Starting up AC Valhalla Dawn of Ragnarok DLC reminded me of how loud my old PC case was and began my upgrade adventure. With my upgrade completed, I enjoyed the rest of the Dawn of Ragnarok DLC. The story was ok, but the new Hugr-rip gameplay mechanics were the star of the show and visuals were great.
The Dawn of Ragnarok DLC was an Ok Story
This entire DLC revolved around entering Eivor’s dream world as Havi (aka Odin). The setting is Svartalfheim, land of the Dwarves. Those grumpy dwarves were a high point in the story. Their world was invaded by Muspels (think fire people) and Jotnars (think ice), so yes, fighting fire and ice.
The setting of Svartalheim is welcome with the giant tree fire branches in the background, giant dwarven statues, fire, ice and everything in between. This world probably has the most vertical changes of any so far, at least as far as I remember. No doubt this was meant to take advantage of the new powers.
As part of the invasion, Havi’s son, Baldr, was captured by Surtr of the Muspels. The whole quest of the DLC is to find a way to free Havi’s son. There’s plenty of encounters with Muspels, Jotnars and Dwarves along the way.
It’s not that the story was bad, but it was just ok. The Wrath of the Druids DLC is still my favorite, but my hope is Dawn of the Ragnarok is the start of something bigger. Actual Ragnarok has to be epic, after all.
The Good News is the Hugr-rip Gameplay is Fun
Early on, the Hugr-rip bracer was a gift from Dwarves. That bracer stores Hugr powers similar to the special abilities from AC Valhalla. Some Muspel and Jotnar enemies that die contain special Hugr powers. With the bracer, I could rip that Hugr from their dead bodies.
Those powers are only available when the Hugr meter is full. The good news there is they refill by walking around dead enemies, via special bloom flowers in the world and Hugr altars (trade health for Hugr).
There were six total powers to acquire. They were the Power of Muspelhiem, Power of the Raven, Power of Rebirth, Power of Jotunheim, and Power of Winter. Each of those also have two upgrades available each. Upgrades require a new Silica resource acquired via raids (just like vanilla AC Valhalla) then applied at blacksmiths.
Power of Muspelhiem is a temporary morph into a Muspel. Walking on fire is safe and serves as a temporary disguise amongst Muspels. There were also upgrades to extend the duration and a heavy explosive attack.
Power of the Raven is exactly as it sounds. It’s the classic Odin transformation into a Raven. I loved reaching hard or impossible to climb heights quickly. I fully upgraded it with the longer duration and the option to assassinate while the raven, but I didn’t really use it to assassinate anyone.
Power of Rebirth was a great power for crowd control. Every fallen enemy while the power is active rises again as a temporary ally. Full upgrades apply the affect to nearby enemies that fell before activation.
Power of Jotunheim is a short duration morph into a Jotnar. It’s a great way to temporarily blend in with the ice giants. Dodges result in small distance teleportation. Aiming the bow at world knots (like diamond shaped dream catchers) allow teleportation at distance. Once fully upgrade, the bow teleport also unlocks teleport assassination.
Power of Winter is great for freezing Muspel enemies. Once frozen, hits shatter them. When I fully upgraded it, the shatter resulted in explosions to take down crowds.
AC Valhalla Dawn of Ragnarok Hugr-Rip Power Puzzles
Playing with all the new Hugr-rip powers was fun for dispatching enemies, but the puzzle solving with them was a nice added layer. Walking through lava is survivable temporarily, but the Power of Muspelhiem is the only way to endure a long path.
Some heights I could only reach with the Power of the Raven. Other power related puzzles involve the Power of Jotunheim teleport mechanic to reach the unreachable. I think it was only those three powers needed for puzzles, so the other two were strictly for combat.
Another little wrinkle to the Hugr-rip puzzle solving was only two powers are available at a time. If another power is desired or required, it must be ripped from another downed enemy. Thankfully the powers each puzzle call for are in close proximity.
Let the Actual Ragnarok DLC Come
Although I mostly ignored the AC Valhalla Dawn of Ragnarok DLC story, it was a fun DLC off the strength of the Hugr-rip gameplay and Svartalfheim setting. With my Uplay+ subscription, playing these DLCs is low risk. The only risk is wasted time and I don’t feel like the DLC wasted my time (I’m not obsessed with chasing all the treasure and activities).
After 156Hrs played, I’m still ready to play more, but I’m hoping actual Ragnarok knocks the story out of the park. All these content updates actual excite me about the possible Assassin’s Creed Infinity games as a service setup. Bring it on Ubisoft.