Assassin's Creed Valhalla: 5 Things It Can Learn from Assassin's Creed 3!

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Assassin's Creed Valhalla has a lot to build on from the series, but since I just finished it, here are 5 Things Valhalla can learn from Assassin's Creed 3!

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Timestamps:
0:00 Intro
0:38 Thorough settlement system
2:54 Aesthetic, UI, and polish
7:24 Weighty combat
10:17 Pacing and narrative structure
14:10 Recruiting allies
16:46 Outro

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Assassin's Creed Valhalla is an open world action-adventure game, structured around several main story quests and numerous optional side missions. The player takes on the role of Eivor (/ˈeɪvɔːr/),[3] a Viking raider, as they lead their fellow Vikings against the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms. The player will have the choice of playing Eivor as either male (voiced by Magnus Bruun [da]) or female (voiced by Cecilie Stenspil)[4] and is able to customise Eivor's hair, warpaint, clothing, armor, and tattoos.[5] The variety of weapons available to the player has been expanded to include weapons such as flails and greatswords. Combat has been changed to allow dual wielding of almost any weapon, including shields,[6] and every piece of gear that the player collects is unique.[1] The Eagle Vision mechanic of previous titles will return in the form of "Odin Sight".[7] The player's companion animal will be a raven named Synin[8][9] (Old Norse for "insight")[10][d] and can be used to scout the nearby areas, much like previous avian companions had done in Origins and Odyssey, identifying foes and aspects of the game world from afar before Eivor engages in combat.[11] There will be more focus on the stealth aspects for both traversing the game world and in combat. The "social stealth" concept from earlier Assassin's Creed games will return: Eivor can hide from enemies not only in stationary environmental objects, but can pull down their hood and slip into certain crowds to use them as cover. Eivor can feign death, use their raven to distract guards, and can access a hidden blade for near instantaneous assassinations. The game's key boss characters all will have a route through approach, tactics, and weapon selection to be assassinated through a single attack, but still can be defeated through numerous other routes.[12]

Valhalla will have a similar structure of main story missions and a number of optional side missions. While the main storyline in past Assassin's Creed games typically moved linearly through the main sections of the game world, Valhalla has the player often returning back to the main settlement and back to areas previously visited as information about the new areas of England are learned by the Vikings through reconnaissance or from contacts. Not all missions require violent ends, with some that can be resolved through diplomatic means.[13] The game will rely less on a traditional leveling system and instead focus more on the selection of skills through skill trees selected by the player as Eivor advances through the game. The difficulty posed by enemies will be rated based on the player's collection of skills.[6] The development team aimed to introduce a wider range of enemy archetypes to Valhalla than in previous Assassin's Creed titles as they wanted the player to be continually surprised by the game even after playing for tens of hours.[6] Enemy archetypes will have their own special abilities that they can use against the player.[6] Player choices through conversation or gameplay options will affect the characters and their political alliances with other non-player characters.[6]

Conquest Battles, a feature introduced to the series in Odyssey, will return. They will be known as "Assaults" and will see the player lead Viking armies to attack fortifications.[6] Raids are smaller battles where the player leads a raiding party to attack a target and secure resources for their settlement.[6] The player will be able to build a raiding party by recruiting non-player characters to assist with these.[14][11] The player will be able to create a Viking mercenary, or Jomsviking, that can be recruited by other players to act as a non-playable character within those games; the player will gain additional in-game rewards for successful missions that their Jomsviking takes part in.[14]

The game will see the return of settlements, which have been absent from the series since Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag. However, where these settlements offered the player passive gameplay bonuses, settlements in Valhalla will take on a renewed importance. Game director Ashraf Ismail described this as being "[because] a lot of what you're doing in the game world is, at the end of the day, going to feed into the settlement so that it can grow, it can flourish."
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