I Think We’ve Made Real Progress
God of War is absolutely, unapologetically depraved.
I’m serious. It is as though every base urge has been codified in the game, to the extent that you may sate yourself on dark fantasies. These indulgences usually come in the form of masterfully animated custom moves - “fatalities,” to delve into parlance - which are unique for each enemy type and almost endlessly entertaining. Imagine that there is a Harpy swooping overhead, and that you have become perplexed by said harpy. Let me break it down for you:
Other games: Hit harpy with weapon.
God of War: Grab each leathery wingtip, yanking the creature out of the sky. Place your boot on the back of the neck and pull off the Goddamn wings with a strong upward motion.
That’s just one guy. I could pack the entire post dense with the desecrations one is capable of, and it would not convey the power of it. The new attacks and ability progression all feel like “cream,” because straight out the gate your capacity to dispense raw damage is unparalleled. They’re like the courses you might take evenings at the Community College, the “Extended Learning” programs which focus on calligraphy or mesmerism.
Put simply you are fully engaged at every moment, fully complicit in each heroic feat - legendary boss battles have fully interactive elements that would be cinemas in any other game. Your utter complicity in each heinous act will enrage Watchdog Groups, provided they ever realize there are videogames produced by companies other than Rockstar or id. There was a Public Service Announcement I saw recently from the group Mediawise, where a young boy relates his experiences in Grand Theft Auto in the first person. Harrowing. That said, GTA doesn’t feature a “Sex With Two Women” minigame or superhot Oracles who are ready to nurse at a moment’s notice.
The only issue one could reasonably submit - outside of the vexing moral ones - is that God of War just asks too much from the poor machine sometimes. Not often enough to really grate on a person, just every now and then, so you get the impression that the developer is saying “Come on little PS2, you can do it” and the PS2 replies “I am an ancient and decrepit thing, a tangle of bones and hair just as one might find in a crypt.”
chick-rown chick-rown chick-rown da chicka row-now