|“||Kratos, before you reach Athens, there is a task you must complete. This beast, this Hydra, it has terrorized my seas for far too long.||”|
In Greek mythology, the Hydra was a serpentine monster that lived in a swamp beyond the city of Lerna. It was then killed by Hercules as his second labor. In some stories, the Hydra's heads differed from five, seven, or one hundred heads, as in the myths, when one head was cut off, two would grow in its place.When it died it was placed in the stars along with the crab(Cancer) that was sent with it.
In God of War Series
God of War
Before reaching Athens, Poseidon, Greek God of the seas, earthquakes and horses, gives Kratos a task: to kill one of the most terrifying and powerful monsters in the Greek mythology; the Hydra. Which seems slightly odd, since Poseidon has the power to kill it himself, yet he sends Kratos to do so. It may have been a part of the Gods' plan to make Kratos the greatest Greek warrior, trained by the Gods, but a mortal.
In God of War, The Hydra is a massive multi-headed sea serpent roughly the size of a small island. The Hydra King is the dominant, central Hydra head, and it controls the smaller serpents. The other heads the Hydra King controls are less powerful and much smaller. The first little one appears below the ship's deck. Kratos manages to seriously wound it by stabbing its eye and smashing it around with his blades. The second is on another ship above deck. It smashes through and starts attacking Kratos before he kills it. As the game's main narrative begins, Kratos has been assigned by Poseidon, god of the sea, to kill the beast, which has been challenging his sovereignty by destroying ships and killing sailors. It can be seen attacking Kratos' Fleet. Kratos kills the beast by driving the ship's mast through its head, retrieves the Key of the Captain, and then continues in his quest to Athens. The Hydra is the first boss in God of War and is very powerful. The carcass was later used to decorate the God of War throne.
God of War II
The Hydra does not make an actual appearance, but the unlockable Hydra Armor costume appears to have been made from the carcass of the one killed in the first game.
God of War III
The Hydra appears in a flashback after Kratos is betrayed by Gaia and after he awakened Hope from within him. In both sequences Kratos beheads the Hydra King and the two other Hydra heads with the Blades of Chaos.
After Kratos became the God of War, and entered the temple on Olympus, he found it decorated with statues of his past enemies. Pandora's Guardian, Ares, and even the Hydra's skin, which was hung behind the throne. Cut off from the lower part of its neck, it displayed the long, serpentine neck, as well as the head, sitting high above the throne. Later, in God of War II, one of the costumes, the Hydra Armor, carries the description: "I always wondered what they did with the body."
- As revealed in the novel, the original Hydra was killed by Hercules when Kratos was still a child. The Hydra Kratos faces is a new one born from Typhon and Echidna, according to Athena. This proves the theory that there exists more hydras in ancient Greece.
- It is interesting to note that after being questioned by Poseidon for sending the Hydra, Ares states that he had no intentions in killing Kratos because his torment amuses the God of War. Ares would eliminate Kratos himself, rather than sending someone else to do this job. He suggests that it was in fact Athena who sent the Hydra in a clever attempt to trick Poseidon into giving Poseidon's Rage to Kratos. It is also possible that the Hydra was in the Aegean sea at the same time as Kratos by chance.
- Oddly, after defeating the Hydra King, if Kratos backtracks, a lesser head is still seen attacking a group of sailors in the background. This was highly likely caused by a developer error.
- The Hydra, along with the Hydra King, appear as a stage hazard in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale in the stage of Metropolis, along with Captain Qwark, both from the Ratchet and Clank series.