Newly announced video game Assassin’s Creed Valhalla will allow players to pursue homosexual romances, one of the game’s designers has announced.
Narrative Director Darby McDevitt told Stevivor that players will be able to have homosexual relationships in-game, as in the game’s predecessor, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey.
“Yeah — there’s a lot of romances to have that can be found all over the map,” McDevitt said, “and you can choose how to approach them any way you see fit.”
Valhalla is set in medieval England during the Viking era, and follows the conflict between Viking settlers and the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms. Medieval attitudes towards homosexuality were typically very hostile, with the death penalty often issued. Though little is known about Norse social customs, the Vikings prized masculinity and derided men who did not marry women as “fuðflogi” – men who feared the vulva.
Although Odyssey, which was set in ancient Greece, also allowed homosexual romances, downloadable content for the game initially required the player to marry and bear children in-game. However, under pressure from militant LGBTQ activists, the game’s publisher, Ubisoft, formally apologised and patched the game to remove this requirement.
“Reading through player responses of our new DLC for Legacy of the First Blade, Shadow Heritage, we want to extend an apology to players disappointed by a relationship your character partakes in,” said Jonathan Dumont, Odyssey‘s creative director. “The intention of this story was to explain how your character’s bloodline has a lasting impact on the Assassins, but looking through your responses it is clear that we missed the mark.”