The retreat has not worked: Kratos, a Greek god, has settled after three turbulent, settled in the Greek gods games in the cold north and carries a long lumberjack beard. Actually, he wanted to lead a quiet life in a forest hut with his wife and child.
But the woman is dead and the child is actually not ready to fulfill the last wish of the deceased: to scatter their ashes from the highest peak in the country. Nevertheless, Kratos and Atreus, the son’s name, are off to one of the most magnificent Playstation 4 games ever.
“God of War”, which will be released on April 20, is now the fourth installment of the Kratos saga, the sequel to a highly successful, but also rather brutal series created at Sony’s Santa Monica studio. From the beginning, “God of War” alone was visually a showpiece series, it was advertising for the respective generation of consoles. Bigger, nicer, faster was the motto of the games.
This is what God of War looks like
Much has not changed on this premise. The new game looks brilliant, there’s hardly anything like it in this generation of console games. The screen is alive and full of tiny details. Small leaves and giant monsters are a matter of course, taking their place in the world. The northern forests are lush, in icy deserts the snow blows and the figures sink deep into it, flower meadows like colorful seas. In caves huge machines are hidden, which are to be brought to life.
The graphic splendor has its price
And again and again huge opponents come on the scene: The Nordic gods are not exactly pleased with the refugee from the south and send out trolls, ogres and demigods to kill him.
The graphic splendor comes – at least on my review unit, a Playstation 4 Pro – but with a high price. Just when especially many or large enemies frolic on the screen, the fan turns on the console and drowns everything. What bothers, as even quieter passages are affected by the roar.
There are some of these quiet moments. Because what makes the new “God of War” special is the interaction of father and son. As a father, the god becomes very human in his ignorance and insecurity, his son is a very modern character, which questions him, annoys him and is always simply a child.
Atreus is a real help
The interaction of the two works so well that you will find yourself as a playing father in some dialogues, hoping not to come across as monosyllabic and monosyllabic as Kratos does here most of the time.
Son Atreus is not only important for the story, but also for the fight. Where Kratos proceeds with ax, fists and kicks, Atreus takes over the ranged and shoots with arrows at opponents. Kratos gives him orders at the push of a button, everything else controls the son himself. This works very well in comparison to other games in which computer-controlled colleagues are often more of an obstacle than help.
But in the end – and that’s probably good news for “God of War” fans – the show stays true to its originality. Even the latest part is bombastic and bloody, sometimes even repulsively brutal. The game is fascinating to look at, you can feel the size and strength of individual characters – and above all the power that lies in the violence. The combative Nordic mythology, also decorated here with “Games of Thrones” bonds, fits quite well.
What’s remarkable about the new game is that it makes you think more about what you’re playing here than its predecessors. The brutal and simple attitude of “God of War” between hurting pride and violence as the only solution is known from other games. Here, however, it seems particularly questionable because it is about the relationship between father and son, that is, about education, about conveying values. Since it seems all the more disturbing that these values correspond to an over-believed human and men image here.
“God of War” from Sony, for Playstation 4, about 60 euros; USK: From 18 years
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