Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is on its way, and fans can expect parkour platforming, historical highlights and Nordic nautical action.
This historical action series used to get yearly installments, but fans and critics seem to agree that the franchise is stronger when it takes a year or two to retool between entries. Now that fans have had a chance to finish the positively massive Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, Ubisoft has revealed its next adventure. Assassin’s Creed Valhalla will take place during the conflict between England and the Vikings, possibly during the 11th century CE.
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The first trailer for Assassin's Creed Valhalla told us a little bit about the game's setup, without directly revealing any of its gameplay. Players will control a Viking warrior, who does battle with medieval foes on both land and sea. As in previous games, players will have access to a variety of different weapons, which will vary depending on whether they want to employ open combat or stealthy assassinations.
While Assassin’s Creed Valhalla won’t come out until Holiday 2020, Ubisoft has released the game’s first trailer, which tells us a lot about the game’s setting, and a little about its story. Here’s what we know about Assassin’s Creed Valhalla so far, and what we expect to learn soon.
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla release date
According to the game’s trailer, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla will launch during Holiday 2020. The trailer mentioned the Xbox One and Xbox Series X specifically. However, Assassin's Creed games usually come out for PC and PlayStation systems as well, and Valhalla will continue that trend.
Of course, if 2020’s other major releases are any indication, the game’s release date is not set in stone. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has delayed a number of high-profile titles, including The Last of Us 2 and Ghost of Tsushima. Since Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is slated for much later in the year, it might stay on target, but that will all depend on how the video game industry responds to public health concerns over the next few months.
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla trailer
The trailer for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla went live at 11 AM ET on April 30, 2020. If you want to watch the whole thing, it’s embedded here:
For those who can’t (or don’t want to) watch a video at the moment, the trailer depicts a Viking warrior — later revealed to be an Assassin — who leads a battalion against the armies of the English. The English think the Vikings are heartless barbarians; the Vikings think the English are tyrannical dictators.
As with previous Assassin’s Creed games, Ubisoft will probably release additional trailers as the release date draws closer. Expect future trailers to give deeper looks at the story, gameplay and setting individually.
Assassin's Creed Valhalla pre-order
Assassin's Creed Valhalla is currently available to pre-order from the official Ubisoft website, as well as all the usual suspects: Amazon, Best Buy, Gamestop and so forth. However, at the moment, you can pre-order the game only for PC, Xbox One or PS4. If you plan on getting it for PS5 or Xbox Series X instead, you may want to hold off until we learn a little more about those systems' launch lineups.
For the moment, the sites list a release date of 12/31/20, but this seems to be a placeholder. The game will likely come out earlier, although "earlier" could mean anytime between October and December.
As with most Ubisoft games, there are a number of different special editions available as well. The standard game costs $60, and doesn't come with any extras. A Gold Steelbook edition comes with a season pass and a special box, and costs $110. For the diehards, there's also a $200 Collector's Edition, which comes with the game, the season pass, a soundtrack, two statuettes and whole bunch of other memorabilia. Ubisoft details the differences among versions on its website.
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla news
Aside from the trailer, we don’t have a ton of news available on Assassin’s Creed Valhalla just yet. On April 29, Ubisoft hosted a Twitch stream in which the visual artist BossLogic revealed some key art for the game, as well as its name, but that’s the only other information we’ve had directly from Ubisoft.
Normally, we’d expect to hear more details about the game at E3 in June, but since that particular trade show won’t be happening this year, we’ll probably hear directly from Ubisoft instead. Whether there’s a big reveal planned for June, or whether the company will update players in dribs and drabs, we’ll have to wait and see.
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla setting
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla will take place in Norway and England in the 9th century, exploring the historical period when the Vikings fought the English for supremacy in the British Isles. This is the era when England was a collection of loosely allied kingdoms, and Viking raids were relatively common along the coast.
Ubisoft has hinted at exploring the Viking Age before, and fans have generally been pretty excited about the idea. Naval warfare has been an important component of the series ever since Assassin’s Creed III, and the two games where it was a major element — Assassin’s Creed IV and Odyssey — have been fan favorites.
Assassin's Creed Valhalla gameplay
The first Assassin's Creed Valhalla trailer did not show any gameplay, but did depict a massive battle between the Viking and English forces, with the protagonist wielding a throwing axe, a spear and a hidden blade. As such, we expect that the army battles from Assassin's Creed Odyssey will make a return, as will the fast-paced, combo-heavy battle system from Assassin's Creed Origins.
Ubisoft shared a tiny bit of gameplay during the Xbox 20/20 May 7 event, but we didn't learn many new things about the game. We know that it will have a fairly violent combat system, with the ability to dual-wield weapons. Ubisoft has also reworked character progression and skill trees, although the company didn't reveal exactly how.
For the moment, we'll have to wait for a more substantive gameplay trailer, or a separate deep dive into the combat system.