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  • firerwolf113
    Original poster 10 posts

    I’d like to start by saying that I love Valhalla. Gameplay, characters, and the aesthetics of the game are all amazing. There’s really only one thing about the game that bothers me, and I wouldn’t write anything about it except that it’s a frustrating problem that there’s no real excuse for. Simply put the problem is that there are far less male options to romance. In the base game there is only one long term male romance which is not impactful to the story while there are two women who can be romance long term, one of which his story important. On top of that there are two men who will turn you down while no woman will turn you down in romances. Furthermore in the new DLC there are three romance chances, all of which are women making it an even a wider gap between the two gender’s availability. This is actually fairly common in video games but the reason why it bothers me at all with Valhalla is because of what happened with Odyssey. They made a big thing about wanting everyone to feel equal and like they have control over their character but then Valhalla is not equal at all. Including the fact that in Wrath of the Druids Eivor is forced several times to make interested faces at the advances of women without a romance option being chosen. I’m hoping that in some way this can be improved in the second DLC. There is a chance to try to make sure that things are actually equal for all or at least to take it into consideration. It says a lot about this game that this is the only real complaint I have but I believe this game can do better and more to make everyone feel welcome and equal.

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  • kreutzgang
    635 posts

    @firerwolf113 Funny, as usually it's guys complaining there are no female options, or that men hit on their male Eivor (which really doesn't actually happen). The problem is really, that it's not an actual RPG where players have proper freedom of choice. Female Eivor is canon, and she seems to be supposed to be a lesbian or bi, hence other options are tagged on to shut players up. The only proper option is Randvi, and that one feels mega obnoxious if you are playing male Eivor.

  • Sam_Boo26
    175 posts

    @firerwolf113 My Eivor remained single because the only interesting "romances" for me ended up being flings. I really wanted Vili to be a permanent romance option because I love childhood friends trope, and I would have liked to romance Hytham too. More characters important to the story should be romance options, and I also think the number of male and female romances should be the same.

  • katzenkrimis71
    233 posts

    Usually it's guys complaining there are no female options, or that men hit on their male Eivor (which really doesn't actually happen).

    ===

    What do you mean it doesn't happen?

    Men hit on Eivor in this game. Not as bad as they do in Odyssey, with characters like Alkibiades, but they do hit on him.

    Just a few days ago a guy was asking me to play with his 'sword'.

    Unless you mean that men aren't complaining about it when it happens, in which case I agree. I don't think men really care who is hitting on them in a video game, as long as it isn't persistent and annoying from start to finish. Like Alkibiades. That guy was the most persistent and annoying gay character in a video game.

    Men are like sex maniacs when it comes to video games. When Cyberpunk was released I couldn't believe how many of them were complaining that there wasn't enough sexual content. Cyberpunk's ESRB rating is M 17+.

    Surely men can't be that stupid. Buying video games that are made for seventeen-year-olds and expecting hardcore sex.

  • kreutzgang
    635 posts

    @katzenkrimis71 Nah I mean it actually doesn't happen. The only character that hits on you is Torben, and I'm pretty sure you have to encourage it. Plus even if they did who cares? It happens. What's actually disturbing is when the game forces your own character to flirt with people you don't want them to.

  • firerwolf113
    Original poster 10 posts

    @kreutzgang I agree that that's how it feels like it is but just as with Odyssey they state that there is no canon for the sexual preferance of Eivor. They actively changed Odyssey to suit people who were upset at a hetero "romance" in the DLC so it's not that crazy to ask for this game to treat all sexualities as equally if they really mean that they want there not to be a canon sexuality. Also bisexuality still means liking dudes.

  • firerwolf113
    Original poster 10 posts

    @sam_boo26 The same goes for my Eivor. It's dissapointing that Vili wasn't a long term if he comes back to the settlement and Hytham seemed like the easy romance to pair with the option of Randvi. It just feels like there was less interest in putting effort into the men you can romance and no effort to make it actually equal in number.

  • kreutzgang
    635 posts

    @firerwolf113 They changed it? I played as gay Alexios and was forced into a hetero relationship involving getting a kid and there was another quest with some woman who my Alexios turned down every opportunity, yet at the end she "ditched" him. I actually think Odyssey was a lot worse in that respect, though Valhalla can still top it in coming DLC's, as it gave you the impression you could be gay if you wanted to and then ruined it with those quests. I also played Valhalla as gay Eivor, and the options are next to none. It's basically Torben and a handful of flings, but I've just decided I don't care about romances in AC games anymore - it's an exercise in frustration since they are not proper RPG's. .

