Spoiler-Free God of War: Ragnarok Q&A

Foreign Guys yeah I don't know where to go from This yeah speaking of the mythological Deities uh we've all been playing God of War Ragnarok yeah sorry if you sat Through that show and you're currently Mad at us for not getting to that sooner Um We asked you to submit a bunch of Questions about God of War Ragnarok Based on what we've played of it uh I Believe we can only talk about the first Five hours but we also are going to be Extremely sensitive about spoilers yeah We don't want to spoil anything Um yeah Jada what do we got so uh I put Out a poll over the weekend to our Facebook Beyond group so far listeners Out there if you aren't there get in There because I'm going to be doing Polls and questions like that and Getting your input answering your Questions uh first question we have Comes from Michael Hamm how much time Has passed since the previous game Um three years that's actually official Info that's out there I think yeah yeah Uh so three years have passed uh since He's a trace is a little bit older you Notice it almost immediately in his Voice yes which there was that behind The scenes stuff about how they had to Modulate his voice because he in the Real life actor went through basically

They're puberty they're puberty during The recording sessions yeah uh no not in The in the middle of the recording Sessions yeah I can kind of hear it Sometimes honestly like there are parts Of the gamer I'm like oh his voice is Like kind of off like if I wasn't if I Didn't know that fact I feel like I Wouldn't have noticed and the Performance is still fine the Performance is crazy but you can Definitely hear some of the slight Different pitches sometimes yeah and They said they messed with it a little Bit Um I just saw that actually last night Um from our b-roll Um our next question comes from Patrick Landry with the first game being such a Masterpiece in terms of both visuals and Gameplay does Ragnarok feel more like an Expansion or a real sequel with Evolution Uh you and I were actually I was talking About this with uh Rebecca Valentine Here at IGN earlier this morning about Like what what really constitutes a Sequel for people like got this the Original the original God of War Franchise kind of ran its course uh also Very beloved but then it got rebooted in 2018 in a way like we hadn't seen a Video game reboot in quite some time This is a sequel to that reboot this is

Not that massive shift the same time Around but it's also like pretty Comfortable right and I was saying that Like it is missing the new car smell a Little bit and you told me well hold on Brian like it does get to that stuff so Yeah yes there is definitely some Elements I will say I am like 70 hours In right now I didn't even know you Could do the hours in okay yeah Um I'm doing a completionist run for Those who are asking um are wondering Why I'm like haven't finished it yet Um but yes it has just been running into The tree at the beginning of the map and Hasn't figured out how to turn around I I will knock that tree down I will Destroy that tree grind it to a pulp um You know gotta test those people S5 Abilities I was kind of amazed at how Much it feels like it picked off picked Up where the one leaves off yeah like Um I guess I was not expecting to be Like a total like you know Standalone Story or anything it's obviously Continuing stuff introduced in the in The first game but it's it feels Immediate like if three years might have Passed but it's still very much like oh They're they're like still rooted in That and I I think because of that Mechanically it kind of follows suit Also the fact that it's uh you know it's PS4 compatible which yeah is you know

Bittersweet like more people get to play It but at the same time uh it isn't this Massive technical leap you might expect If it was a PS5 exclusive yeah I will Say there are a lot of gameplay elements That have evolved um and feel like a Very nice Evolution it doesn't feel like A sequel like where you're getting the Same skill trees and stuff like that Those have evolved those have changed There's new things to do in combat Um that in intangible game feel thing We're always talking about is is Glorious here like there are moments Where it's just gels and feels awesome Yeah that said max did mention like you Know it you know it it picks up where The last game left off but there's some Time in between there's a uh like Basically a recap video on the title Screen of this game Um it's not very well done no it's like I I like not to throw shade because the Rest of the game is but it's it's like Kratos looking into a fire and it's just Like really blurry it's got the sepia Tone over all the footage just like I I Think probably IGN or you know a bunch Of people a bunch of people have done Recaps for the first game watch one of Those yeah if you if you want to get it Like I thought I remembered more than I Did and I I was telling myself I was Going to replay it but I didn't get

Around to jumping back into it but like It very much is you owe it to yourself To get a refresher before jumping into This so keep that in mind before Starting it up when you sit down on Release date and you're like I want to Do this yeah Um so question from James Benjamin boys What story I think I said that right if I didn't I'm apologized Um this game comes out in a decidedly Different landscape than 2018's God of War any signs that the game exists in a Post Eldon ring or post AC Valhalla Ecosystem well or does the game ignore Recent releases and Hue to its own Successful form let's let's throw a Little respect on on the original God of War's name or not the original the 2018 Version because that went head to head With a little open world video game Called Red Dead and that revolutionized Open world games in a lot of ways it Also was slower than GTA 5 so I don't Think it connected with people in the Same way but it was massive that was a Huge game and God of War basically went On to win game of the year in in most Places I know specifically IGN we like That was a debate right we had those Conversations but like we went with God Of War Um will that happen with Elden ring this Time around

