Review by master_bp
"You can do it again and again, and you will have to, and you will enjoy it!!!!"
Stabbing gobs of bad guys is always fun in any game, and you will get plenty of opportunity to do so in Assassin's Creed. Over and over and over and over and over again. As a matter of fact, its a good thing that Ubisoft threw in a fine story, outstanding graphics, a very user-friendly interface and a tutorial that never seems to end that makes this game so much more than repetitively stabbing the bad guys. But make no mistake, the bulk of the game is doing just that.
I wrote the above paragraph specifically to address the main criticism made of this game, and that is the repetitiveness. Yes, its true, the game is repetitive. Very repetitive. Over and over again. But so what? How many hours in a row do you intend to play this one game? Do you intend to do the minimum of gameplay necessary to complete the title, or would you like to walk around, explore the scenery and do a few "extra" things between stabbing gobs of bad guys?
If you have little patience, then Assassin's Creed is not for you. Stop reading. Get yourself some other game, go read some other review. Its that simple. If you do have some patience and are willing to do some of the same things over and over again, and not try to beat the game in 2-3 days, then please read on......
Assassin's Creed takes place in the times of the Third Crusade. At least that is where the gameplay is done, as it is actually a sort of genetic-memory recall that is forced upon your main character by some futuristic evil corporation that is holding you against your will. Supposedly your ancestor was this assassin during that time and held some sort of secret that this corporation wants. So they put you in this fancy Sci-Fi Virtual Reality contraption that makes you recall these genetic memories for the purpose of unlocking information that is important to this evil corporation. I won't spoil it for you as to what it is.
Essentially, the ancestor whose memories you are re-enacting is an assassin of the original assassin clan that fell out of grace with his brethren and is to redeem himself by killing off nine specific targets. The gameplay will take you to very detailed and believable locations such as Jerusalem, Damascus and others where you will spy on, pickpocket, eavesdrop and beat information out of people to get clues on your target and then go stick a knife or sword into them, conspicuously or inconspicuously.
The flow of gameplay is simple: Get your assignment, climb up some tall buildings (this is a LOT of fun, especially how you dive off of them into hay afterwards) to scope out the city, do the investigation, kill your primary target, escape, then report back to your master. This, interspersed with the aforementioned stabbing gobs of bad guys is 90% of the game. The rest of it is mainly talking to the scientists holding you against your will trying to figure out why you are going through all this.
The main features of this game are the incredible graphics, realistically sculptured environments, and sort of cinematic quality of the game. Assassin's Creed, to put very simply, is a masterpiece of historical fiction that happens to have some gaming in it. What this means to you is an experience that will not only spoil you, but anyone who happens to see you play it as well.
I will give the story a 9/10. It is only less-than-perfect because of the way it ended. I wanted just a little bit more closure and a little less mystery at the end.
I give the graphics a 10/10. The game is drop-dead gorgeous, no doubt about it.
Sound gets a 9/10. Everything was very believable, and those who have a surround sound system will not be disappointed. The only criticism I had was a lot of sound clips were played over and over again, where someone you are about to kill in one city seems to have the exact same voice and says the exact same thing as someone you just killed in another city. Ubisoft seems to have a habit of doing this (Play Red Steel and you will understand what I mean).
Controls get an 8/10. This is a very easy to use interface, but sometimes I think a little too simplified at times, making one feel a little less involved in the game than one might feel in other games. When you can block, counter, and deal a death blow all by holding in the right trigger and hitting the X button at the right time, you sometimes feel like the game is doing more of the fighting than you are. Make no mistake, this is great to watch, but I do feel like I am just a little less involved than I should be.
Gameplay gets 7/10. Like I said, the game can be repetitive. Its not so repetitive that it should not be played, but its just something to be aware of. Essentially the variety comes in the locations of the missions, the personalities of the people you work with and against, and the situations of the main assassinations.
The most fun parts of the game are jumping off of high buildings once you have surveyed the land, listening to the final dialog between you and your main assassination target, and doing things like standing in one place and killing so many bad guys at one time that eventually the last one or two of them, who were formerly chasing you, are now running in absolute fear.
The most challenging part of the game is the escape once you have hit your target.
And I will repeat once more, the only real downside is the repetitiveness. You stab gobs of bad guys over and over again. But like I mentioned in the tagline of my review:
You can do it again and again, and you will have to, and you will enjoy it!!!!
I recommend buying this game as opposed to renting, just so you don't feel rushed.
Lastly, I want to comment that while playing this game I did not change my mind at all about how I feel about any particular religion or culture. The game states clearly that it is a work of fiction in an historical backdrop in a disclaimer before the title screen. And even though one might feel at first like its some sort of propaganda for or against a particular faith, if you can suspend that suspicion long enough to complete the game and see what the plot is really revolving around, I am very sure that you will agree that the game is not that at all. If it were, I certainly would not be giving it my recommendation.
Reviewer's Rating: 4.0 - Great
Originally Posted: 11/26/07
Game Release: Assassin's Creed (US, 11/13/07)
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