The combination of cutting-edge technology and timeless legends can lead to incredible results. One current example of this can be seen in the way that Norse mythology is being brought to life in a variety of games.
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Leads the Way
The latest instalment in the Assassin’s Creed series from Ubisoft sees Eivor become a Viking on a mission. The game brings back the concept of the one-hit kill with a hidden blade, together with social stealth that lets him blend into crowds.
Many of the screenshots revealed so far show the game’s idyllic English settlement location, but the Nordic locations look fantastic too. It seems that most of the game will take place in Britain and feature King Alfred, but Norway is heavily featured at the start.
It has also been confirmed that a story mission based on the legend of Beowulf will be included. This features the legendary warrior and adds to the mixing of modern gameplay technology and classic folklore.
We have also seen the Beowulf legend receive a makeover in the shape of the online slot of the same name, which can be seen on the SkyCity Casino site. This game by Quickspin uses an innovative Grendel Attack Feature featuring respins and random locking wilds, as well as utilising classic Norse themes, to create a slightly different title inspired by the genre.
A Norse feel is also expected in the keenly-awaited Elden Ring game by FromSoftware. This collaboration between Hidetaka Miyazaki and George R.R. Martin is due to be released later this year. The snippets that we have seen so far certainly suggest that it will be a sweeping Nordic epic.
How These Games Help Us to Re-Imagine the Era
Just as the recent big-budget superhero movies have transformed that genre, these games can re-invigorate Norse mythology by introducing it to a new audience in an exciting way.
A good example can be seen with the Beowulf legend mentioned earlier. This is a long poem that is written in Old English and that runs for over 3,000 lines. While it tells the thrilling tale of a Scandinavian hero who defeats a blood-thirsty monster, its style means that modern readers may be put off reading it.
By using the latest gaming technology, developers have turned this legend from being an antiquated poem into something that gamers can live and breathe. In this way, the most memorable stories and mythology from the past live on in a new way that is adapted to modern tastes.
“Thor The Dark World” (CC BY 2.0) by The_JIFF
Why Does the Future Hold?
Vikings, Norse Gods, and other elements from this culture have been growing steadily more popular in recent years. From the Vikings TV series on the history channel to the Thor movies based on the Marvel Comics, there is clearly an appetite for more Norse mythology.
The high profile of the Assassin’s Creed game should ensure that this genre continues to attract a lot of attention. As long as games developers find new ways to bring these timeless stories to life, there are sure to be players keen to immerse themselves in this world.
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