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God of War (PlayStation 2)

Mature
ESRB Rating
Genre
Perspective
Theme
93
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
4.0
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.

Description

God of War is set in the age of ancient Greek myths. The hero of the game is a mortal warrior Kratos. Long time ago, Kratos was the leader of Spartans, a fearless and brutal general who waged wars for the glory of his city. Today, he is known as the Ghost of Sparta. For the past ten years, he is tormented with terrible nightmares, unable to forget the tragedy that happened in his past. He has to serve the gods of Olympus, who promised to forgive his sins if he becomes their champion. Finally, the goddess Athene tells Kratos that redemption will be granted to him if he defeats her brother, the god of war Ares, who was the very reason for the tragic event of his past...

God of War is a 3D action game with platforming and puzzle-solving elements. Kratos has two default swords that he will always carry with him, called the Blades of Chaos. They allow the player to perform combos, which will constantly climb until the fight is over or until it takes too long to register another hit. The higher the combo total, the more red orbs Kratos receives from defeated enemies.

Similar to Devil May Cry, the red orbs collected from fallen enemies can be used to purchase upgrades. It is possible to upgrade the default weapons, learning new moves and striking faster, or put the orbs into different weapons acquired throughout the game, such as Blade of Artemis. Kratos will, over time, also have access to a selection of magic spells. At specific points in the game, he will be able to generate an arc of electricity, courtesy of Zeus, or use the decapitated head of a Gorgon to turn enemies into stone with Meduza's Gaze.

The game features several unlockable extras, which are only acquired when the player has beaten the game on different difficulty modes. Most of the features are a behind-the-scenes look at various aspects of the game, such as creating the world, modeling Kratos, and a look at deleted levels that didn't make the final cut of the game.

Screenshots

God of War PlayStation 2 Bashing a foe's head into a rock.
God of War PlayStation 2 Kratos slicing up a cyclops.
God of War PlayStation 2 No, this isn't hell. Not yet.
God of War PlayStation 2 On the pathway out of hell to defeat Ares and become the new god of war.

Alternate Titles

  • "战神" -- Chinese spelling (simplified)
  • "GoW" -- Common abbreviation
  • "God of War: The Hydra Battle" -- Demo Disc release title
  • "Dark Odyssey" -- Working title

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Gods demand sacrifice from all of us Oleg Roschin (164863) 4.43 Stars4.43 Stars4.43 Stars4.43 Stars4.43 Stars
*I* *AM* *THE* *GOD OF WAR* St. Martyne (3562) 3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars
An excellent fighting adventure, marred only slightly by a heavy overdose of pointless gore Greg Mitchell (71) 3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars
God of War shows not only what can be done with the PS2 now, but what developers should have been doing all along Terrence Bosky (5237) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
You are Kratos, and you will MURDER the God of War! Dwango (292) 4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars
It's not easy to be a human being Melody (119) 4.71 Stars4.71 Stars4.71 Stars4.71 Stars4.71 Stars
Kratos is quite simply just one big "pee yoo es es why" lasttoblame (393) 4.14 Stars4.14 Stars4.14 Stars4.14 Stars4.14 Stars
Hell of a great game...unfortunately the final moments ruined my gaming experience Indra was here (19215) 3.86 Stars3.86 Stars3.86 Stars3.86 Stars3.86 Stars
Very gory.. but the more blood, the merrier I am! lord of daedra (63) 3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars
A perfect example about what gaming is all about. Little God (4) 4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars

The Press Says

HonestGamers Mar 27, 2005 10 out of 10 100
EL33TONLINE Sep 15, 2006 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
Jive Magazine Apr 23, 2005 5 out of 5 100
PTGamers Jul 12, 2005 19 out of 20 95
PGNx Media Apr 07, 2005 9.5 out of 10 95
Worth Playing Mar 29, 2005 9.5 out of 10 95
NZGamer Jun 27, 2005 9.5 out of 10 95
Just RPG Sep 19, 2005 94 out of 100 94
Retrogaming History May 11, 2009 9 out of 10 90
SwankWorld Apr 28, 2005 9 out of 10 90

Forums

Topic # Posts Last Post
Kratos 7 Oleg Roschin (164863)
May 19, 2008

Trivia

Athena

In the God of War series, the Greek Goddess Athena is voiced by Carole Ruggier. Co-incidentally, she also voiced the same role in the game Age of Mythology.

