God Of War Ragnarok Best Skills [Weapons & Characters]

Learn about the best Leviathan Axe, Chaos Blades, Draupnir Spear, Atreus & Freya skills in God of War Ragnarok.

Story Highlights
  • Kratos has 2 weapons at the start & he gets 3rd one later down the road in God of War Ragnarok.
  • All 3 weapons come with 3 skill trees.
  • Besides Kratos's weapons, Atreus & Freya also have 3 skill trees.
  • The best skills in God of War Ragnarok are the ones that are not only efficient but are easy to execute & remember like the back of your hand.

Skill trees and skills are much more expansive in God of War Ragnarok than they were in the previous game. You get to use Leviathan Axe, Chaos Blades & Draupnir weapon skills for Kratos & control Atreus as the main and side character. Not only that but Freya also has separate skills that need to be unlocked.

Key Takeaways
  • Glacial Rake fires a barrage of ice spikes at the enemy and builds up frost. It is executed by holding R1 with the Leviathan Axe.
  • Glacial Permafrost applies a range buff to the Leviathan Axe with the addition of Frost waves. It is done by pressing L1 + Triangle when Permafrost is full.
  • When Kratos is bare-handed, Returning Storm can be executed by pressing L1 + R2. This attack will do a frost-embued smash attack, similar to Leviathan’s Fury.
  • Flame Whiplash is a stance that lets Kratos do a sweep or a smash attack, embued with flames. It is executed by mashing the triangle button with the Blades of Chaos.
  • Plume of Chaos is the iconic finisher found in every God of War game. It is done by pressing Heavy Attack after pressing Light Attack 6 times.
  • Elemental Siphon II will allow you to leech an element from an enemy, while also granting you resistance to it. It is done by holding R2 with the Draupnir Spear.
  • Phalanx Breaker is executed by pressing R2 while sprinting with the Draupnir Spear. It does a strike that can break the enemy’s guard.

Atreus Skills

  • Evasive Marksman allows Atreus to fire an arrow while dodging backward. It is executed by holding back and pressing the Light Attack.
  • Bludgeoning Strikes will build up a decent amount of Stun on hit. It is done by holding the Light Attack.

Freya Skills

  • Seeds of Ruin will let Freya aid Kratos by hitting enemies with a gigantic rock.
  • Valkyrie Spirit allows Freya to sprout wings and enter her Valkyrie form, letting her slash through all enemies to help Kratos.

Disclaimer: While there is no contest between skills, we have listed the best ones that, according to us, are easy to remember, execute & offer much more value in combat than others. Also, you will unlock all skills of the three main characters as your progress through the game. 

Best Leviathan Axe Skills

Leviathan Axe is by far the best weapon Kratos has wielded in the saga. There are a lot of skills that return from God of War 2018, and a few new changes are welcomed as well. You will eventually unlock all skills from three different skill trees, but that does not mean you will be using all skills in combat. 

There will be many skills that’d be your favorite or go-to ones that you will remember, like the back of your hand. The best Leviathan skills in God of War Ragnarok that we have listed below are the ones we love the most and have more utility & usability than others. 

Glacial Rake

Glacial Rake [screenshot captured by Us]
The Glacial Rake has to be one of the best Kratos skills in the early game for crowd control, especially if the enemies are in front of you. Unleashing the skill allows Kratos to strike the Leviathan Axe in the ground and rip out the ice shards that travel ahead. 

All enemies that are stuck in this ice wave will get repeatedly hit with the Frost damage. The reason we think Glacial Rake is the best early-game skill in GOW Ragnarok is that you will get to use it for the most part of your gameplay until you unlock later skill levels. This will be your go-to crowd control skill if you’re to use Leviathan Axe as your weapon of choice while engaging in combat.

