at Dawns’ take of the game and can’t wait to play God of War: Ghost of Sparta which is the next PSP title in the franchise.
Some of you who already own the PS2 versions of the game might not think it’s worth upgrading to the HD Collection version of the game, but for around £18 for two fantastic games, it’s well worth the money. Plus, if you’ve gotten rid of your PS2 and don’t have a 60GB PS3, then you should definitely go out and treat yourself.
Also, if you really love the franchise and story behind it, then take a look at our review of the God of War book.
4 out of 5
Danny ‘Ender’ Martin has been part of the Zath team from pretty much the very beginning since he met Zath himself at Leeds Met University whilst studying Business IT. He’s an avid gamer and a big film buff. Danny graduated from the University of Bradford with a degree in Computer Animation and SFX and now currently works at one of the biggest UK games developers, which will hopefully see some of his ideas hit the gaming world.