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.

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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.

"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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thenephariouson

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"an assassin viking"... Really!??

Come on Ubi... lets put the AC franchise to bed for a while and make something fresh and original..

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solidsolo

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@thenephariouson: you are just now finding out about this game? You living under a rock? i say keep em coming!!! fun as hell!

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Dilandau88

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Essentially: 'We're making it more casual'

great.

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Crazy_sahara

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Edited By Crazy_sahara

The first game from Ubisoft to be raytraced in some form or way. Depending on how they use it next gen consoles could turn into beasts or paper weights.

The question is will the rtx 3080ti be able to rumble with it.

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gotrekfabian

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What's with all the necro-bumping of topics all of a sudden? Sort it out GameSpot.

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V1ndictive

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@gotrekfabian: Yeah what the hell? I thought I was going a tad insane.

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whiskeyslim91

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Edited By whiskeyslim91

I just want less spongy enemies. It added nothing and made it completely tedious even if you were optimizing your build. This isn't an MMO or Destiny. I welcome a challenge but it's an old trick to just boost an enemies HP to make it seem like a challenge. It appears to be the only thing the difficulty settings even do.

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alex33x

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Odyssey wasn't grindy, you were over leveled most often than not.

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gamingdevil800

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@alex33x: Only if you played every single side quest in every single region not everyone wants to do that. They changed progression though in the settings to make it more fair.

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tbird7586

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Less grinding for a one time fee

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Shantmaster_K

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I welcome this change.

4 • 
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freddy_diggler

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Why don't they just play the Witcher 3 to see how an RPG is supposed to be done? Every side quest should have story-driven purpose and be of good quality. Not some filler that has you running back and forth for no good reason other than to extend the game's time. I don't think most people will mind grinding, as long as its for a good reason.

i.e. I don't want to chase after any flipping feathers or climb anymore #@$%^&% flag poles!

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attirex

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I. am. OUTRAGED.

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chorn83

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Edited By chorn83

I like the leveling system it was fine to me and I think that's why so many people like the last two AC games I bet this one is not gonna be so good. People already complaining about it being too manly. How the heck do you make a game called ASSASINS creed without violence will these companies ever stop listening to blue check marks on Twitter.

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Keaze_

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@chorn83: What? They removed leveling? Man what the heck the last two games were a step in the right direction and i really enjoyed them. Now they're going backwards to try to adress what they think the playerbase wants. That's a shame.

There wasnt much grinding and so what? The combat was awesome! It was fun grind at least.

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Mogan

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Mogan  Moderator

Power measurement sounds like a Destiny style gear score.

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hardwenzen

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@mogan said:

Power measurement sounds like a Destiny style gear score.

Its EXACTLY that, and in a singleplayer game. Why? Its extremely easy to abuse with mtx. Ubi is the worse.

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Atzenkiller

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Really? Progressoin walls? You'd end up overleveled even if you only completed a sidemission here and there in Odyssey. And you'd be hugely overleveled throughout the whole game if you were trying to complete all side stuff when it was relevant. So how are you supposed to hit a wall that requires you to grind? By skipping every single piece of side content there is?

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Dilandau88

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@Atzenkiller: pandering to the filthy casuals

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Thanatos2k

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Obviously it'll be packed with as much manipulative microtransactions as possible.

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Atzenkiller

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@Thanatos2k: Obviously, same as the last few games. Man, all the money I've spent on it without even realizing. Or not.

It's your choice of course if you wanna get upset every time to see some optional loot box being displayed anywhere. But if you're not looking for it then you might not even notice any of that stuff at all. That's how it usually is for me. And it sure makes it seem like I've been playing a different game than all those folks who are whining and complaining.

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Mogan

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@Atzenkiller: Wait. You mean you didn't have to spend a zillion dollars to enjoy the last few Assassin's Creed games? That's not what angry gamers on the internet said at all. : p

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deth420

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@mogan said:

@Atzenkiller: Wait. You mean you didn't have to spend a zillion dollars to enjoy the last few Assassin's Creed games? That's not what angry gamers on the internet said at all. : p

Yes, because hiding your head in the sand is the better choice.

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Mogan

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@deth420: I've played all the main AC games, I've seen the microtransactions. Be outraged if you want, but I've enjoyed this series fine without ever buying anything from the cash shop. Turns out that's totally possible and things maybe aren't quite so dire as the angry internet was so sure they would be.

