God of War Ragnarok reserves its toughest challenges for optional and post-game content, with the 12 undead berserkers found throughout the realms being one of the hardest hurdles to overcome. But instead of the big boss Berserker King, it’s one of the original 12 that drove me and countless other players to the abyss. I speak neither untruths nor exaggerations when I say that Svipdagr the cold and the sisters of Illska can get in the trash can.
Some of the Berserkers can be annoying due to their evasive AI, area attacks, ranged spam, summons, or status effects, but only Svipdagr and her two sisters pack all of those elements and then some into an impressively annoying encounter. I’ve spent hours of my life getting pulverized by these three (on the game’s second hardest difficulty, one notch below hardest because I’m not a maniac) and judging by the state of the God of War and Ragnarok specific subreddits , I’m not alone.
“There are fights that are difficult and fun, but this one is totally unbalanced and I don’t enjoy it,” he writes Yizhou (opens in new tab)which reflects my thoughts.
“I’m pretty sure this boss will go down in history as one of the most difficult and badly designed boss fights in the games,” he says rshotmaker (opens in new tab). “It’s absolutely cruel.”
“The triple berserk fight is bullshit” Hafeesco (opens in new tab) nicely summarized.
Ivan mosquito (opens in new tab) complains of how they bang their heads against “a specific Berserker fight” (guess which one). “You fight the camera. Not a good boss fight. Enough said.” InspectorGizmoBrooch (opens in new tab) brings it. “The proof is that I didn’t remember which berserker was where, but I already knew exactly which of the 12 it was.” Rifneno (opens in new tab) says and hits the nail on the head. The list goes on; Suffice it to say that these three won’t win any popularity contests.
In a vacuum, neither Svipdagr nor her sisters are that difficult to manage. Together they cause headaches in the legs. Svipdagr slams you with hammer combos that propel her toward you like she’s rocking the Commando perk from the original Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, and she’ll rush in with unblockable AoE punches on a regular basis. Thing is, I really like Svipdagr, so seeing the Berserker King pull out his moves in a less chaotic encounter was pretty cool.
It’s the sisters who turn this fight, to quote Freya, into the most disgusting dirt from hell. If you try to focus on Svipdagr, these two will sit back and idly throw vile spells at you while you struggle to keep your skull hammer-free. We’re talking huge area denial, ice shard and fireball pursuit, sustained ground attacks, and homing bubbles that you can either die from or pop with a ranged weapon, except many times you can’t pop them because the auto-lock will keep holding on to enemies , which you don’t aim at, even though you’ve already adjusted the camera settings in a fit of blind rage, which would make the mid-Spartan Rage Kratos look like a calm and sane person. Not that I know of.
In my experience, God of War: Ragnarok’s combat tends to break down when there are too many enemies in an area, due to its close-up camera and floating lock-on struggling to keep up with the action, and that berserk combat is the most egregious example. It’s virtually impossible to keep all three sisters on screen at the same time, so you’ll inevitably die from random bullshit flying in out of nowhere. Even if you can see it coming, there is no guarantee that the few counters at your disposal will even work properly. Everything about it feels like a gamble, with the only viable solution being to burn half the fight down as quickly as possible and hope you don’t die first. The only saving grace is that the Illska sisters share a health bar, and quite frankly they can share the trash compactor too, which I’d put their severed ghost heads in if I could.
I’m sure some people like this fight and that’s okay; These people are entitled to their wrong opinion. Last but not least, it’s heartening to learn that I wasn’t the only person absolutely sick of this awful trio. If we’re lucky, the fight will be updated to save future completers the hassle. Here’s my humble suggestion: delete the fight entirely, and in its place just add a text prompt telling players to get up, get away from the TV, and do something more fun than the boss that used to be here, like one Headbutting a can opener.
For less chatter and more real help God of War Ragnarok Berserker armorcheck out our handy guide.