**Please remember, before taking to social media to tell me I am wrong, this is my personal opinion and one I am trying to explain. I only think it is fair to respect that.**
Having finished God of War’s main narrative, and now grinding out the last few trophies, I felt I could sum up my feelings on the game a bit more succinctly and fairly as the story has come to a close(ish).
I’ll start by saying, I have never played a God of War game before. the series has never appealed to me. Kratos has always been presented as a character I have no desire to explore, one with little charisma, and one who I do not emphasis with. However, with the hype train in full flow for the release of this latest instalment, and the stellar review scores my arm was twisted into purchasing.
When a game gets 10’s across the board, it must be for a reason… I’ll also caveat this opinion piece with the fact I did not really enjoy Horizon – a topic for another day, but an important stake in the ground when I am trying to explain myself.
For me, whilst it’s a very good game, I would not put it on a pedestal like a lot of other people have done so. Everything the game does, has been done better elsewhere in the PlayStation universe. Visually, It’s up there with Uncharted 4 & Horizon, but no better. The characters have had, and will have, no lasting effect on me as Joel & Ellie have, or even Chloe & Nadine. The combat lacks the depth and strategy from a Batman Arkham title or Shadow of War, it’s basically a button masher (and yes, I have fought and defeated a handful of Valkyries). The world doesn’t have that feeling of being alive that Horizon captures so well (as does The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild). The soundtrack, maybe speaking as a non-fan, seems generic, and the inventory/upgrade system is overly bloated and could have learnt a lot of lessons from Persona 5 and it’s super stylised, super pretty UI.
You can kind of see what I am getting at, but, here is the positive spin. What God of War achieves, is it takes what is great about all the games mentioned above and melds it into one package. A package that is solid, (albeit it should be with the number of updates), well designed and has enough about it to drive even a non-fan like me through to the end. I may not have understood the nuances of Nordic Mythology, and I even had to change the button mapping to suit my experience from other games, but, the fact I could do so is testament to Sony Santa Monica.
So, whilst for me it isn’t a clear 10 out of 10, it makes sense as to why it has reviewed so well, and it is brilliant to see the success the studio has had. It is certainly exciting to think of the heights single player games could reach, and God of War is an important milestone in bringing together many AAA functions to create one overall experience.
Thank for reading to the end, I’d appreciate your thoughts too, both for and against, Dan