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deth420

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@mogan: I played it as well, and find it mostly enjoyable. It one I come back to every now and then.

Im not really outraged. But it doesnt mean I agree with it, and I definitely dont Ignore it. I mean you are right that in this game its not over the top. Like some games where it feels like the stripped the content out to re sell it to you later.

We touched on this in another conversation. I dont care what people spend there money on. you earned it you spend it. ( I wasted mine recently on some coco puffs and peanut butter crunch. yes, then you mix them together :)

What bothers me is greed. instead of making a profit most of these companies want to milk it all. its really gross. this doesnt pertain only to video game companies either.

and to ignore it is detrimental. whats that saying " the only way for evil to win, is when good people do nothing."

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Atzenkiller

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@deth420: Well, you have a few choices here. A few rational choices. Of course there are also other choices like choosing to get upset over it and go online to whine and complain about it. But those don't make much sense. The real choices you have though to deal with such a thing is:

Not buying a game. It also used to be called "voting with your pocket" but nobody really seems to know how to do that anymore. So people choose to instead buy a game and then complain about it. Cause that's clearly the much better choice, right? And you're totally not supporting the company and their practices in such a way, right? Right?

Here's the next choice: you ignore it. Yes, it's that simple. If a game is not so bogged down by MTs and they are not getting shoved in your face all the time, then chances are that you can just completely ignore them. Whether you agree with them or not is irrelevant in that case cause you can still enjoy your game as if those MTs weren't even there. And if I wanted to play a game, then that's what I'd do. While if it was seriously gimped by MT crap, then I would probably avoid it completely. As I do with pretty much all f2p games now.

Those are the only 2 real choices you have. The smart choices. Buying a game that you don't agree with at all and then going on to complain about it is not a smart choice. It's rather what a crazy person would do. Or someone who likes to punish themselves. After all this game is soooo baaad, right? And yet you're playing it anyway. Yeah, makes lots of sense.

But man, that quote you brought at the end is so funny in this situation. Because all that most people do is complain, which never really accomplishes anything. At best it might make them feel better about themselves cause they can pretend like anyone cares about their opinion. But when you're buying a game you don't agree with, then what are you going? The good thing? Or are you "supporting evil"? Yeah, throwing around fancy phrases is easy but actually acting on your convictions is a completely different thing. Most people just don't have the willpower anymore to resist buying a product they don't fully agree with. Good thing that whining about their poor choices is so much easier to do, and that there's so many people around who'll listen to you and contribute to the whining.

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deth420

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@Atzenkiller:

Well the biggest problem I have with what you guys are saying is that people voicing their concerns are "whining." So if someone perceives a problem they should just keep quite?

While I will agree some do just complain with no action. To come here "whining" about whiners, is on the same level.

"It's your choice of course if you wanna get upset."

And why shouldnt people get upset? because you guys think its not a problem? and deemed your thoughts on the matter to be the only right way?

When keep calling people whiners, does it make you feel right, or better about yourself? when you come to complain about peoples actions, you may want to refrain from acting the same way....is all im saying.

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Atzenkiller

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@deth420: You do have a choice: you can choose not to buy a game, "voting with your wallet" and in that way actually making yourself heard. Or you could buy it anyway even though you don't agree with the company's actions and then go on complaining about it online. And possibly have the publisher laugh at you while publicly they might pretend like they really care about your butthurt feelings. You already bought the game so if you're complaining now, then you really are a sucker. And the company got what it wanted: your money. And that's all they care about.

And if you did buy a game accidentally, not knowing what it was really like, then there's a lesson you can learn from that. So don't make the same mistake again the next time, only to waste your time complaining about it once more. Actually look into the product you're thinking about buying and try to figure out if it's reall worth buying or not. And if not then actually avoid it. Unless you truly enjoy being a whiner, in which case no one can stop you from doing that.

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Mogan

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@deth420: When Assassin's Creed's microtransactions are actually evil, and I can't enjoy the game without them anymore, then there'll be something to be bothered about. Right now, they're an option for folks who want that stuff, and don't impact folks who don't.

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ViperGTS96

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@mogan: I'm currently at 135 hrs of AC Odyssey which I got on sale with the season pass and I haven't spent one penny on microtransactions. I'm not even sure where they're at. Had no idea people are upset about them until this thread lol.

