Game reviews: God of War: Chains of Olympus (PSP)

+ This game is a superb technical achievement in the Playstation Portable. The graphics look incredibly smooth, glitchless, very detailed and well rendered, and at places there are surprisingly large landscapes, and all this is rendered at a good framerate. Quite incredibly, the game looks better than many PC games of the era when PCs had stats equivalent to the PSP. This is a very commendable achievement taking into account that this is a handheld device. (The only slight limitation of the PSP is its lack of antialiasing, which makes pixelation sometimes visible.)

The game looks like this, in real-time:


+ Has typical console third-person-view gameplay style, which works ok for the PSP controls. Most movements and combos are relatively easy to perform (in other words, difficulty has not been artificially raised by putting stronger combos behind difficult button combinations).

- The game can only be saved at determined savepoints, and sometimes these savepoints are very far apart, meaning that to get to the next one the player has to play a rather long time. This may sometimes be a problem if playing must be interrupted. (The PSP's sleep mode is of great help with this, of course, but it would still be better if one could actually save the game if playing cannot be continued.)

- The developers made a completely incomprehensible decision at the end of the game: They put a checkpoint just before an unskippable cutscene before the final boss battle, which is an extremely hard one. When you die in the boss battle, you continue from this checkpoint and it takes a bit over one minute before the boss battle starts again! This becomes very annoying very fast.

This is rather incomprehensible. Basically all difficult battles during the game had a checkpoint just before the battle, so when you die you can try again right away. However, in the final battle they decided to put the checkpoint before the (unskippable) cutscene leading to the final battle. I really can't understand why they couldn't put the checkpoint to be after the cutscene and not before it. They did it with all the other battles in the game, why not this one?