|“||I never got to kill anything. She always did that part.||”|
–Atreus about his mother while training as a hunter.
|“||That was your father in Hel... Is this what it is to be a god? Is this how it always ends? Sons killing their mothers... their fathers?||”|
–Atreus to Kratos after learning the truth
In the God of War Series
Atreus was conceived between the Greek demigod Kratos and a Jötunn named Laufey, whom he called Faye. He was a sickly child and only recently grew healthy enough to travel. Not much is known about his past other than the fact Kratos was rarely home because he was practicing control over his rage, which Atreus misinterprets as hunting. Faye had passed away sometime later, although the causes are still unknown.
God of War (2018)
After his mother's death, Atreus encounters his father, who was chopping down a tree which Faye marked. Atreus helps his father prepare his mother's body for cremation and takes his mother's knife. While they wait for her body to completely burn to ashes, Kratos orders Atreus to hunt deer in order to see whether he had the skills to survive the journey to fulfill his mother's dying wish; to scatter her ashes at the highest peak in all the realms. They track and find a deer but Atreus shoots too hastily and fails to kill the deer in a single shot, which earned him a scolding from Kratos. They eventually find the deer and Atreus manages to incapacitate it, but is shocked when Kratos orders him to deliver the killing blow as he had never killed something before. With his father's assistance, Atreus stabs the deer in the throat. Unfortunately, their success was short-lived as a troll attacks them. Faced with danger, Atreus assists his father with his archery in the ensuing fight and both of them successfully kill the troll. However, Atreus loses control of his rage and continues attacking the corpse, only stopping after Kratos brings him back to his senses. Because of this, Kratos declares the boy not ready for the journey, much to his disappointment and they head back home.
However, a stranger arrives at their doorstep soon after they head home. Kratos orders Atreus to hide in the basement while he confronts the stranger. After Kratos fights and wins against the stranger, he heads back to the house and orders Atreus to prepare for the journey, declaring their home no longer safe. As they journey towards the highest mountain in the land, Atreus notices that their home was surrounded by a magical grove of trees which was broken when Kratos cut down a tree from the said magical grove, breaking the protection it provided.
The boy and his father began a quest to take his mother's ashes to the highest peak of the Nordic Realm, which they assume to be the highest mountain visible to them. Along the way they encounter many monsters such as draugr, hel-walkers, and revenants. They also encounter Brok, a blue dwarven blacksmith who claims to have made his mother's axe and offers them merchant and/or smithing services. Sometime on the journey, they encounter a boar. This time Atreus lands a critical blow to the animal, but is caught up in the thrill of the chase and follows the boar, leaving his father behind. He eventually catches up to the boar being tended to by a witch who cares for the boar. They follow the witch to her home and help her heal the boar. In return, the witch leads them through a secret passage from her home, assigns them with a mark to hide them from 'people who would disrupt their journey' and a compass which leads them to their set goal.
Atreus and Kratos leave the witch's home and take a boat. Eventually, they arrived at a lake, while the boy identified the stranger as Baldur. They find a submerged statue in the middle of the lake with a writing in the middle of the water, telling them to "throw their arms to the lake." When Kratos complies and throws the Leviathan into the lake, they inadvertently summoned Jörmungandr, the World Serpent, whose awakening caused the lake to drain and revealed the previously submerged structure, the Bifrost, underneath and opening the path for their journey.
Atreus and Kratos continue on foot and encounter Sindri, Brok's brother who is also a blacksmith and opens his shop to them as well. They begin to climb the mountain only to find the path blocked by a dark magic called the 'Black Breath'. Unable to pass, the witch arrives and tells them the only way to dispel the magic is by journeying to Alfheim and collecting the Light of Alfheim. They journey back to the Bifröst and reactivate the machinery within. With the witch's instruction, the three of them reactivate the Bifröst and journey together to Alfheim. However, they find the Light has dwindled. To make matters worse, the spell which prevents the witch from travelling through realms takes effect and she is pulled back into Midgard, leaving Atreus and his father to fend for themselves in the foreign realm.
