Wednesday, April 23, 2014
Thanks to the good experience of playing AC Brotherhood, I've grown an interest on the whole Assassin's Creed IP. And thanks to Steam, I got the first game quite cheap, so I'm planning to play all of them sooner or later.
About AC1, I played a couple of hours back in the days, and was impressed by the fluidity of the parkour moves. Now that I've finished it I have more data to talk about it in general:
On the plus side I can appreciate the effort to build the first game. Having worked on new IPs all my life I know how difficult it is to create something from scratch. The game is far from being perfect, but there are multiple elements that I'm sure took a lot of pain to build: The parkour, the semi-stealth systems, semi-interactive cinematics, the holy land scenarios, etc. Also the story premise is quite fresh, not surprised Hollywood is considering to make a movie out of it. Truth is, all the major elements of the AC IP are present in the first game. The other instances fixed things here and there, but no massive overhauls.
On the minus side parkour is far from being smooth, many times the smart object is not detected ahead of you and falling/dying happens too often. The game was criticized for being repetitive after the first mission... and it's totally right, the gameplay flow is almost identical in the 9 assassinations. The interactivity on the cinematics add nothing to the final results and the combat controls are too complicated. Aside from that, I suspect the starting point of the design was heavily based on stealth principles, and seems like the game punishes you when you're not killing enemies without being spotted, although you don't have many tools to avoid that. Plus seems like the game spawns additional enemies when you're in combat, or they're alerted even if they're behind a building. Not sure.
So, unless you have an archaeological interest on the saga, I wouldn't recommend the game, but in any sense I appreciate the massive effort on building it and how it built an IP that well, has been feeding the whole Ubisoft for 10 years.