This is another, "I just beat the game post," if you would like to move on now. And a quick TL:DR; it was amazing and I'm now GoW for life!
I love hardcore mode on any game I play. It compliments my mentality on life. Games that lack challenge or games that you can pay to advance in are not for me. The more difficult, the better. I want desperately to see the next cut scene, but I want to earn it and therefore appreciate it much more.
GoW Mode provided this challenge and then some. I honestly thought some of the battles were going to be impossible, literally impossible. In fact, is there a way to check stats? Specifically, how many times that I died? My death count must be absurd. And, I'm not even finished with the all the game has to offer. I completed the story, but I have other tasks to complete.
Those impossible fights were unique from other games that I've played. It wasn't just about getting to know the fight and adjusting strategy until prevailing. The fights made you think about gear, what you have socketed, how you spend XP, controlling Atreus, and using the environment to your advantage. The last part there I figured out way too late into the game. The adventure to flip the realm room is a great example of why. Imagine not using the environment to defeat the monsters as you try to break the chains? I spent a few hours, over a few days, fighting until it finally clicked. That's what I want out of every game! Make me frustrated, hopeless, angry! Then reward me with an epic storyline!
I, like many, think TLOU has one of the best storylines ever created. Now, I, like many, also believe the storyline in GoW is just as amazing. I'm an old gamer and never shed a tear playing Atari games. The stories in GoW and TLOU brought tears to my eyes and rage to my heart. I really enjoyed how the game keeps going even after the main storyline is complete. That was a really incredible surprise that I hope other games impliment.
Grounded+ Mode was so impressive. I didn't think I would find another challenge like that, except perhaps in the upcoming TLOU2. But, my goodness, GoW rivaled Grounded+ and I'm unsure at this point which I find more challenging. I'm just understanding that GoW has previous games to play. Are they just as difficult and rewarding? I'm almost afraid to play in that I may somehow corrupt this GoW experience. That's silly, I know.
Anyway, I could write a novel. To sum up, very satisfied customer and new hardcore fan of GoW. Other developers pay attention. I don't buy, play, or consider myself a fan of very many games. I certainly don't buy real world gear and special edition items that, let's be honest, cost a lot of money. But if you create games like GoW and TLOU, count on reaping profits from new sources, like me. I have Joel's collector watch, firefly shirts and a beanie, an Ellie shirt, TLOU comic books, and an embarrassing amount more. The GoW spending spree is coming soon. You don't need pay to advance, or microtransactions. You just need to put out a quality product. That simple, take my money.
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