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Forums > Submission Feedback > [News] God of War: Ascension announced

This thread is in response to an article about God of War: Ascension on the PlayStation 3. You are encouraged to view the article in a new window before reading this thread.

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Author: zippdementia
Posted: April 20, 2012 (10:16 AM)
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Stop. No more God of War, unless it's to clear up that lackluster ending from the third game.


Note to gamers: when someone shoots you in the face, they aren't "gay." They are "psychopathic."


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Author: zigfried (Mod)
Posted: April 20, 2012 (05:51 PM)
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The smaller problem with this concept is we already know the path Kratos traveled to become a god. So, for people who still care about Kratos, it's useless.

The bigger problem with this concept is that no one cares about Kratos anymore.

//Zig


Unlimited Zig Works!


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Author: honestgamer (Mod)
Posted: April 20, 2012 (06:27 PM)
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Given the general reaction online, Zig, it would appear that you are wrong on both counts.

I'm not sure why it even matters, though. Video games aren't something most people play for the story. It's the gameplay that ultimately matters. If you want a good story, there's almost always a far superior story available in nearly any book you'd care to mention than you'll find in the best of games. That's because games require so many different elements to bring a story together in a meaningful way. The whole "Play a game for a while, then watch a cutscene, then repeat" angle doesn't work. The more of that sort of thing a game includes--in an attempt to tell a better story--the worse the game becomes.

The games that really let you play a role in the story tend to have very little scripted action at all. They're something like the Elder Scrolls games, where you largely make your own story, or they're (from what I hear) something like a Bioware RPG such as Mass Effect, where your choices have consequences that carry through, or they're The Witcher 2 or Heavy Rain. That kind of stuff is difficult to do, and expensive, and you often have to build your whole engine around it to make it work. So with something like God of War, story can't ever reasonably be the primary draw. As long as you're able to gore monsters and whatever else Kratos does (and as long as it all is fairly intense), gamers are going to be satisfied.

Besides, prequels work for a reason. Even when people already know a story, going back to it in fuller detail is always a temptation.


"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought." - John F. Kennedy on reality

"What if everything you see is more than what you see--the person next to you is a warrior and the space that appears empty is a secret door to another world? What if something appears that shouldn't? You either dismiss it, or you accept that there is much more to the world than you think. Perhaps it really is a doorway, and if you choose to go inside, you'll find many unexpected things." - Shigeru Miyamoto


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Author: True
Posted: April 20, 2012 (11:37 PM)
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I agree with Jason on this one. It's one thing to hear about someone's past, but it's another thing to actually experience it. Even if you know everything that happens it's still worthwhile.


If I Offended You, You Needed It.


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Author: Genj
Posted: April 21, 2012 (06:23 AM)
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If this really is a prequel, I question how this would work and/or live up to the epic scale of God of War 3. We spent the first game working toward the goal of finally killing a god, the second defying fate, and the third killing an entire pantheon of gods. A prequel would either need significant retconning or a huge suspension of disbelief to not seem tame compared to the last entry of the series (I'm thinking of Resident Evil 0).

Personally I'm pretty indifferent to this announcement. I've never been a huge fan of the series. I'm sure I'll buy it but probably not at release unless there's a real drought of games at the time.


_


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Author: zigfried (Mod)
Posted: April 21, 2012 (11:13 AM)
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Genj got it. When you've built a game around the most important part of someone's life, then showing us a less important part (especially a part that series fan already know about) isn't going to be impressive. Better to start with a new hero and a new pantheon.

As for story -- I would actually say action games like God of War and DMC are heavier on story than WRPGs (which tend to be heavier on lore). Story should be told through the game. The purpose of cutscenes is to impress players by showing us something that the game engine can't handle. God of War told us a story through the game, and its loud in-game presentation was a huge part of what made the adventure fun.

Weaken God of War's story, and you weaken the game. If it's all about the gameplay (but it's not), then God of War is the wrong thing to play from the start.

//Zig


Unlimited Zig Works!


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Author: Sise-Neg
Posted: April 21, 2012 (12:34 PM)
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Eh, never really liked the GoW series.

