Review by JumpingRaptor
"A social kind of stealth now with improved "social""
When Assassin's Creed came out I could see what the developers where shooting for, a stealth game more dependent on blending in with the crowd and vanishing into society. This type of stealth was something I had never played before, Tenchu and Splinter Cell being my only stealth games. Sadly the first game had some rather horrible AI that prevented it's lofty goal...
Enter Assassin's Creed II and it's star Ezio.
ACII takes the social aspect of blending into the crowd and vanishing once you've struck and actually makes it succeed where it's predecessor failed. Where once lepers and beggars made you stick out like a sore thumb and alerted the nearest guard to you, now only exists the minstrels who you can shove out of the way with no repercussion. Where once the only safe way to traverse the city streets was to crawl along at the slowest speed available now lies the ability to put your running shoes to the test. Where once guards gave up once you got out of view and hid... they now... well ok somethings aren't fully fixed, but some guards do tend to poke hay stacks now... occasionally.
But enough of my praises, let me break it down with a non averaged scoring of graphics, game play, story, sound and fun factor.
Graphics: Easily enjoyable, pretty average really, no matter which system you get it for. My only complaint it that some of the hidden items blend in too well during the daylight hours. 7/10 (Lucy almost makes me want to raise the score, but I'm not that petty... perverted maybe, petty most certainly not.)
Game play: Combat is very fluid, but unfortunately has few animations for all the different weapons. The free running in the game is itself strong and well done, but the camera and Ezio's insane need to run towards walls you aren't always aiming for can get to be a problem. Upgrades for your different ammo and medicine pouches are available, even at a discount if you have your villa up and running smoothly. Your villa itself earns you the money to buy most things in the game which adds an interesting layer to the game. All in all game play is mostly solid with a few flaws in combat and camera control. 8/10
Story: Whooo a double fun part here since you got two stories. First off is Desmond's story continuing RIGHT after the end of AC 1. It's pretty short and we only get back to it 3 times for the whole game, but it is very intriguing to see how Desmond's slowly becoming an assassin himself and realizing the need for his skills. The game proper is Ezio's story and WOW is it cliched filled and FUN. the first half is built upon slaughtering those who killed your family, but slowly bleeds into a conspiracy of pretty nasty proportions. I almost can't say too much without spoiling it, but the story alone is worth the game if you ask me. 9/10
Sound: Again pretty average, some voice acting could be improved upon, and the heavy Italian accents almost make me wish they had just done everything in Italian with subtitles. At least that way the Ingalish wouldn't bother me. Yes I just made that up. No I'm not trying to offend people. It's like Engrish, but with Italian accents. 6/10
Fun Factor: Have I mentioned the vast amount of weaponry you get? Well it doesn't matter much since there are five basic weapons to use; Hands, small blade, Long Blade, Pummeling Weapons and your lovely Dual Hidden Blades (once you get them). Add in some throwing knives a new ranged weapons, poisoning and the ability to assault bards when no ones looking and you can keep yourself busy for a while. It's fun no doubt about that. 9/10
Final Score: 9/10
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 11/23/09
Game Release: Assassin's Creed II (US, 11/17/09)
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