The lights are on
What new ideas the game brings to the table and how well old ideas are presented.
How good a game looks, taking into account any flaws such as bad collision or pop-up.
Does the game’s music and sound effects get you involved or do they make you resolve to always play with the volume down?
Basically, the controller to human interface. The less you think about the hunk of plastic in your hands, the better the playability.
Flat out, just how fun the game is to play. The most important factor in rating a game.
Since the original God of War released in 2005, Kratos’ epic has
expanded to five games and three systems, including PSP. Those handheld
entries from Ready At Dawn accomplish a rare feat, providing portable
God of War experiences that earn their place beside the console
installments. Chains of Olympus and Ghost of Sparta are great games –
without needing to apply the “for a handheld” qualifier. This fact is
clearer than ever now that they are bundled together in God of War:
Because of the quality of the originals, the
transition to PS3 goes well for both titles. A new HD coat of paint
results in impressive visuals for both gameplay and cinematics, and the
action flows smoothly thanks to the improved framerate. The graphics
aren’t as jaw-dropping as God of War III, but I doubt any reasonable
gamer was expecting such a drastic transformation.
Both games also
support stereoscopic 3D, but I can’t really tout that as a selling
point. The feature doesn’t make the games any better or more immersive;
it’s a neat trick, but you’re not missing anything without it. The
implementation of trophies is a far bigger deal, adding goals to shoot
for and a few laughs, like the beam-walking trophy in Chains of Olympus.
The games are worth replaying anyway, but trophies give hardcore fans
an extra incentive to revisit these chapters in the tale.
the new layer of polish, Kratos still feels as powerful and brutal as
ever. He takes down towering beasts and commits deicide with ease, and
the gameplay feels right at home. I loved both Chains of Olympus and
Ghost of Sparta when they first released, but I’m not going to re-hash
my original reviews. The biggest difference is that my only mechanical
complaint is fixed on the PS3 versions. I never warmed up to using the
shoulder buttons to perform the evasive roll on PSP, but the second
analog stick eliminates this problem and puts Kratos’ full agility at
The evasive roll was a small kink in the formula on
handheld, but now that it’s ironed out, you can enjoy the stylish
combat and memorable story unimpeded. Without spoiling anything about
the plot, I can say that Chains of Olympus and Ghost of Sparta possess a
handful of the series’ coolest moments, from familial encounters to
ruthless kills. They also have the best secondary weapons in any of the
games (the gauntlet in CoO and the spear/shield combo in GoS), which
give you a reason to finally put down the iconic chain blades and try
Independently, Chains of Olympus and Ghost of
Sparta were standout efforts that helped make a name for Ready At Dawn.
When you put them together in the Origins Collection, you get two
amazing and upgraded adventures in one $40 package that no fan of action
games should miss.
Email the author Joe Juba, or follow on Twitter, Facebook, and Game Informer.