God of War Ragnarök Guide – Vanaheim’s Southern Wilds

It comes as a surprise to discover that we will now be adventuring alongside Freya in God of War Ragnarok given how the game begins. Who would have anticipated something like that happening? This is the first part of the quest chain known as “The Reckoning,” which will eventually lead our heroes all over Vanaheim. In the course of this quest, you will have to contend with a large number of bosses and mid-bosses. However, there is no need to be concerned because there is a plethora of treasure that will accompany them.

The story begins with Atreus waking up on the wrong side of the wrong bed, which marks the beginning of our journey. That is to say that he has returned to his home in Midgard. You are going to have to engage in combat with a number of Draugrs before you are finally joined by Kratos, who is likely going to be rather grumpy. You will, however, be rudely interrupted by a Valkyrie just as you are finishing off these enemies while they are frozen in place. That’s right, the first challenge in this guide is going to be a boss fight!

###Boss Battle: Vanadis
Vanadis primarily employs two different methods of assault, the first of which is to rush you with slashing attacks using her sword, and the second of which is to dash away and shoot at you with her bow. If you are skilled with your parries, you should be able to consistently deal with her melee attacks while also dealing damage and stunning her opponents. She can close the distance relatively quickly, but as long as you are skilled with your parries, you should be able to do so. She also has an unblockable attack that plunges forward, but it is very obvious, so you should be able to easily avoid it by rolling away.

Her ranged attacks can also be parried and are telegraphed, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble with them either. However, if you successfully parry her arrow and send it back to her, she will immediately send it back to you once more. Just block the arrow that comes after it as well! You should be able to move on to the next phase without too many problems if you can master the rhythm of these attacks and get the timing of your parries down pat. As soon as you have reduced her health by approximately one-half, she will move on to the next phase of the battle.

During the second phase of her battle, Vanadis will unleash an attack that spews poison in all directions. This assault is a real pain in the neck. It will fire the poison in the direction of Kratos, wherever he may be. Therefore, the most effective way for you to avoid it is to get as close to her as possible and immediately begin rolling backward as soon as you notice that she is beginning this attack. You should be able to prevail against her as long as you maintain pressure on her, are deft with your parries, and exercise extreme caution whenever you observe her getting ready to use her poison attack. It is essential to master the timing of those parries in order to succeed.

###The Southern Wilds
Following a quick cutscene, we will finally make it to Vanaheim. If you continue forward along the main path, you will come across a hidden treasure chest on your right and a raven on your left as you travel forward. Get the chest, and then make your way quickly to the raven that is flying around the pond. Maintain your footing and, as you adjust the distance and angle of your axe throws, use the roots in the background as a point of reference. You’ll get him.

You will have to squeeze through a small gap that is sandwiched between a wall and a mass of encroaching roots. Continue moving forward and when you reach the next door, open it to find yourself in an area filled with ruins. In this area, there are toxic plants that will swell up and become more dangerous if you approach them. It is imperative that you wipe them out with your axe. When you first enter the open area of the ruins, there is a treasure chest located to your right. If you keep going to the left side, you will eventually come across a hole in the wall. There is a chest with legendary contents inside! Carry on until you find yourself standing on one of those cracked slabs, then turn around. You are about to be ambushed by a number of adversaries all at once.

You will now engage in combat against an opponent of the Legion variety. The green thugs that we’re up against here aren’t very strong, but there are a lot of them. They do possess a leaping attack that cannot be blocked, but it is rather sluggish. The most effective strategy for approaching them is to maintain a safe distance and use your axe to perform crowd control. On the other hand, if they clump together, it only takes one or two Blades of Chaos combos to wipe out the entire group.

Once you have eliminated all of the Legion foes in the area, there is a treasure chest tucked away in one of the buildings to the right of where they came from. However, there is one of those poisonous plants in there, and you need to remove it before you do anything else. You should travel to the location from which the Legion foes emerged, leap up to the platform that is located above you (it will be on your left), and then make your way around the rooftops of the ruin structures until you are facing that cracked slab from above. Now, bust through it, and take possession of the Kvasir Poem.