Atreus and Kratos journey deeper into Alfheim and get caught up in an ongoing war between its inhabitants, the dark elves and the light elves. The former, being the dominating faction, immediately regard the two visitors as hostile and attack them through their journey. The pair battle through these hostile elves and other monsters, eventually making their way to the temple and the Light of Alfheim housed within. Kratos goes inside the Light and leaves Atreus with his axe to wait. However, Kratos fails to come out after a long period of time, leaving Atreus to fend for himself against hordes of dark elves with his bow and the axe. A frustrated and worried Atreus eventually pulled his father out of the Light. Kratos, who was unaware of how much time had passed inside the Light, reprimands Atreus for pulling him out, causing the boy to snap back at his father for abandoning him. With the Light collected, Kratos imbues Atreus's bow with the Light, allowing the boy to create bridges made of light by shooting Light-imbued arrows to light crystals. The newfound power helps the pair get out of the temple and after fighting and killing the dark elf leader, Svartáljǫfurr, make their way through the Bifrost. However, Atreus's frustration with his father's seeming lack of empathy causes him to accuse Kratos of not caring about Faye. Kratos is immediately angered at the accusation and tells the boy to leave him to mourn in his own way. Realizing that his father felt grief for his mother, Atreus immediately apologized. Kratos showed his understanding and admitted it has not been easy for his son as well and the two reconciled.
With the Light of Alfheim in their possession, the pair make their way back to Midgard and the blocked passage. They use the Light to dispel the black breath and enter the mines within. They reactivate the elevator mechanism within, but on their ascent are interrupted by a variety of creatures and finally, Hræzlyr, a dragon that resides within the mines. They fend off the dragon and get out of the mines but find the dragon on the verge of eating Sindri. Not wanting the dwarf to die, Atreus momentarily distracts the dragon while Kratos moves to attack it. While Kratos fights the dragon, Atreus rescues Sindri and leads him to safety but is soon noticed by the dragon. It lunges at them, leaving Atreus in a nearby crane mechanism. Atreus then wait for Kratos's command to shoot down the crane, which Kratos uses to impale the dragon into a crystal of hardened world tree sap, killing it. A grateful Sindri then gives Atreus mistletoe arrows and imbues his bow with the dead dragon's lightning in gratitude.
As they neared the summit, Kratos noticed that Atreus' quiver strap was loose and used a piece of mistletoe to fasten it. Climbing towards the peak, they heard voices up above. It was the stranger, whom Atreus earlier identified as the Aesir god Baldur, and his nephews Magni and Modi questioning a man in the tree for Kratos' whereabouts, now aware that he's traveling with a child, but the latter couldn't answer due to the Witch's mark concealing them. After the Aesir had departed, father and son ascended the summit, meeting the man in the tree, who introduced himself as Mimir, self-proclaimed smartest man alive. Despite his own self-assurance that they were alone, Atreus reluctantly followed his father's orders to check if the Aesir had doubled back. Subsequently, they explained their objective to Mimir, who informed them that the true highest peak in all the realms was in Jötunheim, to Atreus' frustration. To prove his point, Mimir showed them a projection of their destination in the only Jotnar portal. Mimir offered to help father and son reach Jötunheim. However, as Odin had made his wooden prison invulnerable even to Mjölnir, Mimir requested Kratos behead him; Atreus attempted to prove him wrong by cutting at the tree with his knife to no avail. He then averted his eyes before his father did the deed.
They then take Mimir's head back to the Witch to reanimate it. However, the Witch became alarmed upon seeing the mistletoe arms in Atreus' quiver and ordered him to surrender them. Atreus reluctantly conceded at this father's command. The Witch then destroyed the arrows, calling them "wicked", and made Atreus promise to destroy any more mistletoe he should come across, before giving him her arrows as compensation. After reanimating Mimir's head, Atreus was surprised when the Witch spat in his face and the head identifying her as Freya, the former Queen of the Vanir. His father was angry that the goddess didn't identify herself earlier and told Atreus they had to depart without even thanking her.
