God of War Beginners Guide

With the help of our God of War Beginners Guide, you will be able to better understand all the changes that Santa Monica made to God of War 4.

Below you will find a detailed guide to everything such as your new weapons, items, and tools that you will be using in the game, different resources that you will need for upgrades, skills, and crafting, where you can purchase upgrades and additional gear and more. Become the ultimate God of War with our God of War Beginners Guide.

God of War Beginners Guide

Although the new God of War feels more of an RPG, there are still some solid hack n slash moments and the RPG elements have been implemented in the game very effectively that makes the game very fluid and easy to understand.

You will find all the major and minor details below that you should know about.

Playing With Kratos

While you are playing with Kratos, you must keep a few things in your mind. The green bar near the bottom of the screen represents his health.

Although Kratos might be tough and all but he is not invincible and some of the tougher enemies may still turn him into mincemeat. Always keep an eye on your health and pick up green runestones to refill it. Enemies drop them. You can upgrade Kratos’s health by collecting Idunn Apples from Nornir Chests.

If Kratos falls in battle, Atreus can revive him if he has a Resurrection Stone. They are not cheap and Atreus can only hold one at a time. There are three different types of Resurrection Stone. There is Simple, Superior, and Berserker’s Resurrection Stone.

You unlock these as you progress in the game and can purchase them from any shop in the game by paying the required price. They are not cheap so use them wisely in the game.

Apart from the health meter, you must also be aware of your rage meter. It is the orange bar below your health bar and orange runestones fill it up. You can also build up your rage meter by defeating enemies.

The overall bar can be increased by collecting Horns of Blood Mead. Once the bar is full, trigger it using L3+R3 and you will enter rage mode allowing you to deal an insane amount of damage and get some cool new melee attacks as well.

You will also come across some white runestones. They give you bonus XP. To collect a runestone you will have to stomp on it. Each runestone cycles between all three colors, which are green, orange and white. You can choose whether you want health, rage or XP and stomp on the desired color later on.

Know your Weapons

In God of War, Kratos has two main weapons Leviathan Axe and Blades of Chaos while Atreus has his own main weapon, a Talon Bow. Leviathan Axe is more than a weapon for you in this game.

You will be using it for a variety of purposes such as hitting distant switches, hitting explosives placed far apart which are not accessible by foot. It is also capable of freezing enemies with its Frost.

Sometimes you will also use this axe to move around wooden gates and boards. Some of the collectibles such as Odin’s Ravens, Nornir Chests and hanging Hacksilver containers can only be accessed with your Leviathan Axe. Blades of Chaos are most effective against taking down hordes of enemies and have very good splash damage attacks.

On the other hand, the Talon Bow is not only a ranged weapon at your disposal; you will also use different arrow types for a number of different purposes. You can get Shock Arrows and light arrows for it and it will allow you to open certain types of blocked areas in the game. Each weapon in the game has their use and you will be using them for more than just killing enemies.

Explore the World

The world of God of War is spread upon different realms and each realm has a multitude of areas that you can explore. Each area is full of surprises and secrets waiting to be explored.

Apart from the main storyline, the game also offers many side quests by the name of favors that you can complete. You can look around for hidden signs that indicate a possible path to hidden areas.

Look around for yellow markings, explosive red jars, red sap barriers and other locked gates that will need to be unlocked by certain ways to get to their other side.

They hold secrets, collectibles, and special items for you. Exploring the world is highly recommended and since you can visit the areas anytime now, we recommend that you explore the beautiful world of God of War to fully experience the game.

In this journey, Atreus will accompany you all along so while exploring the world, keep a close watch on him, as he will keep pointing out different things along the way.

He will comment and sometimes even point out different important items around you that may be difficult to see otherwise. If you are lost, he will also point you in the direction where you must go.

Sometimes you may come to a place that might not be accessible yet but since you can revisit these places anytime, you can continue ahead, get that certain skill or ability and then come back and unlock the secret entrance or passage.

The most common type of things that you should be looking around for are Hel’s Bramble, Light Crystals, Read Sap and Winds of Hel Traps. We will explain these further below.

After reaching a certain point in the story, you will also unlock Realm Travel Room, which will allow you to travel to different realms. Apart from these inter-realm travel devices, you also have Mystic Gateways that allow you to travel to Brok’s Shop instantly.

However, later in the game, these are upgraded and they act like fast travel points on the map and you can use them to quickly travel between different Mystic gateways.

Find Special Loot

Across your journey, you will come across a variety of special loot hidden in chests and treasures. The most common ones are the Nornir Chests, which must be unlocked by performing certain acts before you can get the loot inside them.