Leviathan’s Fury

Leviathan’s Fury [screenshot captured by Us]
Leviathan’s Fury was the best ability from God of War 2018 for me, and it’s rejuvenating to see it return in GOW Ragnarok as well. There are multifarious means to use this skill cleverly in combat. What it does is when Kratos sprints and you press the Heavy Attack button, Kratos jumps into the air and smashes the axe down on the ground with a massive hit. 

All small-sized enemies are thrown out of their stance, and the enemies with shields will have their guards broken. Leviathan’s Fury is also good for finishing off a couple of weaker enemies in a single hit. Not only the skill deals good physical damage, but it also applies frost damage as well.

I personally use Leviathan’s Fury as an instrument to deal massive starting damage to an enemy wave or a group that is standing close to each other. The first massive hit using this skill gives you an edge in combat, and there is no better way to start kicking things off than using Leviathan’s Fury.  

Glacial Permafrost

Glacial permafrost [screenshot captured by Us]
You will need to unlock the Permafrost skill first to access this one at its best. Glacial Permafrost is the next level of applying base damage plus the Frost status effect on enemies at every single hit. Also, all small-sized enemies have a nearly 100% chance of getting frozen with a single hit whenever Kratos strikes them while Glacial Permafrost is active. 

The axe meter recharges at every hit you connect with an enemy and falls down if Kratos is hit. Whenever the meter is full, you need to press the L1 plus Triangle button to activate the Glacial Permafrost. This skill imbues leviathan Axe with permafrost for a short duration, and all melee attacks send off a frost wave and freeze enemies on hit. 

Glacial Permafrost has excellent utility while dealing massive damage to a boss or clearing off waves. It is excellent for crowd control as well since each hit basically freezes enemies, giving you a clear way just to hack and slash the foes. 

Returning Storm

Returning Storm [screenshot captured by Us]
If you already like spamming Leviathan’s Fury on your foes, then you would love using the Returning Storm. This is basically an advanced and much cooler version of Leviathan’s Fury. However, to trigger Returning Storm or to use this skill, Kratos is required to be bare-handed only. 

Once you punch your way to strike enemies, just press L1 and a heavy attach button, and Kratos will leap in the air, calling Leviathan Axe and striking it into the ground. The move applies base damage plus the high frost damage as well. You can use Returning Storm while Kratos is standing still or while running towards foes and triggering the Returning Storm skill just before approaching enemies.

I use this skill very often, especially when there are a couple of weak enemies that need to be put out of their misery. Just run towards enemies or punch them using the mighty hands and shield of Kratos and end the melee combo by calling Leviathan axe and slamming it into the ground. 

Whirlwind Sweep

Whirlwind Sweep [screenshot captured by Us]
The basic light and heavy attacks get repetitive very quickly as your progress to the God of War Ragnarok using the Leviathan Axe. Luckily, when you unlock the level 3 tier of the weapon, you can get the Whirlwind Sweep ability that basically makes your combo much cool to look at. 

To trigger the skill, you need to pause for a half second after landing a light attack and then press the light attack button 3 more times after Kratos enters a new stance. This will allow Kratos to fly the Leviathan axe around him, dealing damage to enemies if they’re very close. 

I use Whirlwind Sweep not just for the sake of how cool the Leviathan Axe looks as it flies around Kratos and does damage but because it is also an excellent crowd-control skill as well. 

Also, when you unlock tier 4 of Leviathan Axe, you should get the Whirlwind Throw to mix and match Whirldwind Sweep with it & maximize the combat engagement. 

Best Chaos Blade Skills

Similar to Leviathan Axe, some of the best Chaos Blades skills in God of War Ragnarok are much more aggressive now. In many combat situations, I preferred using the Chaos Blade over Leviathan Axe just because it offered unparalleled crowd control, burn status effect, and massive stun damage. Leviathan Axe is still great, but Chaos Blades are overwhelming this time around. That is why you must unlock all the best Chaos Blade skills and dominate challenging combat situations that otherwise may seem too hard to tackle. 

