The God of War series, now one of the most successful PlayStation exclusives, has long delighted its fans with an exciting and highly dramatized take on Greek mythology. Dealing primarily with the Spartan warrior Kratos and a collection of Greek gods (most notably Ares, the god of war for whom the series is named), the games have always thrived on action-packed gameplay and cutting edge graphics. And God Of War 4, which was revealed at E3, looks to be more of the same in these regards.
The big difference this time around, as noted by Parent Herald’s write-up on the forthcoming release, is that Kratos will now be dumped into Norse mythology. This is a sharp change in direction for a franchise that up to this point has been all about traditional Olympian characters, and makes sense to give the game a new look. However, it may also not be so surprising given that a few other games have made a habit of blending mythologies and providing players with fun selections of gods and god-like figures.
Gameloft’s Gods Of Rome, a highly rated fighter game for mobile devices, has perhaps been the most blatant in mashing different mythologies together. While it advertises itself largely as a game about Olympian gods, there are always new characters and warriors being added, and settings range from Mt. Olympus itself to a gorgeous Chinese temple. There’s not much of a sense of cohesion between all these characters and settings, but it’s interesting to see how naturally you can jump between different myths without feeling jarred or confused. They all play on our imagination similarly.
Online, the diverse library of gaming content at Gala’s bingo platform takes a similar approach to mythology to what we see in Gods Of Rome. While the site is known primarily for its bingo gaming options there are plenty of slot and arcade options that provide different types of gaming, and most of them are built around recognizable characters, settings, or general fictional concepts. Among them, titles range from Nordic Heroes to Rise Of Anubis to Zeus III and Legend of Triton, incorporating Norse, Egyptian, and Greek mythology.
A couple of other apps and games demonstrate similar approaches, and now that we know the new direction God Of War is moving in it seems fair to wonder if this is only the beginning. It’s a little bit hard to imagine the transition that will land Kratos among Norse mythological figures, but if God Of War 4 works smoothly and proves as popular as its predecessors it’s easy to imagine the developers making it a trend. It could be that as some other games have explored blending mythologies, the God Of War series could begin to progress through different histories in much the same way so that many other popular console franchises could also leap through various times and settings.
If this is the way things are going, God Of War may have a more interesting future than anyone would have guessed before the new game was revealed.