Review by GameFreak903

Reviewed: 03/31/05

A brutal bloodfest that mixes greek culture with intense combat

Simply from the screenshots and trailers that looped for this game, you could tell it was going to be a gem. The intense action combined with the elements of a platformer, gave way to God of War. Being a personal fan of Greek culture, this game appealed to me from the first time I saw the hydra being slammed into the side of a ship. Simply put, my expectations were met.

The game begins with little known of yor character, Kratos. You immediately start off on a ship on the Aegan Sea that's already under attack. From the start, you being to tear through hordes of undead soldiers. As you move through the game, the story of Kratos and his past is exposed in unique flashbacks. Not spoiling anything, you eventually get the idea of it. Past occurrences have deemed you bad, everyone hates you, and you wat to kill Ares, the god of war. Simple enough. More is revealed as you progress, but that's the basic idea. With motivation and a pretty bad reputation, you set off on your quest

Now for the gameplay. Besides the occasional puzzle and platforming elements, you are basically going to be tearing through mythical Greek creatures. From Minotaurs, to Medusa, to that wonderful Cyclops, you'll need to use different tactics for different enemies in order to finish them off. This helps the game stay unique, not letting you win by simply tapping the Square button. Besides the awesome Blades of Chaos, you are also given various gifts from the gods. You'll get the Thunderbolts of Zues, Rage of Poseidon, and the oh so amazing army of Hades. Combining these with your regular attacks is necessary. The main innovation is the minigames that appear after wearing an enemy down. For example; after wearing the minotaur down, I have two choices. Press the corresponding button above his head to initiate the minigame and gain health or kill him as normal for orbs to upgrade my abilities. This is also used on bosses for cinematic finishes. I personally love the way the Hydra is amazing.

The music and sound are great. The music is really uplifting, gloomy, or whatever suits the mood. The music helps sets the mood nicely from the desert to a dark cave, it gives you a sense of the environment. The sound is awesome. The noise from tearing a undead soldier in half or stabbing a minotaur through the head are satisfying and can be heard many times. The monster's groans and grunts are fitting and the traps give that aged, rusty sound that just makes you nervous to go through.

The graphics are simply stunning. The environments are what really stand out. You actually feel like you're in Greece with the detailed backdrops. I literally stood for about 5 minutes simply gazing at how awesome a waterfall looked. The character models are amazing. They are greatly detailed and look menacing. The boss details really stand out and the design and look of these bosses are just stunning. Simply put, this is one beautiful game to behold.

Overall, the game is a must-have for any action-adventure gamer. Never before have I experienced the intense combat that this game provides. The creators should be applauded for making beautiful environments, great music, and an amazing experience all around. The only problems I had with the game is that occasionally you get a little lost and are not quite sure what to do next. I was stuck in Hades maze for a good while, and the cliffs of madness also made me go...well, mad. Also, the block button is used in combination with the four main buttons to initiate special moves that sometimes are pulled off on accident. If you can get past that and the occasional nudity and gore, than hey, this is the game for you. An all around challenging bloodbath that is a necessity for a PS2 collection.

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

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