PS4 Exclusive God of War Gets Tons of Info on Norse Setting, Gameplay, Kratos and His Son

During PlayStation’s E3 live coverage, God of War Creative Director Cory Barlog and Voice Actor Christopher Judge (who is the new voice of Kratos) talked about the new game announced yesterday.

Below you can read a recap of what they shared:

  • Barlog was floored by the response to Kratos’ entrance during the live demo at the E3 press conference.
  • Right from the beginning the team wanted to “rip the whole thing up” and rebuild the franchise “from scratch.” They wanted to find all the things that worked and keep them, but change all the things that didn’t match the vision of a more intimate view on Kratos’ life.
  • The team “kicked around” a bunch of different mythologies for quite a while. The setting that they ended up selecting isn’t the viking era. Before the viking era there’s the migration era, and before that there’s a pre-migration era. It’s the era when according to the vikings the gods used to walk the Earth among men.
  • Kratos and his son are in a world where nobody is friendly and everything is hostile. Kratos’ son is actually the only one among the two who understands the local language. Kratos is a stranger in a strange land. For instance, the troll speaks ancient Norse, which the kid understands, but Kratos doesn’t. This allows the team to focus on a new dynamic with Kratos and his son.
  • According to Judge, the script of the game is not simply a game’s script, but is a fully fleshed out story with fleshed out characters that have full emotional ranges.
  • Kratos faces the struggle to accept a new role and not be the same old Kratos, and that for Judge is the role of a lifetime, as it allows a large emotional breadth as an actor.
  • Barlog mentioned that this is not a new Kratos, he’s still the Kratos we know, but he’s older, and he’s looking at life through a different lens. The same goes for Barlog himself: his view of the world is different from when he started working on God of War.
  • Kratos is struggling with the idea of having to deal with another person, a tiny human not listening and not understanding what he thinks is very simple. He’s frustrated, because he can’t let the anger out and has to remain patient and convey his knowledge to his son. His real challenge lays in how much how his real self he’s going to show to his kid, and in how much of himself he sees in his kid.
  • According to Judge nothing changes a man more than having a child, and the game also portrays the challenge of finding out how to be a father when you have never been fathered.
  • The ending of the demo portrays a missed opportunity. The kid is ready to open up, but Kratos misses the opportunity to open up himself. He doesn’t have the strength to pat his son on the back, while he’s completely capable to take down a troll. He has grown up under the most brutal military training possible, and that doesn’t breed cuddly puppies.
  • There are going to be RPG elements and progression, even if it’s not yet set in stone how they will materialize.
  • The axe that we see in the demo has a history. There is a whole story around that connects to many characters within the game.
  • Going with a new weapon was a very deliberate design choice, because there is a whole new way of controlling the game. There is a while new set of controls and a whole new way of interacting with the controller. This had a long development cycle and it went through a lot of revisions.
  • The team isn’t yet ready to reveal the name of Kratos’ son.
  • The whole narrative is set around the idea of teaching, and that’s incredibly important to the gameplay. Through the entire game, Kratos is constantly teaching his son via banter and actual interactivity. There is actually a button entirely dedicated to interacting with Kratos’ son and prompting him to execute certain actions within the game, both in battle and in situations not related to combat, like puzzles.
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Giuseppe Nelva

Hailing from sunny (not as much as people think) Italy and long standing gamer since the age of Mattel Intellivision and Sinclair ZX Spectrum. Definitely a multi-platform gamer, he still holds the old dear PC nearest to his heart, while not disregarding any console on the market. RPGs (of any nationality) and MMORPGs are his daily bread, but he enjoys almost every other genre, prominently racing simulators, action and sandbox games. He is also one of the few surviving fans of the flight simulator genre on Earth.

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