They're two of the most iconic characters in media; Kratos from the God of War series and Dante from Dante's Inferno, a game that was loosely based off the epic poem. Their games show a remarkable resemblance in that you're a lone warrior fighting off hordes of monstrosities, and upgrading your vast arsenal of weapons and abilities along the way. Each game takes its anti-hero to the brink of death and madness as Kratos fights for vengeance and Dante tries to save the woman he loves. If you've played God of War and Dante's Inferno, you're well aware of just how capable both of these men are, but what if they fought each other?
Without a weapon, I feel this duel would end quickly as Kratos tears Dante in half in the first round. And with weapons, Kratos can call upon a vast arsenal, while Dante's limited to his two primary weapons: the Holy Cross and Death's Scythe. Both are capable of shredding wave after wave of enemies apart, but I'm afraid this is an area where Kratos will have the upper hand. You see, while Dante only has the scythe and cross for close-quarters and ranged combat respectively, Kratos has gathered a rather intimidating cache of armaments to reap all sorts of pain on poor Dante.
Does he want to use Medusa's severed head to freeze Dante before neatly bisecting him with the Blades of Athena? Or perhaps he's in the mood to get up close and personal with a quick dash of the Hermes boots before pulverizing Dante with the Nemean Cestus? There are dozens of different ways for Kratos to vanquish his foes, making it impossible for Dante to predict what he'll come at him with. Because of this, Kratos wins in the weapons category.
Both of these men have undergone some grisly trials to accomplish their missions. Kratos fought the Gods himself, finding out bits of his past along the way that only made him want to obliterate everything that was unfortunate enough to get in his way. He even escaped from the fiery pit of hell itself. Dante, however, chose to go to hell in order to save his woman and quickly began eviscerating every hellish denizen that tried to stop him as he went deeper into each of the nine grotesquely imagined circles of hell. Both of these men have done incredible things to achieve their goals, but the crown goes to Dante here. Sure, Kratos visited hell, but it was brief and extraordinarily difficult. Dante spent the entire game plunging deeper and deeper into the depths of hell before finally dueling with the Devil himself.
A hack n' slash beat 'em up is only as good as the enemies you have to fight along the way. They can't be too easy or it's not a challenge, but they can't be too overpowered, as it will make for a very frustrating game to play. Kratos' adventures throughout the God of War series set him against legions of different monsters and even the Gods of Olympus. He's fought everything from reanimated corpses to Minotaurs and everything in-between, but nothing's been powerful enough to do anything but slow him down.
On the other hand, Dante also had to fight a seemingly endless army of hellish minions, and while the handful of bosses he had to fight along the way were just as intimidating as those found in the God of War series, they were also infinitely more grotesque. This is a tough call, but in the end Kratos wins this category because he had to vanquish creatures big and small, and in many fights he also had to contend with quite a few mini-bosses that were far more powerful than anything Dante encountered that wasn't an actual boss fight. Plus, after half a dozen games each filled with a fair share of bosses to overcome, Kratos has far more experience.
So, we know they're both more than capable of tearing an enemy apart, limb-by-limb. What about their intelligence? Their ability to think critically and solve the plethora of puzzles that try to stop them? Both the God of War and Dante have had to conquer some fiendishly designed puzzles and traps. In Dante's Inferno, Dante had to think outside the box to be able to overcome some of the more difficult puzzles like the Gluttony Mirror and Heresy puzzles, and for the most part many of the puzzles he comes across are extraordinarily difficult. Some require quick thinking (and even quicker acting) while others require patience. In God of War Kratos has no shortage of puzzles to get past that require patience and perfect timing to solve. Overall, both games had fantastic puzzles that were seamlessly woven into their game's fiction. Because of this, we have a tie here. It's obvious both Kratos and Dante had to trounce a good number of puzzles proving they're not just strong but intelligent as well.
Despite Kratos' legendary standing in video games, this is a surprisingly tough call. Each of them have had to fight wave after wave of enemies that are thrown their way, survive the pits of hell, and solve complex puzzles. Both Kratos and Dante have taken out a large number of bosses on their travels. But in the end, the crown goes to Kratos because while they've both managed truly incredible feats, Kratos has been doing this for a much longer time. Maybe Dante will be more capable after he travels to hell a few more times, but as it stands right now, he's still a novice compared to the undisputed king of the beat 'em up games.
CCC Freelance Writer
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central.*