Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is the new installment of the popular action adventure series. After a one-year hiatus, the license returned in 2020 in an episode that takes the Vikings as its theme. In this file, which we update regularly, we compile everything there is to know about the game before buying it.
Assassin’s Creed has made a comeback in 2020! After a year 2019 without a game, the license returned last year with Valhalla. This episode takes up what made the success of the saga, but adding its little touches. Likewise, it happens in a particular context, that of the transition between the current console generation and the next.
We are going to take a tour of the essential information to know about this new opus.
What is Assassin’s Creed?
It’s hard not to know Assassin’s Creed, as it is a well-known video game license. Assassin’s Creed first of the name, which was originally developed as a new Prince of Persia, was released in 2007. Since then, a new component has been marketed every year (except in 2008, 2016 and 1019). The saga took us back to the time of the Crusades, to the Caribbean of the 18th century, to the Paris of the Revolution or to the Italy of the Renaissance. Each game takes place in fact at a given period in history.
Assassin’s Creed has known a second youth in 2017 with Origins, which took place in Egypt in the 1st century BC. This episode ushered in a new formula, putting the player in a much larger universe. It also added an RPG dimension with equipment to improve and levels to pass. The next episode, Odyssey which was released in 2018, took the same recipe and improved it, this time placing the action in Greece in the 5th century BC.
Valhalla takes up this principle. This is the twelfth episode of the series to be released on home consoles. This time, he puts us in the shoes of a viking ready to do anything to conquer Great Britain.
When was Assassin’s Creed Valhalla released and at what cost?
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla was released on November 10. Originally slated for release on November 17, its date has been brought forward to coincide with the release of the Xbox Series X (and S). As usual at Ubisoft, several editions are available.
- The standard edition, first of all, is sold 60 euros on PC and 70 euros on consoles. It includes the base game, and only the base game. It will then be necessary to pay the additional DLC which will be released later.
- Gold edition It includes the Season Pass, which means that you don’t have to pay extra fees for DLCs (the first of which is already available). It is sold for 100 euros, regardless of the platform.
- The Ultimate Edition, sold for 120 euros (PC and consoles) includes the Season Pass, but also in-game items to customize your hero or your boat as well as an additional mission.
Finally, collector’s edition, sold for 200 euros, includes all the contents of the Ultimate pack, a statue of Eivor, the protagonist, as well as some goodies such as a bust, postcards and the soundtrack. To be reserved for collectors.
What consoles is Assassin’s Creed Valhalla released on?
Assassin’s Creed is out on all current platforms, except the Switch.
The game is available on PC, but requires going through the Epic Games Store. In addition to this launcher, you must install Uplay (Ubisoft’s software) to make it work. Assassin’s Creed Valhalla released on consoles PS4 and Xbox One, but also on new generation consoles, namely the PS5 and the Series X / S. Note that if you buy the game on the current generation, the next-gen version of the game is “free”.
The game obviously looks better on PS5 and Xbox Series X, but is also faster thanks to the SSD. During our test we found that it only took a few seconds to load an environment, compared to over a minute for the PS4 version.
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Valhalla is also available on Stadia, Google’s cloud gaming service.
What is Assassin’s Creed Valhalla about?
Each Assassin’s Creed takes place in a different time and place. While the last two parts took place during Antiquity, Valhalla takes place in the High Middle Ages, in Great Britain, during the 870s. It is a troubled time for the island, which is not yet a unified country. She faces very strong ethnic tensions between Saxons, Danes and Bretons.
At the time, several kingdoms coexisted on the island (Mercia, Wessex, Northumbria, East Anglia, Wales…). The Saxons have been facing raids for several decades by what are now called the Vikings. The latter came to settle in the region to take advantage of the climatic conditions more favorable to agriculture, by subduing the inhabitants already present.
The player embodies Eivor (who can be a man or a woman according to his choice), a Viking chief who came to found a colony in Great Britain. He must face the hostility of the Saxons and make his ax speak. The player quickly enters the Assassin’s Guild to fight against the Templars, as we are in an Assassin’s Creed after all. Open world requires, it is possible to travel freely in England and visit cities such as London, Winchester or Leicester as they were at the time. During the adventure, we also meet historical characters, such as Ivar the Boneless, Harald I or Alfred the Great, King of Wessex.
The episodes of Assassin’s Creed are independent of each other, since they tell their own story that enriches the universe of the series. It is therefore no need to play previous games to appreciate this new component. The overall story connecting the episodes to each other is told through phases in the present, which make up only a tiny part of the plot. As we recall, Assassin’s Creed tells us how the Abstergo company makes us relive past events thanks to a machine called the Animus.
Read also – Assassin’s Creed: female characters voluntarily excluded from the game by Ubisoft
What does Assassin’s Creed Valhalla gameplay look like?
If you’ve played an Assassin’s Creed before, you will not be disoriented. This is a third-person action-adventure game set in a one-piece open world. Here it is a part of Norway and all of southern England which are modeled. To connect the two lands, you will need to use your personal drakkar. The latter can be used to go up the rivers to travel quickly in the British countryside (in addition to the traditional horse).
On land, the game is very similar to the two previous sections, both in terms of exploration or combat. However, Valhalla has revised its formula somewhat, especially in terms of progression. Indeed, the side quests are fewer, replaced by activities included in a more organic way in the universe.
For example, the attacks on Saxon monasteries are among the highlights of the game. Sequences designed to be eye-catching and give pride of place to combat. Another novelty is the possibility of founding a colony and improving it over time by completing different objectives. It is therefore necessary to recruit allies through quests.
For the rest, we are facing a very classic episode of the series. The stealth, quite light in the last episodes, fhas a comeback in this shutter, as does the Secret Blade. Note that Eivor, the hero, can wear a hood to be incognito in enemy cities. We also find the RPG aspect with skill points and equipment to manage, as well as the dialogues of choice introduced with Odyssey. Mini-games spread throughout the universe are present, such as drinking games or verbal jousting.
As in Odyssey, the player can choose to play as a woman or a man. If he regrets his choice in the middle of the game, he can change it without restarting the game. He can even let the animus decide for him. The protagonist can be modified at will, since it is possible to redo his haircut, his beard size or his tattoos according to the patterns found. It’s up to you to make the hero or heroine you like.
What future for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla?
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla has received critical acclaim. The tests evoked a game very agreed, but effective. However, we deplored a number of technical problems, like blocking bugs (like a script that does not launch), funny (an NPC that flies) or even very annoying (the console that crashes). On January 15, 2021, Ubisoft released patch 1.1, which fixes many issues. Other similar fixes will be released in the future. Seasonal events are also present.
In the future several large patches will add content to the adventure. The first DLC will arrive in the spring and will be called “The Wrath of the Druids”. Eivor will leave England for Ireland to investigate a secret society. The second announced DLC will arrive later and will be named “The Siege of Paris”. As its name suggests, it will stage a famous episode from the early Middle Ages, namely the attack on Paris by the Viking forces.
The Discovery Tour, which allows you to explore the universe without any combat and which has an educational objective, will also be there. However, it does not yet have a release date, but is expected to land before the end of 2021.