5 Nov 2012

Monday Media Fun - The Third Creed

I’m running on the rooftops of Boston in 1700’s. I’ve inducted three men to my cause. As I land a particularly long jump, I scramble up onto the roof only to see my target. I summon my followers to cause a riot. The chaos forces my target closer to me. Lucky for me he escapes down an ally.

I jump the three story building, wrist blades extended. My aim is true and the force of gravity drives me and my blades onto my now vulnerable target. I get up, retract my blades and walk away.

Assassin’s Creed 3 is here folks.

First off I warn readers that my vague commentary is present for a few reasons.

1. The game is very long and I’ve yet to break past 30% of the game and I’m not even halfway through the main quest line. I put in over a dozen hours already and I’ve only just arrived in New York. When I get home today, I’ll complete the intro mission for New York.

2. The game has a major plot twist at the start of the game and I expect a few more as the game goes on.

When you start up this game you play an introduction set of missions as Haytham Kenway an English nobleman who comes to the American Colonies and starts setting into the motion the events that lead to meat of Assassin’s Creed 3.

Upon finishing this series of missions, around the two to three hour mark you switch to main target of the Animus; Ratonhnhaké:ton or his English alias Connor. There we get another set of tutorial style missions introducing us to new gameplay elements such as tree-parkour, hunting and skinning, and being a ship Captain. Of course this takes another couple of hours. Your partner will walk in the living room in a daze; exclaim in mumbles that it’s three in the morning.

The games pacing for some may seem slow but I never felt as the length of the game was padded. It’s long so far and the missions are varied. I’m still getting introduced to new gameplay elements this late in the game and I look forward to the various ways that they will be used in the main story line.

This was a major improvement from the last game, AC: Revelations, who introduced some awesome and different gameplay devices and mechanics only to ignore them in the main line or fail to fully explore them. It was the only game outside of the first AC that had an aftertaste of being unfinished. AC 3, does not have this issue.

The graphics are well done but the age lines are starting to show on the Xbox 360. The game looks great and the environments are brilliant. This game has the best facial animations in the in-game cut scenes I’ve seen in the series. The combat animations are looking great and smooth. The shadows and the odd pop-up are the only evidence of the age of the systems capabilities, heralding the start of this generation of consoles to an end.

The gameplay is one of the strengths of the series. Moving around was brilliant in the first game. It looked good but sometimes you missed your target or it was hard to pick your direction in a run. This has gotten better and better in each game. The organic tree jumping is very well done and the rock faces of mountains and hills look brilliant. Conner doing corner climbs is awesome to witness. Fighting doesn’t feel as tight as I like but the game is forgiving enough that I get away for the mistakes.

I love this series. Ezio’s story arc was brilliant and is an experience that gamers should grab hold of and enjoy. All three Ezio games really moved the story along and proved his importance to the mythology. Conner may not have the same force of character in terms of driving the plot but the guy is likeable enough. His impact feels minor compared to Ezio outside of being used to find the ‘Key’ mentioned by the present day characters in the story.

Speaking of which, I like running around as Desmond. I like exploring the chamber, the heist mission and how he’s reacting to the events around him. His father, William, voiced by John de Lancie does a great job on explaining the precursor race’s obscure speech.

How very Q.

If you are a fan of the series you’ll like the new and fresh direction. Ezio had a great run but his story had to end and it ended well. Altair story also ended in the last game but now this is a new block of stories.

The game is good. It’s not perfect but it’s awesome.

Rank of 4