Now that they have their guide Kratos demands information on Baldur and how to defeat him when they run into him again, to which Mimir claims that Baldur is invulnerable to any threat physical or magical. Instead the father son duo ask for the information they had agreed on, how to enter Jotunheim. The trio travel back to the Bifrost to consult the World serpent according to whom they need three things, the chisel of a Giant, the travel rune for Jotunheim, and the gate they found next to Mimir's prison, and Mimir knows where they can get a chisel.
The duo reach the corpse of Thamur, but realize that the ice is too thick to break through, so they climb to the top of the hammer and release it from its chains. After a while, they reach the chisel, only for the path to be blocked by Magni, who demands them to surrender. Kratos tells Atreus to flee, but is intercepted by Modi. During the violent, bloody struggle, Modi decides to use this time to taunt Atreus about his mother causing Atreus to lose his senses and attack. Luckily, Kratos kills Magni, while Modi flees, with Atreus yelling at him to come back and fight him. Unfortunately, his anger triggers the return of his illness.
Later, as father and son return to Tyr's Temple to retrieve the travel rune, Modi ambushes them and pins Kratos down with lightning, saying that he'll only earn his father's hammer by default and how he ruined everything. Atreus shouts at him to stop, only to receive another insult about Faye, causing him to charge at the god, but is knocked aside. Modi adds that he'll be his new brother soon. Atreus activates his Spartan Rage, but falls into a coma. After Kratos beats Modi, Mimir suggest he take him to Freya, which he does. She lets him in and says that Kratos will need to find the heart of Mattugr Helson, the Bridge Keeper, but tells him that his axe will be useless, so he rushes home to dust off his Blades of Chaos.
After Kratos returns from Helheim, Atreus recovers and continue their quest. When he is asked, of why he's quiet, Atreus responds that he was weak and cursed, and will never be like his father. Kratos tells him that he is a god, which astonishes him. Kratos says that the curse is a lifetime of misery and trauma. When he asks if he can turn into a wolf, Kratos says that he is welcomed to surprise him. Mimir adds that every god is unique, such as a faculty for languages. The duo return to Tyr's Temple where Atreus activates the sandbowl which lowers them down to a hallway-like maze full of deadly traps. Atreus and Kratos realize that Tyr has traveled across the world learning their culture and art of war, even Kratos' home country.
Atreus starts to become cocky and arrogant over time, like yelling to Sindri about his brother being more talented than him and charging at enemies recklessly. After entering the mountain, Kratos and Atreus encounter a beaten Modi, who explains that his father had beaten him for his cowardice. Atreus threatens him to back off. Modi tries to attack, but is too badly beaten to do so. Against his father's orders, he kills Modi with Kratos explaining about kill ethics. Atreus brushes it off saying that nobody cared about him anyways. Kratos says there are consequences to killing gods, but Atreus says that how he knows such a thing.After climbing the summit, Kratos activates the portal to Jötunheim, but Baldur ambushes them and after a scuffle where Atreus shoots his father with one of his arrows and tries to attack Baldur head on, the three end up in the travel room where Baldur has Asgard locked in, but Kratos instead locks in Helheim and the three end up getting sucked in. After Kratos disciplines his son, they continue there journey, along the way, they realize that Freya is Baldur's mother and she cast a spell on him in which it makes him invulnerable, but unable to feel anything.
After spreading his mother's ashes with his father, he asked him why he was referred to as "Loki" on the wall drawings they found earlier which depicted their journey. Kratos then told him that his mother wanted to call him Loki, and speculated that this is the name she told the Jötnar. However, Kratos goes on and says he convinced her to let him be named Atreus instead.
Kratos tells his son that his namesake was a great Spartan warrior who, unlike most Spartans, was happy and filled with life. During and after battles, he would fill his fellow Spartans with hope. When he was killed in battle, Kratos himself carried him back to Sparta on his shield and personally buried him. Kratos wanted his son to be named Atreus because he fills him with joy. Atreus was amazed by this account, commenting that his father actually told him a good story.
After fulfilling Faye's dying wish, Atreus and his father returned home for a well deserved rest. That night, the young boy seemingly had a dream regarding future events, with Fimbulwinter concluding after a few years and Thor appearing at his doorstep, possibly to take revenge on the two for the death of his sons. He told Kratos about this, but the latter told his son that that's something they'll handle another day and that what they do today is what matters.
