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Author Topic: God of War: Chains of Olympus Impressions  (Read 2217 times)
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Kevin Grey
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« on: March 05, 2008, 03:29:32 AM »

Okay, don't have much in the way of impressions yet because I'm stuck in the first area!!!!  Looking for a little help:

Spoiler for Hiden:
  I'm in the open courtyard where you have to carry the body to activate the pressure plate.  I can use him to get through the first gate but I can't figure out how to get through the second gate.

This is so aggravating because I've done puzzles like this a thousand times and I'm sure the answer is obvious.

Anyone else pick this up today and can help me out??? Ron maybe????
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« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2008, 03:32:58 AM »

KG is... Stuck?  icon_lol

I didn't think you got stuck.
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« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2008, 03:36:57 AM »

Quote from: Ridah on March 05, 2008, 03:32:58 AM

KG is... Stuck?  icon_lol

I didn't think you got stuck.

I know, I'm so ashamed!!!!  crybaby 

It doesn't help that I'm sure it's obvious.  I've tried rolling but it's not working for me. 
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« Reply #3 on: March 05, 2008, 04:46:50 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 05, 2008, 03:36:57 AM

Quote from: Ridah on March 05, 2008, 03:32:58 AM

KG is... Stuck?  icon_lol

I didn't think you got stuck.

I know, I'm so ashamed!!!!  crybaby 

It doesn't help that I'm sure it's obvious.  I've tried rolling but it's not working for me. 

sorry - my copy arrives tomorrow (i know: why the hell, if i hate kratos so much, & think david jaffe's a jerk, am i getting yet another gow game?)...
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« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2008, 06:24:08 AM »

As I thought, I was totally missing something obvious.  Not sure how I could have missed that big ass box....

Anyway, I'll write up some impressions tomorrow morning but needless to say that any fan of the franchise will be more than happy with this one. 
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« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2008, 03:30:14 PM »

Alrighty, so some impressions:

Basically, this is kind of God of War Lite or maybe God of War .75.  The latter is probably accurate not only in terms of timeline (it's a prequel) but because (so far) it's pretty great but not quite at the level of either of it's console counterparts.  In that respect it's similar to Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters except that it seems like Ready at Dawn has gotten far closer to the quality of it's console cousin than High Impact (Size Matters devs) did. 

Really, it's very similar to the original God of War so far with the enemies, boss battles, and level design hearkening to many of the early levels of that game.  Which is a fine thing but RAD doesn't seem to have really brought anything new to the series, nor have they expanded the epic feeling to the same degree that Sony Santa Monica did with GoW 2. 

I do like what seems to be the central premise for the game:
Spoiler for Hiden:
  That Helios's chariot has crashed to earth, plunging the world into darkness, and allowing Morpheus to take over.

It's suitably epic and seems to have the potential to be a very cool location to explore. 

One thing does bug the crap out of me- The QTE events that require you to swirl the analog stick are woefully unsuited for the PSP's analog nub.  I've failed more QTE's that require that motion than I can count and it put me in a few sticky situations as the result. 
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« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2008, 06:05:01 PM »

I picked this up at Best Buy at lunch (the shelves were drowning with copies). I'll hopefully have some impressions to post tonight or tomorrow. smile

Honestly, I'm really disappointed with the 2008 PSP games lineup. Patapon ain't my cup of tea (other than this, it's about the only PSP title gathering any sort of buzz or momentum), and the influx of interesting turn-based strategy games seems to have dried up mostly.

I've played some PSP games (SOCOM: Tactical Strike) where the devs really seem to have put some care into living with the absence of a second thumbstick. I think far too many of the action games don't do that, thus way too many end up with negative reviews carping about controls (it really is too difficult to do a competent-playing FPS on it though it doesn't stop devs from trying). Sony hasn't shown any inclination to create a two-thumbstick version so it's up to developers to work with the the limitations properly (imho).
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« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2008, 06:12:14 PM »

Quote from: Blackjack on March 05, 2008, 06:05:01 PM

I picked this up at Best Buy at lunch (the shelves were drowning with copies). I'll hopefully have some impressions to post tonight or tomorrow. smile

Honestly, I'm really disappointed with the 2008 PSP games lineup. Patapon ain't my cup of tea (other than this, it's about the only PSP title gathering any sort of buzz or momentum), and the influx of interesting turn-based strategy games seems to have dried up mostly.

