Codex Gamicus
For the video game of the same name, see God of War.

God of War
Basic Information
SCE Santa Monica Studio, Ready at Dawn Studios, Javaground, Bluepoint Games
Sony Computer Entertainment, Capcom
Hack-and-Slash, Action, Adventure, Fantasy
God of War
PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Mobile Phone and PlayStation 4

God of War is a series of action-adventure video games based on Greek mythology and later Norse mythology.

The central character is Kratos, a Spartan warrior eventually revealed to be a demigod. The success of the first game, God of War has allowed for the development of additional games, with each chapter forming part of a saga with revenge as a central theme. Each new installment provides additional information on Kratos' origins and relationship with his family and the gods.

The main trilogy - God of War I - III - in the series were developed by Sony Computer Entertainment's Santa Monica division, with Javaground and Ready at Dawn Studios developing other installments.

Debuting in 2005, the series has featured on the PlayStation 2, cell phone, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 3, and PlayStation 4. The character Kratos has been associated with merchandise including artwork, clothing, comic books, a novel and cell phone skins.


Greek Era[]

The player controls the character Kratos in a combination of combat, platforming and puzzle game elements. The player typically has to navigate Kratos through a long series of tests, trials and mazes to reach goals.

Kratos' main weapons through the series are a pair of chain blades, with various other secondary weapons (e.g. the Blade of Artemis from God of War) acquired with each game. Magic is also used, with four different abilities usually acquired (e.g. Poseidon's Rage, Medusa's Gaze, Zeus' Fury and Army of Hades). With each new game, most of the previous weapons and magic are typically lost, with a new arsenal and abilities being found through the course of gameplay.

Relics can also be acquired and are an exception, being able to be used in each successive game (e.g. Poseidon's Trident, the Golden Fleece and Icarus' wings).

Kratos often also has a "special" ability which provides temporary invulnerability and increased attack damage (e.g. "Rage of the Gods" or "Rage of the Titans"). It can be recharged by building "hits" on foes in combat.

Health and Magic upgrades - Gorgon Eyes and Phoenix Feathers respectively - are found throughout the game in uncolored chests. A certain number of each are needed to upgrade the Health and Magic bars respectively. Other chests found in the game, containing orbs, are marked with a corresponding color for the orbs (green, blue, and red). Green Orbs replenish health, blue orbs replenish magic and red orbs provide experience and can also replenish the Rage of the Gods meter.

Red orbs may also be collected by killing foes and destroying certain inanimate objects. Combat includes a quick-time feature, which is initiated when the player has weakened a stronger foe and an icon (the circle button on the controller) appears above them. The player then presses the corresponding button commands appearing on screen, with success ending the battle, and failure usually resulting in damage. A "grab" maneuver is also available for use on minor foes that yields a higher proportion of experience points in the form of red orbs.

A quick-time sex mini-game and Challenge mode are also often included, which yield bonus red orbs and secret costumes and behind-the-scenes videos respectively.

Norse Era[]

With the beginning of the Norse era, the gameplay of the series has been completely reworked.

Video Games[]

God of War[]

Main article: God of War

God of War was first released in North America on March 22, 2005. Kratos is introduced as the servant of the gods. Tasked by Athena with finding Pandora's Box, the key to defeating Ares, the God of War. Ultimately successful, Kratos ascends to Olympus to become the new God of War.

God of War II[]

Main article: God of War II

God of War II was first released in North America on March 13, 2007. Betrayed by Zeus, Kratos is saved by the Titan Gaia, who states Kratos must now find the Sisters of Fate. The Sisters can change his fate and prevent his death at the hands of Zeus. Kratos is ultimately successful, and learns from a dying Athena (who sacrificed herself to save Zeus and thereby preserve Olympus) that he is the son of Zeus. Kratos then joins forces with Gaia and the Titans in an attack on Olympus.

God of War: Betrayal[]

Main article: God of War: Betrayal

God of War: Betrayal was released on June 20, 2007. Taking place between the events of God of War: Ghost of Sparta and God of War II, Kratos is framed for murder and rampages across Greece, seeking the true assassin. Kratos succumbs to blood-lust and kills Ceryx, the son of the god Hermes - an act that alienates him from his fellow gods.

God of War: Chains of Olympus[]

God of War: Chains of Olympus was first released in North America on March 4, 2008 followed by a limited edition PSP bundle pack released in June. Set in the time of Kratos' ten years of service to the gods. Kratos halts a Persian invasion of the Greek city of Attica, and learns that the world has been plunged into darkness by the god Morpheus. Learning that the sun god Helios has been abducted, Kratos investigates and prevents the Machiavellian plan of the goddess Persephone to use the Titan Atlas to destroy the world and as a result Olympus.

God of War Collection[]

Main article: God of War Collection

God of War III[]

Main article: God of War III

God of War III' was first released in North America on March 16, 2010 with an "Ultimate Edition" available for pre-order with exclusive content. The game continues directly from God of War II. Kratos engages both the gods and former allies the Titans in an epic series of battles across the Underworld and Olympus. Aided by the spirit of a revived Athena and Pandora herself, Kratos eventually defeats the gods and opposing Titans. Although wounded, Kratos disappears after the death of Zeus.

