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Assassin's Creed Valhalla: Marketing Campaign Breakdown

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Updated 16/5/20                               By Colum Blackett                               Edited by Ashlea Buckley

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Assassin's Creed Valhalla releases Holiday 2020, and we here at TOWCB will be covering everything released to promote the game during the campaign:

Here you will find the highs and the lows, all in one place!

 

Back in 2018, we covered the campaign for Assassin's Creed Origins, arguably one of the best in recent times.

You can find the finished article here

This article will be updated regularly.

About the Author

Col is the Community Admin for The Ones Who Came Before, and one of the UK Assassin's Creed community ambassadors.

He is also a former Ubisoft Star Player, and has spent the last 5 years working within the Assassin's Creed community on countless projects.

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Colum Blackett

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The Assassin's Creed Community are raising

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                            Donate here

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29/4/20 - The journey began with an announcement by Boss Logic, a concept artist teasing a big reveal on Twitter. Later that day, Ubisoft social media accounts announced that fans could tune in to a livestream to see the live reveal of the next Assassin's Creed game setting.

The reveal was in the form of an 8 hour long art demonstration, an innovative and creative way of showing fans the setting of the next Assassin's Creed game. For the project Ubisoft hired BossLogic to create something special, which he did exceptionally well.

Although the reveal took 8 hours to complete, it's fair to say that it was one of the most unusual game reveals of recent times, showing incredible initiative during lockdown.

The very end of the teaser revealed that fans could tune in the next day (30th April) at 5 CEST to see the World Premiere of Assassin's Creed Valhalla.

30/4/20: The World Premiere Cinematic Trailer for Assassin's Creed Valhalla dropped, and the response was generally positive. In the trailer, the new character Eivor (male version) was shown to be more than just a brutal warrior, as he leads his clan to the Kingdoms of England. New enemy types are seen, with Eivor exploiting weaknesses to defeat them. The new hidden blade was also revealed, this time being worn on the forearm rather than wrist. King Alfred of Wessex makes an appearance, signing a declaration of war against the Vikings.

After the trailer, Ubisoft updated the Assassin's Creed and Ubisoft websites to feature the game, where we got screenshots, keyart, merchandise and more! It was revealed that Eivor would be male and female, depending on player preference.

Magnus Bruun (The Last Kingdom) revealed on Twitter that he would be playing Male Eivor in the game, another announcement that was well received.

One issue that slightly tarnished the strong start was the fact that female Eivor did not get the same treatment as her counterpart, and was revealed through a figurine which the voice/mo-cap performer Cecilie Stenspil used to make her own announcement on Instagram. 

Other than that though, it was a strong start to the campaign, and pre-orders began flooding in with fans eager to secure their copy.

2/5/20 - Several news outlets released articles and videos covering Assassin's Creed Valhalla, some of which featured members of the development team. You can find the articles below, but here is our round-up of the information released

A breakdown of the trailer was also released, featuring Creative Director Ashraf Ismail and Narrative Director Darby McDevitt.

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Video by JorRaptor

9th century England is the perfect setting for Assassin's Creed Valhalla

PC Gamer

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Historian Talks Assassin's Creed Valhalla's Women Warriors, Vikings Culture, And More

GameSpot

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We spoke to Assassin's Creed: Valhalla's Creative Director Ashraf Ismail and got all the new game details

Press-Start

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Assassin's Creed Valhalla's Narrative Director On Crafting A Unique New Story

GameSpot

3/5/20 - Secret code deciphered by fans:

It seems that the newly updated Assassin's Creed website was hiding a secret code, and members of the community managed to solve it! 

 

Twitter user LaRedDeErudito and a friend translated the message using a set of runes! 

 

 It turns out that the secret message was actually a verse from a famous Norse poem: "Hávamál - sayings of the high one", a series of shorts poems attributed to Odin. 

"Cows die, kinsmen die, so must die oneself the same. But I know one thing that never dies, each dead man's judgement"

Impressive work!                                                      Article

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6/5/20 - Gameplay Trailer announced

The Ubisoft and Assassin's Creed social media accounts shared a video of Ashraf Ismail, announcing the release of the Gameplay Trailer during the Xbox Series X Gameplay first look livestream which would air on the 7th May.

