God of War: Ghost of Sparta

Last updated date: July 3, 2019

DWYM Score
8.8

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We looked at the top 1 Sony PSP Games and dug through the reviews from 9 of the most popular review sites including IGN, Kotaku, GameSpot, Game Rant, Engadget, Push Square, Game Informer, Games Radar, The Gadgeteer and more. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Sony PSP Game you should buy.

Overall Take

Fans of the "God of War" series expect impressive visuals, and "Ghost of Sparta" does not disappoint. The pacing and level design hold their own against the best editions of previous years. As a bonus, the storyline and combat system, while reliably bloody, are much improved. In our analysis of 94 expert reviews, the Sony God of War: Ghost of Sparta placed 3rd when we looked at the top 10 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note August 12, 2019:
Checkout The Best Sony PSP Game for a detailed review of all the top sony psp games.

Expert Summarized Score
9.3
9 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
9.3
252 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
Beautiful graphics and solid gameplay
- IGN
October 25, 2010 | Full review
This adventure has great pace and polish.
- Kotaku
October 25, 2010 | Full review
Incredible visuals ensure the mythical locations you venture to continually amaze with their strong sense of place and varied artistic design.
- GameSpot
October 29, 2010 | Full review
Playing this leaves you with the re-occurring feeling that there needs to be a God of Warmovie created.
- Game Rant
January 1, 1970 | Full review
It's just really pretty, has refined combat and a more engrossing story than Chains of Olympus
- Engadget
October 25, 2010 | Full review
Some of the visual effects are astounding, with a great art direction and solid level design lending itself perfectly to Ready At Dawn's technical ambition.
- Push Square
February 6, 2012 | Full review
Events that are later referenced in God of War III, along with a handful of visual cues (like the design of Kratos’ god armor in the second game) make it feel like this adventure was built into the mythology from the beginning.
- Game Informer
November 2, 2010 | Full review
Ghost of Sparta is unquestionably one of the best-looking, if not the best-looking game on the PSP
- Games Radar
October 28, 2010 | Full review
The graphics are breath taking
- The Gadgeteer
January 5, 2011 | Full review
What experts didn't like
Combat works perfectly, and while I could have stood a bit more challenge in the puzzle department
- IGN
October 25, 2010 | Full review
The biggest problem with Ghost of Sparta is that it tries so hard to mirror previous entries in the series that it doesn't have its own identity.
- GameSpot
October 29, 2010 | Full review
Rather than being able to save whenever you want during the game, you can only save at certain points.
- Game Rant
January 1, 1970 | Full review
If you were hoping for something really innovative, you're out of luck.
- Engadget
October 25, 2010 | Full review
My biggest complaint – and this is a holdover from Chains of Olympus – is that mapping the evade roll to the two shoulder buttons still feels clumsy and unreliable.
- Game Informer
November 2, 2010 | Full review
Ghost of Sparta suffers from occasional pacing problems, with a few annoyingly awkward balance-beam segments and too-long battles with repetitive enemies breaking up the game’s otherwise brisk tempo.
- Games Radar
October 28, 2010 | Full review
I did notice a few times when I would be in the middle of a gigantic battle and the game would pause for a few seconds while it loaded
- The Gadgeteer
January 5, 2011 | Full review

From The Manufacturer

In his quest to rid himself of the nightmares that haunt him, Kratos must embark on a journey that will reveal the origins of lost worlds. Armed with the deadly chained Blades of Athena, he will have to overcome armies of mythological monsters, legions of undead soldiers, and amazingly dangerous and brutal landscapes throughout his merciless quest. God of War: Ghost of Sparta is a single player action-adventure game for PlayStation Portable (PSP). The second game in the series to be developed specifically for play on the PSP, Ghost of Sparta is set after the events of the original PlayStation 2 game, revealing the previously unknown struggles and history of Kratos as he challenges the deities of Olympus, eventually taking the status and title of god for himself. The game features bigger bosses and more enemies than the previous PSP release, as well as new combat and weapons systems. Set within the shadowy realm of Greek mythology, God of War: Ghost of Sparta allows players to take on the role of the powerful and iconic Spartan warrior Kratos. This new adventure for PSP picks up after the events of the original God of War game for PS2 conclude, telling the story of Kratos' ascension to power as the God of War. Yet this rise is not without its consequences. In his quest to rid himself of the nightmares that haunt him, Kratos must embark on a journey that will reveal the origins of lost worlds, and finally answer long-awaited questions about his dark past. Armed with the deadly chained Blade weapons, he will have to overcome armies of mythological monsters, legions of undead soldiers, and amazingly dangerous and brutal landscapes throughout his merciless quest. As with all God of War games, Ghost of Sparta is a single player action-adventure game played from the third-person perspective that blends addictive hack and slash and puzzle play gameplay mechanics. Playing as the iconic, rage-driven Spartan warrior, Kratos, players face level after level of challenges illustrating the Ghost of Sparta's (Kratos') rise from uber warrior laboring in the service of the gods, to a god himself, following the defeat of Aries in the first game in the series. In the process, the game reveals secrets of Kratos' past only hinted at in previous games in the series. Gameplay, especially during boss battles and puzzle play events, utilizes the familiar God of War style on-screen button prompts to secure victory and advancement, with successful battles and puzzle challenges framed by stunning in-game cutscenes. The game features a more diverse cast of enemies, as well as bigger, badder bosses to tackle. In addition, along with Kratos' signature chain blade weaponry, Ghost of Sparta also features the ability for Kratos to utilize new weapons. These include: a spear and shield combo, which opens up the ability to combine new offensive and defensive tactics; and the Eye of Atlantis, a electrically charged handheld weapon that allows Kratos to shock enemies from afar and from different positions.

