David Klein On November 22, 2010 at 12:12 pm

It’s been a big year for the God of War franchise, not only did we have the big release of the last installment in the God of War trilogy but now near the end of the year Sony’s little system that could is getting it’s own follow up. The first PSP entry into the God of War series, Chains of Olympus had gotten quite a lot of critical acclaim as an experience that stays true to it’s console big brother. Naturally given the success of the first game the sequel was a solid bet and sure of enough we have Ghost of Sparta for PSP owners looking for their second fix of God of War. Now is Ghost of Sparta just ghost compared to its console equivalent or is it just what the PSP game starved gamers are looking for.

The graphics in Ghost of Sparta don’t come anywhere near the level of God of War III. Anyway with that out of the way given the capabilities the 6 years old PSP technology the game looks pretty damn good. The frame rate is consistently solid and the game rarely if ever lags. The character models look nice and if you squint the right way you could confuse it with those in God of War III. Just keep in mind if your expecting a game that looks as good as even the PS2 God of War games you’ll walk away disappointed but by it’s own merits on the system it’s on it’s a good looking game that is one of the PSP’s finest examples.

The sound has everything you’re expect from God of War from Gaia narrating the events of the game to Kratos having his bouts of over dramatized anger against the gods. The soundtrack is superb and would fit in on any of the home console versions of the game. The music feels epic and it feels like you’re on some grand quest of redemption and revenge like Kratos usually is on. The sound effects are your standard fare for a God of War game while most of them feel recycled they keep the game feeling like an authentic God of War title.

The gameplay is where Ready at Dawn really shines compared to Sony’s Santa Monica studio, the makers of the main God of War series. Where in God of War III the platforming felt clumsy and imprecise, while playing Chains of Olympus I never had any of the same moments where I didn’t feel like I was in control. The platforming was expertly crafted and that’s with the limitation of the PSP’s controls with 1 less analog and two less buttons to work with. What they did to get around this limit is by having fewer weapons so the d-pad can share using different magic spells as well, and dodging which normally would be on the second analog is now a combination of pressing L, R and a direction on the single analog nub. While a larger variety of weapons would have been nice, sacrifices had to be made for the smaller portable and I’d normally just stick with the Blades of Athena in this or any other God of War anyway. The combat itself feels the same as any other God of War, the basic square, square, triangle combo will work in most situations and grapples against most enemies feels overpowered and open for abuse.

Delving into the story a little, the game takes place between God of War 1 and 2 and tells the story of Kratos looking for his long though dead brother Deimos that has been haunting him as he sleeps on his throne. While it’s mostly a side-quest from the events of the main trilogy but without spoiling too much you do get to see some monumental moments that might have been one of the many reasons that the Gods lashed out against Kratos in the second game. Suffice to say the story is just an excuse for the pretty cinematic displays and a reason to move from one locale to another. That’s always been true for the God of War series and it’s still true on the PSP.

God of War: Ghost of Sparta, is the PSP at it’s finest. Without losing too much from the console version in presentation you’re getting essentially a comparable experience. I’d even got as far as to say the basic gameplay is better on the PSP version due to Ready at Dawn’s attention to detail with the platforming. When it comes to action games on the PSP, Ghost of Sparta has few peers.


For a PSP game, Ghost of Sparta looks really good and does a fine attempt trying to be like big brother God of War.


There is nothing to really hate about the sound unless you just don’t like the God of War series’ sound


Ready at Dawn know how to do God of War games, I especially appreciate their attention to the platforming mechanics.


Ghost of Sparta a lot more than just a ghost of GOW III, in fact I may even prefer it.

Buy God of War: Ghost of Sparta online for the PSP from EBGames.com


Click here to buy God of War: Ghost of Sparta online for the Sony PSP from EBGames.com


One Response

  1. pspguru says:

    Great review, can’t wait to get this for the holidays.