Now if we could get a sequel or prequel to Heavenly Sword, that would make me happy.


Everything begins and ends with Sise-Neg!


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Author: zigfried (Mod)
Posted: April 21, 2012 (01:21 PM)
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Out of curiosity, what are some prequels (in any medium) that were actually satisfying?

//Zig


Unlimited Zig Works!


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Author: honestgamer (Mod)
Posted: April 21, 2012 (03:07 PM)
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First King of Shannara by Terry Books was tremendously satisfying if you read and enjoyed the later books, as it explored and clarified points that were later referenced. In fact, prequels (whether directly labeled as such or not) are common within the fantasy and sci-fi genres, and they're successful as often as not. Belgarath the Sorcerer and Polgara the Sorceress, two novels by David & Leigh Eddings, were both satisfying and interesting, even though one could argue that nothing the pair wrote every topped The Belgariad.

Of course, prequels aren't always a home run. They can bomb just as easily as sequels, perhaps even more easily, but dismissing something because it's a prequel doesn't make sense to me in the slightest, based on my generally positive experiences with prequels.


"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought." - John F. Kennedy on reality

"What if everything you see is more than what you see--the person next to you is a warrior and the space that appears empty is a secret door to another world? What if something appears that shouldn't? You either dismiss it, or you accept that there is much more to the world than you think. Perhaps it really is a doorway, and if you choose to go inside, you'll find many unexpected things." - Shigeru Miyamoto


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Author: zigfried (Mod)
Posted: April 21, 2012 (03:25 PM)
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That's an interesting set of examples because they focus on supporting characters, or the world in general. So they're prequels in the sense of the overall world, but they don't explore the main character's past. If God of War had a strong supporting cast (it doesn't) and they wanted to explore one of those characters' pasts, I'd actually be interested.

The only good prequel that deals with the main character (that I can think of right now) is Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.

//Zig


Unlimited Zig Works!


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Author: zippdementia
Posted: April 21, 2012 (03:47 PM)
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The best prequels I've ever read were the Dune series by Brian Herbert's son and Kevin Anderson. The reason they worked as prequels was because they knew their audience. They took preconceived notions gained from the original series and twisted them. My favorite example of this is the character of Tio Holtzman, who is revered in the original series as the ingenious and enigmatic creator of the shielding technology that plays such a huge part in the series.

In the prequels, he is introduced as a character and we quickly discover that he's an untalented hack who has not only been drawing upon the work of others and claiming it as his own but who also highly supports the slave trade and whose main goal in life is to increase his own fame and estate.

After reading the prequels, you can reread the originals and get an entirely new story out of it. I suppose God of War has the opportunity to do this. It was what I was hoping to see of the new Deus Ex. A very solid game, but one which ultimately doesn't do much with the material it was handed. It leads into the original Deus Ex and there's some cross overs, but nothing that complicates the story. I wasn't too surprised to see this, because Deus Ex (the original) is so old that it's tough to reference. But God of War doesn't have that excuse.

And of course, I'm very excited (and nervous) for Prometheus.


Note to gamers: when someone shoots you in the face, they aren't "gay." They are "psychopathic."


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Author: honestgamer (Mod)
Posted: April 21, 2012 (04:06 PM)
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Zig, you're right in that I can't name a large number of good prequels that tell of an earlier point in a beloved protagonist's life. However, I can't name a large number of bad prequels that make that effort, either. It's just not something that happens a lot in any books I've read or movies I've seen. That doesn't make it a bad idea, though, and it certainly doesn't strike me as a common pitfall or cause for disinterest.

When writing a story, a novelist is supposed to begin with the most interesting moment of that particular story and build from there, so that there's an immediate hook and the reader will develop an affection for the character, or at least an interest in the outcome of those initial events (after all, not every hero is really a hero). However, when a storyteller has already done those things and has the luxury of a mostly captive audience--an audience, in the case of games, that has reasons to remain engaged besides just an interest in Kratos' innermost emotions or triggers--that's a good thing.

