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Friday, May 17, 2013

God of War: Ascension is the Worst God of War that I've Ever Played...

I've played every God of War that Sony's Santa Monica Studios has made. When my PS2 Fat had difficulty playing the first God of War title, I ran out and bought a slim model just so I could play the game.

While I wasn't particularly pleased with the first God of War, I found the Hades section to be a bit too redundant and difficult, the second God of War got the formula perfect.

After those finishing those two titles, I picked up a PSP just so I could play Chains of Olympus, and what do you know? It was a great game, with a pretty good storyline.

Later on I picked up a PS3 so I could play GoW3, and while I didn't love it as much as the second title and CoO, I still found it to be an enjoyable experience.

I never got around to Ghost of Sparta on the PSP, so I picked up the PS3 compilation of the two PSP titles. I have to say Ghost of Sparta was my least favorite of the series, that is until now.

God of War: Ascension is the worst God of War title I've ever played, and it really didn't have to be. The design decisions in the game are so dumb that I have to wonder if they gave the Single Player to an intern while the main designers worked on the multiplayer.

The game is technically sound, it's just badly designed. The most bonehead decision was having the camera zoom ALL THE WAY OUT during battles. It's just fucking pretentious douchebaggery defined. "Let's make it difficulty for the player to see where the hell Kratos is in a swarm of enemies just so we have this panoramic view of the beautiful enviorment we made."

This frustrated me to no end. How am I supposed to enjoy combat or succeed in combat if I can't even see where the fuck I'm at in relation to the bad guys? It's even worse in the snake section, where you can get knocked off of the train and killed, but can't see where the hell you're standing because you're just barely more than a pixel on the screen.

The combat also lacks, instead of being able to use other weapons like you could in CoO and I believe God of War 3, you're stuck with nothing more than Kratos' Blades. In fact, the magic of old titles has been replaced by enchanting Kratos' Blades with elemental effects like fire, ice, and electricity. This is nowhere near as interesting as having a Medusa head or being able to fire a bow and arrow.

The story never got me, either. Specifically because Kratos, the star of the franchise, barely has a paragraph's worth of dialogue in the first three hours of the game. So what's my motivation? I'm trapped by the furies for breaking my oath. What oath? Where the hell in the timeline of the franchise is this game supposed to fit? If I have to look up websites to tell me when your game is taking place, after having played all the other titles in the franchise, you did something wrong.

Unlike other God of War titles, where mythological figures played major roles, and Kratos interacted with them, Ascension stuck me with a fury for the first hour of the game. Then some shadow guy showed up and sent me on my path of destruction, and that's it. There was some guy with apples in a basket just before I quit playing the game, but no major historical or mythological figures.

The AI enemies are just repetitive and dumb. The bad guys you fight in the first fifteen minutes make up the majority of the bad guys you're going to fight three hours in. There's very little variety. Beyond that, they don't really do anything but knock Kratos around in swarms. They don't fight intelligently, they don't do things that would make sense in a fight, they just get to power through Kratos' attacks and knock him on his ass almost instantly. It actually makes Kratos feel like a weak bitch.

Finally, there's so much sliding in this game. It's like Kratos is a skiier who only uses a knife. It's ridiculous. In fact, almost 98% of my deaths came from the bazillion sliding segments that end with "Press X... Oh, you were supposed to hit R1 to latch onto that glowing thing. Yeah, I know we prompted you for X but not R1, how else are we supposed to kill you?"

I played around four hours, but for the first time ever, I'm not going to finish a God of War title. Fuck it.