Well, Crisis Core is quite a big deal.  Wild Arms XF is getting some very positive impressions and should appeal to anyone who enjoyed FFT or Jeanne D'Arc. 

Quote
Sony hasn't shown any inclination to create a two-thumbstick version so it's up to developers to work with the the limitations properly (imho).

Well, short of putting out the PSP2, they can't add another thumbstick without splitting their market.  Otherwise every single game that supports dual thumbsticks would also be required to have a single thumbstick mode that is still sufficient for enjoying the game which kind of defeats the purpose. 

But I do agree that puts the onus on developers and I wish more would try and focus on good automatic cameras since that's what most often is used on a second thumbstick anyway. 
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« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2008, 07:41:10 PM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 05, 2008, 06:12:14 PM

Well, Crisis Core is quite a big deal.  Wild Arms XF is getting some very positive impressions and should appeal to anyone who enjoyed FFT or Jeanne D'Arc. 

Not sure about Crisis Core.
I think a lot of people are expecting an RPG and not another Dirge of Cerberus.
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« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2008, 07:58:29 PM »

Quote from: Misguided on March 05, 2008, 07:41:10 PM

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 05, 2008, 06:12:14 PM

Well, Crisis Core is quite a big deal.  Wild Arms XF is getting some very positive impressions and should appeal to anyone who enjoyed FFT or Jeanne D'Arc. 

Not sure about Crisis Core.
I think a lot of people are expecting an RPG and not another Dirge of Cerberus.

From everything I've read it *is* an RPG, just more of an action-RPG than turn based but way, way, way better than Dirge of Cerebus. 
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« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2008, 08:23:36 PM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 05, 2008, 07:58:29 PM

Quote from: Misguided on March 05, 2008, 07:41:10 PM

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 05, 2008, 06:12:14 PM

Well, Crisis Core is quite a big deal.  Wild Arms XF is getting some very positive impressions and should appeal to anyone who enjoyed FFT or Jeanne D'Arc. 

Not sure about Crisis Core.
I think a lot of people are expecting an RPG and not another Dirge of Cerberus.

From everything I've read it *is* an RPG, just more of an action-RPG than turn based but way, way, way better than Dirge of Cerebus. 

It got a pretty good review in the last EGM.  It was previously off my radar, but now it'll be a day 1 purchase.

Back on topic, I should have a copy of GoW this afternoon and will post some impressions tonight.
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« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2008, 08:28:41 PM »

both the syphon filter games and the socom games prove that fps can be done on the psp.  logan's shadow has a brilliant control scheme once you remap your left hand to aim and your right to movement. 

i played ls before dark mirror and it's awkward to go back when the new version is so much better. 

truth be told, i never played either of the gow's and to hear some talk about it, it may not be my thing.  if it's as much like devil may cry, then i'll probably play for a very short time before losing interest.
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« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2008, 08:46:26 PM »

Quote from: Caine on March 05, 2008, 08:28:41 PM

truth be told, i never played either of the gow's and to hear some talk about it, it may not be my thing.  if it's as much like devil may cry, then i'll probably play for a very short time before losing interest.