Weapons & Powers
|“||I do not know the reach of your godhood, but over time, we will learn.||”|
–Kratos to Atreus.
- Talon Bow - Atreus wields a bow and, provided he isn't distracted, is an accurate archer. After receiving the bowstring enchanted with Alfheim's magic and powering it up with the light of Alfheim, Atreus can reactivate the magic of the elves contained within certain elven architecture. After having the bow enchanted with the properties of a dragon's tooth, it gained the ability to fire lightning arrows. Atreus also received arrows made from Mistletoe but most of them were destroyed by Freya because (unbeknownst to both Atreus and Kratos) mistletoe is able to break the spell of immortality placed on Freya’s son Baldur.
- Faye's Knife (formerly): In addition to the bow he wields, Atreus also wields a knife that once belonged to his mother Faye. He uses it as a secondary weapon and has used it to kill a deer. The knife was destroyed after it was used to save his father from being killed by a trap when he stabbed the knife into a gear mechanism.
- Atreus' Knife: After Atreus sacrificed his mother's knife to save his father, he received a new knife from his father. The new knife was one of the two knives that Kratos made the day Atreus was born. It was made of a mix of metals from Kratos' homeland and metals from the lands they were currently in. One of the pair of knives was made for Kratos himself and the other knife was made to be given to Atreus the day he was ready to wield it. Atreus, in his arrogance after discovering he was part god, notes that the knife is much better than the Faye's Knife.
- Superhuman Stamina: While not as great as his father, Atreus has tremendous stamina and is able to run long distances through the forest and participate in long battles while showing no signs of fatigue.
- Superhuman Strength: Atreus was able to aid his father Kratos in pushing Thamur's Hammer, though how much of the moving Atreus is actually contributing to is unknown.
- Adept Combatant: While not as powerful or experienced as his father, Atreus is a quite skilled combatant in his own right. Throughout their journey, Atreus proves to be a quick learner as his skills advance considerably compared to when they started (depending on the player's upgrades). He is able to take advantage of his small size and combine his archery skills with acrobatic feats such as incapacitating draugr by climbing on them and choking them with his bow to give Kratos an opening or firing arrows in mid-air. When Kratos left him alone to collect the Light, he was able to kill off waves of dark elves by himself before he decides to rescue his father. In combat, Atreus effectively acts as a support and an extension of Kratos, allowing the pair to combine their combat styles into a synchronized offense. The most impressive display of this teamwork is during the final fight with Baldur, where Atreus helps his father take down the powerful god with a combination of archery, acrobatics, and melee combat.
- Innate Linguistic Capability: In addition to the languages taught to him by his mother, Atreus has the innate talent to understand written and spoken languages he has never heard of or read before by tracing their connections. He explains it to Kratos as he may only be actually able to read a few words and letters but is usually enough to get what the sentence is trying to say. With language ciphers, Atreus can quickly learn how to read the Niflheim and Muspelheim languages. Given a jar of wine from Kratos' homeland, Atreus was able to learn how to read some of the words in Greek. Even Mimir, the smartest man in the nine realms, takes note of Arteus' linguistic capabilities for someone of his age.
- He can even understand some animals, as he understood what Brok's beast-of-burden was feeling and could hear the giant turtle above Freya's house and understand that his name was Chaurli.
- He could understand the native language spoken by the dwarves and dark elves.
- He was also able to understand a soul that had trapped itself inside of a magical ring, who had placed himself there to escape from a soul eater.
- He was able to put together a sentence in the dead language of the World Serpent despite only hearing it a handful of times.
- Spartan Rage: Atreus attempted to use Spartan Rage when Modi tried to kill his father and mocked his mother, but due to his lack of experience and physical prowess, he collapses soon after from the stress.
- Superhuman Senses: He states on many occasions that he can sense other beings and their thoughts and emotions, including their power, and can hear voices because of this ability. Possibly due to his Jötunn heritage, he was able to dream of the future.
