God Of War game of the generation?
A reader explains why he loves the recent God Of War game so much and how it explains why the PS4 was so successful this generation.
By this time next year well know all about the PlayStation 5 and next gen Xbox. All about their games, their prices, their streaming services, and all the other hoopla of the next generation. Well also be drowning in retrospectives of the current generation, as people rush to tell everyone about their 10 best games of the generation and why Sony triumphed and Microsoft failed.
So Id like to get ahead of the crowd and tell you about my favourite game of the generation (and yes, there are some great-looking games coming out next sprin, but humour me).
As Ive heard many others say I was not a fan of the original God Of War games and was not looking forward to the (soft) reboot at all. I hated the character of Kratos and felt the games were pandering to angry American teens in a sort of delayed example of 90s style xtreme edginess.
The odd thing about the reboot is that it wouldnt be as good a game if the previous games hadnt been like that, because it benefits so much from not only subverting your expectations but also showing real character growth in Kratos. Its very slow, and for a while seems like its not going to happen at all, but God Of War features the best character arc of any video game character Ive ever seen.
It doesnt do this through endless lengthy cut scenes but instead through gradual change, small comments, and changing reactions to events and the other characters you meet. Its subtle and its realistic and while the other characters can be a little more abrupt (Atreus in particular) in how their stories pan out its still handled very well.
And just as importantly the gameplay is excellent too. There are perhaps not quite enough enemy types to last the whole running time, including a strange lack of boss battles, but everything else is perfect, with the exploration of the Lake of the Nine being easily my favourite gameplay experience of the whole generation.
Its the perfect mixture of puzzles, combat, storytelling, and exploration being open world but not so huge that you got lost and bored and compact enough that theres something new to see and do around literally every corner. The game is filled with secrets, including some side quests that are amongst the best things in the game, especially freeing the dragons and how all of that is portrayed.
All of this comes back round to the question I mentioned at the start: why has Sony done so well this generation, when theres so little technical difference between the Xbox One and PlayStation 4? Many will say its because of Microsofts mistakes during its reveal but those have been completely forgotten by ordinary gamers now, even if they knew about them at all.
No, the real reason is simple: Sonys games were better. And I for one am very glad that thats the reason the console has been successful (and why the Switch has also succeeded).
Nothing matters except the games and it takes something of God Of Wars quality to realise that. Naturally Im very much looking forward to seeing how a sequel will fare on the PlayStation 5, but its not the better graphics Im excited about, its seeing how it plays and how the story turns out. Because thats whats most important.
By reader Hault
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