Review by SynysterX
""Like Oblivion/Fable/Halo 2 or 3 and most likely not the last" ......"
Ok. First off, I'm 100% sure I am not the first guy to say this, not only of Gamefaqs.com but in any review anywhere you read. No matter what people tell you, there is no denying the fact AC is massively flawed game, which sounds really terrible at first but please bear with me and I'll explain. As you can see in my tagline it says, "Like Oblivion..." and onwards. Keep that tagline in mind as you read the review please.
Graphics - 9/10
There is do denying the fact that this does look like a next generation game, something that despite the two years since even the Xbox 360's release, it has only managed with maybe half a dozen titles. The Ps3 has been out in my native UK little over 6 months, and the vast majority of the titles I have bought, all look very next-gen. Ubisoft Montreal have obviously taken great care in the majesty of the task they set out upon, to bring the "Holy Land" to life, and they have succeeded. All the character models look very well detailed, however upon microscopic inspection, they are not as high quality as something in say, Gears Of War or Ut3, but nowadaws what is? However you'll hardly ever notice this as most of the time you will have panned the camera out so you can see the magnificient views, wherever you are. If you are riding Altair's horse along the coast near Maysayf admiring the mountains and lakes in the distance, or at the top of Acre's Grand Cathedral, everything you see in a more panoramic and natural view, looks breathtaking. There are the occasional graphical glitches, such as Altair freezing mid-jump, while everything else continues around him. However I recently updated my AC game, by downloading the latsest patch, and all glitches seem to have been ironed out, which is very good because now the game looks great running in 1080i on my TV, and nothing dissapoints. At least, in the graphics department.
Gameplay - 6/10
You might, if you have seen the demo's of AC thrown around on sites such as GameSpot UK and/or YouTube, be shocked to see this score. For the first two weeks that I owned AC I would have been, but it's like a curse that plagues Oblivion and the Halo series, and any game ultimately. To assasinate someone you are first given the location and task of killing the target in question, by Al Mualim, the head of your secret order. You then (at least in the beggining of the game) traverse the large sprawling valley of "The Kingdom" to reach one of the three cities, Acre, Jerusalem, or Damascus. Once in the chosen city you make your way to the Assasin's Bureau, acuire hints on where to investigate and you head off. You can acquire informationg several ways; Pickpocketing, Eavesdropping, Interrogation or Informer. That's it. After you have 3-6 investigations complete, off you go to assasinate your target eg. William Du Monferrat. You essentially rinse and repeat for each target, and while in the beggining of the game you won't care, as you bound from rooftop to rooftop, occasionally slipping and crashing to the ground, it gets repetetive, and around the time of my said assasination, you realise the horrible truth. There' s little variety in Assasin's Creed, which essentially in the one major flaw in the whole game, but then look at Halo, any of them, or any FPS shooter, there's little variety in these terms.
Be thankful then, that AC carries itself with a lot of style, the combat is fun and easy, but as would happen with any game worth it's salt, gets progressively harder. It is a beautiful thing, the combat in AC, because it's almost operatic as Altair elegantly swings and dives underneath foes before dispatching them with a Ballerina's grace. The major thing, as already said, is the lack of variety over all, but the quality of AC is so far above most games you will have played in recent times, you won't care too much. Too much.
Story - 9/10
The story, for the purposes of those who are using this review as a guide to make a decision, I won't reveal anything of the story that is actually a spoiler. The game doesn't (or does it?) take place in medieval times, but in a laboratory in New York, present day. You play a bartender called Desmon, a direct descendent of Altair. A secret orginzation has kidnapped you to read Altair's memories, via Desmond's DNA. All good, not entirely original but the execution and presentation is better than most wannabe - Hideo Kojima's. This is perhaps, besides the graphics, the game's ultimate saving grace.
Sound - 8/10
It's all fine, very high quality stuff, but there's a definite lack of variety. There is a set them for escaping from guards, and little else other than slight music confined strictly to Damascus, Acre and Jerusalem. More pieces, and for those pieces to, be a little more inspiring (a good example is the main theme from Oblivion, there's a lack of that here.)
Overall - 8/10
I'll give the game this score. It's because although at first, for the most part, being a really great game, the classic and most sought-after gameplay flaw rears it's ugly head. It's something that has plagued Fable, Oblivion and all the Halo games. After a few hours (around 5 or so) the excitement fades and you realise the lack of variety. However, if you are looking for one of the most immediately breathtaking games of recent years, pick this up NOW!
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 12/14/07
Game Release: Assassin's Creed (EU, 11/16/07)
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