The first words that came out from my mouth when I tried the game were, “Wow, it’s bright and alive.”
I got the PS3’s copy of Assassin’s Creed 3 (AC3) on 30th Oct 2012. I sat in front of the screen for 11 hours straight right after I started playing the game for the first time. I had to force myself to stop playing AC3 for the day. The game was bright and you will find yourself loving the forest more than the city area, which was set in Boston.
The game takes place right after where Assassin’s Creed: Revelations (AC:R) left off. The group of modern day Assassins followed Desmond into the cave where The Ones Who Came Before had instructed him to. This time, we get to have Desmond’s dad to accompany us through the game. The group entered the temple where they set up camp and threw Desmond back into the Animus yet again (don’t we all know it already). Players will start out playing as Connor’s father and then as Connor himself. An engaging story for Desmond’s ancestor and it got me hooked. The single player was enough as the multiplayer section in the game seems like a bonus to me.
I have to give credit to the studios in Ubisoft from all around the world for making such a wonderful environment to free run, hunt and fight in. The forest was the best to play in as the greenery is a sight for sore eyes. Different timeline will bring different seasons. Different seasons will affect the character in some ways. For example, the winter can affect your mobility but summer provides hiding spots in abundance. Details in the game were well done. Some might argue that AC:R might have done better in terms of graphics compared to AC3 but the latter gives better performance speed and also a high level of graphic performance.
Speaking of the environments in the game, the developers revamped the control scheme to better suit the environments in the game and I definitely welcome the change. In previous Assassin’s Creed’s games, players had to hold both ‘R1’ and ‘x’ buttons to sprint/free run but players could not rotate their cameras around while free running. In AC3, just holding down R1 will make you sprint/free run and while sprinting, players can now rotate their cameras to look out for new routes or looking at the pursuers behind you.
The combat was rather refreshing. Instead of us chaining kills after kills with the combo like how Ezio did, Connor had to deal different type of opponents with a different approach. Some enemies requires you to break their defence first then kill them or counter attacks from the more agile ‘Redcoats’. This can be challenging sometimes when there were a lot of different types of units attacking you at once. As Connor grows older, the fighting style and the animations also matures. He deals 2 enemies at once with his Tomahawk (oh I love his Tomahawk) with a different style than his younger self. With these changes, players can feel that Connor was changing and growing. The combat mechanics stays the same for the whole game though. So start planning before striking. Always.
Unlike Ezio, Connor does not have Health Bars but a health meter to represent his health in the game. Connor does not buy armors to increase defence and raise his health bars like Ezio did but he has a fixed health meter that regenerates after conflicts. No more buying medicines and eating it to instantly regain lost health bars. This change made the character, Connor, more fragile than the other Assassins and it increases the difficulty of the game. No more fancy metal armour parts to equip our Connor with. However, Connor’s Assassin robes looks the best compared to the other robes in the previous games.
Another change in the game was that, there were no more shops to unlock and upgrade but instead, players will now be upgrading their Homestead instead by legal tenders and missions. An addition to the game was the Naval Warfare. If players ever get tired with assassination missions on land, they can take Aquila (the ship’s name) into the waters and wreak havoc to Templar ships. Different types of quests are available to the players to give them a break from all that fighting. There are hunting, finding treasures or just simply giving letters to the people all around Boston.
This time, there will be missions for Desmond too when he exits the Animus. One of the mission got him going into a city to retrieve an ancient ‘battery’ from an office building. A more in-depth story between Desmond and his dad, about a sleeper agent who once was an assassin and more. Personally, I am delighted when, at one moment, you go around exploring the cave or go for a mission. I took a moment to stare in awe at the scenery of the lit up skyscrapers of the modern day city. Also, do continue to chat with the other characters like Shaun, Rebecca and Desmond’s dad, Bill, to uncover more stories behind the Assassin’s Creed Universe.
Sadly, like every other game, this game has it’s minor flaws too.
One issue would be that, whenever Connor enters a cinematic , he will be wearing the same coloured uniform he got for the first time even though I ‘dyed’ the clothes to a different colour.
Not only that, sometimes, players will see that Connor will be standing on nothing (or rather floating) while synchronising the map on high towers. There was another scene where the tea smuggler was crossing the road and Connor just walked right through him and Carriages like nobody’s business. It was funny to be honest. Though minor, I hope there will be a patch to see this problem fixed.
I wish to all Assassins from around the world to have a fun hunt for the Templars all around the colony. A splendid job to the teams in Ubisoft for making this game an awesome experience. Let’s continue hunting shall we?