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God of War guide: Return to the Summit walkthrough and collectibles

“Whatever.” — Atreus (constantly)

SIE Santa Monica Studio/Sony Interactive Entertainment via Polygon
Jeffrey Parkin (he/him) has been writing video game guides for Polygon for almost seven years. He has learned to love just about every genre of game that exists.

God of War’s “Return to the Summit” Journey begins after you retrieve the Black Rune of Jotunheim during “Black Rune.” You’ll be free to explore. There’s lots to do around the Lake of Nine, so you don’t have to rush straight to the next goal.

When you’re ready to progress the story, you’re going to head back to the Mountain’s summit, so you’re going to retrace your path through a couple places you’ve visited before. But, with Kratos and Atreus’ new toys, you’ll be able to get to new areas you’ve had to skip over before.

SIE Santa Monica Studio/Sony Interactive Entertainment via Polygon

The Foothills

Items in this area: Realm Tear, coffin (Sigil of the Weapon), Legendary chest (Blast of Hephaestus), coffin (hardened Svartalfheim steel), wooden chest, coffin (solid Svartalfheim steel, Sharp Relic of Shadows)

Tyr’s Bridge

Items in this area: Realm Tear

Get back to the top side of Tyr’s Bridge — just walk up the stairs if you’re coming directly from the Vault, or boat back to the Temple from wherever you’ve wandered. Run along it to the doors of Vanaheim Tower just like you’ve done a couple times before. If you want a challenge you can try to close the Realm Tear just inside the tower, but remember, there are two level 6 revenants waiting for you on the other side — it might be better saved for later.

Continue along the familiar path to get to the courtyard area with Sindri’s shop where you’ll have to suffer through Atreus instantly becoming a surly teenager. Before you do any shopping, head to the right and onto the trails to trigger some enemies.

There’s a level three Ogre, a level three Wulver and a handful of Nightmares to deal with. Try to drain the Ogre first so you can use it to beat up everything else.

Near Sindri’s shop

Items in this area: coffin (Sigil of the Weapon), Legendary chest (Blast of Hephaestus)

The Sky Mover is busted (again), so you’ll be taking the long way up. Before you return the to the trails, head over to the Sky Mover anyway. Turn right toward the cliffs and look for a scorn pole-protected alcove. Use your axe to freeze the first pole and head inside — you picked up a coffin here earlier. On your left, there’s another coffin protected by a Hel bramble-enclosed scorn pole. Burn off the bramble, then freeze the scorn pole. Open the coffin to pick up the Sigil of the Weapon legendary enchantment.

Head back to the path and follow your compass along the route to the mountain. At the top of the cliff, continue past the first scorn pole alcove until you fight a pair of Hel-walkers. Take them out, then backtrack to the scorn pole. Freeze the one outside of the alcove, then head inside. There’s a Wind trap behind some Hel bramble on the wall ahead of you. Burn the bramble, then grab the Wind.

Run back to the path and watch along the ledge on your left for another trap. Stash the Wind here for a second (you can also stash it here if the Hel-walkers jump you when you’re carrying it), then grab it again. Continue through the tunnel and take the next right. Keep spinning to find a tomb with a Wind trap on the front. Toss the Wind into the lock to open it and reveal a Legendary chest with the Blast of Hephaestus light runic attack inside.

Near the Hidden Chamber Door

Items in this area: coffin (hardened Svartalfheim steel), wooden chest, coffin (solid Svartalfheim steel, Sharp Relic of Shadows)

If you continue along that path on the right, you’ll get back to the Hidden Chamber door you found the first time you visited here. Behind the lock, you’ll find the Valkyrie Gierdriful. You’re welcome to visit the inside and at least unlock the Mystic Gateway — that way you can get back here easier later.

Take the path on the left to continue toward the mountain. At the top of the cliff, you’ll come to the arena where you fought your first Ogre. This time, there’s some Realm Tear-like portals that produce a crowd of level four Brood. Try not to get swarmed, and just keep hacking away until they’re all gone.

Continue along to the doors and go through. On the other side, you’ll get attacked by some Nightmares. As you fight them off, watch along the right side of the path for some Hel bramble growing around a coffin. Burn it away and open the coffin for some hardened Svartalfheim steel.

Continue along the path and up the stairs. Take the next right you can and watch along your right again for more Hel bramble and a wooden chest.

Keep climbing the stairs. As you approach the top, watch for a shatter crystal. Have the boy shoot it to free a coffin — you’ll be passing it in just a second. Follow the path around to the left, then jump the gap to get to the coffin you just freed. This one will get you some solid Svartalfheim steel and a Sharp Relic of Shadows.

Climb the cliff, then follow the path to the left. Push through the doors to get back inside the Mountain.

The Mountain

Items in this area: Lore Marker, artifact (Bottoms Up), coffin (solid Svartalfheim steel, Sharp Sigil of Providence), wooden chest, Legendary chest (Hyperion Slam), treasure map (The Last Place They’d Look), Frost Ancient drops (solid Svartalfheim steel, Ancient’s Rubble, Ancient’s Heart, Frost Sigil of Focus), coffin (Mythic War Belt of Clarity), coffin (hardened Svartalfheim steel, Sharp Relic of Fortune), artifact (Bottoms Up), coffin (Mythic Pauldrons of Clarity)

Just like with the Foothills, being back at (in) the mountain with your new abilities means you can pick up some stuff you missed earlier and access some new pathways.

Into the Mountain

Through the doors, you’ll be back in the deer god’s throne room where you’ll watch a brief, troubling cutscene. When you get to continue, you’ll be able to skip a lot of the steps to getting through the mountain.

