When I was getting ready to play the first hour or so of the new God of War, I was psyching myself up for a hack and slash action-adventure. However, the game quickly put me in my place and showed me I needed to think a little and not just mindlessly slash.
During a media preview in Singapore, we were told this new God of War game is built on three pillars: narrative, combat, and exploration. The game has indeed evolved in those three areas — an evolution fit for today’s gaming scene.
If you didn’t already know, God of War is a gaming franchise launched in 2005. It has so far released seven games featuring main character Kratos rampaging through Greek mythology. The creators of the game are now calling that the first era, with this new launch marking the start of the second era wherein Kratos will now face off against Norse gods.
Quite the twist in this game is that Kratos will be joined in this latest journey by his son, Atreus. Yes, Kratos has a son. Atreus will play a key part in both the gameplay and the story.
Speaking of which, the story of the latest God of War game is set in Scandinavia. An undetermined time has passed since Kratos laid waste to the Greek gods, and now he finds himself going through the Norse wilds, teaching his son how to survive while also learning how to be a father along the way.
In previous iterations of the game, the camera had a focused third-person, fixed cinematic perspective. This is where a large part of the experience will change for most players who have grown used to what the previous games had to offer.
From fixed, the developers decided to make the camera “unhinged” giving you free reign to look around and soak in the Norse wilds. This helps as you move around and look for items you might need to unlock more of what Kratos and Atreus can do in the game. Some of the exploration involves having to look for certain stones that unlock chests containing items that will provide boosts for the Spartan warrior.
The core system demanding you to explore, loot, craft, and upgrade is still there, but the ability to control your view adds another layer to it that feels updated for the gaming landscape today. Predictably, this change in the camera has an effect not only on how you interact with your surroundings but also with how you battle.
“We wanted to kick the player’s ass in the beginning of the game,” is how God of War Marketing Producer Aaron Kaufman described their approach to tweaking the combat system.
In a lot of ways, the combat also reflects this new Kratos’ demeanor. While there still remains some of Kratos’ iconic brand of rage, this older Kratos appears wiser and more measured. That same demeanor is how you should approach the combat.
One of the more exciting things in this new game is Kratos’ weapon: an axe. But it’s not just any axe. It looks pretty basic to start, but it has some magic in it and one of its best features is that you can throw it around giving Kratos a bit of an extended range on his attacks similar to his previous blades. So how do you get a thrown axe back? There’s a button to summon the axe and it comes back to Kratos similar to how Thor, the thunder god in Norse mythology and also a well-known superhero these days, summons his hammer.
However, like I mentioned earlier, there’s more to doing battle than swinging and throwing a weapon around. Some enemies won’t be fazed by the axe and you’ll have to straight up give them a taste of Kratos’ fist. Some enemy attacks are so powerful you’ll need to defend before you can land an attack. While others require that you use Atreus’ arrows before Kratos can deliver a beatdown.
It’s a gotten a lot trickier than it used to be, but there are certain elements to it that still feels very distinctly God of War. For instance, there’s a stun meter under opponents’ life meter. Once it reaches critical, it allows you to perform perhaps one of the most brutally satisfying ways of finishing off enemies.
The upgrades are also quantified now. At the pause menu or when you speak to the smiths of Kratos’ axe, you can upgrade the items and weapons equipped to both Kratos and Atreus. There are now numbered indicators of how much a boost each item can give you. This should give you a better idea on whether to have an item crafted now or wait until you have more materials for perhaps a better item.
All of these contribute to a more challenging battle system without completely alienating the hack-and-slash element that endeared a lot of people to this franchise.
Release date and availability
The game will officially launch on April 20, 2018 across the world. Pricing details are as follows:
Philippines — PhP 2,799
Indonesia — IDR 729,000
Thailand — THB 1,890
Malaysia — MYR 229
Those who pre-order will receive three shields as well as an XP boost.
Collector’s Edition contains the following physical items: 9-inch Kratos and Atreus statue, 2-inch Huldra Brothers Carvings, Exclusive Lithograph, Cloth map, Special necklace, and drawstring bag. It also has the following digital items: Death’s vow armor set, Exile’s guardian shield, Dark Horse digital comic, Dark Horse artbook, and Dynamic theme.
It’s priced as follows:
Philippines — PhP 7,699
Indonesia — IDR 1,899,000
Thailand — THB 4,990
Malaysia — MYR 549
There’s also a limited edition God of War PlayStation bundle that include an original design PlayStation 4 Pro with 1TB HDD, one original design DualShock 4 wireless controller, God of War software with premium digital content, voucher code for digital contents, three-month subscription voucher card, and a PlayStation one-year extended warranty service.
Pricing are as follows:
Indonesia — IDR 7,249,000
Thailand — THB 17,690
Malaysia — MYR 1,999
As of posting, the PlayStation 4 bundle has no pricing and availability details in the Philippines.