Flame Whiplash I

Flame Whiplash I [screenshot captured by Us]
While the regular mashing of the light attack button-to-land chain combos of Blades of Chaos is excellent means to strike a crowd, the Flame Whiplash I gives the weapon the fire damage it needs badly in the early game. Blades of Chaos is generally an excellent weapon for crowd control ranging from small-sized foes to big ones. However, during the early game, you will find relying heavily on Flame Whipslash I skill as it basically imbues Blades of Chaos with fire at a faster rate. 

Once the weapon is fully charged, the next successive light or heavy attack that you unleash on enemies will apply the fire status effect. Fire is especially useful in Midgard, where almost every single enemy is weak against it. Since your early hours will be spent in Midgard, it will be better if you unlock this best skill in God of War Ragnarok first in the game. 

Vaporise Frost

Vaporise Frost [screenshot captured by Us]
Vaporise Frost is also a level 1 skill similar to Flame Whiplash I, which we have listed above. This skill is also very useful against frosted enemies that are usually seen in Midgard during the early hours of the game. If you have enough Kratos XP, then do not hesitate to unlock Vaporize Frost skill as soon as possible and increase your chance of dealing increased damage on foes, especially if they are frosted. 

Also, it is not like the skill will be useless after the early game when you exit the Midgard. The frosted enemies appear all the time in God of Ragnarok, and Kratos returns to Midgard for main as well as side quests. That is why we think Vaporise Frost will be the best Blades of Chaos skill in God of Ragnarok to use from early to mid and late game. 

Chaotic Rampage III

Chaotic Rampage III [screenshot captured by Us]
While the utility of chained blades is massive for crowd control, if you want Kratos to unleash his wrath on a single target, with blades in his hands, instead of chains, then unlock the Chaotic Rampage series of skills. It allows Kratos to hold the blades in his hands and hack and slash the target that is very close to him. 

You can unlock Chaotic Rampage III after getting Chaotic Rampage I and II. However, the latter just gives Kratos additional light attacks to unleash on enemies. To trigger the Chaotic Rampage, just hold down the light attack button, and Kratos will unleash a fury of slashes using Chaos Blades in his hand instead of chaining them. 

Furious Immolation

Furious Immolation [screenshot captured by Us]
After unlocking Furious Immolation, all attacks that Kratos lands on enemies will build up the meter that can be used to imbue the Chaos Blades in Furious Immolation. Think of this skill as synonymous with Glacial Permafrost, except Chaos Blades are dipped into furious flames that set enemies on fire instantly at first hit. 

This is by far the best chaos blade skill in God of Ragnarok, as it deals very high damage and sets targets ablaze on hits. To trigger the Furious Immolation skill, you first need to build up the meter by attacking enemies and not getting attacked. Once the meter is full, press the L1 + Triangle button to unleash the skill, allowing Kratos to immolate Chaos Blades into the raging fire instantly. 

I use Furious Immolation for crowd control, and this skill is very effective against enemies that are frosted. In fact, it stacks with the Vaporise Frost skill that we mentioned in the best Chaos Blades skill of GOW Ragnarok list above. 

The skill can be unlocked after you can access tier 3 of Chaos Blades and have at least 1500 XP available to purchase Furious Immolation. 

Plume of Chaos

Plume of Chaos [screenshot captured by Us]
The Plume of Chaos skill returns in God of War Ragnarok, and it was by far my go-to method to assault enemies in God of War 2018 as well. This is basically a combo-ending attack that sets everything on fire when Kratos slams the Blades of Chaos on the ground after jumping briefly at the end of a five-series light attack combo.

To trigger the skill, you will need to execute five light attacks and, after that, press the heavy attack button. This will allow Kratos to make a small jump into the air and hammer down both Chaos Blades into the ground, knocking enemies off guard and applying heavy physical plus burn damage to the targets. 

You can stack this skill with Furious Immolation as well. Just trigger it after you’ve activated the Furious Immolation, and Kratos will basically land an even deadlier version of Plume of Chaos, instantly killing most of the small-sized enemies in one combo.

