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God of War or God of Bore?

God of War Headerv2

I am going to go out and say it… I don’t get the God of War series. I have no idea why people love that game enough to continue to rave about it. Now I know that everyone is going to come here and say “Oh man, it is so epic” or I will get told “I just love the mythology behind it”. I will no doubt get told that it you love how gruesome it is or perhaps you just like the naughty bits thrown in.

I just don’t get it. To me it is a glorified button masher. There is no real strategy to how you attack the enemies, however monstrous they are. The boss battles are okay. Taking on the Hydra was really cool but the others were nothing mind blowing. The puzzles are generally pretty lame: move this box here, jump on box, jump across to another box… you get the point right?

Before I get onto another point, answer this for me. Kratos is this incredibly strong demigod, he tears creatures apart with a swing of his weapons, but he is constantly thwarted by a blocked wooden door. Some god he is, he can’t even open a door without finding a cannon to blow it open. And to get the cannon in place you need to complete some mindless puzzle. Why can’t he just knock the door down? Another thing, and this can be applied to other games, do we really need a QTE when he lifts a door? Kratos the Mighty opens the door, better push Triangle as quickly as you can otherwise he will drop it on his toes. Monsters can attack him, cut him, set him on fire, but do not let that door fall on his toes.

Anyway, what about the story makes it ‘epic’? Is it because you fight other deities, meaning that we just throw the word epic in? I suppose by definition any game can be epic so long as it is really long or ambitious. Does epic even mean that the game is any good? So many questions about a game which is clearly very  popular, so popular that it has resulted in three console releases and two portable releases, two HD collections with another on the way, and of course a fourth console release pending. So I am definitely missing out something here, but no matter how hard I try I can’t help but get bored when playing the game. Kratos as a character does nothing for me. I find him a testosterone-fuelled bully who has hit the gym far too often, and the story holds very little interest.

Perhaps I just don’t get it, perhaps one of you wonderful readers will explain it to me and I will finally see the light. Perhaps you will make me see that every boss battle with its QTE ending is actually different to the other hundred or so battles. Maybe, just maybe, a fanboi will convince me of the game’s epic stature and I will become a fan of the series. God of War? Or God of Bore?

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Author: Jarred Milner View all posts by
I wanted to write "something funny" here... and just succeeded with ease.
  • Chris

    I enjoyed the first title. Second not as much.

  • Garth

    How dare you call this title “God of Bore”. Everyone knows it’s “God of Snore”.

  • kikmi

    I cant agree more, so much fanboi’ism shot this game way past the hype it actually deserved. Nothing innovative, story is pretty drab but yet it gets non stop reviews bouting amazing stats and for what i am not quite sure. And dont even get me started on QTE’s… the bane of modern day gaming

    • Jarred

      Look, QTE’s have a place in certain games. Example Heavy Rain, but what they are doing in a game like God of War I will never understand… and to open a door? I mean really.

  • Die Jason

    I agree on the approach to enemies, which is why you have to crank the difficulty up a bit to inject some strategy to your play (played GOWIII on Hard and it put up a bit of a fight). The boss battles are interesting. The puzzles are okay, as is the story.

    Would not go so far as to say this is a brilliant series, but it is very entertaining as a whole, defintely worth a playthrough.

  • http://www.g3ar.co.za Dawid

    What’s all this hating going on here? Kratos will have his revenge!

  • Daniel

    I recently went and got all 3 (Recently finished the 3rd). To see for myself what all the hype was about. I doubt anyone can convince you otherwise if you’ve already played all 3 and I doubt I have the time during office hours to make an attempt. I was satisfied with the experience… for many reasons. It felt akin to the kind of games we used to play when we were kids. A game for the sake of being a game. Not much thought involved, I could come home from work and button mash my way through entrails with one eye half open. The in game ‘making of GOW’ vids also gave me some respect for the team involved. I got the impression they were a passionate bunch of dudes who put alotta love into it.

