God of War: Ragnarok isn’t quite the pure action title that the original God of War games were, but you’ll still spend much of the game in combat. That’s why it’s important to experiment with the game’s best weapons and skills.
Generally speaking, Ragnarok encourages you to not only try different weapons and skills but to utilize multiple weapons during fights. Every weapon in the game has something unique to offer, so it’s often best to take advantage of all their abilities whenever possible. Realistically, though, it’s sometimes difficult to swap between weapons during fights, and it’s really difficult to upgrade everything through the course of the story. That’s why many players may choose to focus on the absolute best weapons and skills that will make the experience as easy as possible.
Before we dive into all that, though, please note that this article will not include information on shield or companion skills/upgrades. While we may dive into those at a different time, they operate differently than the three main weapons you’ll have to choose from in most fights. As such, we’re only focusing on those weapons for now.
The Leviathan Axe Is A Single-Target Powerhouse With Ranged Potential
The Leviathan Axe quickly proved to be one of God of War 2018’s standout features. Not only did that slower, more methodical weapon immediately help establish that game’s equally methodical combat system, but there are few things in gaming more satisfying than calling the axe back into your hand after landing a devastating ranged strike.
Functionally, the Leviathan Axe behaves about the same as it did in the previous game. It’s great against single targets, you can throw (and recall) it as needed, and it packs a powerful frost-based punch that lets you sneak in some devastating elemental damage. Indeed, you’ll probably be using the axe’s special attacks a lot more frequently than you did in the previous game. While that’s partially because some of Ragnarok’s toughest challenges demand the additional damage those abilities offer, it’s also worth noting that many of the axe’s special attacks are simply better than they were before.
Still, it’s very much worth noting that the Levithan Axe will always perform best in single-target encounters that allow you to focus most of its melee, ranged, and special attacks on one enemy. The axe’s limited range and combo-based playstyle mean that it can be difficult (though certainly not impossible) to use it against waves of enemies. There will also be times when you’ll need to take a breath to retrieve the axe after throwing it in battle, which is obviously easier to do when you’re not surrounded by foes.
God of War Ragnarok: How to Upgrade the Leviathan Axe
The Leviathan Axe can be upgraded with Frozen Flames found throughout the game’s world. Many of the Frozen Flames in the game will be found throughout the normal course of play (i.e. the main story), though you will need to venture off the main path to find all of them. You can also combine 6 Frozen Sparks (another collectible) to form a Frozen Flame.
God of War Ragnarok: Best Leviathan Axe Skills
Frost Awaken – This useful skill lets you charge your axe for greater damage. Though tricky to use early on, investing in this skill early will allow you to unlock upgrades that allow you to easily charge this powerful ability during various scenarios.
Pride of the Frost – This four-hit combo (three light hits followed by a heavy attack) is one of the Leviathan Axe’s absolute best melee abilities. It deals an absurd amount of damage relatively quickly and can even be upgraded to allow for extra heavy attacks.
Glacial Rake – Arguably the most important Leviathan Axe skill, Glacial Rake allows you to unleash a devastating AOE attack from moderate ranges. This skill lets you immediately compensate for one of the axe’s biggest weaknesses.
Vengeful Sickle – This spinning ranged strike allows you to not only hit multiple enemies with your ranged attack but deal repeated damage against solo targets with your ranged strikes. It’s an essential upgrade that you’ll rely on time and time again.
Extinguish Flames & Permafrost – These passive abilities grant you extra damage in certain situations. Extinguish Flames grants you a massive damage boost against enemies that are on fire (a common sight), while Permafrost inflicts extra damage after completing combos and eventually scales into a useful AOE attack. Both are tremendous upgrade options.
Blades of Chaos are AOE Cannons That Are Perfect Against Large Packs of Enemies
Kratos’ most famous weapon returns from both God of War 2018 and the original God of War games. Unlike in the previous game, though, the Blades of Chaos will be available to you at the start of Ragnarok and won’t need to be unlocked later on.
That early access turns out to be something of a mixed bag. On the one hand, the Blades of Chaos are still one of your absolute best AoE options in the game. Their wide, sweeping attack range enables you to easily dispatch waves of lesser foes. The chains’ flame-based attacks also deal enhanced damage against the many frost-based enemies you’ll find in the game. These things almost literally melt through many enemies.
Unfortunately, the Blades of Chaos feel a touch weaker than they did in the previous game, probably because you’re given access to them right away. The difference isn’t that notable, but the Blades of Chaos are even less useful against many solo targets and other powerful foes than they were before. They’re more than viable in such situations if you want them to be, but you’ll need to be aware of their relative limitations.
God of War Ragnarok: How to Upgrade the Blades of Chaos
You’ll upgrade the Blades of Chaos in God of War: Ragnarok with Chaos Flames found throughout the game. Much later in the game, you’ll need to acquire a special item called the Raging Inferno of Muspelheim to unlock the final Blades of Chaos upgrade. With the exception of that special item, you should find the Blades of Chaos’ required upgrade reagents through the normal course of play.
God of War Ragnarok: Best Blades of Chaos Skills
Vaporized Frost – This powerful ability makes the Blades of Chaos even stronger against frost-based enemies. It’s obviously best to pair this with Leviathan Axe attacks that “freezes” enemies first, though you’ll naturally encounter enough frozen foes in the game to justify this skill pickup.
