20th March was a day of anticipation for many as it marked the release of the next installation in the God of War franchise on the PlayStation 4.
A sequel to the original trilogy, this game sees Kratos take on challenges in a different setting from his vengeance upon the gods of Olympus.
Sony have driven the story into new territory as the latest installment takes place in the significant future, with the Ghost of Sparta starting a new life in the Nordic lands.
The shift from Greek to Norse mythology sees our protagonist deal with new threats and very different motives, this includes facing the challenge of fatherhood.
The story follows a recently widowed Kratos and his son, Atreus, trying to fulfill his wife’s death wish; taking the duo on a long journey of twists and turns as well as discovery about each other.
The game has, indeed, matured with its audience with an emphasis on story rather than a violent hack-and-slash gameplay.
Though elements of the hack-and-slash genre are ever present, the mechanics have changed into a style where players will take time making decisions rather than button mashing.
At first, many will find it annoying how many times you die in the game however after a while, pressing L1 to cover yourself with a shield will turn into compulsion – and that’s not a bad thing.
The more patience you have in combat, the better the feeling whenever you defeat a boss and progress through.
An element of the RPG genre has also been introduced to this sequel through unlockables such as armour to increase Kratos’ stats.
Fights can at times be repetitive but when you unlock more skill moves, the combat never fails to impress you.
Another impressive aspect in God of War is the incredible graphics and set design.
With a new mythological world to discover, Sony have made everything larger – from diverse environments to giants trying to squish Kratos and Atreus.
Unlike the previous games, this installment has more colour which fits with the story as it is less darker.
However, don’t take this as a saturation of the franchise.
The game is equally if not better in entertaining players with a balance of everything.
There are plenty of Easter eggs within the story which set up for future sequels.
God of War is a must-buy game.