Review by GrandWalrusKing

"Beautifully crafted, and addicting throughout!"

Assassin's Creed is a game that I, personally, have been anticipating since I first laid eyes on it. The promise of an enthralling world, with gorgeous visuals, engaging gameplay, and a story based on historical events was too good to pass up. Near release, the game started receiving mixed reviews and negative press. This made me wary of picking the game up. But after playing it, I can say that it's an essential game for owners of both the 360 and PS3, and that its high sales are quite deserving.

Audio: 8/10

There's something strange about the music in this game. You're so involved in playing, you don't even notice the beauty of it! When pacing through cities, you can hear the rhythm entwine around you. In the countryside, the tempo beats with the hooves of your steed. And in battle, your blade clashes with the beat. The game's music, ultimately, assists you in ascending into the action.

The sound effects are optimal. When swords cross in battle, you can hear the clashing. The sound made when assassinating adds to the mystery. And the cries of a fallen enemy are oh so sweet. My only complaint is that citizen's lines can get very repetitive, and that the sound of their chatter is cluttering and overwhelming rather than engrossing.

Graphics: 8/10

The graphics in this game can be a mixed bag. Originally, Ubisoft said that they were going to focus on the AI and reactions of the citizens rather than the graphics. They must have changed their mind, as this game is impressive throughout! The character models are surprisingly detailed, towers soar high with cracks and ridges, and the lighting just adds to the joy.

My only complaint is that civilian models get repetitive fast, and that natural features such as bushes seem like an afterthought.

Story: 10/10

*Beginning of game spoilers ahead*

I consider the story to be one of the strongest, if not the strongest, points of the game. The story starts out as Altair, the game's protagonist, is attempting a mission in a cave with his partners, His cocky attitude, however, ultimately leads him to many mistakes and has him fail the task. Upon return to his master, he tries to hide his failure, but the truth becomes revealed later. Altair is then stripped of his rank, and forced to start his career over again.

The game revolves around Altair rebuilding his reputation, as he goes through the three cities of Damascus, Acre, and Jerusalem to end a crooked, corrupt business.

There is also a certain sci-fi twist to the game, but you'll just have to find that out for yourself!

Gameplay: 9/10

Assassin's Creed would not be so addicting were it not for the things you do in it. The nature of the game can be separated into three different things: Assassinating/Fighting, scaling walls, and completing sidequests. Often times, when you're running through a city, you might bump into a guard. But, of course, they're not going to just sit there and take it! Before you know it, him and a number of other men will chase after you, ready to do battle! You have two choices: Run like hell and try to hide, which rarely works, or go and fight them. As you advance, fighting becomes easier and easier thanks to different countering techniques.

Assassination is useful, as it will allow you to quickly dispatch a guard without getting in trouble. And scaling walls is fun as well! Altair can climb just about anything, and he has the upper body strength of a chimpanzee. Climbing can help you get to viewpoints to update your map, or just help you get to a destination faster.

But ultimately, the addicting nature of the game comes down to the sidequests. The main three sidequests include interrogation, pickpocketing, and saving citizens. As you complete them, you can obtain new achievements and raise your health bar. Additionally, completing them can help you in your main quest, or just help you in general things (saved citizens will stop pursuing guards, for example).

Replay Value: 10/10

This title was made for a perfectionist. There are a great number of Xbox 360 achievements you can get, and there are also a lot of hidden tasks which you might miss the first time around
(collecting flags, killing templars, etc.). A player could just focus on the missions in their first play around, and then focus on achievements the next!

Conclusion: 9/10

Assassin's Creed is a must have title. The game has a great story, addicting gameplay, and many achievements to earn to boost that great ego-growing gamerscore. I, personally, have spent many an hour just goofing around in the cities, making this game borderline-sandbox for me.

But this section is straying from the main point: To conclude...

Pick up this game at your local game store today!

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 02/11/08

Game Release: Assassin's Creed (US, 11/13/07)

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