God of War Ragnarok Early Story Draft Was Vastly Different From The Final Game
The early story draft for Santa Monica Studio’s God of War Ragnarok was substantially different from what was seen in the final game.
Speaking during an interview with MinnMax, the narrative director Matt Sophos and story lead Richard Gaubert at Santa Monica Studio revealed that an early version of the story script for God of War Ragnarok had Thor kill Kratos in their first combat encounter. Subsequently, a grown up Atreus would pull him back from the depths of hell 20 or so years later.
Sophos stated that the early story draft was then shown to God of War Ragnarok game director, Eric Williams, who ultimately turned it down, as he felt that killing and then bringing back Kratos wouldn’t be of much emotional value. He also pointed out that the series protagonist has been sent to hell and returned before, arguing that the plot point had already been done before too many times.
He added that, as the narrative team was developing the story, they knew that they wanted the story to be one about letting go and changing. Knowing that Norse mythology is all about fate and prophecy, they wanted to say “that’s bullshit, nothing is written that can’t be unwritten, as long as you’re willing to change or make changes in your life, then you’re not bound to fate.” As a result, upon landing on this narrative theme, the team knew that they didn’t want Kratos to die if they wanted to tell the story they wanted to tell.
God of War Ragnarok is one of the fastest selling first-party games from Sony. It was released for the PS4 and PS5 this November and debuted with more than five million copies sold in its launch week, which is a record in itself. The game is set in ancient Scandinavia, featuring Kratos and his adolescent son Atreus as the protagonists, and is loosely based on Norse mythology. Three years after the events of the last game, Fimbulwinter, a tremendous winter spanning three summers, is coming to an end, signalling the start of the foretold Ragnarök.