Play Report: April 2018 – Boy

At the end of every month I try to pour my thoughts on which games I played. While I was more than ready to talk about the games I played this past April, I soon realized my thoughts on God of War could not be 100 percent spoiler free, so I decided to delay the post until now. With that said, be warned.

God of War was not the only game I played last month. Sony made Mad Max available for free to PlayStation Plus subscribers, and I immediately got into my Magnum Opus and roamed the deserts with my pal Chum Bucket — but after the long grind of completing the world’s tasks, a new game arrived.

I started God of War a few days after launch as I was out of the town at the time of release. I rose early Monday morning, made myself a cup of coffee, and started my journey.

I avoided watching anything but the trailers and gameplay showed at Sony’s E3 conferences, and even skipped on all the reviews, only looking at the scores and skimming through the vast amount of positive comments on the game. So, when I started my journey with Atreus, I would only have a small understanding of the world and story of the game.

The result was perfect. I did not expect traveling to other realms as part of the story. Part of which is due to my little knowledge of Norse mythology. I assumed Atreus and Kratos would only travel through Midgard, and meet the famous Norse gods along their path. Having Freya aid you on your travel to Alfheim, the realm of the Light Elfs, was quite a thrill. In addition, having the scenery drastically when traveling to different realms was a joyous and, at times, breathtaking experience.

In terms of story, God of War easily climbs to the number one spot amongst other games in the franchise. The previous games put the fast-paced, and aggro driven combat in the forefront, and only tried to convey the message that Kratos is just an angry god who wants to destroy everything in his path, in my opinion.

This game completely reverses that ideology. Kratos has moments where he wants to lash out at his son, but stops himself and realizes that’s not the right thing to do. Kratos constantly tries to raise his son better, in that he tells him killing, wrath, and revenge are not the only way. His dialogue during the final boss reinforces his morals.

Gameplay takes a drastic change in this entry, and for the better. Kratos now wields an axe and can wear different sets of armor, which can each be updated with certain materials. Hunting for the right materials for Kratos’ armor encourages exploration throughout the world of Midgard and the other realms. Some of the end-game bosses demand you upgrade your armor and weapons to the max, or your chances of success are slim.

To sum it all up, God of War has reached its way to the top of my Games of the Year list for 2018. Everything from the story, combat, musical score, to the amount of lore Sony Santa Monica poured into the game is incredible. I’m looking forward to the next adventure Kratos and Atreus take next.