In this week’s bulletin, we discuss an update and new DLC for Valhalla, new Northern-themedDLC for Crusader Kings III, Valheim Vikings (of course), the last DLC for Civ VI, Age of Empires Fan Preview, A short Medal of Honor Documentary nominated for an Academy Award and an Interview with the devs of Call of the Sea!
AC Valhalla expansion & update
This week saw Ubisoft announce the first expansion to Valhalla called Wrath of the Druids and the launch of update 1.2.0. The update brought new skills, the Ostara Festival (a timed Easter festival, running until April 7) and transmogrification. You can now customize the appereance of your gear but keep the stats underneath. This was implemented in other AC games as well, but often it was free. In Valhalla it will cost you 50 silver every time you want to change something, something with which players aren’t happy (IGN). Even though silver isn’t the hardest to come by, some players noticed how you could also just buy silver with real life money, so it seems that earning money is one of the reasons for the paid transmog. The new update also failed to fix a game-breaking bug that has been in the game since the launch. The Washington Post reports how a certain bug at about 50% of the main game line will prevent you from progressing further. Because you have already player up to 50 hours to that point, it is very frustrating that the only way to fix it is to start the entire game again. That’s 2 days down the drain. Ubisoft are aware of the bug but are still clueless as to how it happens and how they can prevent and fix it.
The new expansion that was announced will launch on April 29. It will take the Vikings to Ireland to ‘unreal the mysteries of an ancient and mysterious druidic cult’. The expansion will likely bring more content, but not much more is known. It is inspired by Gaelic folklore, and players will be tracking cult members and trying to gain influence with Gaelic kings. It is basically the same as the rest of the game, but then with a Gaelic flavour. It will cost you $25 as a standalone or will be included in the $40 Season Pass. Read more on Polygon.
Crusader Kings III DLC: Northern Lords Flavor Pack
We’re not done with the Nordic content quite yet. This week, the first payed content for CKIII was released. The Northern Lords Flavor Pack adds, like the title suggests, some flavor to the in-game Northern rulers. Even though it is not a fully fledged expansion (and therefore is ‘only’ €7), it adds names, consmetics, events, decisions, legacies and innocations to make the Northern realms more fleshed out. The paid DLC came with a free update for all players that introduced winter as a gameplay feature, poetry and duels. Read more on the update and the DLC on Eurogamer.
The 8 hardest Vikings in video games
So, this is a bit of a meme. But seen as though Vikings are kinda hot right now, Rock Paper Shotgun compiled a list of very hardened Vikings you can compare your own Valheim Viking to. Ranging from Eivor from Valhalla, through the Axe-wielding lad from Mordhau to the Keep Guard from Hellblade (rated with an impressive Nokia 3310 on the Hardiness scale), there are many digital Vikings to compare yourself to. The list even mentions that one mate in Valheim who does all the Viking stuff (shoutout to our own ‘Døc Rændøm’ who goes on the craziest trips and does all the amazing Viking things and should definitely be on that list!) I myself shy away from any kind of combat and will keep myself to building amazing World Wonders and other buildings (and not by using the console like these dudes who made the Eiffel Tower). Out latest addition to our sever: a very scaled down Great Pyramid of Giza.
Final Frontier Pack Update for Civ VI
The last DLC of the Frontier Pass for Civilization VI has been announced. It will feature a new civ (Portugal), two new wonders (Torre de Belém and Etemenanki), a zombie game mode and a new wetlands map-script. Portugal will be lead by João III, who was king from 1502 to 1577. Portgual, like in Civ V, is focused around trade and ships. It will receive bonuses for international trade routes, as well as a special ship and a replacement for the campus district in the Navigation School district. Portugal will receive an extra trade route for every new civ they meet, so prepare to trade! Also pick up the Torre de Belém wonder, as it gives +2 gold for every route. Fill up your purses with Portugal! The DLC will also add a Zombie game mode (cringewarning for the video), the Etemenanki wonder (a very nice ziggurat supposedly the inspiration for the Tower of Babel) and a map-script which will make lots of slow-moving swamps! Read more on Eurogamer. The DLC launches next week.
Tune In To The Age of Empires Fan Preview
If you’re a fan of Age of Empires, mark April 10 in your schedule! On that day, a Fan Preview will be hosted, revealing many cool things for the definitive editions of AoE II & III and also the upcoming AoE IV! You cannot miss it if you’re hyped for the new Age of Empires. Check out the trailer below.
A short film from Medal of Honor has been nominated for an Academy Award
Some video games are inspirations for movies (some more succesfull than others, looking at you Assassin’s Creed). However, they’re not often nominated for an Academy Award. A short film made for Respawn’s 2020 VR game Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond called ‘Colette’ is nominated for Best Documentary (Short Subject). Created by the English newspaper The Guardian for the game, it focuses on the story of French Resistance member as she visits the camp where the Nazis murdered her brother. ‘Colette’ was one of the documentaries made for the 2020 VR-revamp of the classic Medal of Honor title, which itself was met with mixed reviews. Read more on Kotaku, and watch the documentary on The Guardian for free.
An Interview with the devs of Call of the Sea
A while back, we featured Call of the Sea in one of our streams. It’s a Myst-like game, with some Lovecraftian mystery set on an island somwhere in the Pacific. It is also a pretty cool game, with colorful graphics. Eurogamer’s Robert Purchese was also impressed by the game, and states that it was one of his favorites of 2020. The more he read about it, the more baffled he was: it was the first game by the studio, was created in just under a year and a half and it was also nominated for a BAFTA! So Purchese sat down (digitally) with Out of the Blue studio co-founder and game director, Tatiana Delgado. They talk all about the premise of the game, it’s development and how releative newcomers are able to produce such a good game! Read the entire interview on Eurogamer!
Omar ‘oomzer’ Bugter is a Cultural Historian from Utrecht. Since interning at VALUE, he’s stuck around, mainly working on the Interactive Pasts website and the weekly streams. He wrote a thesis on Sid Meier’s Civilization VI and mods, so knows this game very well. He likes many other games, including F1 2020, Hearts of Iron, Mount & Blade and Crusader Kings III., and is VALUE’s in house city builder connaisseur. Tweet to him at @oomzer if you want to know anything about Civ or city builders.