Depends on what you don't like about DMC.  God of War series is like Ninja Gaiden and DMC for the masses- ie much more accessible (ie button mashing friendly) with a truly stunning cinematic presentation. 
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« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2008, 08:51:44 PM »

it's hard to quantify, but for whatever reason, it just didn't click with me.  i guess i should try the demo and see for myself.

i remember people saying the conan game last year was like a poor man's version of gow.  i did like that demo so maybe i just need to give it a chance.
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« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2008, 09:12:57 PM »

fwiw, a fan mod video (from about a year ago) showed how to add a second nub to a PSP (though I get the impression it may just be passing the right side button inputs onto the nub?):
http://pspupdates.qj.net/Dual-nubs-PSP-modding-in-time-lapse-video/pg/49/aid/83183

I haven't used a soldering iron since 1984, so I don't think it' something I'll try. I have MOH: Heroes, the Syphon Filter PSP games, and tried Call of Duty: Roads to Victory, Wild Arms etc. I can't move or aim with anything approaching precision in any of those unless resorting to shoulder-trigger auto-targeting. Even then I often find/found myself pointing in the wrong direction. And God help me in multiplayer (which I did for a while with MOH: Heroes).

I've often heard it would "cost too much," but I'm pretty sure Sony has never said that or really even commented on the concept (I don't guarantee that, but hey, I googled the topic icon_razz). I mean, it's a circuit board when you get down to it. A new circuit board, a new case, you make a new model (as Nintendo has through Gameboy, GBA/GBA-SP, DS etc.). Bingo, suddenly all these games that feel klutzy on PSP don't. But whatever, I guess Sony doesn't care about it or that most gamers would like it, so why should I? Clearly I'm just ... deadhorse

Chains of Olympus isn't aiming to change peoples' minds about the franchise. I doubt if someone disliked it on PS2 that the PSP incarnation would change anything.

I spent a lot of time here touting SOCOM: Tactical Strike and that was an example of doing something truly different on PSP within its control scheme limitations, and being different enough that even if you hated the SOCOM games on PS2, you might find something to like in Tactical Strike. I'm not saying God of War: Tactical Olympus Strike would've been a good idea.  icon_lol

Only that Chains of Olympus doesn't seem to bring anything fresh to the series in its PSP incarnation so it's going to appeal to the PS2 games' fanbase period, pretty much.
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« Reply #15 on: March 05, 2008, 09:31:47 PM »

Quote from: Blackjack
I've often heard it would "cost too much," but I'm pretty sure Sony has never said that or really even commented on the concept (I don't guarantee that, but hey, I googled the topic icon_razz). I mean, it's a circuit board when you get down to it. A new circuit board, a new case, you make a new model (as Nintendo has through Gameboy, GBA/GBA-SP, DS etc.). Bingo, suddenly all these games that feel klutzy on PSP don't.

None of those Nintendo revisions had anything as dramatic as adding another analog stick.  There are already,what, 20 million PSPs out there with a single analog stick?  That market is just way too big to not fully support and if you are going to make a game that plays just as well with a single analog stick then the second stick is pointless.  Unlike adding rumble or analog via a new controller type (see PS1 and PS3), there isn't a $50 or less "upgrade" that will allow that 20 million user-base to enjoy dual analog controls on the PSP. 

I think it was a mistake on Sony's part to go with only a single analog stick.  However since then I only blame the developers for poor controls- if the game doesn't adapt well to a single analog stick then it should be redesigned until it does. 
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« Reply #16 on: March 05, 2008, 11:20:03 PM »

While Chains of Olympus is a cool tech achievement to get such a close approximation on the PSP hardware, I just can't get that excited about it. I've played both PS2 games and this looks like an expansion pack  or "lost levels" to those games. Think I need a real next gen version to get interested again.
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« Reply #17 on: March 06, 2008, 12:43:59 AM »

The problem with 2 analog sticks is that it severely restricts you from using the 4 face buttons (at least with any kind of speed). And with only a single pair of buttons up top, that would make it quite difficult to have enough buttons for things.

And as already stated - there are too many people with the PSP already for them to simply release 'version 2' and tell the early adopters to screw off.

Finally - yes, there is a mod for a second analog stick, but as suggested, it's just a remapping of the 4 face buttons to the stick.
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« Reply #18 on: March 06, 2008, 01:07:51 AM »

1) How are the checkpoints spaced? To me in a portable game's checkpoints should be placed very liberally.

2) How would you rate the difficulty in comparison to the GoW console games?
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« Reply #19 on: March 06, 2008, 02:03:16 AM »

Quote from: Dante Rising on March 06, 2008, 01:07:51 AM

1) How are the checkpoints spaced? To me in a portable game's checkpoints should be placed very liberally.