Hyperion Pull/Grapple – These ranged attacks will eventually allow you to both launch enemies in the air and shoot yourself toward them in order to close gaps. It might not sound like much, but this skill makes the Blades of Chaos significantly better against single-targets and evasive enemies.
Chaotic Rampage – This incredibly useful ability allows you to hold down the light attack button in order to unleash an automatic torrent of devastating melee attacks. It’s easy to weave into nearly every and deals an absurd amount of damage.
Rushing Chaos – This running attack is certainly powerful on its own, but the real reason to grab it is that it gives you yet another way to close the gap against targets at a distance. It’s an incredibly useful utility pick-up.
Rising Chaos – This useful little ability allows you to easily launch packs of enemies into the air at melee ranges. While it’s ultimately yet another AoE tool for an inherently AoE weapon, it plays to the Blades of Chaos’ strengths in the best ways possible.
The Draupnir Spear Is a Late Game Weapon With Undeniable Potential
The Draupnir Spear isn’t just the only new “main” weapon in God of War: Ragnarok; it’s the one main weapon that you don’t start the game with. You won’t unlock this spear until you complete the “Forging Destiny” main quest (which you should encounter around the start of Act 3).
The spear itself is an interesting little tool. For the most part, you’re probably going to use it as a ranged weapon that allows you to keep most enemies at a fairly safe distance while still dealing respectable amounts of damage. However, the spear can also be used as a surprisingly effective melee weapon, especially when you take advantage of its unique ability to “siphon” elemental damage from enemies and apply it to others. Oh, and you can detonate the spears you throw at enemies in order to deal massive AoE damage from a distance.
Honestly, the biggest disadvantage to the Draupnir Spear is that you get it relatively late in the game. Well, that and the fact that its upgrades are ultimately kind of limited, but we’ll discuss that a little more in just a bit
God of War Ragnarok: How to Upgrade the Draupnir Spear
You’ll upgrade the Draupnir Spear with special collectible items called Gale Flames. Many of these Gale Flames can be found in main story missions, though some of them are hidden throughout the world or rewarded for completing side missions. Generally speaking, you’ll encounter far fewer Gale Flames than other upgrade materials simply because you acquire the Draupnir Spear so late in the game.
God of War Ragnarok: Best Draupnir Spear Skills
Draupnir’s Call – This incredible ability allows you to detonate any previously thrown spears. That includes spears that are currently stuck in enemies as well as those that are scattered throughout the battlefield. Those explosions won’t necessarily end fights, but they will stagger enemies and enable all kinds of follow-ups.
Spear Arsenal – This simple skill increases the number of spears you can throw at once. It’s not the most exciting ability, but it’s the key to unlocking this weapon’s full potential.
Elemental Siphon – Another essential skill, Elemental Siphon enables you to draw one enemy’s primary element (fire or ice, for instance) and use it against another. You know those times when you’re able to effectively swap between the Blades of Chaos and Leviathan Axe in order to balance their elemental attacks? This skill lets you do just that with the Draupnir Spear alone.
Hoplite Lunge – This seemingly basic running attack is actually one of the best openers in the game. It lets you take full advantage of the spear’s melee power as well as its increased attack range. Definitely grab this one.
Maelstrom – Most God of War weapons have a skill that grants bonuses for uninterrupted combos, and Maelstrom is the Draupnir Spear’s version of that basic ability. Because this version of that ability is especially easy to activate, though, you’ll be relying on it quite often.
What is the Best Weapon in God of War: Ragnarok?
While your choice of weapon in God of War: Ragnarok will usually depend on whatever situation you’re facing, the best overall weapon in the game is the Leviathan Axe.
Simply put, Ragnarok’s boss fights and other major set-piece battles will be the biggest test of your skills and weapons. Most of those fights will require you to focus as much damage as possible on one target above all others, and the Leviathan Axe excels at that. More importantly, the ability to throw the Leviathan Axe and keep ranged enemies in check means that it allows you to dictate the pace and terms of a fight more than other weapons. You don’t want to find yourself suddenly needing to charge at a ranged enemy in the middle of a fight unless you absolutely have to.
Yes, the axe’s AoE abilities are initially limited, but the key word there is “initially.” With the right upgrades, you’ll eventually gain access to the area abilities you’ll need to effectively deal with packs of foes. Indeed, much of the axe’s appeal is based on how well it scales with upgrades. Every upgrade you apply to the axe early on will be paid off in the future.
That’s where the Blades of Chaos fall a little short. They’re incredible against packs of enemies and frozen foes, but even their best single-target damage upgrades can’t quite compete with what the Leviathan Axe naturally does in those situations. They’re worse in most boss fights, which is a drawback you really start to feel at higher difficulty levels. That said, those playing at lower difficulty levels may be able to use the Blades to “speedrun” through most content. At “Normal” and “Hard” modes, though, the Axe becomes noticeably more valuable.
Finally, there’s the Draupnir Spear. Though clearly powerful, the fact you get the spear so late in the game means that you obviously can’t rely on it for the majority of the campaign. More importantly, its weapon upgrades are relatively limited compared to the Blades of Chaos and Leviathan Axe. Whereas those weapons offer upgrades that greatly expand their general functionality, the Spear largely becomes a better version of itself (with some exceptions) over time. You will need to rely on the spear to get yourself out of some tough fights later in the game, but you can also obviously beat the game without ever touching it in combat situations. The same can’t be said for the other two major weapons.