Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is an upcoming action role-playing video game developed by Ubisoft Montreal and published by Ubisoft. It is the twelfth major installment and the twenty-second release in the Assassin’s Creed series, and a successor to the 2018 game Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. Set in 873 AD, the game recounts an alternative history of the Viking invasion of Britain. The player controls Eivor, a Viking raider who becomes embroiled in the conflict between the Brotherhood of Assassins and the Templar Order.

The game is set to be released on November 10, 2020, for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and Stadia. The PlayStation 5 edition is set to be released on November 12, 2020.

Plot synopsis

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Driven from Norway by endless wars and dwindling resources in the ninth century AD, players will lead Eivor’s clan of Norsemen across the icy North Sea to the rich lands of England’s broken kingdoms. Players must carve out a new future for their clan, reliving the ruthless fighting style of Viking warriors with a revamped combat system that includes the ability to dual-wield weapons against a greater variety of enemies than ever before.

To secure resources players can lead raids to select locations using their longship to earn much-needed riches and resources. As the Vikings begin to settle in their new home, they encounter resistance from the Saxons including King Aelfred of Wessex, who denounces them as heathens and looks to be the sole ruler of a civilized England. Against all odds, Eivor must do what is necessary to keep Valhalla within reach.

Development

Ubisoft Montreal is the lead development studio on Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, working with other 14 studios on the game. This includes external developer Sperasoft. The game having been in-development for 2 years as of April 2020, was led by Assassin’s Creed: Origins and Black Flag creative director Ashraf Ismail, with Darby McDevitt as the narrative director, but in late June 2020 amid allegations of multiple counts of infidelity and sexual misconduct, Ashraf stepped down from his position, citing personal issues impacting his family.. McDevitt, aware of the similarities between 2018’s God of War, believes that Valhalla can stand out as a game more rooted in historical accuracy rather than mythology.

The game’s working title, “Assassin’s Creed: Kingdoms” was first leaked in April 2019, misidentified as “Assassin’s Creed: Kingdom”, after people found what appeared to be an easter egg for the game within a map in Tom Clancy’s The Division 2. In it a poster reading “Assassin’s Creed Valhalla” with a Viking character holding a sphere reminiscent of an Apple of Eden led to speculation about its relation to the Assassin’s Creed series, which in turn led to journalist Jason Schreier confirming the setting and codename for the game. However, this supposed ‘leak’ was later revealed to be a complete coincidence and an accident.

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Gameplay

Set in 873 AD, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla has players take the role of Eivor, a Viking Raider and Clan Leader of the Norsemen who can be played either as male or female. The game retains the dialogue choice and NPC relationship elements from Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey, with new elements such as forging political alliances with NPC clans. Every choice and decision of the players affects the world of the game in real time. Players can travel from the cold shores of Norway to England.

Eivor is able to equip themself with an assortment of weapons, and dual wield many of them; Eivor can also use their Hidden Blade in combat. Eivor can develop their own settlement and build and upgrade structures such as tattoo shops and barracks, they can also recruit new members of their clan and can train their own army for raids or other missions.

The player will be able to build a raiding party by recruiting non-player characters to assist with these. Though the use of naval transport has returned, naval combat has been dialed back. Eivor’s longship will act more as a means of travel when performing raids and for escaping after land combat, rather than being used in combat with other naval vessels. Players can take part in activities like drinking games, hunting or traditional Norse games such as flyting. A player will be able to create a Viking mercenary that can be recruited by other players, acting as a non-playable character within those games; the player will gain additional in-game rewards for successful missions.

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Release

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is set to released on 10 November 2020 for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Stadia, with a PlayStation 5 version being released on the 12th or 19th, depending on the region. It will also be the first Assassin’s Creed title for the next-generation of consoles, the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, being a launch title for both consoles. Valhalla is considered Ubisoft’s “flagship” game for the next-generation systems, and has been developed to take advantage of faster loading times both new consoles offer.

Players on Xbox One or PlayStation 4 will be able to upgrade their game to the next-gen version on their respective platform at no extra cost. On PC, the game will not release on Steam at launch, but will be available on Uplay and the Epic Games Store.

Marketing

On 29 April 2020, the game was officially announced by Ubisoft with an 8-hour art livestream by Boss Logic. The cinematic trailer was then premiered on 30 April at 8AM PDT. The trailer revealed a projected release date of Holiday 2020. On 7 May, a gameplay trailer was released showing in-engine footage. The background image on the Ubisoft website for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, also seen in the trailers, contained a runic cipher which when translated revealed stanza 77 from Hávamál, an ancient Norse poem. On 12 July at the UbiForward event, further gameplay footage of Valhalla was shown. One was a short gameplay overview, while the other was a full 30 minute analysis.

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