To unlock the Plume of Chaos skill in God of War Ragnarok, you will need to unlock tier 4 of Chaos Blades skills and then have at least 4000 XP available to purchase it.

Best Draupnir Skills

Draupnir Spear may be the new weapon in GOW Ragnarok, but in Kratos’s words to Brok, “it is the first weapon that a Spartan learns to master,” gives away how useful it becomes in the game. Besides unlocking accessibility to certain areas, some of the best Draupnir Skills in God of War Ragnarok are just too good to be true in taking down bosses or single targets and controlling the crowd as well. 

Draupnir’s Wail

Draupnir’s Wail [screenshot captured by Us]
While the Draupnir spear has excellent utilization both in ranged and melee combat, pinning down distant targets by throwing and exploding the spear is by far the best way to use this weapon. That is why you must get the Draupnir’s Wail skill, as it basically allows Kratos to amplify the damage you deal by detonating the spears.

You will need at least 1000 XP to unlock the Draupnir’s Wail skill, and to trigger it, just hold the ability button, and Kratos will slam the spear down with a might, unleashing a higher damage output on detonations. 

The skill can also be triggered by pressing the ability button momentarily after any spear melee attack that you deal on a target. 

I use Draupnir’s Wail skill to weaken a series of enemies that appear first. Most of these are easily placed at reasonable distances, and you can hurl the spears nicely and easily. 

Elemental Siphon II

Elemental Siphon II [screenshot captured by Us]
The Elemental Siphon II is unlocked after you get Elemental Siphon I. The latter skill steals the elemental effect an enemy has the potential to deal on Kratos, and the former skill basically offers a resistance buff to Kratos for a short duration so that enemy elemental attacks are less effective. 

To trigger the skill, just hold the heavy attack button, and Kratos will steal the elemental attack that an enemy is capable of landing at you. This effect remains attack even if you do combos back to back or use Draupnir to do ranged damages. However, if you use a runic attack of the combat engagement is over, the elemental effect will be lost. 

While most attacks are effective if you use an opposing elemental effect, such as if you use Leviathan Axe against fire or Chaos Blades against frosted enemies, the stealing of elements from enemies using Draupnir gives little utility. Nevertheless, this is an effective skill if you see enemies spawning with multiple status effect affinities in certain areas of the game. 

Phalanx Breaker

Phalanx Breaker [screenshot captured by Us]
During mid to late game, the shield-wielding enemies will become much harder to take down. Luckily, the Phalanx Breaker skill of Druapnir comes to the rescue, and it basically allows Kratos to break an enemy’s guard or launch weaker enemies into the air. 

To trigger the attack, press the heavy attack button whenever Kratos is sprinting towards a target, and he will land a powerful overhead sweep that basically breaks a target’s guard. The skill attack is also followed by a rising sweep that basically launches small-sized or already weakened enemies into the air.  

Phalanx Breaker is very effective against enemies with shields or brutes who you want to hit hard and break their guard. This skill is also useful while breaking the stance of Draugr bosses or other field bosses in God of War Ragnarok. 

Spear Swiftness

Spear Swiftness [screenshot captured by Us]
While the whole point of using Draupnir is basically to deal with ranged damage by striking enemies with a spear and then detonating it, the process is a little sluggish. To speed things up, you must unlock the Spear Swiftness best Draupnir skill in GOW Ragnarok. 

Once you have this skill unlocked, Kratos gets a speedy spear-throwing buildup as you hurl more and more spears at enemies. The usefulness of using Draupnir as a ranged weapon shines when you unlock Spear Swiftness and enjoy hurling the mighty Spartan spear at targets. 

I have used this weapon of Draugr bosses that were ridiculously overpowered while fighting with Leviathan Axe and Chaos Blades. However, as soon as I got Draupnir Spear and unlocked Spear Swiftness, throwing the spear and detonating it became the go-to moveset to shred bosses without getting yourself vulnerable or open to enemy attacks often. 

