GoW Collection Review
A bloodthirsty bargain for Playstation 3 owners. The legend of Kratos lives on for the HD generation.
Posted by Ally Doig (TheLazyPerfectionist) on Oct 9, 2010 - 4:09pm EST (Oct 9, 2010 16:09)
Although the origins of ‘action adventure’ games can be traced way back past 2005, it was the original God Of War that propelled the genre to dazzlingly frenetic and cinematic heights. When a game such as Sony Santa Monica’s original thrusts itself onto the scene, all current competitors are instantly vanquished, and everything after it tries but inevitably fails to crawl out from Kratos’ daunting shadow. In videogame circles phrases such as ‘like God Of War’ or ‘God Of War-esque’ have become frequent fixtures in vocabulary when critiquing action titles, not to mention the influx of QTE based sequences in games after GOW had popularized the mechanic.
The US method of promoting the God Of War Collection was a far more efficient and relevant way of doing so than in Europe. In build up to the colossal third and final installment of the trilogy, the remastered package was offered at a cut price. This enabled existing fans to re-immerse themselves in the GOW format and story, and also to offer a chance for new players to familiarize themselves with the franchise before the true current generation installment was released. Here in Europe though, we’re treated to the same excellent value HD collection but some time after God Of War 3’s release; hence the anticipation revolving around it has waned and this little gem has rather more of a low key feel to it. However, this is a relatively insignificant gripe when considering the value and quality of this bundle as whole.
A criticism aimed at God Of War 3 was that the gameplay had shown no real signs of evolution throughout the series. However, when the gameplay is as consistently solid as the GOW saga’s undoubtedly is, you can forgive the developers for being cautious in making any wholesale changes to an already brilliant formula.
The original, although five years old, can still hold its own as a stand-alone product. The gameplay we all know and love is there in all its HD, 60fps glory to relive for the nostalgic, or to gleefully indulge in for first time players. The epic feel of the game has been somewhat lost over time however which is fully understandable. While it may have left us awestruck the first time around; the blandness of the character models and backdrops are a symptom of being half a decade old. In the context of Playstation 2 visuals however, GOW is by no means a poor looking game, and after the satisfaction of skewering the first Hydra around half an hour in, original misgivings about the slightly dated look have been well and truly forgotten.