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Touching God of War Ragnarök tribute honours developer who passed away during production

"I wanted this story to be one many queer people know."

Sony Santa Monica left a truly heart-warming in-game tribute to a developer who passed away during God of War Ragnarök's production.

Please note, while this tribute is not integral to the main story, it does relate to one of the game's 'Favour' side-quests. If you are keen to avoid any spoilers, please refrain from reading further.

15 advanced God Of War Ragnarök tips from Zoe.

As players make their way around God of War Ragnarök's realms, they may notice love hearts adorning the environments. These hearts are connected to the Across the Realms side-quest.

This quest tells the story of Jari and Somr, a couple who travelled across the realms together and eventually found a place to call their home. Players can find their camp - the Eternal Campfire - in Midgard, and from here start gathering the ingredients necessary for the couple's next dish (thanks, SirusGaming).

However, this in-game love-story is actually connected to Sony Santa Monica couple Sam Handrick and Jake Snipes.

The couple met when Snipes started working at Santa Monica in 2019. The two soon became inseparable, travelling across the US together and baking (a lot) for the studio.

But their relationship ended too soon. In 2020, Snipes very sadly passed away due to his epilepsy, leaving Handrick heartbroken.

Sam Handrick and Jake Snipes.

Sharing their story on Twitter, Handrick recalled how the couple would "talk about how much we'd love to leave some symbol of us in Ragnarok. Some indication within this game that had been the reason we'd first met, our first game made together.

"[Snipes] once suggested simply a heart, with our initials in Norse runes, carved into this world we made."

He continued: "I told Eric [Williams, Ragnarök's director] and the team about Jake's suggestion of our initials carved into a heart. And he and the team returned with that and something even more special.

"A story of two men who find each other in an often cruel world, and who find a place to belong simply with each other.

"I wanted this story to be one many queer people know: journeying through a world that doesn't always understand you to find a place that truly feels like home.

"And sometimes that place is simply a person. And something as simple as a recipe can be a link back to that home."

You can read Handrick's full, incredibly beautiful, thread below.

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About the Author

Victoria Kennedy avatar

Victoria Kennedy

News reporter

Victoria developed a deep love for video games since watching her brothers barrel their way through Goldeneye 007. She will unashamedly spout forth all sorts of niche Zelda lore to anyone who will listen (and even at times to those who won’t), and makes the best pancakes you have ever seen.

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