2) How would you rate the difficulty in comparison to the GoW console games?

1) Save points are pretty decent (probably 10-15 minutes max between them).  Checkpoints are more frequent but, of course, you can't save there. 

2) Hard to say- Probably  not any harder but I admit to having seen the Game Over screen a time or two but I think that's mainly due to my GoW skills being rusty. 
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« Reply #20 on: March 06, 2008, 03:38:18 AM »

Put in about an hour, and am really enjoying it so far.  I'm amazed at the graphics this little PSP is churning out.  It honestly looks no different from the PS2 version.  The gameplay is identical, so if you didn't like GoW the first 2 times around, this one isn't going to do anything to change your mind.  Some of the new magic stuff is cool (I like the Ifrit spell), but otherwise it's another dose of completely over-the-top ultraviolence, which fits the bill perfectly.
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« Reply #21 on: March 06, 2008, 05:21:21 AM »

reached the first major boss battle, &, not being crazy about the series, i'm finding this game a lot easier to take (minus the knob rotating that kevin mentioned, which is kinda tricky) than the other 2, for some reason. very pretty (tho i still think the monster hunter games have it beat), very well made, & nothing especially new (tho it's early), but i'm not having a problem with that (tho the whole button-press finishing move thing is really starting to feel like it's run it's course)...
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« Reply #22 on: March 06, 2008, 04:05:53 PM »

Well this is my first GoW game and I am enjoying it quite a lot.  So much so that I brought it with me to work and I can't remember I brought my PSP to work so I could play it during lunch smile
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« Reply #23 on: March 06, 2008, 04:37:57 PM »

Also enjoying it so far, died quite a few times but I'm playing on Hard. Estimating myself to be 1/3-1/2 through.

Controls are a bit annoying, but mostly because the PSP doesn't quite fit my hands, so keeping fingers on the stick, buttons, and both triggers is kind of difficult.

I'm a bit dissapointed in the 'scale' of the game, but after GoW2, I can't imagine them finding a way to outdo the setpieces of that game on a handheld.

Story is decent so far, at least as much as a prequel can be.
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« Reply #24 on: March 06, 2008, 04:56:47 PM »

Quote from: madpeon on March 06, 2008, 04:37:57 PM

I'm a bit dissapointed in the 'scale' of the game, but after GoW2, I can't imagine them finding a way to outdo the setpieces of that game on a handheld.

Yeah, I fired up GoW 2 again for a bit last night (and wow does it look amazing upscaled on PS3) and I just don't think you can get any more epic than that. 

They seem to be going for an epic feel in Chains of Olympus by pulling the camera really far back frequently and it's effective, but also kind of weird on a platform witih such a tiny screen- there have been times where Kratos has sort of blended into the background with the enemies and I can't figure out who's who.

I'm hoping that they port it to PS2- as much as I'm enjoying it on PSP, I would love to play it on the big screen upscaled. 
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« Reply #25 on: March 07, 2008, 04:29:39 AM »

An unskippable cutscene before the final boss fight??!?  What the hell were they thinking?
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« Reply #26 on: March 07, 2008, 04:38:03 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 06, 2008, 04:56:47 PM

Quote from: madpeon on March 06, 2008, 04:37:57 PM

I'm a bit dissapointed in the 'scale' of the game, but after GoW2, I can't imagine them finding a way to outdo the setpieces of that game on a handheld.

Yeah, I fired up GoW 2 again for a bit last night (and wow does it look amazing upscaled on PS3) and I just don't think you can get any more epic than that. 

They seem to be going for an epic feel in Chains of Olympus by pulling the camera really far back frequently and it's effective, but also kind of weird on a platform witih such a tiny screen- there have been times where Kratos has sort of blended into the background with the enemies and I can't figure out who's who.

I'm hoping that they port it to PS2- as much as I'm enjoying it on PSP, I would love to play it on the big screen upscaled. 

