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God of War Ascension review

On May 13, 2013 by Aaron Meehan

God of War returns, with Sony Santa Monica takes us back to where it all began with God of War Ascension. In this prequel players how Kratos was left to suffer after he broke his blood oath with Ares.

God of War Ascension sees Kratos imprisoned by the Furies, the guardians of honour, after Kratos broke his blood oath to Ares, the Greek god of War. Once Kratos breaks free he plans to continue his mission which started three weeks before his imprisonment. His mission is to free himself from his bond with Ares, and to stop Ares and the Furies from overthrowing Mount Olympus. However Kratos is no alone as Orkos, the oath keeper helps him on his mission.

The games plot interchanges between his imprisonment and the events which led to his capture. This change in timeline allows players to fully learn the story of why Kratos was imprisoned and also to slowly introduce Kratos to abilities he learned while he was on his mission.

Well enough about the plot, what is the game like? God of War Ascension is an above average game. I enjoyed the story, mainly because I’m a fan of ancient gods, myths and legends. For those who aren’t fans of ancient cultures the games story is still fun, and no you won’t have to stop the game and Google what the Furies are etc. because thankfully the game does tell you all about them.

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Combat is God of War Ascension for me wasn’t exactly a high point in the game. I found enemies managed to soak up a lot of damage, while this is to be expected for bosses and mini-bosses. The amount of time it took to clear out a group of enemies made the combat feel boring and at times it had me wishing it would just end.

When you kill enemies or find red chests you are rewarded with red orbs, these orbs are used to unlock new abilities for your items. Unlocks are pretty similar on all items, with weapon buffs giving you nearly all the same unlocks.

What made the game’s combat bearable for me was the fact the game wasn’t all about fighting. When you weren’t fighting there were puzzle to be solved.

Puzzles in God of War Ascension are great. As a person who is terrible at puzzle games I rather enjoyed trying to figure them out. I was happy to see that as the game went on the puzzles required you to think more and use the abilities you acquired on your journey. If you love a mixture of combat and reasonably complex puzzlesm God of War Ascension is the game for you.

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While I found myself enjoying the game, God of War Ascension did have something I personally despise and that is quick time events (QTE). For those who don’t know what a QTE is, it is basically hitting a specific button at the correct time. The game is littered with QTEs. To kill a mini-boss or boss you have to grapple them and perform a QTE kill. QTEs do appear outside of combat with you having to press x and R1 at the right time to make sure you grab and jump to the next hook, because if you jump and don’t grapple the hook quickly enough you die. I know some people don’t mind QTEs, but I find they take me out of the game. While I don’t like QTEs, the QTEs in God of War Ascension were mostly bearable and thankfully it was possible to fail the majority of them.

Before talking about the games multiplayer there is one last minor issue. At times the camera can go bit crazy, on some occasions it deciding to zoom out to show the background while I was still fighting.

If there is one thing that ruins an interesting single player campaign, it is a bad multiplayer experience. Low and behold God of War Ascension falls into this category. I found the single player interesting story wise, but the multiplayer for me was horrible. I only managed to stomach two, 4v4 team favour of the gods before putting down my controller and saying goodbye to it forever. The problem I found with the multiplayer was the fact I was forced to play against players many times my level, players which had unlocks which basically left me defenceless to nearly any attack. I know that it is a bit of a non issue for some people, but I would have loved to see a way for a new player to play against people close to their level. It would have being a great way to introduce players to the multiplayer instead of like me getting thrown into the deep end and praying that they don’t have to fight against a bunch of high level players.

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With that rant out of the way, what does the multiplayer offer? In multiplayer you have a choice of four classes which all represent a god. The modes on offer are pretty standard with co-op, team deathmatch and various capture type modes. You can customise your character by unlocking new armour, weapons and abilities, but these take time with you needing a certain amount of skill points, level and/or completing a certain task. The multiplayer is pretty much what you would expect from multiplayer game nowadays.

When it comes to the multiplayer, I honestly don’t know why it exists. God of War Ascension is a good single player game and I feel the multiplayer really wasn’t needed for this title.

Conclusion

God of War Ascension has a good storyline with a decent mix of combat and puzzle solving. However the combat does seem to drag on for far too long with enemies being able to soak up a lot of damage. The multiplayer is decent but it isn’t overly enjoyable.

SCORE: 75%

God of War Ascension Information

Developer: Santa Monica Studio
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Genre: action-adventure
Rating: 18
Platform: PlayStation 3
Release date: out now
Website: http://godofwar.playstation.com

Author: Aaron Meehan

Hi, I’m the creator of SG Gaming Info. When I’m not working on my writing or creating content for this site’s YouTube channel, I like to relax and enjoy character driven story games.


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