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God of War III

Kratos Aims High In His Quest Against The Gods
by Joe Juba on Sep 29, 2009 at 05:48 PM
Platform PlayStation 3
Publisher Sony Computer Entertainment
Developer Sony Online Entertainment
Rating Mature

Kratos isn’t the kind of guy who sets reasonable goals. When he goes after something, he aims high and over-delivers with unparalleled zeal and overwhelming brutality. The team at Sony’s Santa Monica studio is adopting the same philosophy in developing God of War III, making sure that the final installment in the trilogy has Kratos performing the most barbaric kills and taking down the most terrifying foes of the entire series. If this really is the last chapter of the story, Kratos is certainly going out in style.

With one of the longest lines on the E3 show floor, the playable demo for God of War III showcased several new tricks Kratos uses in his continued assault on the gods and Mount Olympus. The core of the action is still using his flaming chain blades to tear apart mythological threats, but a few key improvements promise to make that process even more entertaining.

Where previous God of War games usually had Kratos fighting off advancing enemies, God of War III incorporates more mobility into combat, giving you more options to control the fight. When you grab an enemy, you now have a bull rush option in which Kratos holds the victim in front of him and plows forward, breaking through clusters of other foes. The combat grapple also has more utility, since Kratos can throw his blades out at an enemy and pull himself into them (or pull them over, depending on the enemy). This works whether your target is on the ground or in the air. Mastering these crowd-managing moves will be crucial, since this entry can have up to 50 enemies onscreen at once.

Like previous installments, Kratos can use weapons other than his signature blades, but the team has currently only revealed one: the Cestus. This pair of vicious gauntlets is ideal for close-quarters fighting, and they provide a distinctly different feel to the combat – something that alternate weapons in God of War games have struggled with in the past. To further encourage variety in combos, certain special items (like the fire bow) draw from a recharging meter instead of your magic reserves. This gives players more freedom to experiment with combining the blades with other attacks, since the bar will just refill in a matter of seconds.

As much as we enjoyed testing out the new mechanics, we were most impressed by how God of War III continues to up the stakes in an already epic setting. We saw Kratos pull out a cyclops’ eye, stab a chimera with its own horn, and gut a mighty centaur – and that was just during standard encounters. With the massive titans waging war, more gods entering the fray, and Kratos determined to topple Olympus, God of War III will be packed with jaw-dropping moments worthy of passing into legend.

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God of War III

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