I‘ve got good news and bad news for you. Let‘s start with the bad news first – unfortunately, upgrading from the PS4 version of God of War Ragnarok to the PS5 version is not free. You‘ll have to shell out an extra $10 if you want to upgrade.
I know, it stings a bit that the next-gen upgrade isn‘t gratis. But here‘s some context on why you have to pay a bit extra and why it‘s still worth it.
Why There‘s an Upgrade Fee
According to the gaming experts at Digital Foundry, there are a few key reasons why publisher Sony is charging $10 for the upgrade:
It helps offset the huge development costs of building Ragnarok for both PS4 and PS5. Engineering a game for two platforms simultaneously doesn‘t come cheap.
Sony wants to encourage adoption of the PS5. Adding upgrade fees, even small ones, gives gamers an extra nudge towards buying the new console.
It keeps Ragnarok‘s upgrade pricing consistent with other big games like Horizon Forbidden West and FIFA 23. Standardizing costs reduces consumer confusion.
Handling dual entitlements and upgrades for physical discs can get logistically tricky on the backend. The $10 fee helps sidestep those issues.
As gaming industry analyst Michael Pachter told GameSpot, "Charging for these types of upgrades is purely a business decision to maximize profits."
So in an ideal world, we‘d get a complimentary next-gen upgrade. But from Sony‘s perspective, the incremental revenue helps cushion the enormous investment into a big-budget title like Ragnarok. Think of it more as a "convenience fee" rather than a punitive charge.
Plus, at only $10, it‘s still way more affordable than buying two full-priced games to have a PS4 and PS5 copy. So try looking at it from that angle, my frugal friend!
Breaking Down the Upgrade Process
Here are the key details on how to actually upgrade your copy of God of War Ragnarok from PS4 to PS5:
You‘ll need access to both a PS4 and PS5 console to upgrade. The process involves buying the PS5 digital version even if you own a PS4 disc.
Owners of the PS4 disc edition can upgrade for $10 through the PlayStation Store.
Those who bought the PS4 digital version can also upgrade to the PS5 edition for $10 in the PlayStation Store.
You can‘t upgrade a PS4 Ragnarok disc by just inserting it into your PS5. You have to purchase the PS5 edition.
Save data will carry over between console generations via the cloud or external USB transfer.
The $10 upgrade fee applies specifically to the base version of Ragnarok, not the pricier Digital Deluxe edition.
You‘ll only get the PS5 benefits like 4K and 60 FPS after purchasing the upgrade. Inserting the PS4 disc into PS5 without upgrading will trigger backwards compatibility with no visual enhancements.
So in a nutshell, expect to pay a quick $10 at checkout for the privilege of moving your Ragnarok save from PS4 to PS5. Annoying but not the end of the world.
Is the Enhanced PS5 Version Worth It?
Short answer: absolutely yes!
Even though the upgrade isn‘t gratis, Ragnarok on PS5 is the definitive way to experience this Norse epic. Here‘s a preview of the sweet enhancements you‘ll get after upgrading:
Picture-perfect 4K graphics – On PS5, Ragnarok displays crisper 4K resolution compared to PS4‘s 1080p or checkerboard 4K. The detailed textures and environment will look sublime on your 4K TV.
Buttery smooth framerates – You‘ll get the choice between playing at either 30 FPS or a super fluid 60 FPS only on PS5. Combat will look and feel silky smooth.
Ray tracing support – PS5 introduces ray traced lighting and shadows for next-level realism the standard PS4 can‘t match. Lighting looks practically photorealistic with ray tracing enabled.
Faster loading – Near instant loading times on PS5 mean you‘ll spend less time staring at spinning hourglasses and more time exploring the Nine Realms.
DualSense haptics – The PS5‘s adaptive triggers provide tactile feedback so you can feel the resistance of Kratos‘ bowstring or the clash of his Blades of Chaos. Incredibly immersive.
3D spatial audio – God of War‘s amazing sound design envelops you in 3D thanks to the PS5‘s Tempest audio engine. Pinpoint audio cues make combat more impactful.
Better performance – Even little things like menus and UI navigation feel snappier on PS5 thanks to the custom SSD. It‘s the objectively superior way to play.
Digital Foundry analyzed the differences between the PS4 and PS5 editions and considered the upgrade a no-brainer. In their expert opinion, Ragnarok is "nothing short of a tour de force" on PS5.
So you‘re getting way more than just higher resolution or framerates. All of Ragnarok‘s immersive combat, exploration, and set pieces feel tangibly better on PS5.
Trust me, that $10 will be money well spent after you experience the buttery visuals and DualSense feedback for yourself. You don‘t want to miss out on the best way to enjoy Kratos and Atreus‘ epic!
How Does the PS4 Version Stack Up?
Let‘s go over how the PlayStation 4 edition compares for those still gaming on the last-gen console:
Resolution – The base PS4 renders at 1080p while the PS4 Pro achieves checkerboard 4K, a technique that upscales a lower resolution to pseudo-4K. Still can‘t match native 4K on PS5.
Framerate – Stuck at 30 FPS on both PS4 models. No option for 60 FPS gameplay like on next-gen. Some dips below 30 are possible in intense scenes.
