One of PlayStation 3’s biggest flaws these days is its lacking ability to play PlayStation 2 games, for newer systems at least. With the release of God of War III just around the corner in March 2010, there are a lot of gamers out there who still haven’t gotten the chance to play the first two games. So, Sony has gone and created the God of War Collection, allowing for both new players and old players to come back to the hit PS2 titles in stunning high-definition. Considering it’s coded for PlayStation 3 and on a blu-ray disc, that means those with newer, non-backwards-compatible PlayStation 3s can come along for the ride as well.
The God of War Collection is convenient, containing both God of War and God of War II on a single blu-ray disc for easy access to the two games. Both games have received a high-definition visual upgrade and higher frame rate resulting in smoother gameplay, which just about makes up for the many times you’ll hear Kratos sceam “ARES!” in the first game. Trust me, you’ll hear it a lot.
I don’t have to tell you that each title plays amazingly. These games have been out for years now and you’ve probably already seen all the reviews praising Santa Monica’s marvelous piece of work; these are two amazing action-adventure titles. The gameplay in the collection is identical to what you’ve seen in the past, this time with greater visuals and smoother playability. Although, lifting doors in God of War I may be a bit tiring clicking the R2 trigger over and over again. God of War II corrects that by using R1 and Circle instead.
There’s more than one new reason to replay the game. If you’ve already beaten both titles, you may want to experience it in high-definition or you may want to take a crack at the full selection of PlayStation Network trophies that the game has to offer. There’s two platinum trophies on the disc, one for God of War and another for God of War II. You’ll find some amusing accomplishments in there as well such as “Getting My Ass Kicked,” where you die so much the game offers you easy mode. I, shamefully, earned that trophy.
There is one bit of the God of War Collection that doesn’t come out so pretty. Cutscenes in the game using the in-game engine look terrible. There’s static all over the screen, the visuals jump back to the PS2 era and you just want it to end. This is understandable though as most of those cutscenes were movie files in the original game. They can’t upgrade the visuals of a movie file, now can they? Then there are the CG cutscenes, while experiencing a bit of static, they look nice and are much more appealing than the in-game bits.
There’s not much more to say about this re-release besides that the God of War Collection is the proper way to play God of War and God of War II. For $39.99, it’s a steal including a gorgeous high-definition makeover, smoother frame rate, extra bonuses and a demo for the next title in the epic trilogy – especially if you don’t have a backwards-compatible PlayStation 3.