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God Of War Ragnarok Shows How Atreus Learned From Kratos

A year after its original announcement, God of War Ragnarök has finally received more than just a teaser. Revealed at the recent PlayStation Showcase, Ragnarok's new trailer offers an extended look at its gameplay and world and gives some insights into its story. The narrative focus is on Kratos and Atreus looking for Tyr, the Norse god of war, and on Atreus seeking answers about his true identity as Loki. Some of the trailer's details reveal how the characters have grown between the titles, specifically in regards to Atreus learning from his father.

At the beginning of 2018's God of War, before being attacked by Baldur, Kratos takes Atreus on a hunting excursion, which doubles as the game's tutorial and an introduction to the father-son dynamic the rest of the game will explore. The Ragnarok reveal shows this opening sequence was not just to get players familiar with the controls but was, in at least a small part, important to Atreus' character development.

Related: God of War Ragnarök Confirmed As the End Of Kratos's Norse Adventure

The God of War Ragnarok trailer opens with Kratos sitting in front of a fire, sharpening arrows in a cave. Out of a blizzard raging at the cave's mouth comes a figure, quickly revealed to be Atreus, who drops a deer corpse on the ground. In the time between the two games, not only has Atreus grown older and taller, but he has apparently been working on the lessons Kratos intended to pass down. The young man no longer needs a chaperone to help provide for their dwindling family, now fully capable of hunting and carrying a deer. Still, Kratos' lessons appear far from over.

When the series' gameplay mechanics were re-envisioned for God of War 2018, so too were its character dynamics. Kratos spent the original trilogy (and the prequel, Ascension) uniformly angry and consumed by bloodlust. Family was always important to his character - Kratos' accidental murder of his first family being the impetus for him seeking out and killing Ares - but the new, Norse mythology saga directly addresses Kratos' fatherhood. Kratos desperately wants a different, more peaceful life for Atreus and attempts to steer him from the same violence Kratos was subjected to.

Hunting the deer in God of War was just the first lesson for Atreus. He spent the rest of the game grappling with what it means to be a god and how to use his power responsibly. Kratos' hopes for his son are neatly summarized by a line he mutters after Atreus scares off the deer in God of War: "Be better." The Ragnarok trailer shows Kratos is not done with his struggle to help Atreus grow up well; Atreus wants to find answers about who he is, even if it leads to war with Asgard. At one point, he even asks Kratos to "stop thinking like a father and ... more like a general." Kratos is hesitant to leave their secluded cave, since they have already incurred the wrath of the gods by killing Baldur, but it seems he will inevitably have to face his son's identity.

Next: God Of War Ragnarök Confirms Return Of One-Shot Camera

God of War Ragnarök will be released for PS4 and PS5 in 2022.

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