Violent Maelstrom

Violent Maelstrom [screenshot captured by Us]
Violent Maelstrom is a synonymous ability of Draupnir Spear to Furious Immolation and Glacial Permafrost of Chaos Blades and Leviathan Axe. Whenever Kratos successfully attacks enemies, he builds up the meter. When the meter is full, press L1 + Triangle button to trigger the Violent Maelstrom skill, and it will enhance all the melee and ranged attacks of Draupnir Spear for a short duration. 

This skill has excellent utility while fighting against bosses as the base damage, speed, and effectiveness of the spear are already excellent, and triggering the skill gives it an enhanced damage boost. I have used Violent Maelstrom abilities so many times on Draugr Hole bosses and other mini-bosses on the field. The ranged attacks of the spear become so much more valuable and highly damaging when you use them after triggering this skill in God of War Ragnarok. 

Best Atreus Skills

All the best skills for Atreus in God of War Ragnarok that we have listed below can be used when players control him and also when Atreus is a side character while playing as Kratos. Sure, you can’t command Atreus to execute his skills on the fly when you already control Kratos. However, if you already have unlocked these, then expect Atreus to showcase these on his own in combat. 

Evasive Marksman

Evasive Marksman skill of Atreus not only looks cool while performing, but it also has a massive utility. Interestingly, you get to evade an incoming attack and, at the same time, strike back as Atreus jumps back to a safe spot from a vulnerable one.

In order to trigger the skill, you will need to Hold Left Stick Back and press the light attack button for Atreus to jump back and launch an arrow attack. 

While Kratos is excellent for one versus one and crowd control, Atreus is not great at dealing with a crowd due to limited weapons. That is why I have spammed the Evasive Marksman skill every time more than two enemies rush toward me. It allows an easy strike while evading an incoming attack. 

Bludgeoning Strikes 

While Atreus’s playstyle heavily revolves around dealing ranged damage, the bow can be used to deal with melee strikes on enemies. You can spam the usual Light or Heavy attacks. However, things get much easier if you unlock the Bludgeoning Strikes skill. 

Applying Stun always gives you an easy way to defeat enemies, and this skill of Atreus in God of War Ragnarok is by far the best one for that purpose. All you need to do is hold down the Light Attack button, and Atreus will basically go on a rampage with a bow in hand and the enemy’s head at the receiving end. 

The longer you continue the Bludgeoning Strikes, the higher the chances that an enemy will be stunned quickly. I have had my fair share of using this skill for crowd control. It is not per se a crowd control, but you get to eliminate enemies at a much faster rate, and eventually, it serves as a crowd control skill; at least, it did for me. 

Soaring Eagle Eye

Heimdall is one of the Aesir who can slow down the time for a short duration. However, Atreus of Jotnar is full of surprises, and unlocking the Soaring Eagle Eye skill will allow you to slow down the time. To trigger this skill, you need to launch an enemy in the air, which can easily be done by holding down the heavy attack button and unleashing a heavy attack. Once the enemy is in the air, press the aim button, and Atreus will basically slow down the time for a few seconds. 

This will give you enough time to land a headshot or strike the enemy into weak points easily by aiming the bow and arrow. Besides, the skill really looks cool, and you should not ignore its utility. 

Focus Shot

While archery is the go-to assault method of Atreus, what good will it be if you can’t land a devastating charged shot that deals massive damage compared to a normal one? The Focus Shot skill allows Atreus to charge up an arrow by holding the aim plus a light attack button. Once the arrow is fully charged to its max potential, it will start glowing, indicating that you should now fire it on a target for massive higher base damage. 

Besides doing a good amount of physical damage to a target, the Focus Shot also knockbacks small to mid-sized enemies, giving Atreus enough room to continue shooting down opponents from a range.

If you do a headshot using the Focus Shot skill, you will deal even higher base damage compared to if the arrow strikes other parts of the body of a target. Couple this ability with the Soaring Eagle Eye, and you are guaranteed to land a headshot since time slows down and gives you enough room to aim your shot at the head of a target. 

