God of War Ragnarok’s 9th November release date is fast approaching, and the excitement is palpable amongst the PlayStation faithful. Kratos’ next adventure is getting the Game Informer cover treatment in September (with the digital edition live now), and we know new gameplay footage is coming. Today we learned some tasty tidbits about the game’s revamped combat system.
Specifically, a small change to the function of the Triangle button will allow for more combat options. Lead combat designers Mihir Sheth and Denny Yeh outline the changes in a new Game Informer feature, as well as the philosophy behind the decisions. Sheth explains:
“In the last game, if you pressed Triangle, you recalled the axe, 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.’”
Now, each weapon will have what is called Weapon Signature Moves, allowing Kratos to fuse them with ice or fire elemental power, respectively. For the Leviathan Axe, this is called Frost Awaken, and for the Blades of Chaos, Whiplash.
In addition, we learned that shields would function differently this time around, with each leaning into a particular playstyle. The Dauntless Shield, for example, will benefit high-skill players, as parrying at the last moment will cause it to glow red, and allow them to unleash a punishing smash attack, stunning enemies and launching them into the air.
The Stonewall Shield, meanwhile, is designed for players that prefer a tankier style of play. You will not be able to parry, instead absorbing incoming damage, which can be built up and released as a shockwave, blasting opponents off their feet. The trade-off is that it becomes more unstable as it takes damage, opening Kratos up to block-breaking attacks.
There will be other shields for players to find on their journey through The Nine Realms, and we can’t wait to try them all out for ourselves. What do you think of these enhancements to Ragnarok’s battle system? Gird yourself for war in the comments section below.