Sony started its annual E3 press conference this evening with a gameplay demo of a new God of War game. The footage shows the franchise’s main antihero, Kratos, training a young boy to hunt in the wilderness. The boy, who calls Kratos his father, helps him take down a series of vicious monsters, showing off the series’ signature mix of hack-and-slash action and quick-time event cutscenes. There does appear to be a more fluid, Dark Souls-style combat going on though. Kratos also has a wicked beard, so there’s that, too.
The title does not appear to be an official God of War 4, but rather a reboot of the franchise, a direct sequel, or possibly a prequel to the main series, in which Kratos is still a mortal man and a father before becoming beholden to Ares. It also isn’t clear that this new God of War is set in a time before or after Ancient Greece, or if it’s going to tackle an entirely new mythology like the much rumored Norse setting. Kratos still has his ash-white skin, after all. But he’s also wielding an axe and not his signature Blades of Chaos. So many questions, so little information! One thing we know for sure: Kratos is back.