Wednesday, September 21, 2011

WedNESday, Greek Style

A few years ago the internets were a buzz with a game called God of War. In it you played a god who was in charge of war. It was set in ancient Greece and featured an assortment of the old gods, I assume you were one of them, the god of war one of them. Apparently it was filled with blood and guts and boobs and totally extreme awesome things all the time.

 Then, a second game was released, called 2 Gods of War, which was even bloodier and gutsier and boobier and everyone loved it moreier.

Then! THEN! The developers gifted us with another game in the series, 3 Gods and a War Baby. It was the bloodiest, gutsiest and boobiest in the series. To thank the developers for this glorious entertainment harvest, we sacrificed millions of our collective dollars.

 Now this is all good and Greek, but I remember a much finer digital interpretation of the classic Greek gods. Come with me now on a journey as we explore the original God of War!

The Battle of Olympus was a game released for the Nintendo Entertainment System way back in 1988. It is identical to God of War in every single way except that in this game, instead of being a butch terrifying testosterone delivery device, you play a small weak quite effeminate country peasant. Also, you don't have any kick ass weapons, you start with a stick. And you don't really pick up any chicks. And I don't think you do any whole sale slaughter, it's more like snake clubbing.

 One of the game highlights was collecting a harp so you can call your magic pony to fly through the clouds. Yea, a totally magic bad ass harp that summons a terrifying sky beast. You also spent a considerable amount of time enjoying the manly past time of harvesting olives.That's right! OLIVES MOTHER FUCKERS! Those things are salty as fuck and sometimes have ninja stones in them that hurt your teeth. If you're really old they might even BREAK YOUR TEETH!


 This game holds a special place in my gamer heart for a number of reasons. The first of which is because, at the time I first played the game, I was obsessed with Greek myth. So the chance to play in that world really blew my mind. Most other games were so neon and contemporary culture and radical, that this game was a real change of pace.

 The second reason is that this game posed a very real (not very real at all) threat of actually burning down my home and killing my entire family in a unholy inferno. This took place after an especially epic session of game play, I'd reached not only a special portion of the game, but also my bed time. Yes, bedtime, the bane of every young gamer.

For some reason I'd realised that the tv could be turned to a viewing channel while still leaving the console running and decided to leave it on overnight. I was smug with the thought of being able to pick up exactly where I left off the night before. Just before I hit the hay, my dad questioned whether the console would be ok being kept on for that period of time.

The thought had never entered my mind. As a child, I didn't concern myself with the mechanics and reality of how these things work (and if we're honest, I still don't). Dad cautioned me that the console might overheat and break, or catch on fire or something.

HOLY SHIT! Catch on fire? That would destroy not only my game, but the whole NES and possibly the tv, and maybe the whole house would catch on fire! I was so shit scared at that thought, I had to weigh up the pros and cons of what could happen, and like any small child worth their salt, decided to risk everything for a stupid little video game.

My sleep was restless, and woke with a start in the morning. Rushing out to my NES, I had visions of encountering a charred, smoldering wreck of plastic. Of course, it was all fine. Looking back, I get the feeling Dad was just fucking with me. Anyway, The Battle of Olympus was an awesome game and much about a boy and his magic pony. Much better than God of War.



  1. If you and I had known each other as young kids we could have played the absolute fuck out of Recess in Greece together.

  2. I don't think I've ever played this game, but I would have loved it too.

    Did you walk backwards at some points? (around 6:33 - 6:45) into the video