You will need to find and deactivate three runes or destroy them depending on where they are located. Runes on bells indicate they must be hit in quick succession while runes on breakable objects must be broken.

Apart from these Nornir Chests, there are also tons of other hidden loot in the world. You can find valuable loot in Urns, Buckets, Chests, Coffins, Legendary Chests, and Cipher Chests and on corpses.

It all depends on how well you explore the world. There is always something special waiting for you around a hidden corner.

Collect Resources

God of War has different resources as well scattered around the world that you must collect for crafting items and purchasing more upgrades and skills. You will be collecting Hacksilver and Yggdrasil’s Dew alongside many other resources but these two are most common ones.

Hacksilver can be found anywhere ranging from chests, completing quests and favors, hanging from tendrils, buckets, and ceilings. If you come across a hanging resource, use your Leviathan Axe to collect it.

Yggdrasil’s Dew permanently increases one of Kratos’s stat by 2. It is found only in the lakes that are Lake of Nine and Lake of Light. You will require a large number of resources if you want to get the best gear and items in the game. We recommend that you collect as many resources as possible along the way.

Find hidden loot as well as they contain a decent amount of resources as well. Always keep a steady supply of resources at your hand, as you never know when you might come across an epic gear piece or weapon upgrade that you really need.

Apart from purchases at the shop, you will also require resources if you want to upgrade Kratos and Atreus.

Watch out for Power Levels

Introduced in God of War, enemies and Kratos now have Power Levels and they must be near to each other for an equal fight.

Power Level represents how strong Kratos or the enemy is. It shows how much damage an enemy will deal and how resistant he is to your attacks. Same criteria applies on Kratos. You can increase Kratos’s Power Level by equipping better armor and enchantments.

Each armor piece increases your Power Level while adding enchantments to these items further increase the Power Level. The level of weapon upgrades also add to your overall Power Level so upgrading weapons and owning better armor and gear is vital for you in the game as you will not be able to defeat enemies whose Power Level is higher than you.

The highest Power Level of God of War is eight and you will have to own the best of enchantments, weapon upgrades and armor for them.

When you are about to take on an enemy, you must first look at their Power Level. An enemy who has a very high Power Level cannot be defeated at the moment.

You must upgrade yourself before taking them on. You can easily tell an enemy’s Power Level by the color of their health bar on top of them. Green and light green enemy health bars represent that they are lower than Kratos.

A yellow health bar represents that both enemy and Kratos are of the same level. Orange is one level higher while purple is two levels higher than Kratos. A Skull represents the enemies that have Power Levels greater than three over their heads. These are the toughest of enemies for Kratos at that point and they must be avoided before Kratos’s Power Level is increased.

Areas Repopulate

Once you have cleared an area of enemies, it does not mean that they will remain unpopulated forever. After a certain amount of time, enemies will respawn in these areas and thus provides you with a great way to grind for some XP.

It takes a decent amount of time by the enemies to respawn in an area. Normally it will take around 30 minutes before an area is repopulated again.

Skill Customization

If you’re playing at the hardest difficulty, you’re going to want to pick just the right skills for your journey through the realms. An overwhelming number of groups, Guardian Sweep and Grinding Storm are some good picks to help you crowd control more effectively.

This is more of a problem for players starting out in the game since XP isn’t earned as sparingly. Pick wisely, and gain mastery over combat with just the right skills.

Combat’s Pretty Flexible

If you think linear combos are the way to go, then boy are you wrong. The game gives you the liberty to chain various combos in your skill tree, should you want to. See what you have available and try to put it together depending on the situation.

The entire game works perfectly around combat, and there’re no limitations with how you choose to approach your enemies.

Gear Level is Important

Each piece of Kratos’ gear will range from Level 1 to 8. Enemy difficulty is determined in accordance with this level. Should an enemy be stronger than you, you will not be able to deal a sufficient amount of damage to the enemy, and the enemy will deal a lot in return.

It’s better to always focus on better Gear Level in the game, even if it compromises on some of your stats. Moving up the ladder will allow you to face off against enemies that you might not have been able to defeat before.

About Buying Gear

Although getting new Gear using some of your credits is an option; there’s no need unless you absolutely have to. The game rewards you with great gear if you are exploring optional areas within every area.

Sell any old armor you have, and try not to get attached to a specific set of armor. You’ll get a lot of great armor towards the end-game.

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Ali is a passionate RPG gamer. He believes that western RPGs still have a lot to learn from JRPGs. He is editor-in-chief at SegmentNext.com but that doesn't stop him from writing about his favorite video ...