Valheim RPG: Immerse yourself in the Viking Age
Put yourself in the shoes of a Viking and face death in this action-packed survival adventure with RPG elements, featuring high difficulty and construction options. We've played Valheim and in these impressions we discover everything that this PC video game, currently in early access, has to offer.
At this stage, survival games they have trouble surprising. We have seen almost everything, we faced all kinds of dangers, including a trip on the high seas in the fantastic Subnautica.
And yet here I am, ready to tell you how much fun I had fighting and dying in the dangerous world of Valheim. It's not original, it doesn't have to say "it's incredible", but it's catchy, more if you're playing with friends, already stupid, without realizing it, the hours go by while you fight, explore and build in its gigantic and ruthless open world, who makes good use of certain RPG resources to inspire you to advance in search of new challenges in his Viking universe, in which there is no shortage of bloodthirsty gods, giants capable of crushing you with a single blow, and other creatures typical of norse mythology.
"Valheim is very difficult. You will die a lot. And your friends will die a lot," warn those in charge. And yes, it can be a nightmare, especially playing solo, but even in death you always find a good story to tell your colleagues. I lost my life in a dungeon, or fighting a former monster, or I just tried to swim across a river and ended up drowning.
As I said, this game developed by Iron Gate It's not much different from what you see in other survival adventures, but it does something good, and it's a sense of progress; that you have more and more options to escape certain death, that with every new weapon you make, or house you build, new and previously unimaginable challenges open up before you, such as seeking out adventures aboard your Viking Boat.
And it's a rewarding experience that usually ends in tragedy, even if it doesn't mean you lose your smile. And I think that's one of Valheim's great strengths, having just released its early access to Steam.
Forge weapons and build houses in Valheim
The first time I went out to sea on a raft that I could not help but feel ashamed of, I fell into a hellish storm and ended up drowning. All my weapons, materials and trophies sank.
Farewell. A drama. But deep down I laughed, because it's ridiculously funny, so I ended up telling my fellow travelers, to whom something similar had happened to them. It was Valheim. It's yet another survival adventure with the usual options, but it has that rogue point of making you suffer with the stupidest things to the point of catching you with its tough Viking action of retro aesthetics.
If you've played other adventures of this style before, you can get an idea of what's in store for you.
Your first steps: build your own cabin.
Your journey begins in the most absolute misery dressed in rags that do not even protect you from the cold of the night. But you begin to explore, you gather wood, stones and almost immediately you already have an axe; and then a rudimentary club to protect yourself from the annoying monsters that come after you when night falls.
And without realizing it, you've built a simple log cabin with your own vegetable garden and pets, plus forges in which to melt metal that you will later transform into more and better weapons and defensive equipment.
Moving forward in Valheim is difficult, of course, but you always make a lot or little progress, so that your work doesn't become tedious. There's always something new to do, a new challenge, and when you think you've seen it all, you unlock a ton of new recipes with objects and structures you'll want to create instantly.
If you play with friends, this process is infinitely more fun and rewarding, because all together, in just a few minutes, you can build villages that lack nothing.
Alone, of course, it's slower, but even so, it hasn't been difficult for me except on rare occasions, when I was always missing something, forcing me to come and go looking for those cousin subjects.
What I like about Valheim is that he makes good use of his RPG essence, with missions that will confront you with fearsome bosses, or dungeons with hidden treasures inside.
It's precisely in these scenarios that you'll find some of the game's most valuable resources, so building and progressing isn't all about felling trees and chipping stones. It's about putting your life in danger, venturing into dangerous areas, and that's what makes you, in a way, always live with tension in your body.
I've already told you that Valheim is a game that likes to do bad things, and one of them is to send, at random, waves of enemies that will invade your house. Now imagine waking up on a stormy day and finding yourself surrounded by monsters here and there.
The first time it happened, it was clear to me: I ran away. And I learned my lesson. The walls, the stakes and all those other defensive elements They're not just there to make your village look cool, authentic Viking; they have a purpose, and mastering those details will help you survive the many dangers around you.
The fight at Valheim: honor and glory
Valheim managed to surprise me with its stimulating action and with the charm of all the options it offers. Its retro aesthetic, even if it leaves us with striking impressions, may make you think that Valheim is a simple game in which you only have to press the attack button to defeat any enemy.
Forget it. You need to master the art of blocking and dodging to escape death, because enemies will go for all of them from the first minute by attacking in groups without thinking twice. Also important to meet the rival not only because of the way they attack, but also because not all weapons cause the same damage.
Hit a skeleton with a club and you will dust it off; attack it with a sword and it will cost you more. And if I told you that hitting without rhyme or reason is not a good idea, it's mainly because of fatigue, because a few movements are enough to exhaust the Viking's energies, leaving him exposed to deadly attacks.
This situation worsens under certain conditions, such as when it rains, because it makes you exhaust your energy more quickly.
As you can see, there are small nuances that contribute to make the fight at Valheim a very interesting challenge, reaching its best moments in the final battles.
Discovering these rivals is already an elaborate mission, which includes simple puzzles based on the use of the objects around you. Burning the children of El Sabio, an ancestral being? Finding the answer was quite satisfying, and the reward came with the spectacular appearance of this gigantic enemy, with a Death Metal musical background that suits you brilliantly.
And it's hell! Because there are enemies everywhere, traps, explosions and everything you can imagine. You run, dodge, block, shoot with the bow, hit with the axe ... and for minutes you live in constant tension, knowing that failure could cost you your life.
That's why I enjoyed this first contact with Valheim so much. I still have a lot to discover, even though I know I've only just scratched the surface.
Boss are varied and require different strategies.
The final bosses I faced are varied and require you to adopt different combat strategies, but I also enjoyed the exploration. His open world is huge, and always different, as it is procedurally generated with each new game.
That's why it's appreciated that there are constructions such as portals, with which you can travel from one place to another without endangering your life; or cars, indispensable for exploring by dragging tons of material behind your back. There are many options, but at least in those first few hours you don't feel overwhelmed or exhausted by the climb up and down.
If you find that balance, with your boat trips, battles, dungeon exploration and other mysteries, fans of survival adventures are sure to enjoy the trip. Because with an RPG point it feels really good. Same as The Elder Scrolls saga, the more you use a weapon, the more skilled you will be with it; but this also applies to actions such as running, swimming, cutting down trees, jumping, etc. Again, the progression is enjoyable and always grateful, even if it is sometimes a nightmare.
Defeating big bosses and other enemies also rewards you with unique abilities that allow you to temporarily improve some of the protagonist's skills, such as resistance to fatigue or the strength of his blows, which is excellent in multiplayer games, where a team of Vikings can coordinate to defeat monsters strategically.
A total of ten players can join, who if they wish, can also kill each other without compassion. I insist, this is not particularly original, but Valheim managed to surprise me with his stimulating action, and with the charm of all the options he puts in your hands.
If it even forces you to ferment certain foods or resources to create nutritious dishes or powerful potions. And even with this particular retro aesthetic, it is capable of surprising you with some of its moments. It has a long way to go, but Valheim has what it takes to guide us to Valhalla.