Development

According the "Making of" materials, A number of elements were removed from the finished game. Kratos, for example, underwent a number of incarnations before his final design. Some of these included a tribalistic, African design with dreadlocks, a "Lone Wolf and Cub" theme that included a child or small dog (which may have inspired the Cerberus Pups), a vaguely futuristic, armoured look, and various gladiator designs, which were rejected because they didn't look savage enough.

German version

Sony Computer Entertainment Europe's original intention was to release this game in Germany alongside the other countries in June 2005. They even had a cover art for the Germany release ready, as you can see on this back cover, yet there was one big problem.

The USK, Germany's age rating organization, refused to give the game a rating. And while it is not illegal to sell games in Germany without a USK rating (in this case it acts in most cases as it were rated USK 18), Sony Computer Entertainment Deutschland decided to not release the game in Germany.

For this, SCED's Marketing Director Ulrich Barbian gave a statement telling that:
"The publication of a title without an age rating does not fit Sony Computer Entertainment Deutschland's company philosophy. As a pioneer of a whole category, we can't expect that the public accepts video gaming as a natural entertainment like music and video if we release titles without age ratings. We hope our Action-Adventure fans understand us. Besides, there are many very good Action-Adventures available for the PlayStation 2, which got an age rating from the USK."

Besides this marketing speech, there is another reason. Games released in Germany after April 2003 without a USK rating tend be be indexed shortly after. And this means that most of the sales drop to zero after a short time.

Essentially, publishers only have two choices once the USK rejects the game. Give up or cut it so much until the USK is satisfied. The latter of course runs the risk that the publisher is investing tons of money in cutting it down and the public won't take it anymore, because it is cut way too much.

A similar thing happened with Activision's Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil, where Activision decided not to release in in Germany after the USK refused it. And ultimately, the game found its way to the index.

But for God of War, don't cutting it down went to success, as the USK revised the decision two days ago, on 13 February 2006, when it got its USK 18 rating (and therefore the protection from being indexed). However, there is one change: during the sacrificing sequence the human victim was replaced with a monster.

Kratos

Kratos, the name of the game's main character, is Greek for strength or power. Even though he is not part of the canonical Greek mythology, a deity named Kratos (κρατος, "power") is mentioned in several classic works, including Hesiod's Theogony, the primary source for Greek mythology.

Kratos was one of the four children of the titan Pallas and Ocean's daughter Styx. He had a brother named Zelos ("rivalry"), and sisters Bia ("force") and - the most famous of the four - Nike ("victory").

The four sided with Zeus when he fought the titans, and became somewhat of "bodyguards" to him. Interestingly enough, in the few myths that mention Kratos, his portrayal is not dissimilar to the protagonist of God of War. His loyalty to his master and his brutality are particularly noticeable.

Awards

  • Computer Games Magazine
    • March 2006 - Console Game of the Year 2005
  • GamePro (Germany)
    • 23. February 2006 - Best Console Action Game in 2005 (notable is that the game was not released in Germany at this point)
  • GameSpy
    • 2005 – #3 Game of the Year
    • 2005 – PS2 Game of the Year
    • 2005 – PS2 Action Game of the Year
    • 2005 – PS2 Game of the Year (Readers' Vote)
Information also contributed b< Mark Ennis, PCGamer77, Supernintedo Chalmers and Unicorn Lynx

Related Web Sites

JPaterson (9096) added God of War (PlayStation 2) on Apr 13, 2005
Other platforms contributed by MAT (66329)