Where to next for Kratos and God of War?

God of War Ragnarok was easily one of, if not the, best game I played this year. What was originally thought to be the second part of a trilogy of titles from Santa Monica Studio for this new saga in the life of Kratos ended up being the final act. At least when it comes to the Norse chapter of this iconic character’s journey.

While the endgame provides plenty to feast on for completionists, not to mention even more great narrative moments, it does beg the question as to what the next chapter for Kratos is.

In Ragnarok, Kratos and his son Atreus go through a significant change, as both wrestle with fate on their own terms before realising that it is not fate that determines your actions, but rather yourself.

In the endgame, Kratos is joined by Freya and the ever-present Mimir as they complete tasks across eight of the nine realms (Asgard is inaccessible), and while this offers some solid gameplay, it is not truly clear where Kratos will journey to next.

Those who played the 2018 title will know that during their search for Tyr, the Norse god of war, there was one piece of artwork (murals) in particular that depicted his travels to other realms. No, not Norse realms, but ones inhabited by their own pantheons of gods, with Egyptian, Celtic, and Japanese realms specifically hinted at.

This planted the seed that the journey of Kratos is far from done, regardless of whether he wishes to lay down the mantle of God of War. As we have seen during these past two titles, Kratos is drawn to chaos, or perhaps chaos is drawn to him.

That said, when speaking to Atreus during the assault on Asgard, Kratos tells him to “open his heart” in reference to the suffering of others. It is the quality that makes Atreus who he is and what his mother, Faye, wanted for her son too. Kratos adds, “we must be better”, which is where everything clicks for the God of War and that is the moment he truly ignores fate to carve his own path.

It is also why we see a newly painted mural at the end of the game, where Kratos is being honoured and worshipped for loosening the Norse realms from Odin and the Aesir gods, as well as rebuilding several of the realms as well.

What then is the motivation for Kratos to venture elsewhere? On the face of it, it does not seem like there is much, as he is living a happy life now with his son and the friends they have made over the past two games.

We know that Kratos journeyed from Ancient Greece on foot and found Faye in Midgard where the pair had a son and tried to forge a life together, but what happened during said journey? Could Kratos have travelled to Egypt for example? Which is the best of all the remaining pantheons in terms of well-known gods.

Pop culture has made us acutely aware of Ragnarok, but is there a similar event that exists in Egyptian lore that Kratos may be needed to stop? Personally, that would be too easy a storyline, and one that feels like a rehash of what we have just played.

That said, the idea that Kratos needs to travel to Ancient Egypt with Atreus to settle unfinished business is an exciting one, and it is where Cory Barlog had originally planned to take the God of War franchise before settling on Norse mythology. I would love to see Kratos in Japan, but much like Celtic lore, the pantheons are lesser known.

As such, Egypt seems like the best fit. Most important in my view, however, is that Kratos travels to a new mythology for the right reason, and that we continue to see the development of the character.

Arguably one of the best pieces to the 2018 and Ragnarok has been the storytelling, with Christopher Judge breathing depth into a character that felt too one-dimensional for so long.

Regardless of where Santa Monica Studio chooses to go, we are definitely keen to head there too.


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