Yesterday Ubisoft released Dawn of Ragnarokthe latest and greatest DLC expansion for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. And as has become tradition, it includes an unrealistic new animal mount for players to ride. This time it’s a huge armored boar. But unlike before, on this occasion I broke. I dropped. I rode that fat pig.
A bit of history: in 2020, Ubisoft tempted me with an incredibly giant wolf to ride when Assassin’s Creed Valhalla first launched. Because of my strong desire for realism, I refused. The first DLC released last May added a fantastic new animal mount, this time a big cat. Again, I refused. Then, in August of last year, Ubisoft wowed me once again, with a giant bear. Readers, I almost cracked. But I stood firm in my (admittedly silly) belief that my character shouldn’t ride those wild mounts.
I had planned on this blog to follow the same format as before. You see, I had my reasons for not wanting to ride those weird and exotic mounts. As usual, I’ll let the younger (probably sexier) Zack explain it. Take it away, me!
It may seem like a strange line in the sand, but hear me out. Thing is, even though the franchise added more mystical and fantastical elements, I was still able to find a way to make it work in my head. Of course, in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey you can fight a minotaur. But maybe it was just a story that’s been told so much it’s become a memory. Remember that these games work through the Animus, itself a bizarre science that is more magical than logical. The Animus uses the DNA of ancient people to present users with their DNA memories. (That doesn’t really make sense.) Memories aren’t perfect. In fact, in the latter game, you can choose between a male or female Eivor because the Animus doesn’t actually know the historical Eivor’s gender. So a myth someone has heard all their life, something that might even have appeared in their dreams, could contaminate their DNA memory.
But a big wolf or a bear that someone has ridden for years, using it to help fight wars and save people, something that thousands of other people have seen, seems like too much of a stretch. The Animus may not be perfect, but it’s not that bad to get the facts right.
As always, young Zack succeeds. But this time things are different.
This new DLC takes place in the fantasy setting of Norse mythology. There are real reasons for this, and you can read more about it in this other blog, but the important thing to keep in mind is that Ragnarok is not fixed in reality. It takes place in a fantasy world constructed from the memories of an ancient species of super beings filtered through the memories of a Viking and brought to life by modern technology via the Animus. Or to put it another way: None of this is real. At least not in the same way as the other DLCs and main campaign adventures. (Wait, you say ancient super beings are true, Zack? – Ed)
So this time Ubisoft won. I rode the giant boar. It was not easy. Unlike previous mounts, I had to find this big pig in the world. (If you want to find it too, here is a short video showing its location. Just prepare to fight and kill the owner of the boar first.)
Now after riding it a bit, I love my fat pig. He can jump majestically and looks adorable while swimming. And unlike previous mounts, it fits perfectly. The world of Ragnarok is filled with ice giants and magical creatures. He’s a happy pig and you know what? I’m happy too. I can finally ride the big exotic animal in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla like everything you cool kids have been doing for years now. How does it feel to… have fun? I’m in.