    • Charles

      Same sentiment. I love the games simply because it is just that. Over the top, gory, pointless fun. It’s like a Michael Bay movie, nobody is supposed to take it seriously.

      • Jarred

        I get the point that it is simple, pointless fun, but in the same breath then I can’t make sense of why people rave about it being so amazing. I don’t see any of Michael Bay’s movies getting oscars or film of the year awards. People don’t flock to see the movies, because they are what you see when there is nothing else, or when you need to free your brain a bit.

        God of War however people continously rave about, it gets high praise over and over again. The thing that confuses me most is that they have a great basis for the game, a great fan base also, why not just make it more than a repetitive hack n slash. Why not improve the story and puzzles to make it the complete game?

  • Nick de Bruyne

    I like the God of War games, I’m no fanboy, I actually haven’t ever even played the 2nd one… but it seems like someone needs to stand up for it, so I’ll do it.

    What everyone misses is just how approachable it is, how it’s the sort of game that has, is and will always usher in new generations of gamers.

    Its like Ninja Gaiden, or Devil May Cry but no… its more approachable, its got a relatable story with cool Greek God built in that easy goers can all get a feel for, as opposed to giant flying statue baby angel heads in Bayonetta.

    The combat is fun enough without being way too complex, its a through and through hollywood like summer blockbuster. You know I had never played anything like God of War before it came out on PS1. Then I played it and I loved it. It introduced me to the genre in a way that kept me going at it, kept me playing and in the end… it was ‘epic’, and by epic I mean huge areas filled with massive bosses, awesome graphics, crazy weapons, violence, hot women… point is, it kept me glued to the screen.

    From that point on I was hooked and more educated, I moved onto games like Ninja Gaiden, Bayonetta and Castlevania: Lords of Shadow.

    God of War may not be the be all and end all of gaming, but its a damn good looking, approachable blockbuster that gets folks playing and discussing games and then moving on to more, better ones.

    So for that reason alone, I’ll always have a place in my heart for it. Also, boobs. Also, I’m Greek. Also, I like Xbox more, so my words instantly mean … like, 10000000x times more. Its true, Google it.

    • Jarred

      My comment above responds to this also. You make some excellent points and I really do get that people love it. I just find it odd that it can get as much praise as it does.

      I have played many a game that is simple, yet effective. Those games usually go amiss by many gamers. Binary Domain is a perfect example of a game that does much more than button mashing, yet people skip it. God of War comes out and there is frenzied mayhem about it.

    • Jarrod Lane (@NoodleZA)

      So basically GOW is the Marijuana of the games world.
      The gateway game :p

      Good article Jarred, I see your points and I see what Nick means from his side as well.
      Maybe the game does well as you get to be Kratos be the crap out of anything get the girl and look good doing it. All with minimal effort?

  • Martin Du Preez

    LoL! Says the guy who buys FIFA annually. ;p

    For it’s genre it’s amazing.

    Why is COD amazing?
    Why is Forza amazing?
    Why is Skyrim amazing?

    Videogames aren’t suppose to make sense.
    Then you can have that argument on every game. Like why can’t my character jump over this fence? Why hack the door when you can just blow it open with the shotgun I’m carrying?

    This is just a unnecessary hate article on GOW.

    Woohoo,I get a second entry for Freebie Friday!

    • Jarred

      I didn’t even mention FIFA. In fact I rather compared to a game like Binary Domain. FIFA is for sport fans, you either get it or you don’t. But if we are bringing it up then I can say that FIFA offers realism which is already a reason to get excited about it.

      I like lots of action games, I loved DMC and Bayonetta but they have some sort of strategy about them which makes me enjoy them more. I don’t hate God of War at all btw, I just don’t get the excitment around it.

      • Charles

        In your own words, you either get it or you don’t.

    • http://www.g3ar.co.za Dawid

      That’s right Martin, tell this football Hooligan!

  • james

    I agree with article 100% I mean come on guys chains with swords on them seriously WTF.

