Norse Mythology

Thunderstruck 2 valkyrieThe Thunderstruck 2 slot is inspired by Norse Mythology- that rich body of myths and legends from a North Germanic people that was born from the flames of Northern European paganism and developed well after the peoples and tribes of Scandinavia were converted to Christianity. You could say the Norse gods are in their blood. They certainly spilled enough!

The stories weave a rich tapestry of blood-thirsty gods, mortals, heroes and villains that are equal to the ancient Greek myths and which were passed down through the generations through medieval scripts and folklore.

Gods such as the mighty hammer-wielding god and Protector Thor who rages against his enemies, including the one-eyed, raven-tamer god Odin who sits at the Great Hall Valhalla, the beautiful Nordic goddess Freyja, the spiteful goddess Skaði, who prefers the loneliness of the mountains in winter to the sea, Frey, whose power over the weather and farming skills bring peace and harmony to mankind, the goddess Iðunn, who grows apples that hold the secret of eternal youth, Heimdall who can hear grass grow and the infamous Loki, the bringer of chaos. These legends are the stuff that inspired the first Thunderstruck slot.

Did we say these tales were rich? Well, they are off the scale!

In Norse mythology there are Nine Worlds that surround a cosmological tree at their centre called Yggdrasil. The world is born from the body of the first living being Ymir, and the first people in the Cosmos are Ask and Embla. A fierce war called Ragnarok flares up between the gods and their foes, and the world burns to ash to be reborn as a green and fertile world which Ask and Embla populate. 

The Norse myths were told in Old Norse, a North Germanic language spoken by population of Scandinavia during the Middle Ages. Modern languages such as Danish, Norwegian and Swedish all developed from old Norse. Most Old Norse texts were written in Iceland, where the folklore and myths that were spread around the fires were written down in the 13th Century. Important texts include the Prose Edda, written in the 13th century by Snorri Sturluson in around 1200, and the Poetic Edda, a series of poems pulled together (also  in the 13th century).

The Aesir are gods that were thought to be the source of war, power and death while the Vanir were gods responsible for fertility. Asatru is the religion of the Norse. Underpinning all of this folklore is the belief that the destruction of the gods is written in the stars when the great war Ragnarök is unleashed. 

These beliefs are what made the Vikings such a feared race. These Germanic people were supreme warriors who were fighting for the very survival of their gods on the battlefield. This game them deep reserves of courage- they were fearless.

The great Norse warriors  believed in the concept of Valhalla. When slashed and injured fighting their opponents, they believed their gods would heal them so that they could return and fight for them another day. Valhalla is where the slain go.

The Nine Worlds
According to the Norse Myths, there are 9 worlds that are split into three levels.

Asgard, the home of the Aesir is on the first level along with Vanaheim, the home of the Vanir and Alfheim of the Light Elves.

In the middle level is Midgard, or "Middle Earth", where humanity lives. You can travel from Midgard to Asgard along Bifrost, or The Rainbow Bridge.

You also have Jotunheim, the home of the Giants, Svartalfheim, where the Dark Elves, Nidavellir, the home of the Dwarfs, Niflheim and Helheim- where the dead live.

Muspelheim is the home of Giants and Demons.

Yggdrasil: The Life Tree of Life
In the centre of Asgard, the home of the Gods is Yggdrasil: the tree of life. It´s branches shade and protect the 9 worlds and reach up into heaven. One of Yggdrasil´s roots is in Asgard, which serves as a daily meeting place for the gods.  Another root extends down to Jotunheim, the land of the giants, a 3rd heads down to Niflheim and so on.

The Valkyries
One of the legends that feature in the Thunderstruck 2 slot are the Valkyries.These female warrior virgins, ride into battle on horses and it is they who choose who will be slain in a battle. They swoop over the battle in groups of six, nine, or thirteen and choose the slain warriors who will  to Valhalla.

The other warriors will travel to the goddess Freya who has the first pick of the fallen fighters. You can set eyes on a Valkyrie when she takes the form of beautiful swan, but if spy a Valkyrie without her disguise, she becomes a mortal and can never go back to Valhalla.

In the centre of the world, in the skies is Asgard: the home of the gods and goddesses. The males are known as Aesir, and the femaleAsynjur. Odin is the supreme ruler of Asgard, and the head of the Aesir. His wife is Frigg, the Queen of the Aesir. Inside Asgard is Valhalla where slain Viking warriors, or Einherjer, enjoy the afterlife.