Assassin's Creed Valhalla: Wrath of the Druids

I spent more than 200 hours in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, and I even earned the Platinum Trophy in it (which is quite a grind). Needless to say, I really enjoyed the game. In fact, I even nominated it as a 2020 Game of the Year. Valhalla was great.

That said, there was a rock-balancing minigame — the dreadful Cairn Challenges — that could be a huge downer. Sure, the earlier challenges were easy-peasy, but when you get deeper into the game, they become quite maddening. In fact, I would argue that they were the hardest part of the entire game. And they’re not difficult in a satisfying way — you’re just stacking a pile of rocks, for crying out loud!

I should point out that as a mindless, peaceful puzzle activity, Cairn Challenges could have been a really nice way to break up the more strenuous activities in the game. But the later, mega-difficult challenges were frustrating and tedious for no other reason than to drag out what’s already a really, really big game.

Now that Wrath of the Druids, the game’s first substantial paid expansion, is out, we were all ready to move beyond the Cairn Challenges to something new and exciting. And to be fair, there’s some new stuff to do in Wrath of the Druids — establishing trading posts, for example.

But Ubisoft didn’t seem to take notes from all the community Cairn-plaints. They certainly didn’t read my amazing article on them. With Wrath of the Druids, Cairn Challenges are back with a vengeance, folks!

Assassin's Creed Valhalla: Wrath of the Druids

In all fairness, I’ve been enjoying Wrath of the Druids so far. I was really missing the excessive amount of mindless treasure-hunting provided by the base game (no, I’m being serious here). But the fact that I’m going to be forced to endure more rock-balancing challenges is putting me on edge.

Come on, Ubisoft. When it comes to Cairn Challenges, I would prefer not to.

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