God of War Ragnarok is set to close the book on the Norse saga of the franchise, and many fans are eagerly waiting for the chance to fight against countless creatures, humans, and gods.
In the recent trailer revealed at the State of Play, many of the game’s key plot points were explained, including what to expect from characters like Tyr, Freya, Odin, and Thor. With so much confirmed, the God of War Ragnarok story seems to be all but revealed, and as the release date edges closer, fans’ excitement continues to grow.
For most of God of War‘s history, the Spartan warrior Kratos has traveled the realms of Greek mythology, facing off against some of the mightiest gods, including his own parents. However, with 2018’s God of War, Santa Monica decided to reinvent the franchise by swapping out the fixed camera for a more modern over-the-shoulder perspective and arming Kratos with the frosty Leviathan Axe. Most notably, however, Kratos is no longer in the realm of Greek mythology, and instead, he finds himself among Norse gods in the Nine Realms.
Santa Monica’s latest project, God of War: Ragnarok, is expected to release in 2022, and it will be the final part of the Norse chapter of the God of War franchise. While this is exciting, as it opens up the opportunity for the series to explore other mythologies from around the world, it does mean that the Norse story will be a relatively short one. With the games drawing so heavily from the Norse Ragnarok myth, this could mean that there may not be enough time for God of War: Ragnarok to slip in a happy ending.
Norse Mythology Does Not Paint a Good Picture for God of War: Ragnarok
As the game’s title suggests, God of War: Ragnarok‘s inspirations include the Norse Ragnarok myth, and this is hinted at during the final scenes of 2018’s God of War. When snow falls, Mimir warns Kratos and Atreus that the three-year-long Fimbulwinter has begun, meaning that Ragnarok will follow soon after. When one analyzes Ragnarok within Norse mythology, it does not paint a good picture for the heroes.
The word Ragnarok is derived from Old Norse, and it can be interpreted to mean “the doom of the gods” or “the final fate of the gods.” The myth entails a series of events foretold in Poetic Edda. Ragnarok will bring numerous natural disasters that will cause large-scale destruction, along with floods that will submerge the entire world. Epic battles will ensue between the gods, including central figures such as Odin and Tyr, causing many gods to die.
Everyone will know when Ragnarok has arrived thanks to the god Heimdall, who lives where the rainbow bridge Bifrost meets the sky, and he will blow his horn called Gjallarhorn. A central figure in Ragnarok is Loki, a Norse trickster god. During the events, Loki, joined by the Jotunn frost giants, wars against the gods, and he fights Heimdall.
The two prove to be fierce competitors, and they mortally would each other. Following their deaths, the sky will blacken, and the Earth will be engulfed by waters.
In God of War, the conflicts between the gods have already started. In 2018’s God of War, Kratos killed Baldur, earning him the ire of Freya who has vowed revenge. She is joined by Thor, who also wants his pound of flesh from Kratos because Baldur is his half-brother.
Thor may prove to be a powerful foe, because he wields the Mjolnir hammer. Additionally, there is a chance Kratos and Atreus may cross paths with Odin in God of War: Ragnarok, as his arrival has been hinted at heavily, especially by Mimir who claims Odin tortured him. There is no telling how far the warring of the gods will go, and whether it will extend to Kratos and Atreus turning against each other.
It is also worth paying attention to Loki, as it is hinted that Atreus is the trickster. As is explained at the end of 2018’s God of War, Atreus’ mother originally named him Loki. This may be an ominous sign, as Loki does not make it out of Ragnarok alive. It should be noted, however, that the God of War series has always taken liberties with mythology, and there is every possibility that Santa Monica will not stick strictly to the Norse mythology script.
There Is No Time for Post-Ragnarok Myth in God of War: Ragnarok
The Ragnarok myth is not all death and destruction, however. Like many other myths around the world, there is a cyclic structure, and death and is followed by rebirth. According to the myth, once the waters recede, the Earth will reappear more fertile than ever, with the ground rich with crops.
A few of the children of the gods will survive, and they will rule the new world and share the stories of their forefathers. Humans will also repopulate the Earth thanks to Lif and Lifthrasir who survive Ragnarok by hiding in the world tree Yggdrasil. This will mark the beginning of the era of new life on Earth, with more stories and myths to be made.
Although a beautiful vision is presented, with only two games set within Norse mythology, there may not be a chance for gamers to enjoy or experience this post-Ragnarok world, especially when Ragnarok covers so many events on its own.
