Who is the Stranger in God of War?

The Stranger is major character in God of War.

Screenshot by Gamepur

There are multiple enemies and foes for Kratos to face in God of War. The Stranger is the first one in God of War to prove to be a true threat, as he not only feels no pain, but he can regenerate at an extremely quick rate. You’ll face off against The Stranger multiple times in the game, and they will be chasing you throughout the game. So who is the Stranger in God of War, and what is their importance to the story?

Before going further, we would like to address that knowing the Stranger’s identity is a story spoiler. Proceed to the rest of the article at your own risk.

As Krato progresses through the story, Kratos learns that the Stranger is none other than Baldur, also spelled Baldr, the son of Odin and Frigg and brother of Thor. In Norse Mythology, Baldur is the god of light and wisdom. Frigg, his mother, had received visions of his death and thus asked all creatures and things in the nine realms that they would never harm Baldur. They all agreed, except mistletoe. Because only mistletoe had not agreed to leave Baldur harmless, he was immune to all pain and feeling. Unfortunately, another blind god, Höd, had been tricked and accidentally killed Baldur using mistletoe arrows. Upon his death, the arrival of Ragnorök, the end of all things, is never far behind.

The myths and stories line up fairly closely to Baldur’s story in the God of War story, with several noticeable twists. While Baldur is immune to pain and cannot feel anything, he believes it to be a curse given to him by his mother and wishes to feel anything at all, seeking pain and violence at any cost.

The ending of God of War is relatively close to what happens to Baldur in real-world Norse mythology, where Loki is the one who uses mistletoe arrows to break his spell. However, Kratos is the one who kills him, thus likely jump-starting the events of Ragnorök, thwarting Odin’s plans about avoiding it. These events and repercussions will be further explored in God of War: Ragnorök.