- Durability and Endurance: Atreus, apparently inherited from his father and mother's status as among the most powerful of their species, has considerable superhuman durability and resilience. Hence, he can easily withstand attacks and falls from great distances with little damage. He also survived a powerful punch from Baldur without any lasting damage during the last battle against him. While apparently not able to tolerate the extreme environments as well as his father considering his repeated complains, Atreus is shown able to survive in Hel and Muspleheim without suffering any visible harm.
|“||We're gods. We can do whatever. We. Want.||”|
Atreus is a happy and curious child who is kind to others when he engages in conversation with them, believing that he should help people whether they be living or dead. He is fond of exploring and learning Norse mythology, particularly from Mimir and Freya.
When he was a child, Atreus learned various Norse languages and hunting from his mother. However, his gentle disposition initially made him hesitant to take a life, whether it was an innocent deer or a troll that attacked his father. Despite this, Atreus constantly tries to prove to his father that he can handle himself. It is implied that he feels unwanted by his father and that this sense of rejection is what drives him to become a better warrior. Due to growing up with him, Atreus shows absolutely no fear of Kratos and like his stepmother Lysandra, does not hesitate to call out his father when he needed to. He was also naive initially, much like his half-sister Calliope.
Atreus has many flaws stemming from his youth and inexperience but seems to have also inherited some of his father's negative traits, most notably his rage and overconfidence. When Atreus learns about his godhood, it slowly begins to change him due to a misunderstanding of what it means to be a god, in conjunction with his father’s desire for him to be better. At this point, he grows cocky and impulsive, becoming rude to Sindri and telling him to shut up about his rivalry with his brother as he considered it a petty problem and telling Mimír to be quiet after the latter comments on his new change of attitude. He also often charges recklessly into battle without hesitation. Soon he has no problem taking a life, such as when he kills Modi, believing that being a god gives him the right to do anything he wants. It also makes him very careless in battle; this is evident during a fight with Baldur: Atreus disobeys his father's orders to stand back, eventually causing the two to be teleported to Hel. After being lectured by Kratos on the meaning of being a god, Atreus returns to his former personality for the most part. After witnessing Baldur's attempt to kill his own mother and learning the truth about Kratos’ past, Atreus becomes much more humble. He is repulsed by the idea of the cycle of patricide after having learned of his grandfather Zeus' death at the hands of Kratos.
Despite learning about his godhood he still retains his childlike qualities. He also retains his compassion as seen when he tries to protect Kratos during the final battle against Baldur. Another thing of note is his continued devotion to his father. Atreus didn't seem disturbed or put off by his father's admission of killing one of his own family, and perhaps saw this as his father finally opening up to him. Atreus continued to be by his side as they spread the ashes of his mother and continued to talk to him.
Atreus has also shown to care quite a lot for Midgard, certainly more so than Kratos, as after realizing the importance of having the Valkyries restored due to them being the ones who keep the dead from overrunning Midgard, he quickly agreed whereas Kratos did not care that the imprisonment of the Valkyries means that Helheim will overflow with the souls of the dead.
Atreus is a young boy with red hair and a scarred face. He has light freckling and his eyes are an icy blue. He is dressed in leathers and hides of fur. Additionally, the sash around his waist is remarkably similar to Kratos' loincloth during his time in Greece; red in color with golden patterns around it. He comes up to his father's hip and looks to be around ten years of age.
Note: Translations are done by fans and are subject to error, as well as the developers' use of the runes.
- The tattoo on his neck, "ᛚᛟᚷᚾ ᚺᚢᚷᚱ", translates to "logn hugr", which means "steady mind".
- He has "ᚺᚨᛈᛈᛊᚲᛖᛃᛏᚱ" two times circling his right arm, translating to "happ-skejtr" and meaning "lucky shot" or "fortune to strike".
- Then, running down the circle he has "ᛊᛏᛃᚱᚲᚱ ᚨᚱᛗᚱ" two times in a continuous line. It translates to "stjrkr-armr", meaning "strong arm", "skilled arm" or "main arm".
- And in the back of his hand, "ᚺᚱᚨᛞᚨ ᚺᛟᚾᛞ", translating to "hrađa hönd" and meaning "quick hand".