GoW and GoW 2 were reasons I miss BC in my PS3.  Hopefully it'll make a software comeback sometime in the future, so I can play both these games.
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« Reply #27 on: March 07, 2008, 05:31:11 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 07, 2008, 04:29:39 AM

An unskippable cutscene before the final boss fight??!?  What the hell were they thinking?

hey - why any unskippable cutscenes? i was surprised early when i realized you couldn't do it...

just departed from the temple of helios, & i'm enjoying coo more than i did the previous 2 - the combination of fewer of kratos' melodramatic outbursts & a smaller-scale, somewhat original storyline makes the game work a lot better for me. wouldn't mind some puzzles that were actually puzzling, & continue to have stick rotation problems, but otherwise am enjoying the beautiful brainlessness of it all, & will likely be seeing it thru to the end (unlike gow2)...
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« Reply #28 on: March 07, 2008, 06:20:36 AM »

Enjoying CoO more than the first two?  Bizarre. CoO is a fine game but it's a far cry from either GoW 1 or 2 IMO (especially GoW 2).  But I know you generally don't dig the story or characters much in these games.

Finished CoO tonight.  It was very good but kind of uninspiring- there really isn't much at all new or different here.  Heck even the final boss fight is just a variation of a GoW 2 boss fight.  Especially in the last hour there were segments where it was just "get locked in a room, trigger monster spawn, monsters spawn a second time, room unlocked, run down the hall to a room that looks exactly the same, get locked in, repeat..."

I certainly don't think the game is worth buying a PSP over unless you happen to be the world's biggest God of War fan.  But for any GoW fans who already have a PSP then it's a must buy. 
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« Reply #29 on: March 07, 2008, 07:16:21 AM »

You know, in all honesty I'd like to see them start making a plethora of more easily made, high quality 2D or faux 3D games for the PSP.
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« Reply #30 on: March 07, 2008, 01:20:15 PM »

Quote from: Turtle on March 07, 2008, 07:16:21 AM

You know, in all honesty I'd like to see them start making a plethora of more easily made, high quality 2D or faux 3D games for the PSP.
What does this have to do with God of War?
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« Reply #31 on: March 07, 2008, 06:10:55 PM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 07, 2008, 06:20:36 AM

Enjoying CoO more than the first two?  Bizarre. CoO is a fine game but it's a far cry from either GoW 1 or 2 IMO (especially GoW 2).  But I know you generally don't dig the story or characters much in these games.

yeah, as i said, a little kratos goes a long way with me, & this smaller-scale version contains the essence of the gameplay minus the bogus theatrics. unlike some people, good gameplay (which i do think gow, for the most part, does have) isn't enough for me: if i'm gonna get thru an average console game, i need the traditional stuff - likable characters, interesting villains, & actual dialog (versus a hero who basically does nothing, conversation-wise, but repeatedly mention to everyone he encounters (statues included) how badly he's been used, & how pissed off he is about it). the bad news is coo, like the previous 2, has none of the above - but the good news is the game's only so long, so i can fake it smile ...
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« Reply #32 on: March 08, 2008, 09:04:28 PM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 07, 2008, 06:20:36 AM

Finished CoO tonight.  It was very good but kind of uninspiring- there really isn't much at all new or different here.  Heck even the final boss fight is just a variation of a GoW 2 boss fight.  Especially in the last hour there were segments where it was just "get locked in a room, trigger monster spawn, monsters spawn a second time, room unlocked, run down the hall to a room that looks exactly the same, get locked in, repeat..."

hehheh... you noticed that too, huh? smile ...

