God of War II GDC Trailer Impressions

Sony shows off the first footage of its violent action sequel at its GDC keynote address, and we're there to take in the gore.

SAN JOSE, Calif.--It should come as no surprise that Sony and well-known game designer David Jaffe are working on a follow-up to last year's God of War. After all, you don't create one of the best-selling and most highly acclaimed new intellectual properties of the year and then just put it out to pasture. For the first time, we got to check out a trailer of footage from God of War II, featuring the continuing adventures of everyone's favorite angry Spartan warrior, Kratos. The game is due out on the PlayStation 2 in the first quarter of 2007.

Look out, Kratos is gonna getcha.

Not a whole lot has changed since the original God of War--except that, well, Kratos has become a god. But it looks as though he won't be copping out and smiting all his foes with his newfound divine powers. Rather, the gameplay in this sequel looks to build on and extend the diverse and frantic action that Jaffe and team built in the original game. The trailer showed a mixture of outdoor and templelike interior environments, and Kratos showed off many ultraviolent new moves similar to those we saw last year. As you might expect, the game is again set in mythological ancient Greece, and the trailer showed off a number of the new foes you'll face, such as the three-headed dog cerebus and the one-eyed giant cyclops. The trailer even showed Kratos riding atop an eaglelike griffon--and then unceremoniously ripping its wings off.

From the looks of the trailer, God of War II will feature new attack maneuvers, magic spells, and other offensive capabilities for Kratos. Predictably, the new game looks more like an evolutionary step over the first God of War than a radically new experience, but since that game handily took GameSpot's own top honors on the PlayStation 2 last year, that's just fine with us. Sony commented during the keynote address that God of War II is appearing on the PlayStation 2 rather than the PlayStation 3 to satisfy current owners who aren't ready to make the next-gen leap just yet. If development continues apace, the game should make for a nice late Christmas gift to legions of gamers early next year. We'll bring you more on God of War II as soon as we can.

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