One of the standout new features of the revamped God of War is the inclusion of Kratos’s son Atreus, but the team at Santa Monica Studio almost took an extremely different approach.
In a recent interview with USGamer, the game’s director Cory Barlog explains that one of the first ideas to further develop the character of Kratos was to have him and his wife as the focus of the story. Despite only being an initial concept, a vast amount of potential remains should Barlog revisit this theme in the future.
The choice to focus solely on the relationship between Atreus and Kratos was taken so that the characters felt more isolated, making the connection between the two stronger. Barlog also says that the story of a father and his son resonated more personally with himself. Both Barlog and the character of Kratos lacked a father figure growing up, leading to a lack of understanding in terms of parenting.
While the death of a significant other is often looked down upon as a storytelling trope, Barlog counters that the narrative should not be dictated by outside opinions and should instead be free to tell the story as he sees it. While Atreus’s mother will not receive a major role in the game, players will learn more about her through the dialogue between Kratos and his son, as she acts as a way for the two to open up with each other.
Despite God of War looking mighty impressive as it is, the idea of having Kratos fight alongside an equally powerful partner could have been a missed opportunity.
Whether players agree with the change or not, God of War looks to be an incredible single-player experience making its way onto PlayStation 4 on April 20, 2018.