Let's say you and a friend were having an argument over Greek mythology. Instead of braining each other with hardcover copies of Iliad, you can now settle your differences with a new dueling mode in God of War: Ascension.
"In Bout of Honor, two warriors will put their lives and reputations on the line to win the best of seven rounds in this strictly 1v1 mode," explains Ascension designer Quentin Ramsey. "Bout of Honor is a true contest of skill with no chests, fountains, or world weapons to aid you. This mode also disables relics and allows for a Champion’s magic to regenerate over time. Beware, my brothers in arms, magic generates slowly over time so use it sparingly."
"If you are careless you may end up like the Prophet Castor, with your head underneath another warrior’s boot."
Sony Santa Monica didn't just change the player count for this mode. They also introduced four new maps specifically for Bout of Honor. You'll be able to duel in Canyons of Kirra, the Chamber of the Flame, Landing at Delos, and the Streets of Sparta. Furthermore, they've made some balance changes to ensure optimal dueling. Infinites has been removed, while overpowered weapons have been nerfed. The damage from 100% combos was adjusted as well.
If you prefer the traditional group battles of Ascension, Sony Santa Monica has new content for you as well. They've created a new 4-player map called the Whirlpool of Alecto, based on a scene from the single-player campaign. The level features elevated positions that you can use to get the drop on enemies. The centerpiece of the map is a Leviathan who will attack any players who wander close enough to it.
All of this content is included in update 1.09 for the game. Because it's an update, it's completely free to download.
"Praise be to the Gods for hearing our cries! The team at Sony Santa Monica would like to give a special thanks to the thousands of Champions worldwide supporting the team by playing God of War: Ascension multiplayer."