  • james

    I agree with this article 100% I mean come on guys chains with swords on them seriously WTF. Most of the people that I know who have a PS3 have played halo and loved it But this one dude I know who has a computer bought an xbox but hates halo but loves uncharted, shame (hich has nothing to do with this topic acctually)

  • james

    sorry about the repeats it was an accident

  • Preshan

    I agree with the article ,POP provides a more complete gaming experience(with the exception of the last 2 games).

  • Veen

    This is entirely down to personal taste and to be honest if you didn’t get it while playing the game nobody here is going to be able to explain it to you.

    The same way you could probably lecture me about how awesome Halo is until the cows come home, I didn’t have fun playing the game and that’s that. I don’t think its a crappy game, it was obviously just not for me.

    To me games are supposed to be fun above all other criteria. Reviewers will go on and on about Graphics, sound, dialogue and all other kinds of shit but always seem to miss the fun factor in their review roundups.

    You don’t have to get GOW, maybe its not for you. I personally don’t get how People can own poodles and those little shit machines that look nervous all the time, but they love those things and I will never understand that, and thats OK.

  • killerbeepokemon

    God of war isn’t that bad. I mean there are a lot more worse games in this genre

  • Thabz Booster

    The game GOW is a cool game, I strongly disagree with the article.

    GOW might have some of those few mistakes yes, but they are completely forgivable, I mean check out the story behind the ghost of sparta, It’s totally awesome, its a greek methology with a bit of creativity. I could say on the “doors” perspective and the hard hitting buttons to open the doors, it is just an expression of how much strength is used to open a door no man can open. So buddy, I think you look too much into detail when playing the game, take it easy bro, relax and enjoy!

  • killerbeepokemon

    I do enjoy the GOW titles but I guess I have to respect other people views and opinions

  • mqo

    god of war is a button masher period ,it takes us bak to the arcade days ,wen we played street fighter,and wud just button mash,how different is god of war from tekken force mode not very different in terms of game play ,but that doesent make it less enjoyable,i will always love kratos ,with his eye gouging.testicle stomping,head ripping ,and gut busting moves,so wat if he afraid of the door falling on his toes,that just shows the human side of him.lol

  • mqo

    ok so he doesent really stomp anyones gonads ,but that wud hav been a cool move

  • http://www.highonreviews.com Danteofdoom

    It gets as much praise as it does because it opens with Kratos taking down a hydra and then satisfying two women sexually for blood orbs (that sounds euw). BEWBS

  • Anonymous

    The God of War series is the best in gaming history.

    All of the games are masterpieces, but my favourite out of the series is God of War III, the scale is amazing, the graphics are still unmatched to this day. The gameplay is tight, fun, responsive and accessible yet deep. The musical score is stunning and the voice acting is superb. The puzzles are perfectly fitting with the environments and are never frustrating. The story is brilliant, one of the only games which make you think about what’s going on with an analytical mind. And Kratos himself is an amazing character.

    There’s a reason why the God of War series is unmatched in its genre, being the most critically acclaimed, best selling and having the most fans all by a huge margin because the series is just pure quality that will never be forgotten. Nothing in the genre will ever come close, God of War single handedly took over a Japanese dominated genre in 2005 and killed Devil May Cry and Ninja Gaiden so bad that DmC is being rebooted (poorly) and NG is completely dead after the abysmal NG3, no franchise has dominated a genre as much as God of War has.

    Not everyone has to like the series, but calling it God of Bore just makes you a sound like a tasteless philistine, the games are obviously not for you so why do you feel the need to sit behind a computer screen and share your useless opinion only an insignificant minority would agree with? Go play something you like or do something with your life other than bash one of the most beloved series in gaming history.

    • Jarred

      I didn’ call it God of Bore… there is a question mark asking if it is. I simply put up an alternative view of a game to oppose what the so called majority might think. As you might see in the comments that quite a few people agree with the comments.

      Let me categorically state also at this point that I at no stage said that the game was rubbish, I would be insane to say so because it has done so well. I just felt it would be interesting to see what makes everyone love it, and the article has done just that.

