Game Theory

God of War: Ragnarok has to take Kratos to 3 iconic Norse realms

2018's God of War gave players some meaty hints about where Kratos is headed next.

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Ragnarok is coming … eventually. The sequel to 2018’s God of War was officially announced last year with a vague 2021 release window attached, so it’s on the horizon. But considering that we haven’t heard a peep about it since last summer, it’s safe to assume it might recede into 2022 alongside Sony exclusives like Gran Turismo 7.

That leaves us with plenty of time to speculate as to what’s in store for Kratos’ next journey. Looking back on the last God of War game, there’s plenty of hints as to where the story is headed next, but the more intriguing teases revolve around the sequel’s potential setting.

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During the first game, Kratos is eventually able to travel between different realms via a sort of cosmic fast travel room. The area select table includes plenty of familiar realms, but oddly, not all of them are accessible. Asgard, Vanaheim, and Svartalfheim are all locked by the Gods and they never open during the game. While it seemed like Sony might be saving those locations for DLC, the game never got any bonus content leaving those realms a total mystery to this day.

In all likelihood, Kratos is probably headed for at least one of these realms in his next adventure. At the very least, that leaves players with some clues as to what the sequel could look like, so let’s brush up on some mythology and break down each realm.


Asgard as depicted in Assassin's Creed: Valhalla.


Considering that Ragnarok is God of War 2’s rumored subtitled, it seems like Asgard will play a role in the game considering that it’s fated to fall in the calamity. It’s not hard to imagine how it might look in the game thanks to its frequent depiction in media, which tends to be pretty uniform. In both Marvel’s films and Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla, Asgard is shown as a gigantic, ornate fortress complete with golden walls and rainbow bridges. While we have yet to see God of War’s interpretation of it, it likely won’t stray very far from that accepted interpretation.


Vanaheim appears in Freya's window in God of War.


In mythology, Vanaheim is a realm that’s often associated with fertility and nature. As one might expect, that means it’s generally depicted as a lush, green location full of trees and fields. Out of any of the three unexplored realms, we have the best idea of how this might look in God of War 2, because it actually appears in God of War. The realm can be seen through a window in Freya’s house and it looks exactly as expected. There’s a thick forest full of flowers out there, so there’s a good chance Kratos’ next trek will take him to some greener pastures.


Svartalfheim as shown in Thor: The Dark World.


Out of all of these realms, Svartalfheim is the biggest question mark. It hasn’t appeared in the game at all, since Odin locked it shut in order to stop the Vanir people from allying with the dwarves who reside there. The location is often depicted as an underground mine below the world of man. In all likelihood, this could appear in the sequel as a cavernous labyrinth that Kratos must fight through. That said, Svartalfheim isn’t exactly an instrumental part of the story of Ragnarok, so it’s less likely that we’ll see Kratos head there unless he has a bone to pick with some elves amid the chaos.

Those three realms alone give off entirely different vibes, which would certainly make the sequel feel visually distinct from the original. Asgard seems like a lock considering the Ragnarok rumors and Vanaheim seems likely considering Freya’s connection to it in the first game. Beyond that, it would just be too mean for Sony to tease the locations in the first game and leave them locked away forever, right? Consider our curiosity piqued.

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