7 Essential Tips To Master God of War Ragnarök: Valhalla
Kratos’s latest challenge.
Over a year after God of War Ragnarök released and became one of the best games of 2022 — and still one of the best games on PlayStation period — Sony Santa Monica gives fans even more content. Announced at the 2023 Game Awards, Valhalla is a new expansion to Ragnarök that acts as an epilogue to the base game — it’s also free for anybody who owns Ragnarök! Valhalla throws Kratos and players into a roguelite mode that can feel unfamiliar to the main loop of the base game, so you may be a little lost.
Here are seven essential tips to help you through the ever-changing halls of Valhalla.
Gear Doesn’t Matter Anymore
Remember how the God of War Ragnarök base game heavily required you to invest in gear upgrades to stand a chance against tough enemies? Forget about that. Valhalla throws gear out (almost) entirely. While you can change how Kratos looks, his armor is just that now — cosmetic. Instead, you increase Kratos’s power in upgrades to his base stats. But how should you go about upgrading Kratos?
Survivability Trumps Power
Unlike the base game, there is no progression in Valhalla. Instead, Valhalla’s stats upgrades give players more freedom in how to build Kratos. While you will probably be tempted to invest in increasing the damage Kratos can do as it will make defeating enemies easier, try to ignore that inclination. Instead, you should focus on survivability. Valhalla is a marathon, not a sprint, and if you can’t make it to the end then it won’t matter how hard Kratos can hit. With this in mind, prioritize upgrades to health and defense.
Know Your Currency and Spend Often
Valhalla has three different currencies to keep track of and they all have different uses you need to know. Mastery Seals are the most important as they allow you to buy permanent upgrades for Kratos. Spirit Seals are used to change how Valhalla functions, such as options to start a run with some currency already on you. Finally, Fleeting Echoes are a currency that disappears at the end of your run.
Fleeting Echoes should be spent as often as you can since you will lose them if you don’t use them. Spirit Seals and Mastery Seals can be collected over time but don’t feel the need to be precious. When you can unlock an upgrade you think will be useful, trust yourself and buy that upgrade!
Turn Over Every Stone
Remember what I said about survivability? Keep remembering that. Kratos will need to take advantage of every resource in Valhalla to survive its roguelite threats. That includes scouring every room for any healing items and currency that exists. Be incredibly thorough in searching each room before you head to the exit as you may miss a healing item that could mean the difference between finishing a run or meeting an early end. Taking this time will also give you the space to prepare for whatever challenge awaits you next.
Don’t Be Afraid to Experiment
There is something to be said for trying new things. While you may find a build that works for you and has gotten you pretty far, it will always be worth experimenting with something new. Valhalla will probably make you do this at some point anyway, as you will likely reach a challenge your current build can’t get past just yet. If you are willing to take a new approach and be flexible with every run, you will be better off.
Keep Track of Goals
The roguelite nature of Valhalla can sometimes leave players wondering what to do. The base game of Ragnarök is very clear about how to progress, while Valhalla just says to keep doing runs. If you want some more guidance, then check on the Goals tab of the menu. This will give you tasks like Mastery challenges, which encourage you to upgrade certain stats, skills, and play with your builds. It’s a great way to get a feel for how Valhalla wants you to play it.
Played Hades? Then Trust Your Instincts
The other godlike roguelite can be a lot of help when it comes to Valhalla. If you have played Hades — and it's very likely you have, considering how (rightfully) popular Supergiant’s 2020 masterpiece is — then you already have so much knowledge that can apply to Kratos. It may be simplifying things, but Valhalla is so clearly riffing on Hades that you really can take every instinct you have about how to approach a Hades run and just do the same thing in Valhalla. There is no reason to try and reinvent the wheel, you know what you’re doing!