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Assassin's Creed Valhalla Is Changing Progression And Cutting Down The Grind--Here's How It Will Work

The next Assassin's Creed game is making some big changes, including how progression will work and mission structure.


Assassin's Creed Valhalla is in the works for the launch of both PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X (as well as PC and current systems), and it's going to introduce a few changes to the Assassin's Creed formula. The two most recent games in the series, Origins and Odyssey, have taken the series in a new direction by melding the action gameplay with RPG elements. Valhalla isn't necessarily dropping those, but it sounds like progression will be a bit different in the new game. It should serve as a more comfortable play experience for fans of the earlier games, which were pure action-adventure games with very little in the way of role-playing elements.

Talking to Kotaku, creative director Ashraf Ismail has delved into the game's progression system, as well as how new missions will be doled out, among other details. Ismail says that one of the goals with this game is to prevent players from hitting progression walls, so that you're less likely to need to grind to level up.

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"We have a new take on progression in this game," Ismail says. "We have more the concept of power, power that is gained through, let’s say, the player gaining skills." He wants to avoid "big progression walls" with this game, so that players can explore freely without being held back too much.

As we've previously reported, Valhalla is ditching a traditional leveling system in favor of a new "power" measurement. Ismail would not say whether the game would have an XP booster DLC, like Odyssey, simply stating that the developer wanted to "earn every single penny that you’re going to pay" for Valhalla.

Microtransactions for Valhalla seem all but inevitable, as Odyssey saw a huge growth in spending from players, leading to higher profits for Ubisoft. What form they take remains to be seen.

Elsewhere in the interview, Ismail talks about mission structure, and hints at more options for non-violence--despite playing as an assassin viking. Ismail also says that you'll retreat back to your settlement often. "The idea is we want you to start in the settlement and to go out into the world. In the settlement, you might receive some kind of information about what’s happening out in the world, whether it’s contacts, or people that you’ve known in the past, or new opportunities that have arrived," he says.

“When you set out into the world, to go after whatever that is, you get embroiled into politics," he continues. “You get caught up into a journey. We give options within that. So sometimes, yes, it means that you can, let’s say, negotiate to resolve something."

Assassin's Creed Valhalla will bring back some elements from older games in the series, including the insta-kill stealth blade that many players have missed.

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