Assassin’s Creed III: Review

Just a couple of days ago (on October 30) Assassin’s Creed III has reached the store shelves of the US markets and Xbox 360 as well as PS 3 players have a great opportunity to enjoy this masterpiece. As for the other platforms, Windows users are said to get the game on November, 20. Probably, it is too early to make some desperate conclusions but since the game has been out for a couple of days – it might be a good idea to share first impressions about the gameplay and new features that the new Assassin’s Creed offers us.

Plot and Atmosphere

Unlike all the previous games, this one will take you to a totally different place with a totally different beliefs and desires. You will appear on a territory across the ocean that in a couple of years will be called the United States of America. Of course, you won’t have time to walk around and enjoy sightseeing. But there is something better waiting for you – an opportunity to become a part of the US history. Of course, you shouldn’t expect to see your name in the history books but that is not your goal. You are an assassin and you need to stay unnoticed as long as possible. But history of every country is usually built on names that are never to be spoken again and it looks like you are the man. As for the enemies, you will have to fight pretty much everyone: redcoats, hunters, thieves, people that you do not like, guars, officers and Indians. Some of them will be pretty tough and other won’t require more than one perfect fighting combination.

During the game line you will visit all kind of places starting with wild forests and rocky mountains finishing at the great place called New York. Locations and the world around look very authentic. You do get a feeling that there is a second part of XVIII century right now with all its glory, beauty, hatred and rebellious moods. There is nothing that looks wrong in this game and it if you enjoy the glorious times of the War for Independence, by all means you are going to like what you see.

Character

You will start playing this game as Connor – a hot-tempered Native American who knows as lot about people and even more about the world around. He understands animals and talks with spirits. The good thing about Connor is that you will witness his growth as a man: from a little kid playing hide and sick to a troubled and rebellious young man ready to stand for his beliefs any second. And, of course, years later you will see him turning into a reasonable and vengeful man who knows what he is doing. Connor will become a part of the US history and the story line will put him in the middle of the Battle of Bunker Hill. At the same moment you shouldn’t expect him to be a 100% patriot as far as he has enemies on both sides. There is one thing that you are definitely going to like about the game: Connor is not the only character you will play, so brace yourself for a couple of pleasant surprises.

Historicity

Of course, there will be some historical inaccuracy but you need to remember that this is a game only and its main idea is not to recreate everything that happened hundreds of years ago. Its main idea is to surprise you with amazing game process, interesting plot, charismatic heroes and fun.  And I have to admit – they did it pretty well. Through the whole history of computer games, only a few of them took us back to the great times of American history formation and so far this is the best one.

For every American player there is a number of pleasant surprises waiting around every corner and if you are not going to enjoy them it means that you are not a true American. At a certain moment you will talk with Benjamin Franklin and will help him out with some of his inventions (by the way – this is one of the Xbox 360 achievements). Later on you will become a part of different battles like the already mentioned Battle of Bunker Hill. Also, you will be offered to play on the sea fighting with the British fleet which sounds more than just interesting. Of course, this is not the whole list of surprises and things like meeting the French allies as well as hearing out the inspirational speech of George Washington and lots of others should be added to your schedule (in case you want to become a part of them). But what I actually enjoyed is a part where you were supposed to control troops and fight the redcoats. Trust me – you will give everything to see how their lines become rear because of your aimed cannon shooting.

Game Process

Together with the new characters and cities you will enjoy a great number of innovations that can’t become unnoticed:

– now you can spend some time in the woods hunting animals, skinning them and then selling their skins in General stores;

– depending on seasons and parts of the day, characters, as well as your hero, will change their behavior and will be limited in some possibilities. For example, in the night it will be harder to notice you but during winter time, when it’s snowing, your hero will suffer from losing his speed and visibility;

– you can now climb trees and rocks;

– fighting system is totally different in Assassin’s Creed III: now you can take two different weapons in both hands and perform a lot more interesting and a lot more beautiful attacks and kills;

– at last your acrobatic skills do not require hundreds of buttons being pressed in a certain periodicity;

– a totally new weapon called Rope Dart that allows you to attack people when they walk under you and hang them in a very unexpected manner;

– the whole cities and people in them feel and look more alive. It does seem like every person is busy doing something in particular and is not just walking around doing something silly.

– now you can use your enemies as body shields;

– you can now handle animals and use them in your tricky strategy;

– you can now play mini games and get some cool things if you win;

– you can now set traps and use them to hunt animals or kill people;

– hiding possibility has been also changed: things like moving carriages can be used for stealth actions as well;

– a lot of attention has been paid to the plot and I am more than sure that you won’t be bored. All in all there are more than 2 hours of cut scenes that look very alive and show amazing actors’ play. There are also people that speak real ancient languages which adds another plus to the authenticity.

Multiplayer

I think that a Multiplayer mode requires a totally new thread with a totally different story to tell. Together with a mode “everyone is playing for himself” that will support up to 8 players, there will be a multiplayer campaign where you will have to act as a team in order to make things right and finish the mission. And unlike “everyone for himself”, here you will have to use strategy and tactics in order to illuminate someone or act fast to kill as many bad guys as possible. So, when you are done playing single player campaign, make sure you start getting familiar with the multiplayer cause it will be awesome.

Conclusion

Assassin’s Creed III is an amazing sequel of an amazing game. It has everything one would like to see in a modern masterpiece and all the favorite classics is packed in a shiny and interesting plot with charismatic heroes and historical interaction. Frankly speaking I was a bit skeptical about the time period and location: for some reason the War for Independence period has never been the most attractive time for players and developers but it looks like things are going to change thanks to Assassin’s Creed III. I surely want to see Connor or any other assassin fighting another war on the US territory and becoming a part of the US history.

Author: Oleg Repetskiy

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