Take the left hallway and follow it around to the right. Have the boy blast the sap wall and then handle the three Tatzelwurms on the other side.

Run back to the throne room and grab one of the Light Crystals. Carry it back into the hallway you just opened and socket it next to the Lore Marker in the alcove on your right to give the boy something to read.

Climb up the ledges and then the wall at the end of the hallway. When you land on the ledge to your right, follow the path to the left. You’ll have to fight a couple Draugr here as well as Atreus’ newfound sense of self-importance.

Use the switch on the left of the gate to open it and enter the next area.

(Skipping) The first room

Items in this area: artifact (Bottoms Up), coffin (solid Svartalfheim steel, Sharp Sigil of Providence)

This is where you caught your first lift up the mountain last time you were here. We get to skip that this time, though.

When you first walk in, fight off the Wulvers and Draugr. Then, head back to where you started and take the first left. There’s a sap wall you had to skip earlier under the platform on your left. Have the boy shoot it to reveal a room. Pick up the Bottoms Up artifact 5 on your right and open the coffin on your left for some solid Svartalfheim steel and a Sharp Sigil of Providence.

Head to the far right corner of this room (southeast on your compass). Climb up onto the platform, then burn away the Hel bramble to reveal a new elevator to use.

It’s a long ride. At the top, fight off the Draugr and Nightmares that attack you.

After the elevator

Items in this area: wooden chest, Legendary chest (Hyperion Slam)

Once they’re handled, head along the path ahead of the elevator a bit. Have the boy shoot the shatter crystal to the left of the broken wooden door to reveal another hidden room. This one has a wooden chest and a Winds of Hel trap inside.

Ignore the trap for a minute and burn through the Hel bramble on the left when you walk out. There’s a portable Wind trap in here. Pick it up and carry it back to the elevator area.

Set it down next to the raised area behind the elevator. Face the ledge and look to the right for an area you can boost Atreus up. Do so, and have him kick down the chain.

At the top of the chain, turn to the left. Have the boy read the runes on the doors and then back up. A very angry level 6 ogre, a pair of nightmares and some draugr will come crashing through the door in a second.

Collect all the drops, then head back down the chain. Run back to the first room you opened and grab the Wind. Bring the Wind back to the portable trap at the base of the chain and stash it. Climb back up top and grab the Wind from the portable trap. Turn to the right and run it over to the room the ogre burst out of. Throw the Wind into the trap to reveal a Legendary chest holding the Hyperion Slam heavy runic attack.

Frost Ancient

Items in this area: treasure map (The Last Place They’d Look), Frost Ancient drops (solid Svartalfheim steel, Ancient’s Rubble, Ancient’s Heart, Frost Sigil of Focus)

Now you can follow the path along the edge of the cliff. Just past the shatter crystals, there’ll be a fire-throwing draugr waiting for you. Pick up anything he drops and the loose hacksilver out on his perch.

Head into the hallway on the right. Just inside, have the surly boy pick up the The Last Place They’d Look treasure map. (Check out our The Last Place They'd Look treasure map guide for the details.) Duck under the low rocks, then climb the ledge. You’ll have to face a Frost Ancient in the next room. Handle it like the rest of the Ancients you’ve fought. Don’t worry about using the Blades of Chaos just for the fire damage, though — just focus on hitting the Ancient’s weak spot with your axe from a distance.

When it’s defeated, grab all its loot — some hacksilver, solid Svartalfheim steel, Ancient’s Rubble, an Ancient’s Heart and a Frost Sigil of Focus enchantment.

Frost Ancient’s room

Items in this area: coffin (Mythic War Belt of Clarity), coffin (hardened Svartalfheim steel, Sharp Relic of Fortune)

Look in the middle of the room under the wooden structure for some crystalized sap. Grab a piece, then turn left — there’s a sap wall behind you. Blow it up, then grab the cart the sap wall was blocking. Pull the cart as far back as it will go. Check the room where the cart was for a few thousand hacksilver, then climb on top of the cart and up to the next ledge. Open the coffin up there for the Mythic War Belt of Clarity.

Drop back down to the ground, grab another chunk of sap and follow the wall on your right. Use the sap to free the coffin you find on your right a little way down. Open it for some hardened Svartalfheim steel and a Sharp Relic of Fortune.

Sindri’s Shop

Items in this area: artifact (Bottoms Up), coffin (Mythic Pauldrons of Clarity)

Continue into the hallway at the back of the room and follow it around to the right. Climb up onto the ledge, then have the boy read the lore on the ground while you pick up Bottoms Up artifact 6 — completing the set.

Cross the narrow ledge on your right. On the other side, burn away the Hel bramble on your right to free a coffin. Open it for the Mythic Pauldrons of Clarity.

Continue along the path until you come to Sindri’s shop. Take care of any shopping or upgrading while you’re here.

When you’re done, head through the doors on your left.

The Summit

Items in this area: Realm Tear, Legendary chest (Niflheim cipher)

As soon as you walk out, there’s a Realm Tear to deal with. One level six and one level seven Hel-walker will come out along with a few Nightmares. Close it and collect your Dust of Realms. Open the Legendary chest nearby for a piece of the Niflheim cipher.

Turn right and head up the short path to find a color-changing stone.

Head back down to the path on the left. Burn away the Hel bramble and climb the cliffs.

At the top, you’ll be back on the ridge right before the top of the mountain. Walk right up to the structure, then burn away some more brambles. Climb up to the top to (finally) return to the Jotunheim arch.

Have the boy carve the rune and use your magic chisel to open the gateway. Watch the cutscene as everything goes exactly as planned. We’ll meet you on the other side.

The next level of puzzles.

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