God of War is an extremely story focused game- it’s therefore a game that is surprisingly easy to spoil. In fact, a single screenshot could completely ruin, for instance, one of the may surprises that occur into the game. Given this fact, as well as how story oriented the game was, how did Sony Santa Monica manage to keep the whole thing secret?
Speaking to GamingBolt in an exclusive interview, the game’s director Cory Barlog noted that the process was excruciating- but that, thankfully, it did end up being something that the team was able to stay on top of.
“Yeah, that nearly killed me,” he said. “There is a lot of stress in trying to get people on board with concepts and ideas, and pitching and convincing and trying to keep everyone on target, and that’s really hard, right? But then in the end, for the last year and a half, I had to ensure that everyone across the world aligned with what we were doing, and didn’t let any information out on an incident in the game. Wow. I have never experienced that much stress. It is a wonder that nothing got out- actually, I think it did get out, some information leaked, but fortunately it didn’t permeate too far out into the ether for everyone to catch on to it.
“We were able to keep on top of it. But it was very stressful, trying to ensure that everyone could get the same experience, and it required a lot of great collaboration between the marketing and PR groups to be flexible, when I would have a fit of some sort, and realize “Oh my god, we have to get this out now, we have to do this, our plan was to do this, but let’s just go!” Or something might be getting leaked, and just getting on top of that as quickly as possible, even though the information was there, it went away fast enough that nobody caught it.”
On the whole, given how reliant on the element of surprise the story’s effectiveness can be, it is good that Sony Santa Monica’s efforts ended up paying off in this regard. It is good that no one maliciously went out of the way to leak details about the game, either- God of War is a fantastic game, and thankfully, due to the lack of leaks, people were able to play it as intended.