God of War Ragnarok launched as a cross-generation game on PS4, PS4 Pro, and PS5 with some subtle yet marked differences.

Some gamers were unhappy when Santa Monica announced God of War Ragnarok as a cross-generation title. Many were worried its PS4 version could hold back its graphics and performance.

The game certainly has some evident contrasts between each of its versions. Here we will point out performance information and differences across all the God of War Ragnarok versions!

God of War Ragnarok PS4 (Pro) vs PS5 Graphics Differences

When it comes to graphics, God of War Ragnarok looks very similar on PS4/PS4 Pro and PS5, and you will most likely only notice most graphical differences on still side-by-side comparisons.

PS4 and PS4 Pro versions look identical. However, compared to the PS5 version of Ragnarok, the game lacks several graphical enhancements.

These are all the graphical features not present on the PS4 version of Ragnarok:

  • Improved Ambient Occlusion – Better Scene Lighting
    • Uses Screen Space Directional Occlusion (SSDO) to avoid light leaking issues, improving the indirect lighting quality.
    • This indirect lighting improvement leads to environments that look properly illuminated, making characters and dynamic objects fit the scene properly.
  • Upgraded Shadow Quality – Improved & More Accurate Shadows
    • Better-looking and more realistic shadows across the board.
    • This improvement is even more noticeable in the Favor Quality graphics setting on PS5, as it also features contact hardening and higher-quality shadow maps.
  • Additional Lighting on Cutscenes – Improved Cinematic Ambience in Cinematics
    • This mild change makes some cinematic scenes look more polished with richer environments.
  • Screen Space Reflections Improvements – Better Reflections
    • Higher quality, better cube map alignment, and more accurate reflections in relation to the camera position.
    • This improvement is more noticeable while using the Favor Quality settings on PS5.
  • Increased Resolution and HFR Mode – Support for Higher Resolutions & Frame Rates
    • Ragnarok on PS5 can reach native 4K and supports high frame rate modes depending on your display and the graphics settings you choose.
God of War Ragnarok Combat Gameplay

GoW Ragnarok PS4 (Pro) vs PS5 Performance Differences

God of War Ragnarok has the best performance on PlayStation 5, with various graphics modes that offer features like native 4K rendering, unlocked framerates, and VRR support.

This is how Ragnarok performance stacks across PS4, PS4 Pro, and PS5:

PS5 PerformancePS5 Performance + HFRPS5 QualityPS5 Quality + HFRPS4 Pro PerformancePS4 Pro QualityPS4
ResolutionTargets 1440p – 2160p (Averages 1872p)1440pNative 4K (3840 x 2160)Targets 1800p – 2160p (Averages 2160p) Targets 1080p – 1656p (Averages 1080p)Targets 1440p – 1656p (Averages 1656p)1080p
FPSLocked Stable 60 FPSAverages 80 – 90 FPSLocked Stable 30 FPSLocked Stable 40 FPSTargets 60 FPS (Averages 40 – 55 FPS)Locked Stable 30 FPSLocked Stable 30 FPS

Overall, the good news is that the frame rate is almost flawless in most graphics settings, even in the most hectic combat scene with the Blade of Chaos and its myriad of particle effects.

God of War Gameplay Capture

Ragnarok PS4 vs PS5 Loading Times

PS5 has, on average, a 60% – 70% faster loading time than PS4. However, PS4 is fast enough, with the initial loading time from the main menu taking only 30 seconds on the base old-gen console.

These are the loading times you can expect from God of War Ragnarok on PS4 and PS5:

  • Initial Loading Time (From Main Menu)
    • PS4 – Average 30 – 40 seconds
    • PS4 Pro – Average 30 – 40 seconds
    • PS5 – Average 10 – 20 seconds
  • Load Time After Dying
    • PS4 – Average 10 – 12 seconds
    • PS4 Pro – Average 10 – 12 seconds
    • PS5 – Average 3-5 seconds

Even though the loading times are pretty infrequent and short, if you find yourself dying too often, you can always choose a difficulty setting that works best for you.

Loading Time God of War Ragnarok

Source: Digital Foundry

Developmental Editor
Cristian started his journey in gaming with an NES. Now, he works as a gaming journalist and enjoys the wonders of multi-platform gaming.