For this Faceoff, we throw two Spartan warriors legends in the arena. Mythological legacy is on the line. it’s Leonidas vs Kratos.
Spartan warriors are not a regular menu, they are descendants of Gods. Their hearts are pure courage, their abs are pure CGI, and their madness: The result of grueling and sadistic military upbringing. From the very moment they enter life, they begin to master death and violence.
They train to become the elite human class of Greek Society. Spartans Kings and Spartan Soldiers are the messengers of the end. For whoever crosses their way.
King Leonidas, 300 Movie
“Spartans never retreat! Spartans never surrender!”
The Greek city-state of Sparta is notorious for its military-focused society and bloodthirsty commanders. From infancy, Spartans are carefully selected and bred for combat. Every child begins his life starting at a cliff. They wait to hear if their lives are destined to become warriors. Or, deemed as “damaged goods”. This was the first moment of King Leonidas’ life: looking towards oblivion, ready to face death. As a child, Leonidas was trained by the Spartan army both physically and mentally to become a
These top assassins used spears, shields, and swords, but if needed, they were capable of killing deadly animals with their bare hands. It was well known throughout Greece that: “one Spartan was worth several men of any other state”. Believed to be a decedent of mighty Hercules, Leonidas quickly became warrior King and a general of elite, vicious warriors.
Upon entering his reign, a soulless enemy was knocking on Sparta’s door. Leonidas, the commander of the Spartan army, took 300 men to face a Persian army of hundreds of thousands. Severely outnumbered and about to be abolished by a delusional God ruler named Xerxes, Leonidas showed the world what happens when you “mess with the Spartans”.
Luring the Persians into the Thermopylae pass, Leonidas and his men suffocated them where their numbers counted for nothing. They slaughtered tens of thousands of Persian soldiers using their corpses as walls around their base. 11 days of mass-killing led by an over-the-top, insane tactician.
See relevant: The Best 10 Epic Movies Like 300
Leonidas is a man willing to die at any moment. With that said, he poses no godlike powers and is still a man capable of dying in combat. His ultimate doom in battle came from a betraying alley he wrongly trusted. He lost his advantage and faced defeat by the Persians. Although his men are loyal to him, it has been proven Leonidas can be fooled in the midst of war.
“Zeus! Your Son Has Returned. I Bring the Destruction of Olympus!” – God of War II
The son of Zeus and demigod, Kratos, is a power-hungry Spartan general with Olympus blood flowing in his veins. Although his main weapon of choice is the ax, Kratos is a bald sword-fighting legend. He spends his days spreading chaos and death throughout the cities of Greece.
He is violent and without empathy for his enemies or those who suffer at his hands. After making a deal with the God of War Ares, Kratos begins raiding Greece and butchering its citizens. Unknowingly, he finds himself killing his own wife and daughter, cursing him with the nickname “The Ghost of Sparta”.
Training with the Spartans while also packing some godlike powers, Kratos posed a threat to everyone, including his own father, Zeus.
By the end of his path as a demigod, Kratos was obsessed, and consumed by battle, until ultimately assuming his role as the new God of War. It’s safe to say that Kratos lives and breathes solely to fulfill his long-lasting vendetta with the Gods.
Filled with rage for the fate of his family, he tends to kill first and ask “who’s the body?” later. Chopping down his enemies, he gradually takes over the land, makes tactical alliances, and rains his final vengeance by cutting through Zeus’s chest.
See relevant: Thanos vs Kratos The Ultimate Battle
If you’re facing Kratos in combat and looking for holes in his game – good luck. With that said, his main vulnerability is his own life story and the emotional baggage he carries with him.
Zeus, in their ultimate fight for survival, exploited Kratos’ psychological weakness by projecting Kratos with memories of his family, trapping him in his own mind. In the battle with the Northern Barbarians, another side of Kratos was revealed: he proved to be weak when fighting alone and faced complete obliteration. His only chance of escape was begging the God of War Ares to save his life. Without the help of Ares, Kratos would be chopped liver left to die on Barbarian soil.
Leonidas vs Kratos: Who Wins? Verdict
Leonidas will go the distance and face any challenge. He despises cowards and low-level politics. He stands at the front line of every battle with pure willingness to die. In the final moments, he stares you down with his maniacal eyes, and lets you know the end is coming. Leonidas defies all odds, takes control of the situation, and steals your belief in yourself. Persian armies or God-King, they all bleed by his hands at the end.
When Kratos finishes a battle, hope is lost on both sides. He slaughters villages, conquers kingdoms, and slays Gods before his Greek breakfast. If the Gods come back to haunt his body, he finds an ally and discovers another weapon that gets the job done. His life is cursed by war and endless suffering, but ultimately, he delivers the final blow and gets to see another day.
Who will gain Spartan glory? Who will go down as the undisputed Assassin of Ancient Greece? Check out our grades below and find out.