The new God of War title could wind up blowing chunks. I just don't think it's fair to dismiss it on the grounds that it's a prequel, and it's probably not fair to consider the franchise a dead one when it continues to sell at a reasonable pace. A few million units moved is nothing to sneeze at, even though it falls short of retailers' inflated expectations. I'm aware from previous discussions that you personally have lost interest in Kratos and his story, but that doesn't yet seem to be the widespread opinion in the manner that your earlier comments in this thread suggested.


"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought." - John F. Kennedy on reality

"What if everything you see is more than what you see--the person next to you is a warrior and the space that appears empty is a secret door to another world? What if something appears that shouldn't? You either dismiss it, or you accept that there is much more to the world than you think. Perhaps it really is a doorway, and if you choose to go inside, you'll find many unexpected things." - Shigeru Miyamoto


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Author: True
Posted: April 21, 2012 (03:49 PM)
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Record of Agarest War: Zero was a good one. Although it didn't focus on the main character, it did shed light on what brought about the events for the original.

I would also say that Lufia: Rise of the Sinistrals is another great example of what I think Ascension is trying to accomplish--in that it's trying to establish more depth in the Kratos legend. If they're smart, they won't try to get bigger and better because let's face facts that you're probably not going to be able to top Kratos riding a Titan to attack Mt. Olympus. In order for this prequel (or any for that matter) to work, at least in my opinion, they need to reign everything in, simplify it and add substance to the foundation they've already established. Try to build a house that way and you're fucking nuts, but in the entertainment field prequels can work sometimes.

The problem is that most people forget that, like Rise Of The Lycans or Scorpion King. They expand even further on all the elements that work, and try to make them even more grand than the first two, so basically all they're selling us is another sequel with a asterisk.

I was going to reference Darkness but really...


If I Offended You, You Needed It.


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Author: Roto13 (Mod)
Posted: April 21, 2012 (04:22 PM)
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Out of curiosity, what are some prequels (in any medium) that were actually satisfying?

//Zig


Metal Gear Solid 3. Tons of Zeldas. Metroid Prime.


---


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Author: zippdementia
Posted: April 21, 2012 (05:16 PM)
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Oh jesus, how did I forget Metal Gear Solid 3? Best prequel ever made, in my opinion. So much so that it was more interesting than the sequels.


Note to gamers: when someone shoots you in the face, they aren't "gay." They are "psychopathic."


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Author: Genj
Posted: April 21, 2012 (11:27 PM)
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I can only think of a few truly great prequels:

The Godfather Part II - Lives up to the first film's quality. However you can argue against calling this a "good prequel" since only half the movie is a prequel, and that half was already part of the original novel the first film was based on.

Devil May Cry 3 - A return to form for the series. The first game had already established that Dante had been demon hunting prior its events, so it fit pretty easily into the series. Hell, I think the only reason this even was a prequel was just to distance itself as much as possible from the shitty second game. Interestingly, DMC (or Devil May Cry 5 - whatever you want to call it) seems like it'll have the complete opposite reception.

Metal Gear Solid 3 - Not only the best playing MGS, but featured a legitimately interesting story with a great cast of characters and villains, much more so than MGS2 & 4. Eventually you realize that its story was important to setting up the final chapter of the series.

There are a lot of games you could mention but their placement in time, story, and/or characters are largely unimportant. For example, all the Zelda games are in different eras of Hyrule, but their chronological order are debatable and pretty much every Zelda is a re-boot of the same concept. Halo Reach is the best playing Halo, but few play Halo for compelling narrative. Street Fighter Alpha is technically a great prequel, but it's a fighting game.


_


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Author: Suskie
Posted: April 22, 2012 (12:03 AM)
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Metroid Prime is one of my all-time favorite games, but I don't consider it an exemplary prequel or anything because its place in the series' timeline is irrelevant to me.


You exist because we allow it. And you will end because we demand it.


This message was deleted at the request of joseph_valencia, the person who originally posted it.

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Author: joseph_valencia
Posted: April 22, 2012 (02:03 AM)
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Never mind. Most of the stuff I listed deals with the supporting characters and/or world. Don't know of many successful prequels that actually deal with a lead character.


Spaceworlder was able to build this sig IN A CAVE…… WITH A BOX OF SCRAPS!!


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