This is not a complaint by the way, I’m genuinely enjoying the game and it’s new difficulties. In Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey, as much as I loved that game, I did find the game to be overall, fairly easy. Obviously, if I travelled as a level 14 to a recommended level 50 area I would be in a bit of trouble but as long as I didn’t do anything as drastic as that, travelling and exploring was fairly easy.
However, Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla has been a completely different experience. First of all, Ubisoft has introduced ways for the world around you to kill you. So, not just the vicious animals and the numerous soldiers roaming around, but the actual weather. Re-introducing fall damage, which is really annoying when you’re in the mountains in Norway and freezing to death in cold water, make exploring the world tougher.
Then you do longer have the level system, which means all warriors and animals cannot be dominated over just because your ranking is slightly higher. You actually have to face these warriors and beats that inflict the same amount of damage. Just travelling from one location to another has become all the more difficult. I’m actually accessing situations and trying to avoid confrontations sometimes in order to complete an objective.
Then there is the new health bar, which doesn’t automatically re-fill. Again. making the outside world scary when you lose most of your health climbing down a mountain, only to find an angry wolf at the bottom. The new health system does allow you to regain health from consumption but you need berries or meat for that. If you’re low on resources, which is common in the snow, you’re in trouble. As a result, you’re fighting for your life before you even get to the battle.
In the previous two Assassin’s Creed games, as fun as they were, I was able to easily go from place to place and kill everything I came across. This game is more defensive, more dangerous and I love it. My fans on Twitch probably don’t love it as much as I’m sure they are sick of seeing my die for the 50th time trying to climb down a mountain, freezing to death or being mauled by a deer (the latter actually happened). Yet, as the player, I am enjoying this very new experience.