Dextrous Shot

While there is no brainer that headshots in any game deal much higher damage than striking other body parts, the same applies to Atreus in God of War Ragnarok. If you’re good with aiming at the head using the controller, then you will be undermining the potential of Dextrous Shot if you ignore unlocking it as soon as possible. 

Dextrous Shot skill allows Atreus to deal even higher base damage to a target if he lands headshots one after another on a target. The repeated targeting of the head of an enemy using quick-firing arrows should not be much of a challenge to achieve this task. 

The best part of Dextrous Shot is that even if you are not good with landing headshots, using this skill while activating Soaring Eagle Eye will give you plenty of time to land a couple of headshots. 

Best Freya Skills

Unlike Atreus, who has decent play hours where you control and play, you can’t control Freya in a similar manner. This means all of the best Freya skills in God of War Ragnarok are to remain passive, and it is entirely up to Freya’s AI to execute them in combat. But still, unlocking following Freya’s skills will make her aggressive enough to aid Kratos in fights. 

Seeds Of Ruin

Seeds of Ruin [screenshot captured by Us]
While buddies such as Atreus or Freya can be helpful in distracting enemies or stunning them, Freya goes all out when she throws a giant rock at foes using her vines. After unlocking this skill, Freya gets a chance to summon a giant rock from the ground via her vines and then throw it at nearby enemies. 

The giant rock not only deals direct damage but has a little AoE as well. If the rock hits a weaker enemy, it will be one shot, most likely. However, if a mid to large-sized enemy is hit by a giant rock, then there is a good chance that they will be stunned for a short duration.  

Valkyrie Spirit

Valkyrie Spirit [screenshot captured by Us]
Freya is not the master of mystic arts, but she is also a warrior and Valkyrie herself. However, her Valkyrie form is locked until you buy the Valkyrie Spirit skill. This will allow Freya to randomly convert to her Valkyrie form, spreading out her wings and slashing nearby opponents. 

Kratos can not command Freya or trigger the Valkyrie Spirit skill, but the AI gets to trigger the skill at random during combat. 

Valkyrie Mind

Valkyrie Mind [screenshot captured by Us]
Similar to the Valkyrie Spirit skill of Freya, we think Valkyrie Mind is another best Freya skills in God of War Ragnarok. It is because she not only enters her Valkyrie form but also gets to rain down a barrage of arrows on enemies. 

You will need at least 1000 Freya XP to unlock the Valkyrie Mind skill.

Goddess Focus

Goddess Focus [screenshot captured by Us]
Goddess Focus skill basically gives Freya free will to switch sigils and attack foes according to the combat situation. She becomes much more aggressive if you unlock this skill. Mainly, her ranged attacks get enhanced in a way that she mixes them up and throws variety in the combat. 

Valkyrie Blade

Valkyrie Blade [screenshot captured by Us]
Valkyrie Blade is by far the best Freya’s skill in God of War Ragnarok, as you can trigger it more than often by throwing an enemy into the air backward. When this action is done, you will see a Square button prompt above Freya, and if you press it timely, Freya will rush toward the target and deal a massive damage than the regular attacks. 


That is all we had to discuss regarding Kratos, Atreus, and Freya’s best skills in God of War Ragnarok. You must note that no skill is useless in the game; however, the skills we have listed in our guide are the ones that we use the most, and it seems like most writers and eXputer also share the same thoughts. 

At the end of the day, you will get to unlock or buy all Leviathan Axe, Chaos Blades, Atreus, and Freya’s skills in God of War Ragnarok. So, you will get your hands on all skills eventually and mix and match them to create a devastating combination. 


Was this article helpful?

Thanks! Do share your feedback with us. ⚡

How could we improve this post? Please Help us. ✍

Irfan Ansari

With four years of Video Game Journalism and Tremendous love for Gaming, Irfan loves chatting and writing everything about video games.

Related Articles