There are a ton of fantastic looking games set to release this year, but one of the most anticipated is Sony’s return to one of their most successful properties. Simply called God of War, this title swaps the classic Greek mythology for the often underexplored Norse mythology. Developed by SIE Santa Monica Studio, God of War aims to reinvigorate the franchise while shifting some aspects and mechanics for how the game functions. If you are unfamiliar with Sony’s upcoming exclusive or simply want a refresher on what to expect, here are 5 fast facts about the new God of War.
1. God of War Is Set After the Events of God of War III
Despite being a reimagining of the series, God of War is actually set after the events of the original trilogy. This is the same Kratos, however, he is far older now and even has a son named Atreus. An Egyptian setting was originally considered, but this was swapped for a Norse setting since it was more isolated. Creative director Cory Balrog explained in an interview with Eurogamer why they decided to drop the Egyptian theme.
“All of them had great reasons. I think, for me, as I looked at both of those, Egyptian mythology is about the pharaohs as embodiments of the gods on earth and there’s a lot more about civilization – it’s less isolated, less barren. I think at this time, we really wanted to focus on Kratos. Having too much around distracts from that central theme of a stranger in a strange land.”
We also know that players will get to explore the Nine Realms of Norse mythology during the campaign. For the unfamiliar here are the nine different realms of the Norse mythology:
- Niflheim: The World of Fog and Mist
- Muspelheim: The Land of Fire
- Asgard: Home of the Gods
- Midgard: Home of the Humans
- Jotunheim: Home of the Giants
- Vanaheim: Home of the Vanir
- Alfheim: Home of the Light Elves
- Svartalfheim: Home of the Dwarves
- Helheim: Home of the Dishonorable Dead
2. The Gameplay Perspective and Main Weapon Have Changed
Previously the God of War games had either fixed camera angles or the perspective was pulled back in most fights. This has been changed for the newest installment as the camera is now an over the shoulder perspective of Kratos. His famous Blades of Chaos has been outright replaced with a powerful two-handed axe dubbed the Leviathan Axe. Unlike the Blades of Chaos this axe will actually return to Kratos once he as thrown it. Because of this, players will have some unique and flashy combat tricks to tear your foes apart with.
However, due to the size this weapon the combat itself is a little bit slower than the frantic slashing that the previous God of War titles were known for. The axe’s heavy and light attacks can be upgraded with runes and the player will have access to a shield for defensive options. Players can also enhance their axe with different elements to gain an advantage in battle.
3. Other Mechanics Have Been Altered, Replaced, or Just Removed
Quick Time events are perhaps one of the most recognizable mechanics in the God of War series. While they aren’t gone for good, SIE Santa Monica Studio has shifted how they function in combat. Enemies will now have two meters over their heads with one representing their health and other their stun percentage. Once the stun bar completely fills, users can grab that enemy and perform gruesome kills. Spartan Rage also makes a return in a similar manner as the original titles. As Kratos deals damage the meter will fill up and once complete the user can activate Spartan Rage. This mode sees Kratos beat his enemies into submission with his bare hand for massive damage.
A crafting system will be implemented into the game that allows players to scavenge for resources out in the world. Once found, users can upgrade their current armor or construct new pieces of clothing provided you have enough experience. Kratos will not be able to swim in this game, but will instead need to rely on boats to traverse bodies of water. God of War will have no morality system and the sex mini-game has been completely removed.
4. Players Can Give Kratos’ Son Commands
One new inclusion to God of War’s combat is giving the player some control over Kratos’ son, Atreus. While you cannot directly take the helm of this young lad, users will be able to issue commands in battle. Players can direct Atreus to fire his bow at enemies which will fill up their stun meter but do minimal damage. This will certainly help the player bond with Kratos’ kid, while not hampering the enjoyment of the brutal combat. Atreus can also draw the attention of weaker enemies which allows Kratos to focus on the stronger and more dangerous foes.
Yet, if Atreus takes too much damage he will be knocked down for the remainder of the fight. Just like Kratos, players can upgrade Atreus’ weapons, skills, and outfit him with new ammunition like electric arrows. Atreus will also be used in exploration of the world and solving various puzzles throughout the campaign.
5. God of War Releases April 20, 2018
Thankfully players won’t have to wait much longer for this game as it’s set to release on April 20, 2018. In addition to the standard version of the game, Sony is also selling a special Collector’s Edition at $129.99. The main item that comes with this edition is a 9-inch statue of Kratos and Atreus killing two basic enemies. Users will also obtain 2-inch Huldra Brothers carvings, a steelbook case, exclusive lithograph, and a cloth map. There is also some additional Digital Content which comes in the form of a digital artbook, digital comic, in-game items, and a dynamic theme. You can currently pre-order this edition of the game at multiple retailers.
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