E3 Impressions: Assassin’s Creed III

The Assassin’s Creed series has been a staple of my gaming library for at least 6 years now. I’ve followed Desmond from his first days in the Animus, and I’ve travelled through time to some of my favorite eras in history: Jerusalem, Renaissance Italy, and the Byzantine Empire. I’ve seen it all and I’ve enjoyed every conspiracy driven minute of the Assassin’s journey, and now Ubisoft is bringing my much loved franchise to an era that I can’t get enough of. Assassin’s Creed III will bring the boats back around, setting sail for a story centered in Colonial America.

“It will be found an unjust and unwise jealousy to deprive a man of his natural liberty upon the supposition he may abuse it.” – George Washington

With a new addition to Assassin’s series comes a brand new assassin to embody. The game will continue following the story of Desmond, but this time his ancestry takes him neck deep within the Revolutionary War. You’ll get the opportunity to strap on the white cowl as you play as Connor, a half-Native American/half-English assassin, who becomes a silent voice for liberty above the tyranny of the British soldiers. Now from what I’ve seen, this game has everything I could ever ask for when considering what I would want out of a 18th century experience.

It would be incredibly easy to go into a in-depth, multi-paragraphed dissertation on all of the ways Ubisoft has altered the newest addition to their Assassin’s series. I, however, will try and remain completely objective and refrain from my fan-boy obsessions with the time period and characters to give you a detailed and unbiased multi-platform examination of the game. Here goes:

  • In past Assassin’s Creed games the game has had some linearity to it, but it felt like an open world experience. In AC III Ubisoft truly revamps the open world experience for the game. I always found that in past iterations of the Assassin’s series that, while the environments looked beautiful, they lacked environmental climate changes. In AC III Ubisoft has seen the need for environmental experiences. Players can now experience the weight of walking through thick tufts of snow, crunching over mounds of dried leaves, and even fighting off generated wildlife that roams the wood.

The most epic game of “Hide and Seek” ever.

  • In AC III there seems to be far more open ended fun to be had. The quest systems seem to be more ‘in the moment’ and even if they’re similar in some fashion [ and by this I’m referring to the fetch quests, assassinations, etc. eventually they felt very similar in scheme after a couple of attempts.] Ubisoft seems to want to change that with letting you feel as though each mini-quest is as important as the main story scheme. Interact with historical figures and feel like a meaningful part of the Revolution Era. I’m sort of loving this, and I can’t wait to see what that means for further gameplay.
  • It seems as though your main enemy in this game is, of course, the Templars. The Templars seem to be mostly associated with the British soldiers, but that’s not saying there probably won’t be some traitors within American ranks either [ I’m actually kind of hoping for that! ] Ubisoft really focused on being authentic though, because if you watch the gameplay scenarios, the soldiers only shoot once before they have to ambush you with bayonets.
  • This is going to give a lot of variation to the new gameplay mechanics, and with some of the new moves that seem to be showing – I think this will be one of the most versatile combat systems we’ve seen out of the Assassin’s series. The movement and dodge mechanics seem to have new animations and provide the player with a brand new experience that makes every combat scenario a unique experience. I can’t wait to kill off Templar goons, string them up, use them as bullet shields, etc. Oh, and let’s not forget that there’s actually going to be naval ship battles too – which blows me away! No pun intended!
  • The game has multiplayer of course, and though I haven’t seen much of it. It looks like they’ve made the system easier to deal with and more accommodating to the user. I was unfortunately disappointed by the Revelations revamp and how difficult the system was to handle. I preferred the interface they incorporated in Brotherhood, but it seems as though the interface for AC III seems far more fitting to the user.
  • The game is going to be released multi platform as always, but what makes AC III so intriguing for me is that it’s going to be coming out for Wii U, PS3, 360 and PC. I’m intrigued by the possibility of AC III on the Wii U. Will you be able to use the second screen function as a far more visible HUD, inventory screen, etc. How will the touch screen be implemented? This also brings to mind the 360 Smart Glass. How will Smart Glass help AC III differ on their system in comparison to if I bought it for PS3?

For Liberty and Justice For All

I’m hoping the new gameplay and environmental elements of AC III will bring Connor’s story to life in the greatest way possible. I’m hoping with new technology and new ways to interact with the AC universe that Assassin’s Creed III will be one of my most loved and cherished games. I will be on pins and needles waiting to see how this game unfolds, but it’s shaping up to be one of the most epic adventures that Ubisoft has ever unveiled.

Thanks guys for giving this designer something to truly swoon over both from a gamer perspective and from a tech junkie’s anticipation! The game’s slated for October 2012 – so get ready folks! The Revolution is coming!

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