One of the biggest reveals during the Sony E3 2017 press conference was the new God of War gameplay trailer. Fans were incredibly impressed at how the footage looked, but now they may be surprised to discover how developer Sony Santa Monica Studios made it happen.

In an interview with Geoff Keighley on YouTube live, God of War director Cory Barlog revealed that the E3 2017 trailer was running on a standard PS4 rather than the PS4 Pro. God of War will have PS4 Pro improvements, Barlog seemed to confirm, stating that “the goal” is to make the game look even better on the newer Sony console.

Although God of War may look this good with just under a year to go until it releases, Barlog admits that the development team still has “a long road ahead of us.” As Barlog also stated that God of War will have a “heavier emphasis” on exploration, with the boat from the trailer being used throughout the game, Sony Santa Monica will indeed have a challenge on making sure that all of that is polished.

God of War isn’t an open-world game, Barlog clarified, but its world is described as being “very violent” and “very large.” Moreover, the developer wants to “empower the player to discover as they’re moving through the world” and provide them with the feeling of being on a tour bus “and being able to pull the string and get off whenever you want and look around.” Gamers only have to look to titles such as The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild to see how getting around in a massive game can sometimes cause problems, but no doubt the bug busting teams at the developer will be on the case.

Promising a potentially touching story that follows Kratos and his son as well as huge combat scenes and (friendly) encounters with characters such as the World Serpent, God of War seems to be ticking off all the right boxes with series mainstays.

God of War will be the first game in the series especially made for PlayStation 4 and Sony Santa Monica may well be feeling the heat. But given the reception the game has had at this year’s E3, the developer will certainly be delighted to see fans’ excitement for the game and will be working hard to deliver on those hopes.

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God of War releases in early 2018 exclusively for PS4 and PS4 Pro.