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It’s eight players in teams or against each other, as gladiatorial slaves to the gods, battling to become champions. Align with Ares, Hades, Zeus or Poseidon to tap into each deity’s powers, dress up your champion (with traditional armor, garb and weapons from the time period) and jump into the arenas.

Now perform the Hulk smash with a controlled button mash on opponents while collecting riches, finding weapons, setting traps and accumulating favor points to succeed. It’s the Spartacus Super Smash Bros.

For the best modes of the bunch, try the death matches Favour of the Gods and Match of Champions, or Trial of the Gods, a timed cooperative struggle against waves of creatures.

Best part of the multiplayer maps is a massive Cyclops oversees the proceedings in the Desert of Lost Souls presenting a nightmare for combatants that even the great Oracle could not have foretold.

Parental advice: The ESRB (Entertainment Software Rating Board), after watching Kratos split open the skull of an Elephantaur and watch its exposed brain undulate, decided to label this game “M” and that stands for mature — adults 17 years and older need only try to control a Spartan in God of War: Ascension. So don’t let your 14–year-old convince you that “it’s like ‘Wrath of the Titans,’ and yeah Dad, you get to learn about some cool creatures from multicultural mythology. It’s really educational.” The game highlights a topless, always bloodied Kratos, occasional topless females and plenty of topless creatures (as in missing heads) in a swirling journey of eviscerations barely digestible for a sane 49-year-old.