God of War: Ascension Review

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The old adage, “where there is smoke, there’s fire” rings absolutely true with the God of War series, so long have I heard the praises of the games, that I have finally been convinced to join the masses who’ve played.  Several years ago, I started God of War I, and like many people I know, gave up on the first chapter, lost to the crate puzzle.  Forward to this year, and when God of War Ascension was announced, I became determined.  I first thought to finish the series, up to the point of Ascension, but life and responsibility took precedent.  Never the less, I got Ascension upon release, and dedicated myself to complete.

God of war cyclopsImmediately, I became aware of what I had gotten myself into, the massive button combos, even just starting, became difficult to master while thinking, trying to use all the different button mashes in fights was just to difficult.  As I progressed, I thought less, and became more successful, and along the way, new weapons were added, and then upgraded, and soon muscle memory took over, and I knew what all the buzz was about.  God of War: Ascension is very methodical, very segmented.  Normally, a series of platforming begins, into a puzzle, then onto a sliding section, or a swimming, followed by a battle.  Wave after wave of enemies attack, each wave more difficult than the last resulting in a satisfaction upon completion that most games lack.  When I received my second elemental weapon, I fell in love.

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Battles become more about wits, then combos.  Different enemies change the way you approach individual fights, some enemies are equipped with fire weapons, and you quickly change to ice, some enemies take to the underground, resulting in you grappling.  I soon found myself, after hours of finding it difficult to determine my position on the screen, watching the screen explode in color, hitting buttons with vigor, as I carve my way through fights.  The controls end up being easy to master, platforming sections are positive in their feel, each move filled with confidence.  Fighting, like I stated before, are intimidating at first for the novice, but soon become second nature in their mastering.  Visually, God of War: Ascension is amazing, colors are vibrant and scenery is clear  and beautiful in their rendering.  Lastly, the sound is full, with the soundtrack taking care of building suspense where required, and roaring to a feavor pitch as the action grows intense.

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In closing, God of War: Ascension, for me, was an epic journey filled with satisfying action, and immersing storytelling.  Towards the end, one particular battle sequence was as difficult of a fight as I’ve faced in quite sometime, but the game was so driven, that I persevered and finally made it through, filled with accomplishment.  I’d give God of War: Ascension a 92/100, and, in my opinion is worth picking up at $39.99, the length of the campaign being the reason to wait from full retail price.  Unfortunately, an online pass is required for online play, which I did not purchase, thus I am unable to review the multiplayer.  Regardless, for me, the singleplayer campaign was so rewarding, I do not feel as though I have missed out on anything.

Raptr Tale of the Tape

Note, I’ve decided to include the information that Raptr accumulated in my reviews for the Achievement/Trophy hunters to use to help decide if the game is worth to play.  The information can sometimes not be 100% accurate when it comes to time played. 

God of War: Ascension- 16 hours played 22/36 Trophies Won

The trophy list is mildly difficult to complete, with a hard playthrough required, and a decent collectible list as well,  There are multiplayer achievements that require an online pass as well, but the game plays well, so replayability is strong.  Not an impossible list, but mildly difficult, especially once they add a few checkpoints to the Gauntlet of Archimedes.

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