God Of War has been one of the most highly anticipated games of 2018. There’s so much hype surrounding Kratos‘ next adventure that some gamers have even considered buying a new console just to play the new God Of War. While the game does have impressive graphics, interesting new mechanics, superb voice-acting and character animations, I would not advise getting a PS4 just to play one game.
**Warning! Spoilers For The Game Below:
A big selling point for the new God Of War has been the story and its Norse mythological setting. Having watched a friend play through the game, I can say that I was underwhelmed on both accounts.
Players were drawn to this new interpretation of God Of War to see a new side of Kratos. However, Kratos went from being a two-dimensional revenge machine to an equally two-dimensional “distant father” who only gets two inches closer to his son by the end of the game. He doesn’t laugh, cry, or express any other emotion than being stoic.
The game starts strong, with Kratos and his son burning the remains of Kratos’ dead wife. Kratos intends to fulfill his wife’s last wishes by scattering her ashes at the highest peak in the realms, but he is waylaid by a mysterious stranger at the front door. The first boss fight is epic and on par with anything seen in a blockbuster superhero film.
However, this lean-bodied, tattooed, sarcastic god isn’t Loki, as the player might expect. He is in fact Baldur, a lesser God who mythology buffs will know as a sun god that Loki kills with an arrow made from mistletoe (lame). Baldur is an excellent first boss, but not even remotely compelling as a final antagonist.
The final fight with Baldur is just recycling the first fight, but with the difficulty amped up. Kratos kills Baldur (for plot purposes) by snapping his neck even though Kratos had snapped Baldur’s neck in their first encounter.
There just aren’t enough big boss fights. Kratos fights trolls, but they’re just sub-bosses–like the cyclopes from the original series. Where are the frost giants and Fenrir wolves? The more recent God of War games still haven’t topped the Cronos boss fight from God Of War 3.
Players encounter the Midgard Serpent, which is incredibly well animated and designed. But, players don’t even fight the serpent; it’s about as threatening as the Luck Dragon from The Never Ending Story. The big guns like Thor and Odin never appear in the game, and are only referenced through statues and runes. Loki is in the game, but he’s not a playable boss and his true identity will either blow your mind or make you roll your eyes.
The hype surrounding God Of War is so massive that it’s impossible to live up to everyone’s expectations. It’s not a bad game, but it’s not a masterpiece or even the best game in the series–so buyer beware.