- In Greek mythology, was a king of Mycenae, the son of Pelops and Hippodamia, and the father of Agamemnon and Menelaus. However, Kratos decided to name his son Atreus because of a young Spartan soldier he commanded. The soldier remained hopeful even in the darkest of times, and sacrificed himself in battle in order to save his companions.
- At the end of the story, it is revealed that Atreus is named his mother. He shares several similarities with his counterpart from the Norse myths:
- Both of their mothers are named Jötunheim, Kratos' name is written as (ᚠᚨᚱᛒᚨᚢᛏᛁ), which is the name of Loki's father in the myths, and Atreus bear the name: ᛚᛟᚲᛁ - which translates to Loki. . On the mural in
- Atreus is part Jötunn, part god; Loki is a Jötunn who is also a god. Also, neither of them belong to the Aesir or Vanir.
- After learning of his godhood, Atreus asks his father if he can transform into an animal, such as a wolf; Loki in the mythology is infamous for shapeshifting into various animals and other beings.
- Atreus causes Baldur's death by breaking the spell with a mistletoe arrow shard; Loki causes Baldur's death by giving the blind god Höðr a mistletoe arrow, and then tricking him into shooting Baldur.
- Mimir says that Jörmungandr somehow recognizes Atreus; is a son of Loki in the myths. When Atreus confronts Mimir saying it is impossible, Mimir replies the serpent might have been talking about the future, since it is said that the clash between Jörmungandr and Thor during Ragnarök will be so catastrophic that it'll splinter Yggdrasil and send the World Serpent back in time, before its own birth. Freya's comment about the serpent mysteriously appearing one day in the Lake of Nine seems to support this theory. A Jötnar Shrine confirms Jörmungandr is the son of "Loki" and Angrboða.
- In mythology Loki had two younger siblings named Helblindi and Býleistr, but it's highly likely they don't exist in God of War universe since Atreus is the only son of Kratos and Faye and there are no indications that Atreus ever had other siblings apart from Calliope.
- Atreus is the second character Kratos fights alongside with, the first being Deimos. He is also the first and currently only character to accompany Kratos throughout the story.
- Like his father and uncle, he has markings on the left side of his face. Though very faint, the markings look similar to both his father's tattoo and uncle's birthmark.
- The A.I. for Atreus changes as the main story continues. After being told of his godhood, he starts attacking enemies by himself with his knife, even firing arrows without Kratos saying so or even engage not hostile enemies and will sometimes refuse to help or pick Kratos up if Kratos falls in battle. During this time his effectiveness in battle will take a noticeable fall which Kratos himself will comment on. If he is angry at Kratos, Atreus will not help him in some battles, even leaving Kratos to fend for himself. However, after Atreus was lectured by Kratos on the meaning of being a god, Atreus now always helps his father in battle and always helps him get up, restoring much of his efficiency as a partner in the game, although he still attacks others even without Kratos commanding him to.
- Atreus is the fourth character in the series to kill a god counting Kratos, Zeus (who technically killed Kratos), and Odin (who killed Tyr).
- GameSpot erroneously credited the name Charlie as the name of Atreus after the game's reveal in the E3 2016. At the time, Atreus' name was kept secret. The name Charlie stuck as a joke.
- Atreus is partially based on Creative Director Cory Barlog's own son. Aspects of the game like Atreus having to translate Old Norse to Kratos were inspired by real-life situations he had with his son.
- When Atreus was dying due to activating Spartan Rage, a red storm within the epicenter above their cabin started. According to Cory Balrog, this is the symptom of the world out of balance caused by Loki's (Atreus') dying state. This is a nod to the previous trilogy, where death of Greek Gods causes various disasters.
- As a result of his father being Greek with ties to the Olympian gods and his mother belonging to the Jötnar race of frost giants, Atreus is related to both the Greek gods and the giants.
- Atreus' funerary prayer in the beginning of the game is based on Buliwyf's in The 13th Warrior film.
- Kratos frequent use of the term "boy" to call Atreus has become recurring jokes amongst fans and even various memes are produced based on it.