This current console generation seems to be all about remakes and remasters. Every time you turn around another game from the previous generation is getting a 1080p upgrade and being re-released for almost the same cost as it was originally.
God of War 3 is now 5 years old. It was already a great looking game on the PS3. I would argue it was the best looking game on the console. So why do we need to pay $40 to experience the same thing again, only this time, at a higher resolution and framerate? The answer depends on how much of a fan of the series you are.
Put simply, if you enjoyed God of War 3 on PS3 and never replayed the campaign on a harder difficulty or obsessively worked to complete all the challenge modes, then the remaster may not be worth your time unless you are just feeling nostalgic and want a prettier trip down memory lane. However, if you are a God of War fanatic and have played the previous games multiple times, still play them today, earned all the trophies, and now want to experience the swansong of the series in full 1080p at 60 frames per second. Then this is definitely a worthy purchase and you will enjoy yourself start to finish.
Games, like most things in life, only give you back what you put into them. If you rush through games not caring for the story or lore and just want to kill things, ignoring the overall experience the developers were hoping you’d have, then you may want to save your money. This review probably won’t sway you because literally nothing is different. The story is still the weakest out of the 2 previous numbered games in the series. Kratos is also still the angry one-dimensional killer he was before.
[pullquote]You are essentially getting the exact same God of War 3 experience[/pullquote]
However, in a slight twist, he has gone from anti-hero to full on merciless villain. I wish there would have been a more redeeming arch or perhaps a better glimpse inside his human side (considering he was once a father). But alas, it’s pretty much murder everything and do so in the most spectacular fashion possible. You are essentially getting the exact same God of War 3 experience as before. There are no new skins, challenges, or trophies. There is however a very fun new photo mode, which seems to be a new trend for games.
The photo mode is a nice touch and has added hours to my first playthrough of the PS4 remaster. As you will see in the screen shot gallery below, I can’t get enough of it. I am a bit dismayed that the camera on the right-stick is fixed in photo mode and you don’t have the freedom the Last of Us remaster’s photo mode offered. However this is not a deal-breaker and finding those perfect moments to freeze the game and create the perfect picture has been a blast. I’ve even let myself die a number of times, just to capture that perfect photo of a kill. But it was worth it.
As for the gameplay, it’s still the leading king in 3rd person hack-n-slash gameplay. No other franchise has come close to the combat perfection of the God of War series and God of War 3 proves it is still the benchmark for its genre. Thankfully none of this has changed or been altered in any way. Every move and attack from Kratos is just as responsive and at 60 frames per second, it just feels amazing. Besides the resolution polish, the game also has been given some lighting tweaks and it shows in the beauty of the outside environments. The sound design seems to have been improved too. Kratos’s famous blades now seem to have a heavier sounding impact on both enemies and the ground. The chains seem to rattle a bit louder too when using area of effect attacks. God of War Ascension had the best sounding weapon impacts in my opinion, and this God of War 3 remaster seems to be closer to that.
If you are new to the God of War series, I would definitely recommend this. You are in for a real treat with one of the best hack-n-slash games ever made. Hopefully it will be enough to make you a fan of the series and go back to the PS3 games and experience them as well. If you are a fan of visceral combat, epic Greek mythology and settings, horrifying monsters and creatures that you can decapitate, disembowel, and empty of all their blood. Then God of War 3 might be right up your alley. However, if you were lukewarm about the series, or a fan, but never really played the games more than once, then you may want to pass.
There is a lot of missed opportunity here in terms of the remaster’s offerings. The cut-scenes are all pre-rendered and seem to be in a lower resolution than the gameplay. After the ambiguous ending, I had hoped for a teaser for the next game in the series. However, that is not the case. There is literally nothing new here and it’s a real shame. A lot of these remasters are starting to feel like lazy and greedy cash-grabs. However, if you are not bothered by that and want to experience the game that does grand scale in a way like no other, then God of War 3 remastered is definitely something you should try.
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