  • firerwolf113
    Original poster 10 posts

    @kreutzgang They changed it in that they slapped a label of romance on the option to ask them not to leave as if there had been any romance before, and made a change to dialogue that spells it out like people are dumb that the baby is just to continue the blood line and there's no romantic attachment. And all that was changes only made because people were upset about Kassandra getting with a dude, never saw Alexios mentioned in the discussion. Yeah, the final lost tale was sort of a smack to the face particularly after the changes to the DLC because there's this woman hitting on you, even when you keep choosing nonromance options, and then the quest just has her keep talking like you romanced her. Playing a straight Kassandra that was annoying. It's along the veins of them forcing my straight Eivor to look interested when Ciara makes passes at her or that random woman at the start being auto flirted with. The thing is that if they're going to put in romance options it doesn't seem like it's a lot to ask for the effort. They clearly put in effort for the female romances. Like it's not crazy to ask that gay men and straight women have options if they're going to pretend that's a feature to the game. I wish I could not care but it's not just about AC for me, I just think that they should be pushed to improve like all developers should on this matter.

  • lemmie88
    309 posts
    I've just decided I don't care about romances in AC games anymore - it's an exercise in frustration since they are not proper RPG's.



    I'm in the same boat. Tbh, I say yes to pretty much everybody in the game because it matters so little, I just let Eivor enjoy life.
    The idea of insisting it be equal in number seems a bit odd to me. Like reminds me of when my mom would count out cookies so my brother and I got equal portions. imo, the quality of the character and interactions are much more important. In that respect, I think only Vili and Randvi fit the bill. But in any case, romance seems more an afterthought in the game, which I think is perfectly fine for AC.

    I guess I don't know what makes a game an RPG. There are games where you create your own character and your decisions shape the world around you (fallout, cyberpunk, etc). And there are games where you role-play as a particular protagonist and live out the experience through their eyes (witcher, zelda) and your romance options are typically a lot more limited. It actually seems like Ubi has two camps: One that wants a strong, iconic protagonist. And one that wants you to create your own character (prob so they can sell you cosmetics). Instead of one winning out, they make this confusing mess where you don't get either.

  • firerwolf113
    Original poster 10 posts

    @lemmie88 How is it odd to want equality when they're romances that Ubisoft makes. It's like giving every kid the same number of cookies, not portions. And there's no reason two kids shouldn't be given the same number of cookies. And Randvi is not comparable to Vili. Vili is one arc and is a fling romance at the end of the game while Randvi is met like ten minutes into the game and is there for the entire game and key to major parts of the game, and a long term romance. I would agree that men being romancable seems like an after thought but with how major several of the female characters you can romance are pushed those don't feel like afterthoughts.

    An RPG is mainly designated by levels, loot, skills, which Valhalla does have. It's Ubisoft that has made romance, and supposedly freedom of choice in romance, part of their RPG.

  • kreutzgang
    635 posts

    @firerwolf113 yep, gay male Eivor also gets to leer at Ciara as though he fancies her. I do like her personally, but since my character is a gay guy, he wouldn't be flirting with her unless he was a jerk xD

    @lemmie88 In Odyssey, I just ended up letting Alexios go with the flow of what he was clearly "supposed" to be doing. Not something I liked at all, but I still prefer it to him being a complete ** and just using someone to procreate. I don't think the "choice" between suddenly no longer being gay for no reason or turning into an abusive ** are reasonable choices at all.

    A "proper" RPG is one where you have freedom of choice and nothing is overwritten by a "canon" storyline. As we are on about romances here, I'll stick to that so as not to get too off-topic. For AC there would be no obvious suggestion that you are supposed to be romancing Randvi, for instance, your character would never flirt with people off their own back or be forced into relationships you didn't want, and there'd be at least one option for straight/gay/lesbian that had about the same effort put into them. One way to do that easily is to make all romanceable characters player-sexual - as in you have x characters that can be romanced and they will romance the player irrespective of your gender choice - but that seems to irritate a lot of people, and to not have people moaning, you'd need a more or less equal no. of males / females and try to make them somewhat diverse. The more restricted this is, the less of an RPG it is, but if you start offering options, people expect them to be respected. I have no problems at all playing Geralt as a straight guy, but if I'm given the option to be a gay guy and take it, I expect not to be forced into heterosexual relationships. I'd say an example of a proper RPG would be Skyrim, as you can do basically anything you want and be anyone you want; beyond the suggestion in the ads that male Nord is the main character I don't recall anything anywhere suggesting who you are playing is somehow not the proper choice. OFC the romances in that game are absolutely rubbish unless you download mods, but still - haha. Even Dragon Age, which tends to get praised a lot for letting people be gay/bi or whatever, has canon choices and canon romances, where in Inquisition you are obviously supposed to be a female elf and romance Solas, but at least the other romances are fleshed out enough so as not to come across as half-arsed attempts to shut people up and your character doesn't start flirting with people unless you actually decide they should be doing so etc. If that's the case I'd rather just play the premade character than be given a choice that's then overridden or made to feel wrong.

