Originality comes in spades these days. It’s rare that a game comes out and actually boasts something that sets it apart from a gaggle of ugly ducklings as the beautiful swan. Well, that was something some of us were starting to feel, at least until March 24th, 2005. David Jaffe, acclaimed director of the classic Twisted Metal series has finally released his proud gift to gaming, God of War. God of War is, without a shadow of a doubt, the greatest action adventure game to come out in years. Possibly the best of all time, for that matter, as bold as it may sound. The game casts you in the role of Kratos, a Spartan warrior who feels he has been betrayed by the Gods. To get even, he takes it upon himself to destroy the lives of many and slay the God of War, Ares. The thing that God of War best hits is its atmosphere. Atmospheric presentation in gaming is something that has been getting better and better as the years have gone on, and God of War hits ancient Greece almost flawlessly. Jaffe’s depiction of the ancient country is such a beautiful sight to see that it often makes you pause and just take in your surroundings as if you were there in real life. Artistic direction doesn’t just flow with the look of the game, it also pushes the action to a level that hasn’t ever been achieved in a game of this sort. Maturity in games of this nature often feels forced and trite. In God of War you don’t just kill because it’s cool, or because you’re a badass, but rather because you have a cause, a purpose, a duty, a true reason for killing. You slay the hearts of the wicked and destroy the lives of the innocent. You are Kratos, you feel no remorse. Fluidity is so nice in a game like this. Action games often feel clunky, especially since there has never really been a game to set the standard. David Jaffe and his team have taken it upon themselves to do just that, set the standard, but they’ve set it so high that it might be hard for any game in the near future to match it. Either way, it’s the gamers that win, there’s nothing to worry about here. If you’re looking for a game on your PlayStation 2, look no further. God of War proves that not only the cream of the crop comes out in the Holiday season. This game isn’t just filler in anticipation for November, this could very well be the final hurrah on the PlayStation 2 as the next generation approaches for next year.