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    jp's God of War 2 (PS2)

    [March 17, 2010 06:11:36 PM]

    It's a funny feeling to finish playing a game on the eve of the sequel being released. It's all the more unusual because despite enjoying all of the games released so far (except for the mobile one) I'm not particularly excited about GoW III. I guess I'm tired. The games are, for the most part, exactly the same. The story is different, the puzzles are different, and, for the most part, the places are also different. But it still feels the same.

    It took me a while to realize why. Initially I thought it was a gameplay issue. It was so easy to pick up GoW 2 after finishing the first one, that surely that would explain it. However, there is a certain pleasure in the acquired (and developed) expertise. It feels good when the combos work, when you solve the puzzles, and when the enemies lose. No, it wasn't gameplay. It was Kratos.

    The best way I can think of explaining is by analogy to television. The God of War series feels like watching 3 episodes of a really good TV show. However, each episode is pretty long ( +/- 20 hrs) and for all that time there is no character development whatsoever. I guess I was expecting Kratos to change from one game to the next, but he doesn't. So, maybe he's more like a TV show character (who may not change in a few episodes, but rather you are provided with more insight into the character). GoW is neither. No development, no depth. And no change. Kratos is unrepentant, unforgiving, and completely blinded to any thing other than his thirst for revenge. He never changes, and he never will. So why bother playing GoW III?

    Oh, the ending (from the fight with the sisters of fate onwards) got pretty interesting. I think this might be the first game I know of where you go to the past in order to make sure that it stays the same way it was. In this case "the past" refers to events from the first game!
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    [January 1, 2010 08:59:45 PM]
    I guess the downside of playing a game and its sequel close to each other is that your understanding of the sequel isn't mediated by the amount of time that passed between their release. This can make a big difference in games.

    I was expecting God of War II to look much better than the first one. I remember that when it came out people were surprised that it was a PS2 release as opposed to a PS3 one. It may have been the last AAA title to release solely on the PS2. So, even though GoW looks great, I was expecting the sequel to look, you know, much better. It doesn't.

    I guess they really were pushing the limits of the hardware for the first one. Sure, I've noticed some little details and things that are better visually (dust-in-the-air effects), but it feels almost as if the game could have come out a few weeks after the first one. In movies, tv shows, and novels, this is what you expect. Just because an actor has aged between episodes of a tv show doesn't mean that the character ages on the screen! I guess I was expecting a significant graphical overhaul based solely on the fact that it was a sequel. That seems quite unfair now that I think about it.

    As for the gameplay, yes, it's basically the same thing, which isn't bad. Still epic. Still violent. Still over the top.

    I also felt that the sequel tied in nicely with the earlier game, there are a few cut scenes that sort of fill you in as to what happened earlier, but a lot of things that could have been told via cut scene were (smartly) left for gameplay. You basically start the game with all your powers from the last game and then give them up (tricked!) in order to defeat a large enemy. That motivates the rest of the game pretty well (get powers back, get revenge on those who tricked me!).
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    jp's God of War 2 (PS2)

    Current Status: Finished playing

    GameLog started on: Friday 1 January, 2010

    GameLog closed on: Wednesday 17 March, 2010

    jp's opinion and rating for this game

    So far, as good as the first one, yet in the end somewhat unsatisfying. Not from gameplay, but from narrative development.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstarstarstar

    Related Links

    See jp's page

    See info on God of War 2

    More GameLogs
    other GameLogs for this Game
    1 : God of War 2 (PS2) by akhera (rating: 5)
    2 : God of War 2 (PS2) by aubcook (rating: 5)
    3 : God of War 2 (PS2) by dkirschner (rating: 5)


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