God of War III: I’ve hit another milestone in my gaming career

Ladies and Gentlemen, without exaggeration, I’ve just witnessed the single most epic video game sequence in my life. I’m talking about the opening to the third installment in the God of War franchise: the final, culminating, game. I’m coming into this thing as newb as they come, having only spent around an hour with the PSP iteration, Chains of Olympus.

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Imagine, you’re riding on the back of a giant woman made up entirely of rock and tree. She’s as tall as a skyscraper and as she climbs, enemies are landing on her left and right, jumping down from the peak above. Then, out of nowhere, Poseidon shows up. Except, he’s not in his “man” form. Instead, he’s a towering cyclone of water with a man’s body and snakelike arms that end in watery horse heads with spiky, crablike arms. He attacks you one arm at a time while the other (including his human shaped arms) attacks the creature that’s still climbing to the precipice.

Crab arms slam down around you causing trees to fall and the titan to cry out in pain. The first horse head sends a massive plume of water at you and then electrifies it to finish the job. But you’re Kratos and this is not the day you die. You slash away at the crab legs until you’re able to slice the spiked end of one off. Then, you hack away at the head until it rears back, allowing you to thrust the dismembered claw into its beating heart.

This all makes sense in the battle, I promise.

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The titan, freed thanks to you, grabs Poseidon’s body and pulls him back. You leap and swing from her hands, sending your sailing to and through the man-form of the Sea God, landing on the other side with Poseidon in the flesh. You headbutt him, and slam him against the walls, finally dispatching him off the side of the cliff.

Sounds incredible, right? Well, it is.

I may sound like I’m easily impressed to those of you that have been console devotees for years. But, let me tell you, I’ve spent the last three immersed in MMOs where this kind of stuff doesn’t happen.

The combat was absolutely sick. You start off at full power with a bevy of incredible skills to use. Cutting through enemies is like using a steak knife to cut butter. It’s that good.

But don’t misunderstand, the game is not easy. I died several times just in the tutorial with the game set on normal. There are several different encounters with Poseidon and each one requires a different strategy. There’s a lot of trial and error until you find the right method of winning the day (at least for me, GoW vets may have a different take).

I usually play through single-player games on easy, since I’m notoriously bad at finishing them. The game seemed to pick up on this because, after a few deaths, it asked me if I wanted to lower the difficulty. I said no, though, because I always felt like grasping the fight was just beyond my reach and that I’d get it if I kept trying. I was right.

Overall, I’m am thoroughly excited to get more into this game. So much so, I could see myself choosing to play it over even Final Fantasy 13, which I would’ve never believed to be the case. And this is with only about 45 minutes played.

Has anyone else tried it yet? I’m considering picking up the collection, just from playing the tutorial.

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