God of War currently sits at a 95 on Metacritic: the highest-rated new PS4 release this generation. With the critics in its corner, the new first-party Sony game from Santa Monica Studios looks poised to make a huge splash when it releases later this month.
With an imminent release, the game's director, Cory Barlog, recently sat down with GameSpot to reflect and talk about the game, where he revealed the inspirations of Mad Max, as well as the influence director George Miller, had on him and his work.
As you may remember, back in 2008 after Barlog left Sony, and it was announced that he would be working on a new Mad Max game in collaboration with George Miller. This project eventually was scraped, and replaced by the Mad Max game released by Avalanche Studios in 2015, which despite coming off the back of Fury Road-mania, failed to make an impact or impress.
Barlog's Mad Max project is long gone, however, his experience during this time changed him as a person and transformed his work, both of which came into play during the development of God of War. According to Barlog, it wasn't until working with Miller that he truly understood what drama is and how to create it.
"It's just unfortunate the way that sometimes games go that they ended up going in a different direction, and George and I ended up not working on that one with them," Barlog said while talking about the Mad Max game. "But the learnings I got from that definitely made [the new God of War] possible, I think, to do this.
"I think if I had attempted this game--I'm not even certain if I would have attempted it--had I not worked with George. That is the impact he has. I feel like prior to working with him, it would be like reading a book without your glasses and you have terrible vision, so you see the words, but they're blurry. Working with him, and starting to understand why drama occurs, why conflict feeds into the development of all the characters--that kind of put glasses on me to help me understand like, 'Wow, I really don't understand drama.'"
Barlog went on to reveal that some of the canned Mad Max game inspired parts of God of War, however, he also noted that said project was “such a different thing.”
"None of [Barlog's Mad Max ideas had a] one-to-one analogous transfer over [to God of War], but this idea of developing relationships on the road, the ideas and characters figuring eachother out as you go, was something that I started to explore in our draft of Max."
Barlog also noted that not only is Miller himself a genius, but he is surrounded by a team of wonderfully talented people “who literally just throw gems out like nobody's business. And I'm just like, 'Seriously? Are you not picking any of this stuff up, anybody? I'm gonna horde all of it, right?' So, yeah, it was amazing."
God of War is poised to launch April 20th, exclusively for the PlayStation 4. If you haven't already, be sure to peep our glowing review of the game, where we talk about the series' new direction and more.