Like Odyssey, Assassin's Creed Valhalla (opens in new tab) will let you traipse around its big ol' open world as either a male of female hero, but unlike its predecessor you won't be locked into that decision.
Where Odyssey—and Syndicate—made its playable assassins siblings, in Valhalla you always play as Eivor, and you pick their gender at the start. Ubisoft has confirmed, however, that you'll be able to change it whenever you want.
"You can decide to play male or female", game director Eric Baptizat told GamesRadar (opens in new tab). "[But], you are allowed to change, at any time, your skill tree or the gender of your character—you can swap at any time."
This would have made less sense in its predecessor, where the sibling you don't pick becomes an antagonist. What's interesting, though, is that this choice does have an impact on the narrative, according to Baptizat. It's not just a different character model and voice actor. It's still just one story, though.
"It was important to make this option available for the player. It’s something that the player can decide for the way they want to play, because it has some impact on the narrative—but it’s not two different stories. It’s the same story of the character—whatever options your character decides."
Baptizat adds that the team want players to "experience all the possibilities of the game." It's definitely going to save me a headache. I loved playing Kassandra in Odyssey, but I did get a bit of FOMO. After I finished, I briefly considered starting a New Game Plus, but after 150 hours, I was pretty tuckered out. I was expecting to struggle with the choice in Valhalla, but it looks like I won't have to settle.
A November 17 release date was announced yesterday, and in the meantime you should check out Wes's Assassin's Creed Valhalla hands-on (opens in new tab) for more details.