Why Kratos Is Saving Civilians in God of War: Ascension

E3 2012: We find out why Kratos is showing mercy in his latest adventure, plus get some more details on how the action in this prequel has changed.

Sony showed off a decent chunk of single-player action from God of War: Ascension during its press conference this year, and for the most part, the gameplay looked like, well, God of War. But one thing did stand out: Kratos saving a civilian from an incoming spear thrown by a satyr.

The Ghost of Sparta's casual life-saving shove seems to be out of character for the angry, take-no-prisoners Kratos we've come to know during the previous three games. So why is Kratos showing mercy instead of using hapless bystanders as meat shields?

The answer, it seems, is simple. A representative from developer Sony Santa Monica Studios said that because Ascension is a prequel to the original God of War trilogy, Kratos has not fully developed into the bitter, furious dynamo he eventually becomes. The spokesperson said that Ascension will track his descent from (somewhat) decent human being into unhinged rage machine and that there will be more instances in Ascension where Kratos will show compassion towards the innocent.

Compassion isn't the only change you'll find in Ascension. As seen in the demo, Kratos will now be able to wield secondary weapons that he finds lying around (or takes from certain enemies). This has resulted in a slight change in button layout, with the secondary weapon now using the circle button. The cinematic finisher button has been remapped to R1, which also allows Kratos to latch onto enemies from a distance and bring them in for some pain.

The frequency of quick-time events is also being scaled back. If you watch the E3 demo, you'll see that the way Kratos takes out the elephant boss at the end has no button prompts at all, a departure from the old series which would have seen you finish the mid-boss off after completing some quick-time presses. This time, players will have to keenly observe the enemy while they're in close, attacking when they're open and moving Kratos' body away via the thumbsticks if the enemy is gearing up for an attack. Think Punch-Out in the God of War universe, and you're coming close.

Despite these changes, however, God of War: Ascension's single-player certainly looks like more of the same at this stage. But if you're a fan of the series, this really won't be a complaint. And who knows? Maybe you'll also get to see a new side of the angry Spartan.

Written By

Randolph is the managing editor of GameSpot, and needs more time to play games.

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Discussion

67 comments
sma3
sma3

02:58 : is that eye of the fate ???? << they said it's a prequel of the GOW series

Caduceus89
Caduceus89

As long as they don't half *** the story, I'll buy it (standard edition). It looks like what they should have done with the PSP games or what they could have done if the first two games had been released for PS3. I like the combat moves from the previous games they added.

Klokateer
Klokateer

Are they counting the civilians that would just be running around in some areas? Because those cases it was purely your own decision if they lived or died so I don't think they should count. Most of the civilians it was necessary to kill to progress such as the guy on the wall near Helios, or just unforeseen consequences of killing gods such as the flood from killing Poseidon or the plague from killing Hermes. The only unnecessary killing of a civilian I can remember is in GOS when he drops a block on a guy trapped in a crack in a wall.

Diamondsoulz
Diamondsoulz

Kratos is in rehab after killing  his father Zeus he decided to seek help by taking Prozac.

supermtf
supermtf

Kratos saved a man?? probably a bug that will be fixed in the final version

Zato_Hurricane
Zato_Hurricane

I like how people say "nothing we haven't seen before." Is that what people say about the CoD series too?

 

Ze_Strife
Ze_Strife

I didnt want a prequel. Save Kratos!

hgerisson
hgerisson

best games  best character Kratos best everything of all time

gamermajor
gamermajor

he only saves him because in the end he knows hes going to die anyway lol

Ibra8
Ibra8

he saved him by mistake  

Rat_King
Rat_King

First off, let me say the God of War series is undoubtedly one of my favorite in modern gaming history. Kratos is one of the best anti-Heroes of gaming and I don't care what anyone else says, but especially knowing the 1st and 2nd story lines, GoW 3 was one of the most epic and satisfying games I'd played in years.

 

On that note, this trailer excites me just as much as it bothers me. It looks awesome, but...more like GoW 3 awesome. Pretty much the ONLY thing I was hoping they could improve on was enemy reactions to your hits. I hated beating down someone my size or slightly bigger with chains only to have them run through it or stand there like nothing is happening. Doesn't even have to be as accurate as, say, Arkham Asulyum, but that general idea. Just seems so PS1..

 

Otherwise, it looks to be just as epic as ever. Undoubtedly I'll still buy it and play the crap out of it...

souther_hill
souther_hill

As a die-hard GOW fan, I simply cannot wait for this game. :))

SicklySunStorm
SicklySunStorm

I think what they meant is Kratos saves a civilian...... for later, meaning that he didn't want to eat them right now, but save them for when he's a bit more peckish.

 

that's the only saving the Kratos I know would get involved in.... ha ha

PlatinumPaladin
PlatinumPaladin

He's got some crazy gorilla arms in this game but his facial animation is awesome. Not sure I understand the explanation of the quicktime replacement on the elephant-man.

