God of War III Remastered
The deluge of remasters and HD updates shows little sign of abating, a trend that many are citing for this current generation’s rather slow start. It may be a valid point – for every such title that a development team works on, surely there’s less time and money for much needed new games. As such, instead of God of War IV or some new iteration or rebirth of the franchise, we have God of War III Remastered, a HD update of the five-year-old PS3 classic.
Then again, cinephiles don’t seem to harbour the same grudges when presented with a stunning Blu-ray transfer of a film they already own on DVD. It’s not a perfect analogy but playing God of War III ‘as it was meant to be played’, so to speak, is certainly on a par with an auteur director bringing his masterpiece bang up to date with all the care and attention it deserves.
We can give you the numbers that prove GoW III is indeed a high quality transfer, coming with a solid sixty frames per-second, a negligible drop rate and all in glorious, razor-sharp 1080p. In reality what this means is that it runs as smooth as silk with a noticeable refinement between joypad prompt and on-screen execution. Whether you’ve played the original or not, this is certainly the definitive cut; particularly when other ‘redux’ versions have fallen short of the mark.
Five years is a long time in gaming but God of War III fairs well in this regard. Its scale and ambition set it apart from most other third-person action games, save for the likes of The Last of Us. Yet where that particular remaster succeeded in the small intricacies, GoW III is more astounding in scale. Combined with some impressive set pieces and flowing camera work, it’s easy to see why Santa Monica Studios felt the need to show their baby in the best possible light.
It’s a fairly streamlined experience too, with little of the flab many of today’s titles suffer from. There are perhaps some small niggles that time has pushed to the surface though. Quick Time Events may still be part of the gaming landscape in 2015 but GoW’s take feels particularly unrefined (even though they are fairly well spaced apart). Furthermore, there’s nothing in the way of extras or bonuses, at least not in the review copy we played.
Still, as good as the main game itself is, it’s hard to recommend GoW III right off the bat. Fans will find an absolutely solid remaster of a great game here but with the PlayStation 4’s catalogue now looking fairly healthy, with plenty of spoils upcoming, most gamers could do well to save their pennies for something brand new.