After the announcement, expectations were set high, and fans were looking forward to seeing gameplay at the event. It was made clear by Ashraf on Twitter that the livestream would feature a teaser trailer, rather than a gameplay demo like some fans were expecting. Unfortunately, only a small number of fans saw the tweets.

7/5/20 - Xbox begin the stream:

 "It’s time for your first look at next-gen gameplay from our global development partners with the Xbox Series X."

The stream started, and it featured trailer for new games using in-game footage rather than unedited gameplay. AC fans had to wait until the very end for the teaser, and it was similar to the other teasers: A first look, rather than actual gameplay, like Xbox and Ubisoft had promoted.

 

The backlash was seen immediately, as many felt that the event had not met their expectations. Downvoting the video started immediately, and it was clear from the online comments that fans were unhappy with the lack of actual gameplay.

Other fans also voiced their disappointment once more that Male Eivor had been the focus, when both versions of the character are canon.

ed using in-game 

8/5/20 - Ashraf issues a statement in response to the Gameplay Trailer reception

8/5/20 - Aaron Greenberg (Xbox Marketing) admits that Xbox set the wrong expectations for the event, and that the feedback will be taken back to the team so that improvements can be made in future.

You're up to date!

Let us know what you want to see next from the marketing campaign in the comments!

11/5/20 - Ubisoft announced 'UbiForward', a digital event taking place on July 12th. Fans can look forward to  exclusive game news, reveals and more.

12/5/20 - 30 FPS concern

In an article with Eurogamer Portugal, a Ubisoft rep commented on the potential frame rate for Assassin's Creed Valhalla on Xbox Series X, stating that the game will run at a minimum of 30fps.

Ubisoft eleaborated on the comments to GamesRadar, stating that "Assassin’s Creed Valhalla will run at a minimum of 30. On Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, we are committed to offer the best experience to our players by immersing them in the most beautiful worlds and environments we could create, and leveraging not only the graphics enhancements offered by the next generation of consoles, but also faster loading times and the new architectures."

Numerous news outlets covered the topic, but focused on the fact that the company did not promise a dedicated 60 fps, most likely as the game is still in development.

Games Radar: Assassin's Creed Valhalla might only be 30 FPS on Xbox Series X, and that's not good enough

VG24: Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is 30fps on Xbox Series X

Ars Technica: Some Xbox Series X games won’t hit 60fps “performance target

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11/5/20 - Soundtrack Composers Leaked

The German Ubisoft Store listed the Assassin's Creed Valhalla Composers: Jesper Kyd, Sarah Shachner and Einar Selvik. The leaked information was covered by numerous news outlets and even other Assassin's Creed communities, despite a previous tweet by Ashraf Ismail that a proper announcement would be made.

The following day, 12/5/20, Ubisoft officially confirmed the news with a new article which can be found here.

The news was met with thunderous applause, as fans wee exited to see the return of two Assassins' Creed legends, and the introduction of Einar Selvic to the series, who worked on the soundtrack for the Vikings TV show.

13/5/20 - Launcher Live Interview

Assassin's Creed Valhalla Creative Director Ashraf Ismail joined Launcher Live (Washington Post) for an online video interview, which covered a range of topics.

Looking at the chat, it was clear to see the hype fans were feeling for the upcoming entry. #OdinIsWithUs

You can watch the full video here, and see a breakdown of the new information here.

14/5/20 - Valhalla breaks Ubisoft record 

In an earnings call, Ubisoft chief financial officer Frédérick Duguet revealed that the Assassin's Creed Valhalla announcement trailer got 100 million views in its first 10 days across multiple platforms, making it the most viewed trailer in Ubisoft history!

Articles covering the news:

Assassin's Creed Valhalla trailer was Ubisoft's most watched ever

Assassin's Creed Valhalla Set New Records for Ubisoft

15/5/20 - Ubisoft begins Dev Diary videos

The first Dev Diary featured Creative Director Ashraf Ismail, and covered social stealth in the upcoming title. You can watch them all below.

Assassin's Creed is a registered trademark of Ubisoft Entertainment

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