I'm going to make this review short and to the point: I cannot stand God of War. I've always seen it as a self-important, needlessly mean-spirited series that desperately tries to be Rated M For Manly. The series fails in this regard, if not every regard. The only thing I can really compliment the series for is its mechanics, and even they are not unique. The game's writers try to make Kratos seem like a Byronic hero, a bad ass who rages against the system that has taken everything from him. In theory, this could make for an interesting character; I'm reminded of Guts from Berserk, who fits a similar mold but is ultimately far more sympathetic — he's aware of his flaws, but has trouble overcoming them, and he tries to do the right thing despite the brutality it may involve. Kratos, on the other hand, is more like an unintentional parody of this trope: he has no redeeming qualities, he's incredibly selfish, he's childish, he slaughters innocent people, and he manipulates other victims of the gods. This last point is especially troubling, because it shows what a hypocrite Kratos is. I doubt the creators meant to portray our "hero" this way, but it's interesting that Kratos spends the whole series wangsting about how the gods betrayed him and trying to get revenge for the things (he believes) they've done to him, and yet he has no qualms with murdering people who are trying to achieve the same goal, or are simply trying to survive the horrible circumstances they've been given. Apart from Kratos' Complete Monster status, there's also the rampant sexism prevalent in the series. Yes, I know that women (and men) were heavily sexualized in Greek mythology, and are often portrayed as nude or semi-nude; however, in a series that strays so far from the source material that it might as well change the names of the mythological figures, I won't accept that it's "being true to the source." Female characters rarely wear more than panties (or the Grecian version thereof) or a shift. I would be more accepting of this if the men were just as sexualized (after all, it is Ancient Greece). In the end, God of War is an ultraviolent foray into an adolescent boy's fantasies, where the hero treats other people like garbage, kills for the hell of it, is an all-around Marty Stu, and doesn't have to answer for his misdeeds.
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