In what could be considered a peace offering for God of War 3 missing the 2009 calendar, Sony has released the God of War Collection, the HD once-over of the first two God of War games.
In the God of War Collection Kratos has been given a HD face-lift by Bluepoint Games. In this port Bluepoint Games have concentrated on improving the graphics of the original God of War (2005) and God of War II (2007) by locking the framerate down to a solid 60FPS while improving the resolution to handle a 720p output. The graphics are noticeably improved especially when you compare it running on the PS2 hardware. In the nature of the port it’s only a re-skinning of the game, Bluepoint didn’t add or reconstruct any new content.
Having these two games being ported up shines a spotlight on how much of a leap the Playstation 3 is. This remake definitely makes both games more enjoyable and playable. Now its not going to stand up to anything current running on your HD rig, however running in 60FPS feels more fluid and how the original game was meant to be played.
She's Not Pretty, She Just Looks That Way
One minor issue with the game being remade in HD is that the CGI rendered cut-scenes look notably better than ones using the in-game engine. It’s too bad more mojo couldn’t have been sprinkled on the game to make it look more even. It is hard to explain how different it is without viewing it, but basically you go from slick HD graphics to blocky and blurry textures. This is only a minor blemish in an otherwise solid makeover.
Chain-Whipping War Machine
The best aspect about God of War being remade is that we get to experience one of the Playstation 2 era’s best games. Both these God of War games deserve all the acclaim they have received over the years and jumping back into the brutal action makes us remember how much fun God of War was. It feels great to get back into the boots of God of War’s chain-whipping war machine Kratos as he exemplifies the characterization of the anti-hero. Kratos is remorseless as his button-combo through countless levels of enemies. The formula isn’t complex and SCEA developed for formula and ran with it. Reliving the original experience is very satisfying and surprising how well the old gameplay holds up.
It's Trophy Time
Not only will the smooth and brutal gameplay keep your attention to reliving the God of War experience, but Bluepoint has added Trophies to both games. It’s a nice touch that both God of War and God of War II have their separate trophies which means you can hop into both games and try and win the illusive Platinum Trophy. In total you have 36 Trophies for God of War and 35 for God of War II, equaling 71 trophies to strive for. Not bad, and for those wanting an easy few points, this one is for you.
Missing You- Olympus
The only real disappointment in this collection is that Chains of Olympus, last years God of War entry on the Playstation Portable wasn’t added on the disc. Having Chains of Olympus on the disc would be more than awesome, not only because it’s a great game (read our Chains of Olympus review here), but it was never ported to the Playstation 2 like most current PSP/PS2 games. Without Chains of Olympus this collection isn’t complete, but its is enough to prepare you for God of War III. Speaking of God of War III, included on this disc is a code to download the demo of the new game. This demo is the same one that was from E3 2009 and will get your mouth watering for what is in store next year. God of War III will be a huge hit and included demo is only a taste.
The God of War Collection has been given a visual bump making for a smoother ride as you relive some of the finest moments of Playstation 2 gaming. Even without its HD makeover, this collection would be worth checking out because it clearly shows us why the first two God of War games are so special. In the odd chance that you haven’t played original God of War games this is the perfect opportunity to get caught up before God of War III is released.