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 07, 2008, 06:20:36 AM

I certainly don't think the game is worth buying a PSP over unless you happen to be the world's biggest God of War fan.  But for any GoW fans who already have a PSP then it's a must buy.

agreed. as an action game, not nearly as much fun as size matters, daxter, or gurumin, imo. very, very pretty (tho there's quite a bit of environment recycling), no camera problems, controls (but for the knob) are great, combat's impressive - you know, were kratos not gaming's most one-dimensional hero, were the angst-meter turned down several notches, were there room for some other characters, some actual 'dialog', & even a little bit of humor...

ah, never mind smile ...
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« Reply #33 on: March 09, 2008, 01:56:36 AM »

Well I certainly think it was better than Size Matters which really fizzled for me after a promising start.  I would probably rate Daxter higher but that's more because Daxter succeeds in being it's own separate entity from the franchise that spawned it (a linear platformer during a time when Jak games were focused on action and free-roaming) while CoO aspires to be as close to it's console cousin as possible but still falls short of that mark.
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« Reply #34 on: March 09, 2008, 05:06:09 AM »

Kevin,

in an earlier post you mentioned, "One thing does bug the crap out of me- The QTE events that require you to swirl the analog stick are woefully unsuited for the PSP's analog nub.  I've failed more QTE's that require that motion than I can count and it put me in a few sticky situations as the result. "

How much did control issues such as that inhibit your enjoyment of the game? Just by your description I'd be afraid to tear my analog stick right off the PSP.   crybaby
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Kevin Grey
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« Reply #35 on: March 09, 2008, 06:48:43 AM »

It really wasn't that big of a deal.  It was specific to QTE events and once I learned to adapt to the way it's handled on PSP I was able to get it relatively consistently.  Still, I think it was  mistake to use those types of QTEs at all but it's by no means a game breaker. 
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« Reply #36 on: March 10, 2008, 03:04:20 PM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 09, 2008, 01:56:36 AM

Well I certainly think it was better than Size Matters which really fizzled for me after a promising start.

we're gonna have to agree to disagree here - went back to sm for a while last evening & picked up from my save in my second run-thru, & ended up replaying the 'north by northwest' cornfield sequence, which alone, to me, was more inspired, clever, & entertaining than just about all of coo put together smile ...
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« Reply #37 on: March 11, 2008, 01:15:58 AM »

Well, I'm officially stuck.  I doubt anyone can help on this one, but I'll give it a shot.

I'm working my way through
Spoiler for Hiden:
Hades
, and I come across a fight against 2 cyclops with a few soldiers thrown in.  After beating them, one more Cyclops pops up, and then the area barriers disappear.  Problem is, the only way to proceed is across a large chasm, which is too far to jump.  I'm obviously supposed to jump across it (I even checked the Gamespot guide, and that's how it said to proceed - 4th paragraph down here), but I must have tried 50 times and fallen into the chasm every single time.  It's simply too wide to jump across.  It's obviously the only way through (all the other paths are now blocked by locked doors), so there must be some way to get over it.  I've tried every combination of timing, double jumping, running starts...but nothing works.  I just keep falling to my death over and over. 

Any ideas?
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Kevin Grey
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« Reply #38 on: March 11, 2008, 01:24:48 AM »

I'm *pretty* sure I know the jump you're talking about.  IIRC I fell in the chasm the first time.  It is a pretty big jump- even double jumping Kratos only made it so that he was barely hanging on to the ledge and had to pull himself up.  I just loaded up my save from my second playthrough since I just cleared that section but unfortunately I can't backtrack to verify.  Sorry I can't be of more help.
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« Reply #39 on: March 11, 2008, 02:14:41 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on March 11, 2008, 01:24:48 AM

I'm *pretty* sure I know the jump you're talking about.  IIRC I fell in the chasm the first time.  It is a pretty big jump- even double jumping Kratos only made it so that he was barely hanging on to the ledge and had to pull himself up.  I just loaded up my save from my second playthrough since I just cleared that section but unfortunately I can't backtrack to verify.  Sorry I can't be of more help.

i feel for you, gratch - for some reason, i had incredible luck doing the longer jumps (i remember several), as i usually do really badly. but, yeah, when i did make them i'd always just be hanging on the ledge. there's an optimal moment to do the second part of the double jump, & finding it is pretty much the trick. good luck...
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"... i'm not against some 'monkey catching'... but i'd rather be collecting pants..."
- snake, 'snake vs monkey' (mgs3:se)
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