5.18.2009

Heavenly Sword Review


Heavenly Sword came out nearly 3 years ago, but still stands out as one of the marquee titles for the PS3. If you've ever played God of War, it's exactly like that - a hack and slash vs. hordes of enemies utilizing some simple button combinations to unleash walking death on them.

While the battle system lacks the depth of God of War (nothing in this game levels ... you only unlock more combos as your progress through the game), and the art style lacks the gallons of blood and guts spilling everywhere, there is one quality that sets this game apart from it: the voice acting and cut scenes. As much as I love Kratos's menacing tone, he's pretty much stuck on one gear - rage. The cast of Heavenly Sword does an astounding job bringing the story and cut scenes alive. Andy Serkis (LOTR: gollum!), in particular, does a really good job with the evil king Bohan. His supporting cast is hilarious and brings a certain lightness to the tyrant's campaign.



The entire game flows like a movie and breaks into 5 acts, and despite some frustrations with the projectile modes (arrows, cannons), it finishes really fast. I think it only took me 5-6 hours to complete the game while achieving about 3/4 of the total glyph points. Some might consider that a con, but for people like me who have a million other things to do, this game makes for a perfect distraction.

Overall, the presentation is solid. The graphics are as good as any game coming out these days, and if you have a surround sound system, the explosions are especially satisfying. There are some frame rate issues and the six-axis implementation could use some tweaking, but at least they tried. Finally, the boss fights are pretty lame ... you just have to find an attack pattern that works and dodge and repeat.

Arbitrary kenholic.com rating: 7.5 out of 10.

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