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Atzenkiller

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@mogan: Yeah, it's the same thing as with all those people whining about games having an mp mode. Even when it's completely optional and doesn't impact them in any way. Just knowing that it exists is enough to make them fly into a fit.

There are certainly plenty of bad examples for MTs, online modes and anything else out there. But there's also plenty where it is completely optional and it's not being shoved into your face constantly. And in those games if you didn't care about it you probaly wouldn't even notice it ever. But those folks who love to whine and complain, they seem to always pay a lot of attention to those things. Seeing it everywhere it shows up and always focussing it intently.

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altairdarius

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How can u add non violence option to a viking

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deth420

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@altairdarius said:

How can u add non violence option to a viking

Heh, I was wondering this as well.

Its a game about assassins, assassinating. Assassin Hug

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Mogan

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@altairdarius: Thumb wars, probably.

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s1taz4a3l

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@altairdarius: Beard barbershop, a place in medieval europe were vikings and knights solved their differences non violently. While getting their beards dyed trough a special DLC sold apart from the season pass.

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DEVILTAZ35

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What Microtransactions were there in Odyssey? . It's a while since i played it but i don't remember them being there unless they were added in later.

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Atzenkiller

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@deviltaz35: That's just how it is when MTs are not being implemented in an obnoxious way. The folks who want to spend money on them will find them while the rest who doesn't care might never really notice them at all. But some folks will still complain about them just because they exist. And I wonder if that might be in part because they feel an urge to spend money on them, but can't allow themselves to do so.

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s1taz4a3l

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Edited By s1taz4a3l

@deviltaz35: You could buy a special currency that would let you unlock golden tier gear early on, some skins for crew/horse/ship. Also the xp booster. That currency could also be earned but at a much slower rate.

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Xylymphydyte

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Ambassador's Creed

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impact455

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As long as "assassinating" an enemy can actually KILL an enemy without needing to use a critical assassinate skill then sure they can do whatever they want. For me origins and odysseys stealth systems and that almost nothing can be killed with normal assassinations are huge sore points. Why even call it assassination when 9/10 it doesnt kill may as well just call it sneak attack with critical assassinate being normal assassinate

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RELeon

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@impact455: I mean, if you spec'd into assassinations and had the gear for it, just about everything died from an assassination, minus some mercenaries that were resistant to it. It was just their way of making it so you had to make choices about how you wanted to fight, whether it was stealth, range, or combative.

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Atzenkiller

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@impact455: Was that really the case with all enemies? From what I remember it was mainly the mercenaries in Odyssey that could survive an assassination attempt. And even those you could take out in one hit if you were able to target their weakness.

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Mogan

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@Atzenkiller: It really depended on which way you specced. Like, if you focused on assassin damage and the stealth/assassination skill tree, you could kill most anybody your level or lower in one critical assassination move (the one where you hold down the button). But if you didn't spec towards assassin damage, your spear sneak attack was kinda weak.

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Atzenkiller

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@mogan: Well, yeah. But if you cared more about stealth than about open combat then you'd naturally put points into those skills. So everything is as it should be. I wasn't really a fan of the combat in the last game as it was too gimmicky, to reliant on those abilities you can unlock. But it wasn't bad and it hasn't kept me from playing stealthily most of the time as I always do.

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gotrekfabian

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Edited By gotrekfabian

It sounds like they're dropping level gating and replacing it with enemy scaling and/or the need to find "places of power" to gain skills. As sure as people complained about level gating and Odyssey's map size people will complain about this as well.

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Martin_Pagan

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@gotrekfabian: My guess is it's going to be something like in God of War, where your "level" was the function of gear you wore and skills you unlocked.

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DEVILTAZ35

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Edited By DEVILTAZ35

@gotrekfabian: It should become far easier to have smart adjustable AI with the new consoles seeing they have far better CPU's than before. I hope to see something like that in future games if not this one.

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Atzenkiller

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@deviltaz35: What does enemy AI have to do with that? Enemy scaling just means that enemies level up with you. Enemies getting stronger and more difficult to fight happens as a result of progressing through the game. And no, you don't need super high powered hardware for it because most enemy AIs are still extremely basic. Unless you were thinking about implementing real AIs, or anything close to it. Which is not going to happen anytime soon. I wonder how much longer it will take until we get to see the first real AI anyway. So far nothing really close to it seems to exist yet, but everyone sure likes to use the term to get attention.

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