Review by mvc2junkie
"Assasin's Creed Delivers What was Promised"
When Ubi Soft Montreal, responsible for the highly popular Prince of Persia series, announced Assassin's Creed, it promised an intuitive, stealth action game set in the crusades, with great graphics, story, and presentation.
The question is: Does it deliver?
After the major plot twist presented in the beginning of the game, you are thrown into the shoes of Altair, assassin living in the time of the Crusades, when the Holy Land is under siege by the Templars of the Vatican, as well as the armies of Britain and France. As Altair, you must regain your honor, and discover the conspiracy that threatens to tear the war apart at the seams, and could very well affect the modern world.
The story is deep, well thought, and the plot twist meshes with the story of Altair extremely well, and will leave you second guessing yourself at every step of the way. For those of you who are looking for the simple story of "gimme a gun so I can shoot", you may not be able to get into this game as well as most, but shouldn't prevent you from checking it out.
From the birds in the sky, to the light casting a shadow on Altair's hood, the graphics in this game are great. As you walk around the fully interactive city, you will rarely encounter slow down's, even as you peer from the hustling, bustling streets 20 stories above. That being said, Assassin's creed is a very pretty game.
Game play: 8/10
You may not be Ryu Hayabusa, jumping and bounding off walls as you decapitate enemies with your sword, and you are not Solid Snake, capable of diffusing every situation with a box or neat-o disguises, but Altair gets by just as well.
Your goal in Assassin's Creed is to interact with the public, not raise any attention, and at some points, kill your target in the middle of a crowd and fade away. This is easily done at most points, but at others, you will wish you had active cameo.
Given 5 simple weapons, long and short sword, fists, throwing knives, and a retractable blade, Altair must use these to kill targets in open areas, defend himself, and run away as to not get caught. While you are keeping a low profile, you can blend in with the crowd while pressing and holding the A button, so you look like monk, and no one will pay you any mind.
Perhaps the greatest flaw and lifesaver in Assassin's Creed is the Blend button. At any time you can walk up behind a guard, take his life, then hit the blend button, BOOM, no one cares. Sure they raise a ruckus over the dead body, but so long as you keep blend pressed, no one will suspect you, even if you kill the guard in front of a whole crowd. But this can also be a life saver should ever accidentally kill the wrong person, no one will suspect you, thus letting your mission proceed as it should.
Combat in Assassin's Creed should be avoided, but since at some point if you run down the wrong alley into a dead-end, you should be able to defend yourself. Given a short sword and a longs word, the only difference is the long sword is slower and more powerful in swinging attacks, while the short sword is faster and hits weaker. The main bread and butter of combat are your counter, which works when you press the correct button at just the right moment of an incoming attack. Using the counter can easily kill hordes of guards, while all you have to do is play the waiting game. Combat is fun, although killing someone right and running is generally more of a thrill than sitting around waiting for an attack.
Assassinations generally involve your throwing knives and extendable blade. The throwing knives work well when killing from afar, and the extendable blade is satisfying on every silent kill. I wish there were more killing animations, but what is given is good enough. The jumping to assassinate is difficult and clunky to use, you can never time it right, and sometimes you overshoot, alerting everyone around you. Main target assassinations are a thrill to plan and execute, but the "run away" after every assassination can become intense.
That being said, game play is fun, with a few minor flaws, nothing that should prevent you from trying out the game.
After completing the main game, you can go back and finish all the side quests, as well as full access to the cities. No unlockables, no hidden extras, and no extra targets. But it should still warrant a play through to see if you can try some of the assassinations in different ways. But not many people enjoy doing that.
Assassin's Creed is fun, unpredictable, and a thrill ride at every corner. A few minor flaws, but it is an excellent game that takes players on a wild ride that they are sure to want to try again and again
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 11/15/07
Game Release: Assassin's Creed (US, 11/13/07)
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