God of War: Ascension
God of War: Ascension is a 2013 action hack and slash game developed by Santa Monica Studios and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. It is the seventh game in the God Of War series, the first chronologically, as well as the first to include multiplayer. It is a prequel to the games, set six months after Kratos murdered his wife and child.
Why It Rocks
- Extremely awesome and realistic graphics, better than lots of PC and PS4 games even today.
- An interesting prequel story where you see Kratos calmer and with less rage.
- Great gameplay with great puzzles.
- Similar to God of War III, as you play you unlock four new magics; these affect your main weapon, the Blades of Chaos, granting you more access to more combos.
- Introduces multiplayer, a first in the series, with customizable characters as well as lots of modes, weapons and maps.
- Some enemies drop weapons and shields now which you can use against enemies or throw them at enemies to stun them.
- Incredible bosses.
- Great soundtrack.
- Almost all enemies are new and never appeared before in the series.
- Early versions came with a special beta for The Last Of Us multiplayer.
- Online pass of the game also gives you Zeus and Clark from Dead Space for free on PlayStation All Stars Battle Royale.
- Special New Game + mode where you can play the game, while using new unlocked skins and carry on your progress as well.
- The special artifacts from God Of War II and III return, where you find special artifacts that gives you special powers in NG+ (optional to use).
- Special items where they help you solve some puzzles, like cloning yourself and fixing broken buildings, and can be used to fight enemies as well.
- Rage of the Gods return, but this time it's easier to charge, and once it's full, you get exclusive combos. The meter won't decrease unless you stop attacking enemies or get hit.
- Magic Powers here replaces the original Rage mode found in previous games, but this time there's four different rage powers, Fire, Ice, Thunder and Souls.
- Solves some plotholes of the series along with Furies and other decent characters (especially Orkos) which are decent addition to lore.
- Like God Of War III, the game also has a hint about the future God Of War game, only this time the hint was a puzzle.
- Weapons aren't that powerful, especially when you fully upgrade the Blade of Chaos.
- The upgrading system is unbalanced: everything doesn't require much orbs but the last two levels of the Blades of Chaos require lots of orbs.
- Some multiplayer modes can be repetitive.
- Combat arena and challenges were removed in favor of multiplayer (though there's a special gauntlet mode in multiplayer where you keep fighting enemies, can be played alone or multiplayer).
- Unless you got lots of space on your PS3, it is extremely recommended to get the game physically, not digitally, since the game on the PSN is over 80 GB, making it perhaps the largest PS3 game. The game is very large specially for a PS3 game, and even larger than lots of PS4 games.
- The infamous Trials of Archimedes segment.
While the game received positive reviews, it wasn't well received like the older games and many consider it the weakest game in the series. It was praised its fundamental gameplay and spectacle as true to the series. Some reviewers said the story was not as compelling as previous installments. The game's multiplayer element received a mixed response. Although reviewers said the gameplay translated well into the multiplayer element, they criticized the balance and depth of combat. Ascension did not perform as well as its predecessors in terms of sales and awards, but it did receive several nominations. Many felt that Ascension is a sign that the series is going downhill.
Fortunately Santa Monica Studios noticed this and would give the franchise a new beginning which received universal acclaim.