Overall Product Rankings

1. PlayStation Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep
Overall Score: 9.3
Expert Reviews: 11
2. Final Fantasy 7: Crisis Core
Overall Score: 8.9
Expert Reviews: 8
3. God of War: Ghost of Sparta
Overall Score: 8.8
Expert Reviews: 9
4. Final Fantasy IV The Complete Collection
Overall Score: 8.7
Expert Reviews: 9
5. God of War Chains of Olympus
Overall Score: 8.7
Expert Reviews: 9
6. Grand Theft Auto Vice City Stories
Overall Score: 8.7
Expert Reviews: 10
7. Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker
Overall Score: 8.6
Expert Reviews: 8
8. Daxter
Overall Score: 8.5
Expert Reviews: 9
9. Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters
Overall Score: 8.3
Expert Reviews: 8
10. Toy Story 3
Overall Score: 7.7
Expert Reviews: 4

An Overview On Sony PSP Games

The last edition of the PlayStation Portable (or PSP) was discontinued back in 2014, so to say that this system is past its heyday would be something of an understatement. But the early generation of PlayStation’s games are still some of its best, and many of them are playable on this handheld game console in some form. In a lot of ways, there’s been no better time to be a PSP gamer! For one thing, both the system and games can be found for just a fraction of what they cost when Sony’s flagship portable was released in the mid-2000s.

Back then, that sticker price was one of the main gripes against the PSP, but it was clearly worth it to the millions of gamers who bought one. The PSP was an early adopter of some the bells and whistles that are now commonplace to handheld systems like the Nintendo Switch, like the ability to play it on a television or monitor. And while they’ve stopped making games for it, the graphics hold up well on its 4.3 inch LCD screen.

Those games included nearly every genre there is: Action / adventure (“God of War: Ghost of Sparta,” “Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories”), role-playing (“Final Fantasy 7,” “Kingdom Hearts”), racing (“Ridge Racer,” “Need for Speed: Underground Rivals”), sports (“NFL Street 2: Unleashed”) and much more. While solo is the primary way most gamers play on the PSP, you can play with a friend on some designated multiplayer titles if they also have a PSP in the same room. Failing that, you can hook up to Wi-Fi through the system’s internet capability and find other players online. Just bear in mind that Sony’s online support for the PSP has been largely phased out, so the community of players you find online may be less than robust.

While we’re on the subject of online support, it’s helpful to know that Sony has also phased out the PlayStation Store on the PSP, where you would originally go to download games. Barring some inventive tech solutions, the only way you can play the PSP’s games now is on the primary media that it launched with: The UMD, or Universal Media Disc. But that’s not to say your options are limited! Over its lifetime, Sony and other big developers put out hundreds of titles for the PSP. They’re still out there for sale, used and new. And as has been said before, they’re still some of the best.

DYWM Fun Fact

Gamers praise the Nintendo Switch these days for its modular setup and versatility. The PSP wasn’t quite as well known for its non-game potential — at least, not officially. Hackers have found several inventive uses for old PSP consoles, modifying them into robot remotes or rudimentary smartphones.

The Sony PSP Game Buying Guide

  • When you’re buying a PSP game, consider the player. If that player is a young child, you might have to do a tiny bit of homework first. With its slick presentation and sharper graphics, the PSP was initially marketed toward an older crowd of gamers than the Nintendo DS, its primary competition at the time. That’s not to say that the PSP didn’t have games for younger kids. Titles like “Daxter” and “Little Big Planet” are not only some of the system’s top-selling games, they’re great fun, no matter what age you are. But there are more mature games whose violence level might be a concern for parents, such as “God of War: Ghost of Sparta” or “Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories.” When in doubt, check the ESRB (Entertainment Software Rating Board) box on the cover of any game. It’ll not only tell you what age range the game is suitable for, but also the reasons the game is rated that way (violence, language, etc.).
  • Do you plan on playing the game with others? Group play is a highlight of the gaming experience for many, but the PSP — being a handheld, portable device — caters slightly more toward the solo player. That’s not to say you can’t play select games with friends, but since online support for the system has been largely discontinued, your options are a bit more limited. For the most part, you’ll need another player physically present in the room with another PSP to connect to. This can be a particular concern if you’re buying sports games or one-on-one fighting games like “Darkstalkers Chronicle,” where multiplayer competition is a primary appeal.
  • A lot of parents buy games to occupy their kids on long car trips or to buy a little quiet time at restaurants. If that’s the case, consider whether the game needs the sound on to be playable. While it’s nice to hear the soundtrack on “Final Fantasy 7: Crisis Core,” that game and RPGs like it usually have subtitles for the dialogue. If a game really needs the sound up, maybe consider another option — or just invest in headphones, so your young player won’t bring the whole room into the game.
  • Another factor to consider is repeat playability. It’s great to binge-play an engrossing new game when you first get it out of the box. It’s not so great to be done the next day when you’ve played through the storyline and there’s nowhere else to go.
  • A word on the software: While you used to be able to download games and even movies through the PlayStation Store, that’s no longer the case now that Sony has phased out the PSP in favor of its newer handheld (the PS Vita). You can still play games on their primary physical format, the Universal Media Disc. That “universal” part is not to be taken at face value, though. Keep in mind that UMDs will work only in your PSP, and not in your larger PlayStation consoles or any other device.