God of War video game collections

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God of War is an action-adventure video game series loosely based on Greek mythology. Debuting in 2005, the series has become a flagship title for the PlayStation brand and the character Kratos is one of its most popular characters. The series consists of seven games across multiple platforms. Five of the games have been re-released through three separate compilations for the PlayStation 3 (PS3) platform: the God of War Collection (2009), the God of War: Origins Collection (2011), and the God of War Saga (2012). With the exception of God of War III in the God of War Saga, each collection features remastered ports of the games that were not originally released on the PS3. God of War: Betrayal, however, is the only installment that has not received this treatment.

Each collection was praised for how the games were remastered, as well as their price. IGN claimed that the God of War Collection was the "definitive way to play the game[s]". The God of War Collection prompted Sony to make a new line of remastered games for the PlayStation 3 (which has expanded to the PlayStation Vita). Although the Origins Collection was criticized for its lack of new bonus content, IGN said that "Sony succeeded at making good games better." For the Saga, Digital Trends claimed it is "perhaps the best value buy for any console available."

God of War Collection[edit]

God of War Collection is a remastered port[4] of God of War and God of War II for the PlayStation 3 on a single Blu-ray Disc that was released in North America on November 17, 2009.[1] It is the first game under Sony's line of "Classics HD."[4] The collection was included in the God of War III Ultimate Trilogy Edition, released on March 18, 2010, in Australia and New Zealand, and on March 19 in Europe. It was released in Japan as a standalone on March 18, where it was published by Capcom,[2] and was later released as part of the God of War III Trilogy Edition, which included God of War III and God of War Collection, on March 25. It was released as a standalone in Australia on April 29[5] and in the UK on April 30.[6]

God of War and God of War II were ported by Bluepoint Games and feature high-definition 720p anti-aliased graphics at 60 frames per second and Trophies.[7] The bonus materials of the original two-disc PlayStation 2 (PS2) version of God of War II are included with the Blu-ray version of the collection.[8] The port was produced as a result of feedback from fans of the series and was viewed as a means of introducing new players to the series before God of War III was released.[9] The God of War III game demo from the 2009 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) was included with early copies of the collection.[10]

Sony's Santa Monica Studio—the games' original developer—ran a sweepstakes in November 2009 for the release of God of War Collection. The grand prize was an autographed "Gold" disc, exclusive artwork created and signed by a God of War team member, a Limited Edition Kratos T-shirt, and a limited edition 10 inches (25 cm) figurine of Kratos. First place prize was a copy of God of War Collection signed by the development team. Winners were announced in December 2009.[11][12]

On November 2, 2010, the God of War Collection was released as a digital download on the PlayStation Store.[8] PlayStation Plus subscribers can download a one-hour trial of each game. For a limited time, Plus subscribers received a God of War III skin with the purchase of each game: "Phantom of Chaos" (God of War) and "Forgotten Warrior" (God of War II) respectively.[13] The bonus materials for God of War II were not included with the digital download version.[8] With the download of patch update version 1.01 that was released on September 5, 2012, the PS3 version of God of War Collection can be played on the PlayStation Vita via the Remote Play function.[14] At E3 2013, a PS Vita version of God of War Collection was announced,[15] and released on May 6, 2014.[16]

Reception[edit]

God of War Collection received universal critical acclaim. IGN gave the game an "Editor's Choice" Award, praised the enhanced resolutions, lower price point and smoother frame rates, and stated it was the "definitive way to play the game".[23] 1up.com noted the tremendous increase in visuals but said the in-engine cut-scenes appeared blurry.[24] GamePro stated the collection is "two fantastic games on one disc for a low price; puts you in the right mindset for God of War 3."[25] PlayStation LifeStyle (5/5) said "Those ... familiar with Kratos will enjoy the extra polish the Collection brings to two of the best games from the PS2 era."[26] Due to the success of the God of War Collection, Sony announced that further titles would receive similar treatment for release under its new "Classics HD" brand.[4] By June 2012, God of War Collection had sold more than 2.4 million copies worldwide.[27] The Vita version has received mixed to positive reviews.

