Easily the poster child for the PlayStation 5 and one of the biggest games of 2022, it’s a gross understatement to say that there’s a lot riding on God of War Ragnarok’s success. Here’s our God of War Ragnarok review where we explore if Kratos and Atreus’ latest outing is worth the price of entry.
God of War Ragnarok Review – What is it about?
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Developed by Santa Monica Studio and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment, God of War Ragnarok is the sequel to the previous God of War that debuted in 2018 on the PS4. This time around, Ragnarok is available for both the PS5 and PS4. For our review, we’re using the PS5 version.
For the uninitiated, the game takes place after the events of the earlier God of War with the eponymous God of War Kratos and his son Atreus jaunting across the Nine Realms of Nordic myth to prevent the looming apocalypse, the titular Ragnarok from occurring.
This time around, Kratos feels more fatherly but his distant nature and driven purpose lends him space to grow in the narrative. His son Atreus is a teenager now and has grown in strength after the events of the prior game which also saw him learning the name that his late Giantess mother Faye gave him – Loki.
While the connotations of the name are charged with meaning from our interpretation of him from pop culture, in particular Marvel’s Cinematic Universe, the game itself offers a very unique interpretation of Nordic myth and especially how Loki/Atreus resolves his story arc.
Without spoilers, the God of War Ragnarok asks the hard questions about prophecy, predestination and if blood is thicker than water which makes it unique rather than just being a pure hack fest.
Accompanying Kratos and Atreus while acting as an effective narrator and in-game hint engine is Mimir who is little more than a talking head in keeping with the original being in Norse legend though this interpretation is wry, exceptionally entertaining, witty and hilarious to boot, doubling as a comic relief at times. Both Kratos and Atreus don’t overshine each other and each one has their moment in the limelight.
The witty repartee between the taciturn Kratos, the enthusiastic Atreus, Mimir and the entire literal pantheon of characters they meet across their adventure kept me entertained throughout the game.
Along the way, you’ll meet Norse gods including a different interpretation of Thor the God of Thunder and the infamous Odin. Each and every line of dialogue is beautifully delivered, riveting and as good as a triple-A Netflix drama.
The combat in the game is well spaced out, brilliant with interesting choices and combos that offer multiple ways to complete a battle beyond just button mashing while rewarding skill, timing and solid gameplay choices.
Kratos’ Leviathan Axe is a particular favourite, acting as a literal fire-and-forget bladed weapon of skull-splitting doom that returns instantly to his hand. For tougher, more annoying enemies, the game has deep dodge, parry and block mechanics that open up avenues for counterattacks.
God of War Ragnarok review – Should you buy it?
While I’ve been testing the game, the vox populi made their feelings known about the game and it managed to snag not one but a whopping six awards in The Game Awards 2022 with nine nominations to boot.
Kratos’ voice actor, the eponymous Christopher Judge even managed to get the Best Performance Award while the game itself won Best Score and Best Music along with Best Narrative, Best Audio Design, Best Action/Adventure Game and even Innovation in Accessibility. That’s a truly impressive array of awards by any measure of the word.
Playing at a moderate pace, my God of War Ragnarok review marathon took me about 30 hours to complete with a good majority of the side quests completed along the way.
There’s plenty to see and do off the beaten path and while it does feel like DLC at times in some places, it remains a worthy sequel that expands on the successful formula of the first game in new, rewarding ways. Is it worth it? Absolutely. If you own the PlayStation 5, this is a mandatory purchase.
Publisher Sony Interactive Entertainment
Developer Santa Monica Studio
Genre Action Adventure
Available for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5
God of War Ragnarok PS5 available for purchase on https://www.playstation.com/en-my/games/god-of-war-ragnarok/
God of War Ragnarok
God of War Ragnarok
A gaming masterpiece with a heartfelt, engrossing story, solid combat mechanics and a huge mythical world to explore as well as tons of loot. This is a cornerstone of the PS5 experience and a mandatory acquisition for any gamer worth their salt.
Excellent replayability with tons of side quests
Some puzzles a bit tough