How to fully upgrade the Leviathan Axe in God of War Ragnarok

You’re gonna have to work for those last few.

Originally Published: 
Santa Monica Studio / Max Fleishman

Fimbulwinter is upon us. God of War Ragnarok is the latest game from Sony Santa Monica and the sequel to 2018’s God of War. In this game, protagonist Kratos can wield multiple weapons that let him handle any combat situation — and he can learn a variety of abilities to make them more powerful.

Warning: mid-game story and sidequest spoilers ahead for God of War Ragnarok.

Kratos starts the game with his ice-imbued Leviathan Axe, which is a formidable melee and ranged weapon with a wide range of uses. The material needed to upgrade the weapon is the Frozen Flame, and there are 8 of them in total. You’ll get the first five of them just by playing through the game, but the remaining three need to be earned through side quests. The most difficult one to collect involves gathering six Hel Tears.

The first five Frozen Flames are unlocked by defeating main story bosses. They are:

  1. Defeat Huntress (The Path: Surviving Fimbulwinter)
  2. Defeat Alva (The Path: Groa’s Secret)
  3. Freeing Freya in Vanaheim (The Path: The Reckoning)
  4. Defeat the Hel-Traveller (The Path: Reunion)
  5. Defeat Flame Phantom (The Path: The Summoning)

Frozen Flame locations in God of War Ragnarok

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Frozen Flame location #6

The sixth Frozen flame can be earned by completing the “For Vanaheim!” Favor.

To do this quest, you’ll also have to complete “Scent of Survival” along the way. This quest is automatically given to you after rescuing Freyr from Odin and leaving Freyr’s camp in Vanaheim upon completing “The Path: Creatures of Prophecy.”

In this quest, you’ll track down a creature called Helka. Follow Helka’s tracks into the Western Barri Woods. You’ll have to do this several times. You’ll come across an enemy encounter later on and then a Celestial Altar nearby. Use it to switch the environment from daytime to nighttime in order to open up a path.

Once you go through the path, Kratos’s companion will notice that Birgir’s flare has appeared, which lets you know that the “For Vanaheim!” Favor is near. At the end of the path, you’ll find Helka at a ledge. Interact with the wind next to it to open up the paper boat. This will complete “Scent of Survival” and automatically leads into “For Vanaheim!”

Kratos and his companion sail on a paper boat to reach Birgir.

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Opening up the paper boat activates a cutscene where Kratos and his companion get into it and sail across the sky to find Birgir. During the middle of the ride, they’ll be shot down by a dragon creature called the Crimson Dread and land in a new area called the Vanaheim Crater, officially activating the “For Vanaheim!” Favor.

If you look at your map, you’ll see a quest marker for the Favor, which indicates Birgir’s location. Follow its general direction to face several enemy encounters along the way. Sometimes, the Crimson Dread will show up standing on a rock and spit flames at you. Throw Draupnir Spears at it to make it retreat.

Eventually, you’ll come across a Celestial Altar. Change the time to nighttime in order to make an Ogre appear by a locked door in the distance.

Approach the Ogre and kill it. Once that’s done, you’re free to lift up the door and continue. Go along the path until you see a small crack in the wall that you can squeeze through. This will lead you directly into the fight against the Crimson Dread.

It has easily telegraphed attacks on the ground, such as bites and lunges that you can guard against or dodge away from. While the boss is in the air spitting fire at you, throw Draupnir's spears at it, forcing it to crash land. Defeating Crimson Dread will make it drop a Frozen Flame. At the end of the arena, climb up and you should see Birgir. After the conversation, open up the Mystic Gate for him so that he can go back home to Sindri’s. That completes the “For Vanaheim!” Favor.

The Berserker Gravestone location in Alfheim.

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Frozen Flame location #7

For the seventh one, go to Alfheim. In the Barrens area, you’ll find a Berserker Gravestone. You’ll have to complete the “Secret of the Sands” Favor where you must free a giant jellyfish creature known as the Hafgufa. (There are two Favors involving the Hafgufa, and you only need to complete the first one to access this Frozen Flame.) Freeing it will stop the raging sandstorm surrounding the Barrens area and remove the sand blocking that Berserker Gravestone.

When activated, you’ll have to fight three mini-bosses. Svipdagr the Cold is the main enemy, and she has two Sisters of Illska helping her out. They’re all quite strong — Svipdagr, in particular, hits very hard. The two Sisters share one health bar, so it’s best to focus your efforts on one at a time. If one goes down, the other goes down with it. The Blades of Chaos are a solid choice here for their range and effective crowd control. Svipdagr only attacks with melee attacks while the two sisters attack with magic. One uses ice elemental magic and the other uses fire, which can freeze and burn you, respectively!

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The sisters like to fly around the arena, so if you’re constantly chasing down one of them, Svipdagr will have to do the same in order to attack you. Use those crucial moments to inflict as much damage on the sisters before Svipdagr catches up to you.

Svipdagr has an unblockable lunge attack that will quickly close the gap. When she yells “I tire of you!” she’s going to use that move. It’s very easy to dodge out of its way if you’re only dealing with Svipdagr, but it’s just as easy to get caught off guard while also fighting off the sisters. If you hear her yell that line, or if your companion warns you of an incoming attack off-screen, be prepared to dodge.

After the sisters are taken care of, the fight becomes much more manageable, with just Svipdagr remaining. Once you win, you’ll earn a Frozen Flame for your troubles.

Frozen Flame location #8

The eighth Frozen Flame actually comes from collecting six Frozen Sparks. These can be earned by sealing up the six Hel-Tears scattered throughout the Nine Realms. There are a lot of rifts and tears in Ragnarok, these ones are the result of Atreus’s “oopsie” involving a large wolf, which unlocks the “Hel to Pay” sidequest.

When sealing these Hel-Tears, you’ll have to fight off waves of incoming enemies while your companion chants to close the tear. You’ll know that it’s a Hel-Tear you found when you see a large blue tear in the area.

These are their locations — they aren’t marked on your map automatically once you start the “Hel to Pay” Favor.

  • Sindri’s House - This is automatically given as part of the main story during The Path: The Reunion
  • The Gleaming Bale area in Helheim - You’ll run into this one during “The Path: Reunion” and you should see it as you progress through the main path.

The Hel-Tear location in Svartalfheim is in the Aurvangar Wetlands area.

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  • Aurvangar Wetlands area in Svartalfheim - On the right side of the wetlands, take a boat to the area and climb over a wooden structure to find the tear on the other side.

The Hel-Tear location in Alfheim is in the Strond area.

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  • The Strond area in Alfheim - There’s a Mystic Gateway in the Strond area. The tear is directly south of it in the lower area.

The Hel-Tear location in Vanaheim is in the Southern Wilds area.

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  • The Southern Wilds area in Vanaheim - Go to the Southern Wilds Mystic Gateway and run a few steps forward. It is quite literally in front of it. It’s very hard to miss.

The Hel-Tear location in Midgard is in the Well of Urd area.

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  • Well of Urd in Midgard - Travel to the Lake of Nine Mystic Gateway and travel northeast up to the Well of Urd. Climb the mountain and squeeze through the crack in the wall. The tear is directly in front of you on the other side.

When all six of the Frozen Sparks are collected, they will form together to create the final Frozen Flame.

God of War Ragnarok is out now for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5.

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