Enjoy The Ride

Happy Weekend TAY!

I hope everyone has something great to play this weekend and that you find some time to relax. Good luck to all of you in exams at school...I’m guessing that “relaxing” isn’t exactly on your mind at the moment.

Amidst our ongoing bathroom renovations that have screwed up my sleeping patterns, I’ve tried to put in what little extra time I’ve had this week towards God Of War.

God Of War is shaping up to be one of my favourite PS4 games (despite the problems I have with it) and I’m loving my journey with Kratos and his son.

Advertisement

The map design is the star here and I haven’t had this much fun finding collectables in a long time. The nature of the level design makes backtracking slightly easier than many other Metroidvania games, though it is still a bit of a slog to hike back through many of the larger areas. The backtracking is also hurt a little by the overall slow speed of Kratos (and the TERRIBLE climbing).

Combat Demo *Warning: encounter and upgraded ability spoilers*...oh, and it is violent too.

I’m very happy God Of War seems to be keeping up the challenge as I go along. I’ve had to back out of a couple of fights and make a note to return to them later when I acquire more power. It is refreshing to have a game kicking my ass a lot and a map that keeps track of most major encounters for me.

Advertisement

When I initially started up the game, I chose the highest difficulty available: “Give Me God of War” (I assume this would be “Nightmare” or “Ultra” in other games). And...I couldn’t even make it past the first encounter in the tutorial. In my defence, this initial encounter at the top difficulty level assumes you’ve already played the game once. The first combat tutorial only teaches light and heavy attacks, when it is obvious that you need to be intimately familiar with Kratos’ entire repertoire from the get-go for “Give Me God Of War”.

Advertisement

It was probably for the best that I dropped the difficulty as I am still well challenged at “Give Me A Challenge” (likely the equivalent to “hard”). I’ve always found even the early God Of War titles to be more challenging than its peers and “hard” really meant hard. One of the things I am excited about with machines learning to play games is that we may finally be able to start seeing more objective assessments of game difficulties. If a machine can rate a difficulty level on things like input timing and how much new information is in each encounter, then it might be able to compare that to other games and develop a standardize difficulty system.

Last week I also received my PSVR from Amazon and I’m looking forward to playing more of that when I’m done with God Of War. I’ve only had a brief time with the VR gear after a lengthy setup, but I’m loving what I am seeing so far.

Advertisement

I’d be happy to hear which experiences or games those of you with a PSVR would recommend. This PSVR came with Creed and Superhot and I picked up Archangel and Until Dawn: Rush Of Blood on the Black Friday sales, but I haven’t had any time to look at any of them. I did try out the demos for Moss and Astrobot and enjoyed both of them.

However, the standout title so far is WipEout. I don’t know if I’ll actually play a lot of it in VR as the loss of 4K resolution, HDR, and the silky smooth framerate are likely too much to give up, but WipEout is an exhilarating experience in VR. Only those with stomachs of steel need to apply here, I was feeling a little rough after 8 races.

Advertisement

I’m hoping to have some more time with God Of War this weekend. I’m going to try to focus on the main quest and get that tucked away before I decide whether or not I want to find the remaining collectables. I’m also hoping to get back to some Breath Of The Wild with my kid...damned schoolwork always seems to get in the way of us playing.

So, what are you playing this weekend?