Perhaps in a trilogy, there would have been the opportunity to see what happens after the final battle of Ragnarok, but with the current structure of the myth, fitting it into a two-parter seems unlikely. Furthermore, judging by what is foretold in the Ragnarok myth, things may not be looking good for gamers hoping for a happy ending in God of War: Ragnarok.
With the release of Ragnarok inching closer, gamers may receive some answers they have been desperately waiting for. Soon, players will discover who Angrboda is, how Atreus will cope with being a god, and whether this is Kratos’ final game.
Like prior titles from Santa Monica, the game is likely to be a visual splendor and a series of non-stop high-energy action sequences. However, players probably shouldn’t expect too many heartwarming moments, as the story may be a tragedy.
God of War: Ragnarok – Every Major Plot Point Revealed in The Trailer
Kratos and Atreus find themselves taking on unbeatable odds as they prepare to lead a charge against Odin and Thor, bringing about Ragnarok. The State of Play trailer also revealed several key figures, including the three wolves, Skoll, Hati, and Fenrir, who will most likely aid Kratos and Atreus in their quest. Also, it seems that Kratos is no longer calling the shots. Whether it is because of a moment in the story or because Atreus has some knowledge that Kratos does not is still a mystery, though it could mean the end of Kratos, as hinted at the end of 2018’s God of War.
Atreus Holds The Reins
One of the biggest talking points about 2018’s God of War was seeing how much Kratos grew throughout the course of the game. He went from putting absolutely no faith in his son to regarding him as a worthy god, capable of doing good and breaking the cycle of death that has followed him from Greece.
The State of Play trailer for God of War Ragnarok showed an interaction between Kratos and Atreus, which confirmed that Atreus will be the one calling the shots and guiding Kratos through the story.
There are many reasons why Atreus is taking the lead in this game, for starters, he could have knowledge of certain things that need to be done in order to kickstart Ragnarok and is asking for his father’s trust to see this through.
Another reason could be that he is being manipulated by Odin, who is shown arriving at Kratos’ door in the trailer. The most likely reason, however, is that he is being guided by Angrboda, the last giant, as she yearns for revenge after what Thor and Odin did to her people, which would also explain why the wolves are siding with the duo.
Kratos Has Many Allies
Apart from Angrboda, who was revealed in a previous trailer, and is historically the wife of Loki, Kratos and Atreus seem to have many more allies in God of War Ragnarok than they did in the previous game.
Tyr, the Norse God of War, will be helping Kratos and Atreus after they free him from the prison that Odin threw him into, and will prove to be a valuable resource of knowledge. Also, while they did not feature in the most recent trailer, Brok and Sindri will also return to lend the duo some weapons and help.
The three Norse wolves, Skoll, Hati, and Fenrir, also seem to be allies of Kratos and Atreus, and this could be easily explained by the fact that Loki is their father, though it is more likely that Angrboda has asked them to help the duo.
They will start the events of Ragnarok, something that was visibly seen when Atreus shot the eclipse in the trailer. Finally, while it looked like Freya was an enemy to the pair, the scene they depicted may lend a hint that she will ultimately side with the duo in the hopes of ending the Aesir reign and freeing her people.
Odin And The Valkyries
The State of Play trailer for God of War Ragnarok revealed a major fight scene where Kratos and Atreus fight against a pair of Valkyries. These two Valkyries are Hrist and Mist, two legendary figures in Norse mythology who carry the horn of Odin with them. Their presence all but confirms that Odin will not be able to talk Kratos out of war, and could also hint at many other important Valkyries appearing in the game, including Brynhild, the most famous Valkyrie in Norse mythology.
It has been known for quite a while that Thor will be one of the main villains that fans will fight against, and while Odin’s role has been shrouded in mystery, the State of Play trailer all but confirmed that the All-Father will not be able to convince Kratos and Atreus to stop their quest for Ragnarok.
It stands to reason that at some point in the game, the players will be fighting against Odin himself, probably with the help of Fenrir and Tyr. So, along with Thor, the Valkyries, and maybe Freya, Kratos and Atreus will also be fighting Odin and could encounter any other Aesir God that did not feature in the first game, such as Vidar and Vali, two of Odin’s other children.
With so much revealed about God of War: Ragnarok, the story has finally begun to unravel and fans have been given a glimpse of what to expect. From countless enemies to numerous allies, the final chapter in the Norse saga of the God of War franchise has set itself up to have a dramatic and exciting ending. Whether Kratos survives is still not known, but with Atreus taking the lead, the wolves behind them, and the wrath of Asgard attempting to stop them, God of War Ragnarok seems to be the best way to end this chapter in Kratos’ life.