Preview: ‘Assassin’s Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarok’ is going godlike

If Assassin’s Creed Valhalla flirted with Nordic mythology, then it appears the Dawn of Ragnarok DLC is set to consummate the relationship. We tuned in to an exclusive preview, and now have all the details.

The third DLC for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is scheduled for release March 20 this year and, after watching an exclusive preview of Dawn of Ragnarok, we can confirm there is plenty to get excited about. Because if you’ve been digging the Nordic flavour of the most recent game in the series, this expansion is going to go down a treat.

While the past Assassin’s Creed Valhalla expansions, Wrath of the Druids and The Siege of Paris, were more heavily grounded in reality, the upcoming expansion ventures deep into the world of Nordic mythology. Sure, there’ll still be plenty of gritty combat and stealthy gameplay, but the narrative stakes are more epic than ever before.

assassin's creed valhalla
Image: Assasin’s Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarok / Ubisoft

In fact, it’s difficult to ignore the obvious comparisons with Sony’s 2018 God of War (and its upcoming sequel that also happens to have Ragnarok in its title). However, while that game put you in the shoes of demigod Kratos, the latest expansion for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla goes all in by letting you play as Odin.

Fear not though, the journey of protagonist Eivor continues in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarok. It’s just kind of complicated – as the official description explains:

“Faced with visions of a new threat, Eivor must embrace their destiny as Odin and enter the mythical dwarven realm of Svartalfheim, a beautiful but hostile world under invasion. From underground forges to soaring golden peaks, immerse yourself in a vast, perilous new world of Norse mythology as you embrace your fate as a Norse god.”

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Image: Assassin’s Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarok / Ubisoft

The setting of the new Assassin’s Creed Valhalla DLC

The Dawn of Ragnarok DLC takes you to the mystical realm of Svartalfheim – a land populated by gods and their schemes, powerful relics and, above all else, a hell of a lot of dwarves. In the gameplay preview we were privy to we got to watch the developers journey through a variety of environments, but the Dwarven mines featured most heavily.

Notably, the dwarves of Assassin’s Creed Valhalla appeared to be in a bit of a sorry state – brutalised and enslaved by the invading forces of the Muspelheim and Jotunheim. These two new factions will feature heavily as enemies in the expansion.

The Muspels are a new class of enemy that will use fire to try and burn you to a crisp, while the Jotnar prefer icy magic. Both groups are still quite mysterious, yet judging from the gameplay demo they will attack you on sight. Thankfully, you’ll have a host of new abilities and powers to help you dispose of them (see below for further details).

Finally, the story of Dawn of Ragnarok centres around Odin/Eivor’s quest to find his son Baldr. How Ragnarok, the dwarves, ancient relics and new enemies fit into this is still up in the air, but our brief experience with the new Assassin’s Creed Valhalla DLC has left us feeling pretty curious.

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Image: Assassin’s Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarok

New powers and abilities in Dawn of Ragnarok

One of the most exciting features touched on in the Assassin’s Creed Valhalla DLC preview was the new powers, and how they are being incorporated into the gameplay. First of all, the developers have made it so you can steal the powers of the enemies you defeat. This appears to work really well, allowing you to change up tactics depending on your preferred style of play.

In the gameplay preview of Dawn of Ragnarok we saw this translate into a number of interesting scenarios. Players can gain the ability to summon allies and attack strongholds in a front-on assault. Or you can disguise yourself as a Muspel and pick enemies off like an assassin. Fire and ice spells are also there to be stolen and used against those same enemies.

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Image: Assassin’s Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarok / Ubisoft

Finally, players gain access to the Power of the Raven ability, which is one of the coolest additions to Assassin’s Creed Valhalla we’ve yet seen. Essentially, you will be able to take on the form of a bird and fly through the world at your leisure. This will have its obvious strategic benefits, but it should also make exploring this mystical realm even more rewarding.

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla: Dawn of Ragnarok is out March 20 2022 on PS4, PS5, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PC and Stadia.