Climb your way back up to the roof, and once you’re there, turn right. There is a chest here that contains various items for crafting. You need to go back to the spot where you originally jumped down from, and this time you need to cross the bridge. You are going to be surprised by several Gulon warriors. These individuals are not especially powerful, but they are swift, and they launch their assaults in groups. It should be fairly easy for you to eliminate them one by one using your axe from a safe distance. After you have finished dealing with the Gulons, make your way back to the point where you entered this area. There is a tunnel off to your left that will take you to a chest full of treasure.

If you keep moving forward, you will eventually come across a Nornir Chest. The first objective is located to your left; throw your axe at it to spin it around so that the rune that resembles a C is visible. The next objective is to the right of the chest; first, you must clear away the brambles that are blocking it, and then you must rotate it so that the rune that resembles a N is facing forward. The last objective is located near the point where you first entered this area. You need to go back, then look up, and you will find it. Additionally, it is covered in brambles, but you cannot access them using your Blades of Chaos due to their location. To our great relief, the brambles continue to grow to the left. Burn them there, and the flames will travel to their intended destination. Make sure that the rune that looks like a R is facing up when you turn the target. Now crack open the chest and take the Horn of Blood Mead out of it.

Now, proceed along the main path, and torch the brambles that are located to your left. You will locate a second chest in this area. If you continue along the main path forward, you will immediately be confronted by a Wulver. You were the Atreus who was more nimble and focused on ranged combat when you fought the last. If you’re going to be playing as Kratos, you should probably go for an approach that relies heavily on parries and stun damage. The second one will appear once you have reduced the first one’s health to about 50 percent of its original value. It would be wise to put your Spartan Rage to use right now.

After you have dealt with them all, Brock will run off, and it will be up to you to find him and bring him back. Following a series of cutscenes, you will finally arrive at Freyr’s Camp. Freyr’s Camp does not offer a lot of entertainment options. Despite this, there are a few lore texts. There is a treasure chest on the other side of the water, but you do not have the equipment necessary to cross the water to get to it just yet. You are now going to head back onto the main path and continue your journey through the wilderness. You will have to walk across a bridge, then make your way through a cave, and finally you will emerge back into the forest. If you continue along the wall to the left, you will come across a treasure chest that contains Honed Metal inside. You should be able to spot a body of water very close to this chest. A statue in this location features one of Odin’s ravens sitting atop it. Put it in the trash!

Once you’ve returned to the primary route, you should follow Freya as she flies around. You will eventually reach a point where an explosive will occur on a poison plant that is attached to the wall to your left. After gaining access to the nearby ledges, head in the right direction. This location contains a chest filled with treasure. Keep going in the direction that the main path leads, grapple your way across a few gaps, and crawl through a tunnel. You will make your way into a massive clearing and engage in combat with the gargantuan Forest Ancient there.

###Boss Fight: Forest Ancient
Two things can be said about the Forest Ancient: first, from a tactical point of view, it is very easy to understand, and second, it is powerful enough that you will almost certainly still lose to it a few times. This behemoth is essentially capable of three different attacks. It will shoot rocks at you while also firing a direct beam of fire, and it will sweep that beam of fire across the screen in a horizontal direction.

You will have plenty of warning before the Forest Ancient directs the beam of light at you, so don’t worry about that. You will primarily be able to defeat it by hurling the rocks that it leaves behind after using its rock shooting attack at it in an attempt to counter its attack. The sweeping beam attack that the Forest Giant uses is the one that is the most challenging to defend against. It is possible to roll through it, but the timing might be awkward. The best way to defend yourself against this assault is to take cover behind the enormous tree. In general, that enormous tree ought to play a significant role in the strategy that you employ here.

At the halfway point of the encounter, enemies belonging to the Legion will join the fight against you. You should only engage them when you are protected by the Forest Ancient (back to the tree again). The Forest Ancient delivers powerful blows, and its movements can be startlingly swift at times. On the other hand, if you use that tree to your advantage, you should be able to defeat him in just a few tries.

You will be able to proceed to the Eastern Barri Woods as soon as you have finished dealing with the Forest Ancient. But I’ll save that for a different guide.