Your experience of God of War Ragnarok depends on the difficulty you choose, but if you are new to the game and have chosen the “Give me Balance” level (or any higher one), you may need some tips, tricks, and strategies. These will not only help you survive and progress faster but also give you that extra awesome feeling of being the God of War (and play better as Atreus too). Check out all of these God of War Ragnarok combat tips for beginners and with patience and practice, you will get better in your battles.
Note: There are no spoilers in this guide.
God of War Ragnarok Combat Tips for Beginners
Various types of dangers lurk in the world of God of War Ragnarok and you have to be prepared to take down every type of enemy. Each opponent has a different weakness and you will have to switch weapons accordingly. Read through the beginners tips below to be a better Kratos during combat, especially in the early game.
Master the Camera Movement
This is one of the most important things you need to practice. Know how to control the camera so that all or most of the enemies are in your vision because this will make or break your combat experience. This will make a huge impact on your Axe throws and melee attacks. Head to the settings and switch things up according to your preference.
For example, the Lock ON camera and Recenter Camera settings can be adjusted as per your preference. The Lock ON camera gameplay setting provides 3 options: Classic, Auto-Target and Auto-Target+. Whereas the Recenter Camera on Attack gives the Classic, Priority, and Priority+ options. The defaults are set to Classic.
Green Health Stones Help During Combat
You have seen those glowing green stones scattered across the world during exploration but did you know that they can come in handy during combat as well? They can give you a boost of health, yes, but they can also momentarily stagger your enemy if you stomp on it when they are very near. This gives you a chance to make the most of their vulnerability and go ham with your weapons. You will have to carefully lure them towards the green stone and stomp at the right time to make this happen, especially if they are initiating a red ring attack that’s unblockable. Speaking of rings, be sure to understand what every enemy ring indicates in GOW Ragnarok.
Know when to use Heavy & Light attacks
Heavy attacks are powerful but slower. If you are surrounded by enemies and it’s a weaker enemy type, use Light attacks to get the job done quickly.
When you use the Light throw of your Axe, aim it toward the enemy’s legs to make them lose balance and trip.
Along with that, a heavy throw of your Leviathan Axe can freeze your enemies in place, so that you can rush to them and tear them apart. These can be particularly useful if you feel overwhelmed due to incoming enemies. Don’t forget that Kratos’ fists are pretty strong too – use them to land punches whenever your foes try to get up, close and personal. Moreover, bare-handed attacks will help you fill-up the Rage meter faster and deal more Stun damage as well.
And as you may already know, you can call your Leviathan Axe back by pressing the Triangle button on your PS controller. If you throw it and call it back instantly while an enemy is in front of you, it can slash them along the way and deal easy damage. With practice, you will understand how the arc of the Axe works and you can plan out your next recalls according to it.
Check the Stun Damage Bar
Under the enemy’s health bar, you’ll see another bar which is for Stun damage. The more you stun enemies, the more the bar gets filled up and eventually, you can press R3 to get a cool finisher animation for a particular foe. During this time, you will be invulnerable against other enemies.
If you hit enemies into walls, either with your weapon or with your bare hands, they will be left vulnerable and get more stun damage as well. You can launch enemies in the air with the help of Blades of Chaos which can weaken them further. Another thing to add to the combo is a powerful kick by Kratos – it can leave enemies open for attack.
Don’t forget to get some help from your best boy/companion – Atreus – because his arrows can also stun enemies. And if you upgrade his skills even more, he can deal a sweet amount of damage. This will also take some pressure off you for a bit, while you focus on other creatures. If you’re planning to freeze up your Axe, it takes a couple of seconds, so you need to concentrate and do it only when you are not swarmed by a mob.
It’s all about timing – when your attacks, parries, stuns, and evades are executed at the right time, going on a rampage against enemies becomes much easier. This will come with more practice. Speaking of parrying…
Parrying is of Utmost Importance
Just like Elden Ring and Ghost of Tsushima, you can also parry in God of War Ragnarok. It’s important because it will stagger your enemy (and you will look pretty cool while doing it). It gives you a chance to land back-to-back hits after you parry with your shield. Check out our recommendation of the best shield to use in the game.
Upgrade Weapon Skills
The basic skills that Kratos has are pretty brutal, but you can make him a more hardcore version of himself, by adding skills to his weapons (and Atreus’ bow too). Check out the abilities under Technique, Ranged and melee to deal bonus damage to enemies. These will be for specific enemies such as Burning or Frosted creatures and in various scenarios, you will have to switch between weapons as well.
Use the Surroundings
Hide behind a rock to regain composure, use your Blades of Chaos to climb up, or use some objects around you to throw at your enemy. The surroundings can be helpful during boss fights, so make the most of it. Apart from giving you a movement advantage, the Hyperion grapple can also help bring smaller/weaker enemies towards you to ensure immediate kills. Plus, you can kick or punch opponents off ledges or cliffs whenever possible.
Get Comfortable with Sidesteps
While parrying and going in aggressively is the nature of Kratos, balance it out with evading and dodging to survive longer. If you sidestep, the sequence of your light attack combo will be maintained but if you roll, it will reset the combo. So for better survivability, sidestepping (by pressing X) has to be added to your moves.
Use Spartan Rage for Hordes
Avoid using up the Rage meter for one or two small enemies. Spartan Rage is best if you use it to damage a bunch of enemies in a horde that can potentially overpower you.
These were all the combat tips for beginners in God of War Ragnarok. If you wish to know lots more tips, tricks and strategies for the games, check out our GOW Ragnarok wiki guide and learn more about combat right away.