I’m confident we’d all agree re-releasing PS2 classics such as the original God or War titles, or even the recent Ico/Shadow of the Colossus Collection as HD remakes for their next-gen cousin requires an Olympian effort. Upgrading these older titles to the PS3’s Divine 1920 x 1080 resolution is no small undertaking.
But truthfully, next to the monumental task of up-scaling PSP titles, initially rendered at a measly 480 x 272, it’s a decidedly mean feat.
Mercifully, the busy people of Ready at Dawn have no interest in mean feats!
Things aren't looking great for that bird!
The God of War: Origins Collection is a re-mastery in the truest sense. These PSP classics have been ferried via PS3 engine. Kratos runs, pillages and wantonly murders at full 1080p and a silky 60fps. Even the original FMVs, the bane of the predecessor collection, have been entirely re-rendered for graphical fidelity... though it damn near took an entire Blu-Ray to do it.
Geometry and Texture enhancements prevail throughout Kratos’ two less publicised canonical adventures, with the polygon count of each and every character doubled by hand and in many cases even tripled.
No mear spit polish! It looks a lot better, and on a screen about 15 times the size of a PSP
In layman’s terms this allows for prettier, more-detailed carnage as the Ghost of Sparta eviscerates anything that rubs him the wrong way, that is, any way at all. He’s not a calm man!
The only issue in Ready-At-Dawn’s Herculanean effort is the decided absence of Anti-Aliasing. At glorious 1080p, there persist one too many jagged, pixelated edges for our tastes, some minor screen tearing and a few frame rate clips.
In our humble opinion, it far from sullies the experience. But on recollection we don’t have chained swords burned into our very flesh nor the ashes of our butchered family staining our skin a deathly white!
Perhaps you do. If so, it’s probably you’ll be less forgiving...
You'll likely not notice the occassional jaggie. Too many foes to chop!
Also, for the three of you who might avail of this feature, Origins Collections marks Kratos’ first foray into the third dimension. The Stereoscopic 3D remains an impressive addition, imparting dual 720p images which manage to alleviate many of the issues marring the 1080 presentation.
More noticeably, the PS3’s DualShock 3 rumble echoes the brimming fury of the God of War’s obscene rampages. Similarly, Kratos’ nimble rolling has been mapped to the right thumbstick to more effectively brutalize his opposition.
Generally, this remake is a technical landmark in precision and effort.
No mild case of indigestion!
But, as ever, its ability to impress depends entirely on your own ability to forgive. It’s not RAGE. It’s not Uncharted 3. Hell, it’s not even God of War 3. But it’s one Hades of an effort, notwithstanding.
Ultimately, the key issue facing the God of War: Origins collections is not a technical one, but a preferential one: Do you suffer Kratos fatigue?
How could you not?!
God of War 3 was a debacle, reducing gaming’s most savagely arresting protagonist to a laughable parody of his once infectious fury. Sadly, the series lost its novelty for me at this point, around the same time I slapped square, square triangle for the 40,000th time! And technical merits or no, the God of War: Origins Collection does little to improve the Ghost of Sparta’s lasting appeal.
That said, if you’ve a lingering fondness for hack and slash, fire in the belly and €40 to burn, it might be worth going back in time for this re-mastered massacre.