God of War launches onto the PS4 (and directly into my grubby little hands) next week, and new details about the game are now coming in hard and fast. The latest comes from developer Santa Monica Studio’s Jeet Shroff, who provided information on the game’s difficulty settings and HUD options.
In a post from the game’s official site, Shroff stated that there would be 4 difficulty settings for the game:
- Give Me A Story ‘lets you experience the story without too much of a difficult gameplay challenge’.
- Give Me A Balanced Experience is ‘tuned… to deliver a balanced, challenging playthrough’.
- Give Me A Challenge is ‘harder and less forgiving. It is recommended for players who find action games extremely intuitive’. And finally…
- Give Me God of War ‘is the most difficult mode in the game.’ On this difficulty level, Shroff states:
‘We haven’t just made you weaker or enemies stronger; we’ve looked at enemy behaviors and placements in encounters as well, tweaking everything to make it as threatening as possible. Best of all, you cannot change difficulties once you start a game on this mode, so if you suddenly realize you’re in way over your head, you’ll have to start a new game. Don’t be sorry, be better?’
The first 3 options sound pretty routine in terms of difficulty settings, but Give Me God of War’s claim to have ‘looked an enemy behaviors and placements in encounters…to make [it] as threatening as possible’ is a big claim – it’ll be interesting to see if it’s just hyperbole or if it actually alters how enemies react to you in a meaningful way. And while by no means a new concept, the inability to switch to an easier setting after you’ve committed to Give Me God of War will also add that extra incentive / deterrent for players (depending on how you roll).
‘Immersive’ HUD mode
Shroff also revealed the HUD options for the game, with an option called ‘Immersion Mode’. Seemingly taking a book out of Horizon Zero Dawn’s fully customisable and touchpad-sensitive HUD options, Shroff stated that God of War’s Immersion Mode will ‘cut things down to just the minimal absolute necessary HUD elements’ . Players will also have the ability to choose which HUD options they want ON, OFF or temporarily enabled via touchpad. This is welcome news (especially given how beautiful this game looks), and may come as some consolation after it was revealed that while the game will have a photomode, it probably won’t be available at launch.
So which difficulty setting will you choose? I’d like to think I’ll go for Give Me A Challenge, but to be honest I’ll probably opt for the safer Balanced Experience on my first run through. We’ll soon be able to see how these features work ourselves – the game releases exclusively on the PS4 next Friday 20 April.
(Who’s getting the limited edition PS4 Pro bundle? Is anyone else as excited as I am for this game?!)