Graphics – Visuals look great on PS4 but aren‘t enhanced with ray tracing, improved textures, and higher object detail available in the PS5 release.
Loading – Expect longer loading screens compared to the near-instant loads on PS5. Bulky game install size leads to a lot of drive-churning as you play.
No DualSense – You miss out on the extremely immersive haptic feedback and adaptive trigger effects built for PS5.
So while still totally playable on PS4, you‘ll have to settle for lower fidelity visuals, longer load times, and a lack of innovative DualSense features. Not necessarily a deal breaker, but PS5 is the crystal clear winner in terms of technical performance.
How Do the Pre-Orders and Editions Break Down?
God of War launches for both PS4 and PS5 on November 9th, 2022. You‘ve got a few options when it comes to buying and pre-ordering:
- Standard PS4 – $59.99 Physical or Digital
- Standard PS5 – $69.99 Physical or Digital
- Digital Deluxe (PS4 and PS5) – $79.99
- Collector‘s Edition – $199.99
If you plan on upgrading to PS5 eventually, your cheapest path is buying the PS4 Standard edition for $60 then paying the extra $10 for the PS5 upgrade. That totals $70, matching the standalone PS5 version.
Or you can pay $80 upfront for the Digital Deluxe to get both the PS4 and PS5 editions bundled together. That‘s the simplest option if you plan to play on both console gens.
The Collector‘s Edition costs a hefty $200 but is packed with rare collectibles like a 16" Mjolnir recreation. Hardcore fans might find it worth the investment! But it doesn‘t actually include a copy of the game itself so you‘ll still need to buy a standard version.
How Long is God of War Ragnarok?
Wondering how long it‘ll take you to journey across the Nine Realms and put the smackdown on Norse gods? Here‘s an estimate on Ragnarok‘s length:
Main Story – Around 30 – 40 hours if you focus mostly on completing the main quests. You‘ll get your money‘s worth just blasting through the story.
Completionist Run – Plan on 60+ hours if you want to 100% the game by completing all side content, collecting items, exploring fully, and tackling the toughest optional bosses.
In comparison, the 2018 God of War clocked in at around 20 hours for the main story and 40 hours for completionists. So Ragnarok is substantially chunkier.
The critical path itself features exciting set pieces like >!Thor‘s opening assault on Kratos‘ home!< or the >!reckoning with the Norse god Heimdall!<. Savour these cinematic moments as you journey across the realms.
And if you enjoy God of War‘s addictive loot grind, you‘ll easily get 60+ hours from tracking down the best armor sets and fully upgrading your Leviathan Axe. Ragnarok has plenty of content to keep fans busy for weeks.
Any Post-Launch DLC Planned?
Official DLC plans haven‘t been announced yet. But given the first God of War got a paid expansion in 2018, I‘d expect Ragnarok to receive similar post-launch content updates.
There are a few clues pointing to potential DLC:
- The game‘s ending suggests the story could continue in future expansions.
- Job listings reference Santa Monica Studio developing online and co-op modes separate from the main campaign.
- Cut concept art shows characters like Surtr who don‘t appear in the base game.
Creative director Cory Barlog [hinted in interviews](https://www.videogameschronicle.com/news/sonys-suggests-more-god-of-war-ragnarok-games-after-the– Norse-saga-wraps-up/) that Ragnarok kicks off a new multi-game Norse saga. So I‘d expect paid DLC in 2023 to continue the adventure.
This could take the shape of new narrative content expanding on side characters like Freya or wholly original quests exploring later periods of Norse myth.
And given the immense popularity of the God of War franchise, multiplayer or co-op add-ons can‘t be ruled out either. But any online component would likely release separately from the main single-player campaign.
While still speculative, additional Ragnarok content seems highly probable based on the 2018 precedent and wealth of remaining Norse mythology to explore. Expect story expansions in 2023!
Let‘s recap the key points:
The upgrade from God of War Ragnarok on PS4 to PS5 costs $10. Not free, but significantly cheaper than buying two full-priced games.
You need access to both PS4 and PS5 consoles to purchase and utilize the upgrade. Save data transfers between generations.
The PS5 version adds 4K resolution, 60 FPS performance, ray tracing, 3D audio, DualSense support, and drastically faster loading. Absolutely worth $10 extra!
You‘ve got options between cheaper Standard Editions for $60-70 and pricier Digital Deluxe or Collector‘s Editions packed with bonuses.
Expect 30+ hours just focusing on the main story or 60+ for completionists. Ragnarok is substantially longer than 2018‘s God of War.
Post-launch paid DLC expansions seem likely based on the previous game getting one and the new Norse saga just kicking off.
While the lack of a totally free next-gen upgrade is a bummer, the PS5 edition provides technical and visual benefits that justify spending a bit extra. Treat yourself to the best way to enjoy Kratos and Atreus‘ epic!
Let me know if you have any other questions about upgrading to PS5. I‘m here to help you decide which version makes sense for your situation. However you play, God of War Ragnarok is sure to provide one of this year‘s most unforgettable gaming journeys.