How God of War's new photo mode works

Smile for the camera.

God of War is one of the loveliest looking games around, and now you can revel in its detail with the latest update adding the long-awaited photo mode to Kratos' blood-spattered jaunt through Nordic legend.

You can trigger Photo Mode from the Options menu, or you can enable it on the touch pad for faster access. Once in Photo Mode you can move the camera around in the current scene using the thumbsticks, while L2 and R2 raise and lower your viewpoint. Tap Square to revert to the camera's original position.

You'll also have five tabs with which to tinker with the current scene, and it helps to think of your virtual camera as a real one. The Camera tab lets you alter field of view, focal length and camera roll. Aperture is where you can change the depth of field, focus distance and f-stop settings - or how big the hole in your "camera" is and how much light it lets in.

Filter lets you add grain and other effects, vary their intensity and also tweak the exposure of the image - how long the aperture is open, and therefore how light or dark it is. Borders, as you'd expect, is where you can add border overlays on top of the image, or add a vignette effect where the edges of the image are darkened to draw the eye into the center.

Best of all is the Characters tab. Using this you can remove Kratos, Atreus and their many, many foes from the frame entirely and just shoot the landscape or - oh happy day - change their expressions. Yep, ol' grumpy guts Kratos can do more than just scowl.

It's a system that will be familiar from many other games that have included Photo Modes to showcase their lush worlds. From GTA V through to Horizon Zero Dawn and Assassin's Creed Origins, expect to see more of this sort of thing as games stride into the 4K future and beyond.

Dan has been playing games since the 1980s, and doesn't plan on stopping any time soon. Also, get off his lawn. You can contact him by email if you need to know exactly how to leave his lawn.

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