To say that Kratos, the calm and reasonable God of War, defied fate over the course of his travels would be an understatement of divine proportions. He did so repeatedly across multiple mythologies, and neither the Norns nor the Fates themselves could best the Ghost of Sparta. But another god almost did, at least, they did in an earlier draft of God of War Ragnarok. Spoilers for God of War and God of War Ragnarok are below!
Speaking to MinnMax, narrative director Matt Sophos and story lead Richard Gaubert of Santa Monica Studio discussed the monstrous task of writing an epic like Ragnarok. The entire interview is well worth a watch, but of particular interest was Sophos' description of an earlier version of the script in which "Kratos died in the Thor fight at the very beginning of the game."
Obviously, that doesn't happen, but if it did, things would have gone in an entirely different direction, "and so, he was gonna die, and then it wasn’t a permanent death. What was going to happen – and I don’t care, we can tell this, because it doesn’t happen any more so this is all fan fiction at this point – he would get pulled out of Hell, essentially, by Atreus. But it’s now been, like, 20 years have passed – it was going to be a big time jump-type thing. So that was a version of it."
Game director Eric Williams wasn't too keen on the idea, and Sophos is glad the story went in the direction it ultimately did, recalling "Eric was like, ‘I don’t want to do that, Kratos has died and come back from it too many times, and it’ll feel a little bit too ‘oh, you said he was gonna die and oh, you just killed him but he came right back. The hook, the emotion, wasn’t really going to be there, and he was absolutely right, and so that’s why it didn’t last very long."
What do you think, are you glad that Ragnarok wrapped up the way it did? Or, would you have rathered venture into an underworld again for the umpteenth time in the series? Defy fate in the comments section below.