  • Lonthor

    Each to their own I guess.

  • http://www.woobl.net Johann

    A lot of comments this generated. God of Snore being the best description :-)

  • killerbeepokemon

    There are a lot worse hack and slash games, and Gow is accually one of the better ones compered to games like ninja gaiden and dynasty warriors. So why pick on it but not the games worse then it

  • G

    GOW has great graphics, gameplay but more especially a GREAT story. A lot of games nowadays just have such a stupid plot..the first game hooked me and i had to buy the next 2 because i wanted to see where the story would go. And cmon who doesnt love Greek mythology?!

    If the story is good, people will follow the series (eg LOTR). A better question would be why do people go so crazy for those stupid gaylight movies…

  • Kamille

    gotta love the fanboys. I bet none of the haters have even played any of the games for more than 5 minutes. To be hating on what is arguably one of the best franchises in the industry you have to be one blind Xbox fanboy to death.

    GOW is so good that Lord of Shadows and Dante’s Inferno are basically rip-offs of it. On top of it the average Metascore for this series is of 90/100 and it has several awards under its belt that includes multiple GOTY’s too!

    • Jarred

      I am an Xbox fanboy, you got me there. Weird though that my favourite games are Mario, Zelda, Heavy Rain and Batman. Weird that indeed.

  • Garvin

    It has always been God of Bore for me. Its just not my cup of tea.

  • Blaylock

    Thank you for this article. I don’t think anyone has had the guts to stand up and say this about the game. It seems like a herd of gamers just love it because a herd of other gamers love it. Like you said, its a glorified button masher. I don’t care for the character Kratos nor his adventures. I rather play the old DMC than play this crap

  • Marius

    I played the first 2 and frankly I agree with the majority of comments after a couple of hours it just feels like more of the same. The one thing the series did that made me very happy was the end sequence for God of War III (from reading and vids) , it was a stylish way to end the series and they really should have left it there.

  • Lyle Arends

    Damn, some backlash. O_o

  • JShad

    I feel the same way about Uncharted. That game is terrible, to me. A glorified film, with predictable and boring plots, god awful jumping mechanics, repetivive enemy AI and just altogether bland.

    People just have different opinions on things.

  • http://www.nyaanime.co.za Zombia

    Wow, lots of comments on this one o.O

    I personally enjoyed the games but also didn’t get the hype about the games. (Maybe coz I played them after games like Devil May Cry, Heavenly Sword, Ninja Gaiden etc. :/)

    It was still fun though.

  • http://www.zedduo.com zaheed manuel

    I think what made God of War good was the actual originality of the character and the power moves that he has. Also the pressing of buttons to help defeat those huge ass monsters.

  • http://chrichtonsworld.blogspot.nl/ chrichton

    OK.I understand that some might find God of War boring.But that has to do with the fact that it is a hack and slash game.Which is usually a genre you either like or not.Compared to other titles like Devil May Cry or Ninja Gaiden,God of War is less complicated and easier to get into gameplay wise.Story wise it is epic.Most of the Greek Mythology is accurate and is the first in any video game (and maybe even movies) ever to do so.Greek Mythology is also one of those things you either liker or not.Then there is just the simple brutality and gore.Kratos is one angry dude and it is fun to be him.But yes,I understand that it can be tedious at times simply because it lacks the depth in combat or other game play mechanics.Both of the PSP God of War titles in the franchise were proof of that.It was still fun,but more of the same and somehow after a while that isn’t enough.Games like Devil May Cry and Ninja Gaiden always managed to be diverse when needed.And made your rely on a lot of different combos.Ninja Gaiden even more so because when not paying attention even the simplest of goons could beat your ass.With God of War that hardly happens.Still,God of War is a slick and beautiful game that provides the fun as long as it lasts.I do think you will have to love the genre.For example,you can’t ever get me excited for FPS or sports games.Only a few exceptions to the rule.But even then it’s a genre that simply doesn’t appeal to me.