I mean I'm the wrong person to ask for That because like Eldon ring is like That that might end up being my favorite Game this generation I will say if You've been playing a ton of Elden ring You may have the wrong kind of muscle Memory yeah I was awful at like God of War when I first picked it up I was like Why is the Dodge Notch oh right sorry Did you swap it no I just like forced my Thumb to like move backwards There are some phenomenal like Accessibility options obviously you can Remap everything Um yeah making it so that circle is Dodge did me some favors because I was Just like so I'm almost there so I've Came I started God of War off of playing Tales of arise which Dodge button is R2 And all the combos are on the square Triangle and x button and circle Um and then went to Gotham Knights where The Dodge button is circle and then Switch to God of War where my Dodge Button was X yeah so my buttons have Been all messed up I can't tell you how Many times the first fight going back When I was stopping and starting between The different games was just horrendous I was dying in the first fight every Time you ever played PS5 for a week and Then like loaded a switch game and just Accidentally backed out of everything That you're trying every single time

Everybody get all the console Manufacturers and bring steam there too On a vacation and just sort that out Where does the x button live yeah Exactly exactly no there is an option to Just I mean to swap X and circle and I Highly recommend doing that you know you Know like the PlayStation in like Asian Countries the circle is like the x Button really yeah because so make it More consistent with like Nintendo's Like button mapping like yeah I think That because it's like Circle no yeah Exactly yeah for some reason the Western World was like no remember when you Started playing breath of the wild and Like the top button is Jump yes because It's like yeah because you go up that Makes sense but my brain was also like It's never up there yeah that's what They wanted the triangle to be because It's pointing up right get up there but Uh yeah I don't know if we're answering These questions very well I think we're Doing great Uh Kevin Jackson have any Controls changed since the original a la Spider-Man mps4 to Miles PS5 I think When you're talking about controls I Think he's not talking about like being Able like buttons moving around but more Of like uh combat abilities yes Um the triangle button is specifically Changed um in the previous God of War Triangle was purely meant for switching

To your ax calling back your ax now it Has special effects depending on which Weapon that you are wielding if you're Wielding the Leviathan ax holding Triangle will frost will charge the ax With frost Um adding it different effects giving Different uh moves and it's the same Thing with the blades of chaos it will You'll base you mash the triangle button And he whips the chains Um and which do damage and it looks so Cool it looks so cool very good and if You get a specific pommel for those Blades of chaos it will actually repel Uh range projectiles automatically for You so keep an eye out for that one yeah You didn't yeah I also like I didn't know what those things did Right they didn't really explain these New things well and I was like was this In the last game like I don't think so And there's also like the permafrost Effect as well that I didn't notice for Like 15 hours into this game and then I Looked down one day I was like L1 plus Triangle so now and I was like what yeah So permafrost and the uh I forget what The the yeah those were in the previous Game oh they were in there Um it just was uh it wasn't used as much I hope it is in this one it's a lot more They they throw a lot at you yeah which Is I guess preferable to that kind of

Nonsense where it's like that Metroidvania approach where they're like You lost all your things better learn How to use things again like yeah it's Kind of like there's a little bit of Like some refresher stuff in there but It it's nice that it's sort of like oh Like the crap you had at the end of the Last game is there with some yeah it Feels like you could go through on Because you can like kind of enable and Disable skills on your skill tree so it Feels like you could theoretically run Through this game several different Times with completely not necessarily Like different loadouts like you could With something like Elden ring where all Of a sudden you're like I'm a wizard and I'd never walk in a building I kill Everyone with lightning from 100 miles Away Um but there is a lot more combat Options now and it's kind of on you to Get out of your comfort zone and figure Out what you like and experiment with Those because otherwise yeah you could Just ax everybody or chain everybody Through the whole game and theoretically Get through it especially on some of the Software difficulties but like if you're Playing on a tougher difficulty like You're going to want to get out of your Comfort zone and play with different Styles you have to un God of War

