God of War Ragnarok gives Kratos new elemental attacks

A song of ice and fire.

Image via PlayStation

The God of War Ragnarok team is looking to spice up the sequel with new mechanics and narrative hooks like the great wolf Fenrir. Those looking forward to new combat maneuvers should be happy: Kratos will be able to infuse his weapons with ice and fire in the new game.

Kratos’ Leviathan Axe and Blades of Chaos are already tied into those respective elements, but they’ll get new functionality in the sequel. In an interview with GameInformer, Ragnarok’s lead combat designers Mihir Sheth and Denny Yeh explained how this gimmick came from the previous game’s control scheme. “In the last game, if you pressed triangle, you recalled the axe,” Sheth stated. “But if you already had the axe, nothing happened. If you had the Blades of Chaos and you pressed triangle, you just went back to the axe. We looked at that concept and wondered, ‘What if you could do something a little bit different with that button — a whole new suite of moves.'”

Thus, Weapon Signature Moves were born. By pressing triangle, Kratos can use Frost Awaken to buff the Leviathan Axe with ice or use Whiplash to ignite the Blades of Chaos with fire. This then deals extra damage to enemies by freezing or burning them. You can get a glimpse of this in the latest Ragnarok trailer that GameInformer released.

Additionally, shields will have more variety in Ragnarok. Dauntless Shields are made for parries, letting Kratos unleash a smashing riposte after blocking at the last possible moment. On the opposite side of the spectrum, Stonewall Shields are for sturdily blocking blows. They can’t parry at all, but after taking enough hits, they can shoot the damage right back out in a shockwave.

You can try all these new weapon mechanics for yourself when God of War Ragnarok releases on November 9. It’s headed to both PlayStation 5 and PlayStation 4, and there are several different editions available for preorder. If you want a refresher on the series ahead of launch, you can watch the official recap video or see our guide on how to play the God of War games in order.