Tuesday, March 9, 2010

God of War III

God of War III is a single player action game, exclusive to the PlayStation 3, and the final installment of the God of War trilogy. Containing signature and addictive God of War gameplay, a combination of over-the-top action combat, exploration and puzzle solving, along with an engrossing mythologically inspired storyline and a selection of new weapons and a new weapons system, it is a fitting conclusion to the much praised God of War franchise.

Photo: platformnation.com

God of War III allows players on the PlayStation 3 to take on the climatic role of the ex-Spartan warrior, Kratos, as he treads through the intimidating heights of Mt. Olympus and the dark depths of Hades once more to seek revenge on those who have betrayed him. Armed with double-chained blades, as well a selection of new weapons, Kratos must take on mythology's darkest creatures while solving intricate puzzles throughout his merciless quest to destroy Olympus and the mighty Zeus himself.

God of War III features gameplay similar to that of previous installments. The player controls Kratos in a combination of combat, platforming, and puzzle game elements. Kratos's main weapons are the Blades of Exile, but for a short while at the beginning of the game, Kratos wields the Blades of Athena. Other new weapons include the Claws of Hades, the Nemesis Whip and the Nemean Cestus. This new weapon has the ability to smash through solid objects such as rocks and to plow through enemy shields, but has a slightly smaller range than the extending chains on the Blades of Exile.

The Claws of Hades and Nemesis Whip are similar to the Blades of Exile, both being used in the same fashion as the Blades of Exile, but with their own combos and magic abilities. Unlike the previous games in the series, the use of magic is limited to the weapon that is equipped. For example, the Army of Sparta is only available to use when Kratos is equipped with the Blades of Exile. The Golden Fleece, Icarus Wings, and Poseidon's Trident are kept from Kratos' adventure in God of War II. The Blade of Olympus, rather than being used as a regular weapon like the Blades of Exile, is used with the ability "The Rage of Sparta." The Rage of Sparta replaces Rage of the Titans from God of War II and Rage of the Gods from God of War.

When The Rage of Sparta is activated, Kratos wields the Blade of Olympus and becomes momentarily invincible. A new feature to God of War III is the use of items. These items act similarly to magic from the previous installments, but when they are used, the item bar is depleted. Furthermore, although the use of items is limited by the length of the item bar, the bar refills automatically, which is in heavy contrast to the previous games. Items that Kratos uses in God of War III include the Bow of Apollo, the Head of Helios, and Boots of Hermes.

On February 16, 2010, it was revealed that there are no true CGI cinematics in God of War III. SCEA says their in-game PS3 engine is plenty capable of blending the non-interactive sequences with the interactive, so there's basically no difference between the two. SCEA animator Bruno Velazquez said "that while the first two God of War titles certainly boasted CGI cinematics, there will actually be no true CGI in the third and final installment." He continues to say that "Everything you see is 100% in-game.

All camera features, including motion blur, run real-time in the cinematics and in-game. For this game we decided to try and blend in the cinematic sequences with the in-game sequences, so all models and assets are used for cinematics and for in-game." Later, he clarified that not all cutscenes are realtime and some were pre-rendered earlier. "When I mentioned that GOW3 has no CG, I was referring to the fact that we do not have pre-rendered scenes that were created outside of the game engine, like GOW 1 and 2. In GOW3 all the cutscenes are created using our in-game engine, however some scenes were just too epic to run real time and thus are recorded videos."

Therefore all of the in-game graphics are created using the God of War III engine, however, not all cutscenes are rendered in real-time. The God of War III engine is a new game engine that Sony Santa Monica has built from the ground up. According to Sony Santa Monica's director of technology Tim Moss, God of War III takes up 35 gigabytes on the Blu-ray disc it ships on. In an interview with Giantbomb.com Sony Santa Monica's director of product development John Hight stated that the game cost $44 million dollars to make and came in under budget. The game went gold on February 20, 2010.


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