Difficulty you have to utilize Everything at your disposal especially I'm doing some of the in-game boss Fights now and don't talk about them I'm Not talking about them you can't say it But I shouldn't even say you played them I'm just saying I'm playing them but You're all in trouble Um so back to our questions uh let's see We have Kevin garaventa a lot of Kevin's Asking questions in the PlayStation Beyond group are you playing on PS4 or PS5 I think we're all playing PS5 Um if it's PS5 have you noticed any Hidden loading sequences like crawling Through a tight space or waiting for a Door to open there are are many I don't So I don't know I I don't think any of Us can speak to the exact technical Reasons over there because I've seen a Lot of discussion about this sometimes It's basically to valve players through Smaller areas to bring them to a bigger Area for like that wow factor other Times it is to mask a loading screen Like the original Metroid Prime had a Thing where you would like shoot you Know your doors and it would just not Open you'd be like is the door broken And it was like the game's loading just Give me a minute yep um but there are a Lot there's just there's several even in The first half hour of this game where You're crawling through a tight tunnel

Yeah it continues Um I will say that it does Um it's another reason they have that is To lower the load on your console so That it's not you're not processing Everything that is behind you when you Crawl through that tunnel squeeze Through that crack it stops loading all The stuff behind you because it doesn't Need to use memory on that stuff anymore So that's a game development thing I Mean it's one of those things that is a Reminder that you're playing a PS4 game Still I would say it's completely Negligible as far as how much time it Spends on it in PS5 I will say the loading is a little bit Longer than I expected Um it's not bad Um but it is a little bit longer than I Was hoping for with this one yeah so I Was really scared like I went through a Door like a big door at some point I was Like oh wait there was a thing I wanted To collect back there and I turned Around I was like oh he's gonna have to Like do this whole animation and like Unlock it but he just opened it up again I was like oh okay this is fine I can Bear with this yeah yeah Um let's see Brennan Bova did they do Anything really cool with controller Haptics we were all talking about this Before we started we're like kind of

Like it's it's nothing that blew us away Yeah it does some like some nice kind of Gimmicky stuff with it with the haptic It's all pretty Rock Solid none of it so Far from me and I'm probably like 10 or 12 hours in feels like on the level of Something like astrobot or return or you Know like yeah like returnal had like Different guns had different vibration Feels it was different force uh pushback On like on the triggers instead like That there's a little bit of that stuff Here but like it doesn't feel like it's Oh it's you know you can feel rain or Snow it's cosmetic haptics yeah and Again this is still a PS4 game and so They they can't have like stuff that is Dependent on the haptics to do anything Like it's sort of it's still got to be I Think also making things dependent on The haptics is also like an Accessibility thing like if you start Doing it anybody who has motor skills or Issues like that can come to play and Can really affect somebody's enjoyment Yeah that said I think like it would Have been cool if they did a little bit More with like you know the the haptic Specifically for people who want to turn Those things on Um I know it's gimmicky and it'll waste The battery and stuff like that but the PS4 or PS5 battery is is going to be dog Crap no matter what you do so you know

Might as well let me feel the rain and The waves and stuff like that and There's not a ton of that so far uh Coming down the last couple questions Nicole Garber does Kratos seem more Friendly towards atreus in the early Game or is he sticking with his boy ways Of your he does the thing that a lot of Like quiet stoic fathers do now where When he doesn't say anything it's good You know like atreus will say something And Kratos will go And you're like oh that's I think that's Approval yes thanks Dad he loves him Um I will say in that first couple that First couple hours I felt a little bit Of emotion in a couple of the dialogues It wasn't like Ham-fisted uh whatever the Handover fist I don't know it wasn't it wasn't like Totally overt Um but there was if you really kind of Like are in that mindset of enjoying This story of a father and his son like You can kind of pick up all those times So like I said it's been a minute since I played the last one and I did that Thing where I I think I became sort of Almost like tactically jaded where I was Like this was voted by our readers as The greatest game ever made I don't want To have too high expectations for Ragnarok I'm sure I'll like it jumping Back into it I was immediately slapped

In the face with how well written these Games are yeah like it's just the most And it's again it's stuff that's it's Hard to quantify because it's very Subtle Nuance but it's just like the Performances are so good and the writing Is so good and it's just you know it Still has like occasional video gaming Nonsense in there but like when it's When it's running on all cylinders it's Like okay that's right that's why we're Excited for this that's why that's why We give a [ __ ] I'll put it this way like The the last game in 2018 began Immediately after Kratos had lost his wife and atreus had Lost their mother uh her mother his Mother and and Kratos had to bury his Wife she was he was angry he was just Like unchecked ball of rage and he's Still pissed off he's still the God of War he still uses fire chains and an ax And he kills people and screws you know Destroy rips heads off it's still Violent as hell it's so much fun but he Is not that raw and vulnerable like when You caught him then especially not to His own son they have built up a little Bit of a relationship this story feels a Little bit more like a coming-of-age Story for atreus and it doesn't really Feel like you know Thor you know Thor's There and there's other bad guys and Stuff like that but Kratos definitely