God of War: Ghost of Sparta[]

Main article: God of War: Ghost of Sparta

Set after the events of the original God of War and prior to God of War: Betrayal. The game will be released in North America on November 2, 2010 with select retailers offering pre-order exclusives, in addition to the game being available in a special limited edition PSP bundle pack.[1]

God of War (2018)[]

Main article: God of War (2018)

Set many years after God of War III, God of War acts as a "soft reboot", taking place in Norse mythology rather than Greek, and completely reworking the gameplay. This game focuses on Kratos's relationship with his new son, Atreus.

Other media[]


A film adaptation of the game was announced in 2005.[2] Creator David Jaffe confirmed that a completed script had been written by David Self and would be sent to an unspecified "huge-name director". Jaffe also confirmed that Universal Studios is behind the making of the God of War movie but was unaware of its current status,[3] and eventually stated that "it's doubtful that the film will even be made." [4]


A novelization of the first game written by Matthew Stover and Robert E. Vardeman was released on May 25, 2010 by Del Ray Books.[5]

Comic book series[]

Main article: God of War (comics)

A six issue comic book series written by Marv Wolfman with art by Kevin Sharpe was released by Wildstorm in March 2010 on a bi-monthly schedule.[6]


On March 1, 2005 the score for God of War - composed by Gerard K. Marino, Ron Fish, Winifred Phillips, Mike Reagan, Cris Velasco and Winnie Waldron - was released on CD (58 minutes and 55 seconds in length) by SCEI as an exclusive product for the Sony Connect Music Store. Several of the tracks feature voice over passages from the video game.

On April 10, 2007 the score for God of War II - composed by Gerard K. Marino, Ron Fish, Mike Reagan and Cris Velasco - was released on CD (66 minutes and 41 seconds in length) by SCEI.

On March 16, 2010, the score of God of War III - composed by Gerard K. Marino, Ron Fish, Mike Reagan, Jeff Rona, and Cris Velasco - was released as downloadable content (58 minutes and 42 seconds in length) through the God of War III: Ultimate Edition and Ultimate Trilogy Edition by SCEI.[7]

The God of War Trilogy Soundtrack was released with the God of War III: Ultimate Edition (North America) and Ultimate Trilogy Edition (Europe, Australia, & New Zealand).

Critical reception[]

God of War[]

Main article: God of War

God of War II[]

Main article: God of War II

God of War: Betrayal[]

Main article: God of War: Betrayal

God of War: Chains of Olympus[]

God of War Collection[]

God of War Collection has been well received. IGN (9.4/10) awarded the game the "Editor's Choice" Award and praised the enhanced resolutions, lower price point and smoother frame rates, stating it was a "definitive way to play the game".[11] ("A" rating) praised the tremendous increase in visuals but noted that although insignificant the in-engine cut-scenes appeared blurry.[12]

GamePro (5/5) stated the collection is "two fantastic games on one disc for a low price; puts you in the right mindset for God of War 3."[13]

PlayStation LifeStyle (5/5) noted that for those who are "familiar with Kratos will enjoy the extra polish the Collection brings to two of the best games from the PS2 era."[14]

Due to the success of the God of War Collection, Sony has ordered new titles to receive similar treatment under a new brand of "Classics HD".[5]

God of War III[]

Main article: God of War III

Game merchandise[]

Kratos has also been featured as a playable character in four other PlayStation games outside the God of War series. One of the games, LittleBigPlanet, also included appearances by minor Kratos foes, such as the Medusa and a Minotaur.[15][16][17][18]


  1. Levine, Eric (2010-05-04). God of War: Ghost of Sparta Announced for PSP!. SCEA. Retrieved on 2010-07-13
  2. Games to Film: God of War,
  3. - Game Head - David Jaffe meets Uwe Boll
  4. John, Tracey (2010-03-04). God of War Movie Update: Designers Have 'No Creative Control'. UGO Entertainment. Retrieved on 2010-04-28
  5. 5.0 5.1 Del Ray announces first God of War novel for March 2010. Joystiq (2009-06-13). Retrieved on 2010-01-04
  6. God of War #1 Solicitation. Wildstorm. Retrieved on 2010-01-04
  7. God of War Trilogy Soundtrack. VGMdb. Retrieved on 2010-03-30
  8. God of War Collection for PlayStation 3. GameRankings. Retrieved on 2009-11-19
  9. God of War Collection (ps3) reviews at Metacritic. Retrieved on 2009-11-19
  10. God of War Collection Video Game. Game Trailers. Retrieved on 2009-11-19
  11. Chris Roper (November 13, 2009). God of War Collection Review. IGN. Retrieved on November 16, 2009
  12. Chris Roper (November 16, 2009). God of War Collection Review for the PS3 from Retrieved on November 16, 2009
  13. Kim, Tae K. (2009-11-17). God of War Collection Review from GamePro. GamePro. Retrieved on 2009-11-19
  14. Allen, Richard (2009-11-17). PS3 Review – God of War: Collection. PlayStation LifeStyle. Retrieved on 2009-11-19
  15. [Hinojosa-Miranda, Chris (2008-08-20). Kratos to Swing the Clubs of Chaos in Hot Shots Golf. Sony Computer Entertainment of America. Retrieved on 2008-08-21]
  16. [GameStop LBP pre-order adds more God of War sackness. Joystiq (2008-10-07). Retrieved on 2008-10-15]
  17. [Sinclair, Brendan (2009-04-28). Soulcalibur forges Broken Destiny on PSP. GameSpot. Retrieved on 2009-04-29]
  18. [Fahey, Mike (2010-03-15). ModNation Dated, Kratos, Ratchet & Clank, And Nathan Drake Join The Race. Kotaku. Retrieved on 2010-05-12]

External Links[]