Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Forgotten Saga launches for free in August

Ubisoft shows off more of the roguelite Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Forgotten Saga DLC, which arrives at the start of August for free in the Viking RPG game

Assassin's Creed Valhalla Forgotten Saga DLC - Hel, the queen of the dead, sitting in a throne of bone and skulls

The roguelite Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Forgotten Saga DLC is looking great, as Ubisoft shows off more of the new mode coming as a free update on August 2. The Forgotten Saga was announced during the series’ 15th anniversary celebrations, and a new video from the RPG game’s developer breaks down the nuances of the new expansion.

The DLC marks the first time Assassin’s Creed has adopted the roguelite format, where players make repeated attempts to get through a challenging set of encounters. Progress is reset upon death but some persistent upgrades carry over between runs, making each subsequent attempt a little more feasible. Forgotten Saga sees the return of Odin as a playable character, as the god descends into Niflheim – the Viking hell – to go up against the minions of Hel.

Each run, Ubisoft explains, you’ll have to make decisions about which path to take. As you cross the bridges between areas, they will collapse, meaning that you cannot backtrack and change your mind about where to go mid-run. You’ll find new weapons and gear as you progress through Niflheim – the weapons are randomised with each new run, but your armour persists, so you’ll be able to grow increasingly stronger with repeated attempts.

Also important are uncovering hidden areas and secret merchants. Several secret areas dotted through the four regions of Niflheim contain unique enemy encounters which, when defeated, will unlock hidden buffs that grant Odin permanent upgrades. The merchants can offer a selection of runes, upgrades, and abilities to spend your gold on. You can even find some upgrades dotted around the world, if you look hard enough.

You’ll find new weapons over the course of your run, but opting to take one will cause your previous weapon to be destroyed, so you’ll have to choose carefully. It’s worth experimenting, however, as skills and upgrades bought in the hub area between runs will only continue to make you stronger, in the vein of other roguelites such as Rogue Legacy and Hades.

The Forgotten Saga is also seemingly taking inspiration from the hugely successful Hades in its character work. The mode will see various other key NPCs appearing either mid-run, where they can offer side quests that might take one or more runs to complete, or conversing with Odin after he dies to offer new lore and expand on the narrative.

The DLC is set to be part of the final updates for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, as Ubisoft looks towards its future projects. It appears that the series’ next destination will be in the Middle East, although we’re a little sad that we aren’t getting a Mesoamerican Assassin’s Creed game for now. What we do have, however, is some more of the best roguelites on PC, if the Forgotten Saga tickles your fancy for the format.