“God of War: Ragnarok” is one of the only games I’ve played that I’d give a 10/10. Released as a sequel to the 2018 “God of War,” it took everything the first game had and improved its visuals, settings, and characters in so many different ways. Santa Monica Studios has achieved a very difficult goal in the gaming industry in creating a sequel that is better than the first game.

The visuals of this game are one of the best out of any of the video games I’ve played. Everything has so much detail put into it. The game looks and feels like a movie. It employs a super cool trick where there are never any loading screens or cuts in the entire game, so it feels like one continuous journey.

Another element that makes this game phenomenal are the locations. All nine different realms are available in this game, and none of them feel the same. You get to explore the snow-ridden Midgard, the rocky cliffs of Svartalfheim, the raging infernos of Muspelheim, the glorious green landscapes of Vanaheim, the icy mists of Niflheim, the grandiose society of Alfheim, the desolate land of the dead Helheim, the lost luscious forests of the giants in Jotunheim, and the battlegrounds of Asgard. All of these locations are amazing and absolutely gorgeous to look upon. My favorite location however is on Yggdrasil, the world tree. On Yggdrasil lies your home base, and the scenery is something to behold. 

The best parts of this game come from the characters themselves. All of the characters are incredibly well written, and the dialogue is naturally funny without ever feeling forced. Even the small sections of dialogue that play when you have to do something mundane, subtly tells more of the story and reveals more about each of the characters. 

The best example of this is the character Mimir. Mimir is the Norse god of knowledge and wisdom, and he consistently has the funniest dialogue in the game. In the game, he acts as an advisor to Kratos and grounds him quite a bit. 

Each character feels so incredibly three dimensional. All of their choices and actions in the game feel correct. None of the character arcs feel unnatural or forced upon the characters. The growth they all show is absolutely beautiful from a storytelling perspective.

The combat is something that was improved upon massively. They added two new main components to the combat, including an elemental charge meter so you can inflict more damage onto enemies and multiple different shields with different functionality. They also added a lot of new enemies to face down, so Ragnarok never ends up feeling the same as the first game. You can tell the sheer amount of effort that went into making sure the combat was never boring.

The bosses are just absolutely incredible. While not usually too difficult, they are spectacles to behold. With how many bosses there are, I only found one of them to be a little lazy, as they just made you fight two of a previous bosses at once. Some of the bosses are visually stunning, and the best example of this is the fight with Níðhöggr the protector of Yggdrasil, the world tree. 

The game isn’t without its imperfections, but they are few and far between. There can be some graphical errors when stun killing an enemy on a slanted surface. The other notable one was the AI companion voice lines. When trying to solve a puzzle, they can be a little quick to give you an answer, which can get a little annoying at times. They also give repetitive voice lines while in combat.

“God of War: Ragnarok” is as close to a perfect game as we have right now. This game sets an amazing example as to what triple A games should look like. It is insanely polished and it used all of the four years in between the two games to its absolute fullest. This should be the gold standard for third-person story games.

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Hello my name is Ryker Stevenson and this is my first year on 42fifty. I am a junior currently and participate in the chess club and scholastic bowl. I am thrilled to be your video game expert at 42fifty

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