Plans Change, But Was it For the Better?
It’s no secret that a developer’s original vision might not always make it to the end product. Whether that’s a good or bad thing is hard to say – even harder when that vision could have fundamentally changed the games we know today. God of War, like most other games, had plenty of ideas that never made it off the cutting room floor, but few games can say they had to cut something this drastic. For a period of about three months, the original vision for 2005’s God of War title would’ve shifted the player’s perspective right into Kratos’ head.
This little nugget of information comes to us from David Jaffe, the director for the game’s release. In a video from the guy’s own youtube channel, he discusses various inspirations for the game’s concept – including one that would’ve seen the game operate in first-person. Ultimately, it was cut because getting Kratos’ expressiveness through was much harder when you can only see his hands, among other reasons. You can see the full video down below. It’s all worth your time, but the section we’re talking about is just the first chunk.
A shift to first person isn’t a decision to take lightly. The sense of scale implied by so many of God of War’s famous boss fights becomes a lot harder to accomplish, you have to design combat around the player not having 360 degree vision, the works. There’s no doubt that if the game came out like this, it would have been a wholly different experience – so much so, that it’s impossible to tell if the game would have been better or worse off for it. The video shows off plenty of examples of that system done well, as they were the inspiration for God of War’s original combat vision.