God of War: Origins Collection[edit]

God of War: Origins Collection (titled God of War Collection – Volume II in Europe and commonly referred to as God of War Origins) is a remastered port of the two PlayStation Portable (PSP) installments in the series—God of War: Chains of Olympus and God of War: Ghost of Sparta—for the PlayStation 3 on a single Blu-ray Disc. It was announced at the Sony press conference at E3 2011 and was ported by Ready at Dawn, the developer of the PSP games. The collection was released on September 13, 2011, in North America, September 16 in Europe, September 29 in Australia, and October 6 in Japan. God of War: Origins Collection was also released in North America as a digital download on the PlayStation Store on September 13.[28]

God of War Origins features 720p high-definition video, anti-aliased graphics at 60 frames per second, DualShock 3 rumble features, Trophies,[29] and is the only God of War release to feature Stereoscopic 3D. The God of War – Game Directors Live documentary, Kratos Legionnaire bonus skin, and Forest of the Forgotten combat arena (originally pre-order bonuses for Ghost of Sparta) are also included with the God of War: Origins Collection.[30][31]

Reception[edit]

God of War: Origins Collection was similarly well received. IGN stated, "Sony succeeded at making good games better" and that it "acts as a time lapse experiment for players to get a really good look at how a developer evolves from one game to another."[34] GamePro noted the lack of new bonus content, and said, "3D doesn't necessarily radically redefine the experience. It does, however, make things like boss fights and magical effects much more mesmerizing", but added that, "all of the in-game cinematics are not in 3D, which is ... unfortunate considering how cutscenes are such an integral part of the storytelling in any God of War game".[35] By June 2012, God of War: Origins Collection had sold 711,737 copies worldwide.[27]

God of War Saga[edit]

God of War Saga is a collection of five of the God of War games for the PlayStation 3 released as part of Sony's PlayStation Collections line on August 28, 2012, in North America. The collection includes God of War, God of War II, God of War III, God of War: Chains of Olympus, and God of War: Ghost of Sparta. It features two Blu-ray Discs—God of War I and II on the first and III on the second—and a voucher to download Chains of Olympus and Ghost of Sparta. The games retain the same features as their first PS3 releases. The collection also includes exclusive bonus content and a voucher for a one-month trial of PlayStation Plus. The games, with the exception of God of War III, are also available to download from the PlayStation Store.[36][37] From September 27 until October 5, 2012, to celebrate the release of the God of War Saga, PlayStation.Blog ran a weekly countdown of the top five God of War epic moments as voted by the God of War Facebook community. "The Death of Ares" from the original God of War was voted as the "#1 most epic God of War moment of All Time."[38]

In Latin America, an exclusive version of God of War Saga, titled God of War: Omega Collection, was released in November 2012. The Omega Collection features three Blu-ray discs, as opposed to two, with Chains of Olympus and Ghost of Sparta included on the third disc. It also includes a SteelBook game case with exclusive artwork and a limited edition bronze statue of Kratos, created by an Argentine artist.[39]

Reception[edit]

God of War Saga also received praise. Ryan Fleming of Digital Trends wrote that the collection "is perhaps the best value buy for any console available", and that for fans of the series, "this collection is not for you" as all games (with the exception of God of War III) are available for download, and it will "likely be redundant." However, new or inexperienced players should buy it. Fleming added that it was odd that the PSP games were included as downloads, and would like to have seen content migrate over to the PlayStation Vita.[40] Jeffrey L. Wilson of PC Magazine gave the collection a 4 out of 5 and called it "an excellent purchase for anyone looking for cinematic, blood-drenched action – especially newcomers who get five titles for the price of one", but added that long time fans may not find much value in the collection.[41]

References[edit]

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