CRAPCOM1926
CRAPCOM1926

Demo Stars: I was like " hmm same thing, better animations,  different  style and graphics,  doesnt looks  anything like GOW 3 hm..

 

"Kratos saving a civilian from an incoming spear thrown by a satyr."

 

me:  HOLY COW O.O!!!!

 

I can wait  to see the fan arts in devian arts XD

risako9
risako9

Kratos saving a civilian? Must've been hard for him

dustding24tuc
dustding24tuc

i played the god of war demo 12 times which i was like this will ruin that part of the game, but i shouldve played it 80 more times cause it didnt cause god of war is the best series to me in the world, next to resident evils, silent hills, gears of war, halos, and of course any game that comes from the maker of heavy rain , and uncharteds, by the way last of us is looking to be game of the year stuff, and alot more my taste than uncharteds

Frimmel
Frimmel

On the one hand I have a pretty strong, "Why are you selling me this game again? Buying it three times already wasn't enough of my money?" On the other hand I feel like Smithers in the episode where Lisa makes a doll but Barbie wins doing the same old thing, "SHE'S GOT A NEW HAT!!!!!!!!"

slikjohnson
slikjohnson

I don't get the point of this game.  I thought they explained his past in the main trilogy.  Not to say that the gameplay doesn't look good, but it can't match the epicness of the third game.

Andrecosta13
Andrecosta13

The graphics look a bit better, gameplay somehow renewed...well, just hope the story is good!

Smallvilleno1
Smallvilleno1

lame as can be i don't care how kratos was "nice" back in the day... with knowing how stupid this series ends this game can just fall off a cliff and commit suicide kratos you emo pos you deserve nothing but the worst hate imaginable

rawsavon
rawsavon

Looks more like God of War: the lost levels to me

Johny_47
Johny_47

Even before this article, I'd guess it's before he was betrayed over and over again, after a while your just gonna have enough of the bull s*** and stop caring about everything.

 

I almost forgot about this at the Sony show, blinkin heck, don't know what happened, I didn't mention it in my last comments, sorry Sony Santa Monica =/

PayneKiller
PayneKiller

lol I thought I was the only one that noticed Kratos actually push that guy out of the way. I was like "WTF KRATOS!! HE SAVED A MORTAL'S LIFE..."

Purple-turtle-X
Purple-turtle-X

Was I the only 1 that noticed that f**king cool reversal power that he had?? You can even used them one enemies...I'm totally trying that sh!t out!

relli-boy
relli-boy

when the prompts came up, to press "X" "O" etc......i noticed my thumb twitch as if i was actually playing lol way to suck us in, with this eye crack!

Dreizel
Dreizel

GOW is awesome,

I'm just not too found of yet another prequel. I would rather have the sequel to the last one, but oh well. 

I just hope this is the last prequel that they trow at us to milk the franchise, because i want to play a sequel to the GOW 3 but if they keep trowing at us more and more of the same it will enventually lose it's magic and then the chances of a GOW 4 will be lower :(

 

drakekratos
drakekratos

looks awesome... good thing i have a PS3

carnivalshow
carnivalshow

The storys always really good in these games and the game play is always awesome i can't wait been looking for new god or war stuff for ever.

Hodge996
Hodge996

 @Zato_Hurricane And pretty much every other sequel in the history of time!  Why do people expect a developer to make radical changes to a hugely successful series?  If they changed it too much fans would winge that it's "just not the same" etc etc.

Klokateer
Klokateer

 @HipHopBeats Well there's secondary weapons that can be picked up, a new kind of rage meter, a new temporal power, new enemy types, new part of the story, no prompt minigames, multiplayer and elephant brains. And that's just what we've seen so far. As for how easy it is, that's what difficulty settings are for. 

PayneKiller
PayneKiller

 @dustding24tuc it didnt ruin that part of the game at all, cause when you compare the part that it is taken from, lots of things were altered by that point. You had different weapons and set pieces, story implementations etc.

Psi9179
Psi9179

 @slikjohnson The point is "hey we can put this out and it'll probably make money so let's do that."

dustding24tuc
dustding24tuc

 @slikjohnson

 i think it will be better now it isnt just go kill every god but there is going to be a game that changes the way kratos thinks, and i think it will be cool cause his family might still be alive in this one hopeing anyway we will see, but im hoeping they would make a new one every year and never quit on this series nothing can compete with god of war

CRAPCOM1926
CRAPCOM1926

 @squidshoggoth And  Not for the multiplayer, right?? RIGHTT????? hello??? Well i Know I am Not doing it for  That or the story....why i want these game?

dustding24tuc
dustding24tuc

 @Saylickletvsorry about that i was talking about the god of war 3 demo shouldve put that on there wish this ones demo was out

 

CRAPCOM1926
CRAPCOM1926

 @dustding24tuc  Game takes place 6 MONTH AFTER  he's family dead, At hes hand, Tricky by Ares. But Still HE kill them XD.

dustding24tuc
dustding24tuc

 @CRAPCOM1926

 well was hoepeing they were alive wouldve put more depth to it but hey im still going to get it