  • firerwolf113
    Original poster 10 posts

    @kreutzgang First off what happened with Odyssey is sort of what I want them to avoid here. The entire thing with the second chapter of Legacy of the First blade was a mess and in the end ended up slapping almost everyone in the face. They didn't go back and make an actual romance for the straight pairings and didn't go back and have your character establish any real desire to carry on their bloodline or even wish for a child. But the very fact that they went back to try to change it at all makes the fact they didn't seem to learn from that for valhalla confusing.

    Also Dragon Age doesn't have a canon anything so that's not a good example. Elf inquisitor or even Solas romance aren't canon. Dragon Age II is actually the best example of it being done right. There was an even number of romances, either gender could romance either, and all of them were good romances.

  • Ken_Koerperich
    69 posts

    Why can't we have more than 1 at a time also??? Or if we can, I haven't figure out how yet, and those who flirt w/ us, I haven't figure out how to bed yet either.....

    What gives???

  • kreutzgang
    635 posts

    @firerwolf113 Dragon Age does have canon, though idk if they call it that - it's reflected in the books, comics and default world states (and also in dead people being alive).

  • Cell1e
    174 posts

    @firerwolf113

    Im not so keen on Valhalla as I was the previous games, Valhalla just missed the mark for me in too many ways to mention here and now but I have to heartily agree with you, the males to romance are seriously lacking in this game. Tarben just felt so neglible and unimportant to the story and game, vili was very interesting and sweet and the fact they had so much history and perhaps 'love' between them, I felt sad he wasnt a potential mate for Eivor, at least he turned up to many of the important battles to support Eivor.

    I have to say feeling a connection with any of the characters was really hard, I felt Eivor was away so much and had very little real and emotional moments with her clan mates for any of them to really matter to her in the long run.

    But I think in Valhalla they tried to do too much, perhaps if they invested more time and energy in a few areas of the game instead of trying to make it such an 'all rounder' with a bit of everything.

    I love romances in games but if you are going to do them, do them right or not at all. Otherwise they are meaningless.

  • Garbo3
    780 posts

    @firerwolf113 I couldn't agree more. The only interesting charismatic guy is Vili,but is not long term,so had to stay with Tarben but oh ,he's dull and plain. The only advantage about being in a relationship with him is he sucks at playing dice ,so is good to do the dice weekly challenges.

    And yes,DLC you are forced to flirt with 2 women wich I didn't like at all. spoiler I never liked her and hated all the repetitive flirts .

  • firerwolf113
    Original poster 10 posts

    @cell1e Valhalla could have really benefited from the same things as the Lost tales of Greece but like Tails from Ravensthorpe that are just Eivor helping and interacting with the local people. Or even just including the village people in the festivals they keep running. They made some great mystery quests, just do that in Raventhorpe. I didn't have a problem really feeling a connection with characters but I was left wanting for interactions. If all the important characters, Gunner, Hytham, even Sigurd, got missions like Randvi's I would have been supper happy.

  • firerwolf113
    Original poster 10 posts

    @garbo3 Vili was the best man you could romance but there were tons of great male characters that could be romanced, and they just didn't make any of them. Personally Tarben is not a good option to me because I like romances where the characters have things in common and he's a pacifist while you're a warrior. There are plenty of charismatic and interesting men who Eivor has way more in common with. I didn't mind Ciara, I'm sort of used to having my straight female character be forced to be flirted and interested in female NPCs against my will. I played Odyssey after all. Though after Odyssey it strikes me as more frustrating that they did it.

  • Cell1e
    174 posts

    @garbo3 Yes diappointed there, I really felt a bit creeped out by the flirty looks my straight Eivor was giving Ciara, I went with the flirtation out of curiosity really but I cant see how people say Eivor is cannon female, someone should tell the devs because the only true romances in this game is for straight male Eivor or gay female Eivor.

    I think Ubisoft have a ways to go before they are up to Biowares or even CD Project Reds character and romance development.

    Oh yes and Tarben, and the creepy face my Eivor had when she would say 'I'm perfectly happy here' That 'coy' line is really weird for me. Poor Tarben, lovely fella but so lacking interest and excitement for my Eivor. just no connection there. Didnt know you could play dice with him, I thought the activities would be fishing and I seriously didn't want to go fishing with the baker. Hehe.

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