Feels like okay I'm still grieving There's still that part of me but I'm Not ready to like tear into my son for Every single thing he screws up their Relationship is palpably different from The first yeah it's like that difference Of raising like a little kid and now Like a teenager yeah right they're like You definitely see that Dynamic shift Pretty early All right we got Lucas Stone do you feel Do the environments feel more open than The first Um Based on the early portions of the game You'll you will know what to expect is What I will say yeah I don't think I was Ever surprised about but did it ever Open up more than the first game I don't Think like right like midgard obviously When when you're you know you get onto The Lake of the nine in the in 2018 Um God of War like that's where it Really opens up and feels very open Um but even there some of the areas feel A little bit kind of closed off I will Say I feel like each of the branching Paths even in the this the earlier Portion of the game do feel like they go A little bit deeper and there's a little Bit more rewards and stuff there so it Is still like valuable it's more Valuable to go and do that side stuff It's not suddenly an open world game yes

Like I remember playing the first one Being like this is like there are Parts Where it's extremely wide linear yeah Just shy of being an open world game and It's not like they suddenly like used to Jump into next-gen and to like make it Wide open like it's very much very Similar I do get the sense that this is Like I'm I'm very early still and we're Not supposed to say anything too deep in The game but I get the sense that it's Bigger in scale maybe in terms of just Like number of areas like it feels like It's sort of the beginning of a bigger Like I mean the first one they're like We're gonna go up that mountain and they Wind up going a little bit off the Beaten path along the way but like it's Very much it feels more contained this Is kind of like out the gate it's like All right let's we're gonna hit the road I will say that like you do golden path This game for the first few hours and Then it starts to give you some options Um and it's up to you to take those but One of the first I guess the first one Or two of those turned into like really Cool really interesting just like Visually impressive and just like just Really fun cool adventures and within Those side areas where alternate or Additional tinier areas that you could Go and find treasure chests and stuff Like that like almost every area you're

In has like a little side path that at The very least has a small thread you Can pull on that might just lead to like You know some stuff to pick up or a Treasure chest to open and others lead To like whole other things that do show Up in your Um think about when you're playing like A GTA game or something like that you've Got your main quests and then there's Side quests and like this this game does Give you those options eventually as Well I the The side quests two are really great Just because like you guys know me I Play games when I'm playing games I Usually have them on my other TV I'm Watching a movie watching a TV show Trying to catch up on something I can't Do that with God of War because it is so Good the writing is just so Stellar that I give I want to dedicate 100 of my Focus and attention to it Um and I don't do that for many games And so this is one of those games where I'm like so just drawn in from the story Beats the writing from even just like The little side characters when you just Like go up and talk to Brock or sendri And you triangle and they give you stuff The dialogue is just it's Immaculate It's just kudos to the writers Santa Monica I will say that on the topic of Like side quests and stuff it does break

A little bit of like narrative immersion For me because Kratos as a character is A guy who doesn't want to do any [ __ ] yeah and then these side quests Pop up you have chess off to the side And you're like I have to do [ __ ] and yeah like he Doesn't have to smash stuff though right Yeah it's like getting like a box cutter And like yeah but he's still sliding Open a coffin you know he's not smashing The roof of it in terms of like like There's always that immersion breaking That happens with open world especially Where like I remember in like Zelda Right breath of the wild you're like I Saved the princess and stop the evil Ganon but I also could collect like 400 Turns right it's this really weird Balance in open world that I don't know If I've ever really seen anybody like Nail it yet like I know Red Dead 2 also Had this issue for me the God of Wars Credit I think that like this game in The last game like the main purpose of The story and I I don't know exactly Where this one is going yet but in the First game like we have to spread our Mother's ashes on a mountain right there Wasn't any like very distinct urgency to That that was like we should get around To doing this but like she's not getting Any younger so it doesn't really matter Right right and in this game like there

There's conflicts and there's obviously Threats and there's things you have to Deal with but there's also like like There are characters that are like oh we Don't to really worry about this yet so If you want to go do this you can go do That so this game is a little bit better About stuff but yeah I'm also totally With you like this happens in every game Like if you want a golden path it and Get to the end sure but like there's Alternate stuff here and your brain has To kind of say like let's not think too Hard about how I spent like five hours This afternoon like climbing up a hill To open up a treasure chest because like Somebody really needs me in the opposite Direction right right I mean it's not Like I would say that's a negative point For the game it's just one of these Things for open world games that I wish Was more ingrained like organically yeah I mean open world games are completely Antithetical to telling a story and God Of War walks an interesting line where It's like it's walking a line but There's some little branching points off On the side

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