Now that a solid release date is in place for God of War: Ragnarok, we’ve probably been given most of the details Sony cares to make public before we get our hands on the game. Last year’s showcase included exciting highlights of most of the previous game’s cast. Atreus is growing into his own. Kratos seems to be doing his best to toe the line between his old life and current one. But the Norse gods don’t seem to have made peace with his presence in their lands.
Between that excellent trailer and the one just recently released, I couldn’t be more excited take control of this father/son duo. Atreus is one of the best support characters ever conceived, in my opinion. His story, Sunny Suljic’s performance, and the game’s brilliant ballance of AI and player input for him were just stellar. Meanwhile, playing as Kratos is consistently one of the most satisfying experiences in video games. So, I was amazed that Santa Monica Studio could create a weapon like the Leviathan Axe that equaled — if not surpassed — the Blades of Chaos in terms of sheer fun. Those are high bars. So what can the next game do to avoid simply treading water?
I see two clear avenues for God of War: Ragnarok to carve its own identity, as well as possibly improve upon its predecessor. First, I’d like to see a more singular focus on Atreus. In fact, I was surprised to see that Kratos is still very much front-and-center here. The closing of the previous game had me assuming this one would time skip to an adult Atreus as the main character. His archery and summoning deserve more time in the spotlight. Second, it seemed to me that the side quest content of God of War amounted to nothing but padding. The core game being as satisfying as it was, this actually isn’t much of a complaint. However with room to improve, it would be great to see some variety injected into the series’ gameplay loop. This could be accomplished by separating father and son more often for concentrated side quests. Even better might be to have the occasional chance to sub in one of the Norse gods whom Kratos and Atreus have befriended.
Improving on God of War would be no mean feat. And I loved it so much that even if this game is simply more of that, I’ll be happy. But my expectations are high and I’m hoping for a new focus on Atreus and how he matures. By doing so, I think God of War: Rangarok could add gameplay variety with a small boost to its playable roster and what it asks you to do with — and for — those characters.
But what do you think? What are you hoping to see in God of War: Ragnarok, come this November? Tell us all about it down below or in the Boss Rush Discord.
Featured Image: SIE