God of War is back and its trailer shows a HUGE departure

Behind-the-back dad action

Sony opened up its E3 press conference with full orchestra, which is a welcomed respite from “Welcome to the new age, welcome to new age.” This was in service of a new God of War trailer that looks a lot more like a third-person, open-ish-world action game — with a pulled in, over the shoulder camera — than it looks like a traditional God of War game. It’s being played live, too, rather than pre-recorded footage.

Oh, and Kratos has a son. He’s teaching him to hunt in the intro, which is inadvertently producing a real The Last of Us vibe. Also he’s a stern, asshole dad this time around (geez, so your 9-year-old can’t hunt) with a viking beard. He seems to have come into his son’s life a little late.

All the action — it quickly breaks into Kratos having to fight off some mystic creatures — also takes place in that behind-the-back camera perspective. Even when a monstrous giant five times his size shows up (at which point Kratos Jr. gets his bow privileges back). Kratos is still able to activate his Spartan Rage, too, despite the wintery location and jumps aboard the beasty in a Dragon’s Dogma vein. It’s definitely a grand departure from typical God of War fare — “a new beginning,” as Kratos intones.

He looks out into the distance and a dragon flaps over the horizon.

Steven Hansen