PlayStation 4 bundles are discounted for a limited time
Up to PhP 5,000 discount are up for grabs
On the eve of the PlayStation 5 launch, Sony is discounting its PlayStation 4 bundles for a limited time. Discounts of up to PhP 5,000 are up for grabs, making the PlayStation 4 a steal deal during the promo period.
During this promo period, gamers can take advantage of discounts for the following PlayStation 4 bundles:
- PlayStation 4 Mega Pack
- Jet Black 1TB HDD PlayStation 4 + God of War + Horizon Zero Dawn: Complete Edition + GTA 5 Premium Edition — from PhP 17,990 to PhP 14,990
- PlayStation 4 Pro Bundle
- Jet Black 1TB HDD PlayStation 4 Pro + Marvel’s Spider-Man Game of The Year Edition + Horizon Zero Dawn Complete Edition — from PhP 23,990 to PhP 18,990
- DUALSHOCK 4 wireless controller — from PhP 2,990 to PhP 1,990
Reebok unveils Valhalla-themed Capsule Collection
Inspired by the Viking fantasy of the upcoming Assassin’s Creed title
Are any of these your SneakerMatch? Footwear brand Reebok launches its own Capsule Collection inspired by the Viking fantasy of Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.
The whole collection features sneakers, apparel, and accessories in different color accents taken straight from the game. For the footwear options, three styles headline the entire collection with designs taking insipiration from elements of Viking lore. The Zig Kinetica, Club C Revenge, and Classic Leather Legacy all include symbols, weapons, and colors taken from Norse mythology.
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is just right around the corner, and it promises a whole new adventure to explore. Explore the rich lore of the Vikings as Eivor, a fierce raider during the time of England’s Dark Ages. With new features and new worlds to explore, Valhalla promises a whole new dimension in the Assassin’s Creed saga. Before you get to venture into the Dark Ages, you can bring Valhalla to your sense of style!
The collection also features two hoodies, caps, and socks to match the footwear. It will be exclusively available on Reebok’s website beginning November 7, and will hit select retailers on November 11.
MSI gaming and productivity laptops are 30% off this Halloween weekend
Exclusive freebies are also in tow
On the hunt for the perfect laptop before the holiday season kicks in? MSI is discounting select gaming and productivity laptops by 30% from October 29 to November 2. As a bonus, the brand is giving away exclusive freebies for every purchase of its laptops.
Gaming laptop deals
Discounted gaming laptops from MSI include its beloved GL and GF series. Both laptops cater to gamers who need the best performance without the bulk design commonly associated with gaming laptops. Also discounted are MSI’s Alpha series, its AMD-powered lineup.
- GL63 (Intel Core i5-9300H + NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti; 4GB RAM / 512GB SSD) — PhP 62,600 + free MSI gaming mouse worth PhP 2,250 (SRP: PhP 72,995)
- GL65 (Intel Core i7-9750H + NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650; 8GB RAM / 512GB SSD) — PhP 60,900 + free MSI lootbox headset worth PhP 6,000 (SRP: PhP 70,995)
- GF63 (Intel Core i7-9750H + NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650; 8GB RAM / 128GB SSD + 1TB HDD) — PhP 53,200 + free MSI gaming headset worth PhP 3,500 (SRP: PhP 60,995)
- Alpha 15 (AMD Ryzen 7 3750H + Radeon RX 5500M; 8GB RAM / 512GB SSD) — PhP 54,000 + MSI Alpha lootboox and AMD Jacket worth PhP 5,000
Deals on Prestige and Modern laptops
MSI is also slashing the price of its Modern and Prestige laptops for a limited time. These laptop lineups come in a sleek and minimalist design, packing the latest Intel processors with others having discrete graphics too.
- Prestige 14 (Intel Core i7-10710U + NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650; 16GB RAM / 1TB SSD) — PhP 101,900 (SRP: PhP 119, 995)
- Prestige 15 (Intel Core i7-10710U + NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650; 16GB RAM / 1TB SSD) — PhP 101,900 (SRP: PhP 119, 995)
- Modern 14 492PH (Intel Core i7-10510U; 16GB RAM / 1TB SSD) — PhP 69,500 (SRP: PhP 80,995)
- Modern 14 677PH (Intel Core i5-10210U; 8GB RAM / 512GB SSD) — PhP 52,300 (SRP: PhP 60,995)
- Modern 15 (Intel Core i5-10210U; 8GB RAM / 512GB SSD) — PhP 45,500 (SRP: PhP 52,995)
- Modern 14 493PH (Intel Core i5-10210U; 8GB RAM / 512GB SSD) — PhP 43,700 (SRP: PhP 50,995)
- Modern 14 695PH (Intel Core i3-10110U; 8GB RAM / 512GB SSD) — PhP 34,250 (SRP: PhP 39,995)
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