The end of an era...
Endings are funny things, not ha-ha funny, but truly tricky things to get right. After putting over 12 hours into Assassinís Creed: Revelations and watching Embers...which you need to watch after you finish the game, Iím finally done with Ezio and Altair. I feel that weíve reached the perfect and very poignant place to call it a day, and so do Ubisoft...this is the game that ties up the Altair and Ezio storyline, answers what happened to Desmond at the end of Brotherhood and neatly segues into the new Assassinís Creed #3 due out...well...eventually.
It isnít a ground-breaking new iteration like Brotherhood, but it is a pretty fantastic game non-the-less and fans of the previous title will find a lot to like in both the single player and the refined multiplayer.Story
Without a shadow of a doubt, this is the capstone on Ezioís tale and it takes all the threads from the previous first Assassinís Creed, 2 and Brotherhood Ė putting them all together for once and answering as many questions as possible, whilst still leaving room for more questions and teasing the player. Desmondís fate is revealed from the end of Brotherhood and there are even more surprises in store, youíll have to play it to discover the answers for yourself though.Gameplay
This time around weíre in Constantinople and there are a few gameplay changes here and there. The combat system has been refined a little, there are now a few new moves, mostly involving the Hookblade and Ezio can counter a lot easier now. Itís even easier to get dramatic kill streaks and to look like an utter badass whilst doing so. The traversal mechanics are smoother too, with the Hookblade making short work of even the most devious climb and allowing Ezio to move around the city via zipline. Templar Dens are back, the Assassin Guild management is back with a bigger emphasis on training your assassins up to the rank of Master so that they can protect your Dens from Templar attack.
Thatís right, thereís a Den Defence mini-game that lets you command units in a tower defence style game, placing them and barricades down to impair and kill the enemy. You should only really need to worry about Den Defence if youíre being careless though, too many high profile actions whilst the Templar Awareness meter is at full and you can trigger an attack on one of your Dens. Unless that is, you happen to have a fully trained Master Assassin in charge of it, then itís immune to attack.
The random events/missions are back and run in a similar vein to Assassinís Creed. Though to be honest we only ever seemed to see guys who wanted to beat on Ezio. Who is now in his 50ís and looking pretty spry for an older gent. He can still kick ass with the best of them.
The renovation of Constantinople is similar to that of Rome, except this time you tend to draw Templar attention when you renovate a building, so you need to be careful how you do it or bribe a lot of Heralds after. Or kill important officials, not much has changed there. You can unlock new weapons/equipment and items by doing various side quests that pop up, you can finish faction based challenges just like in Brotherhood only this time the rewards are a lot better.
You can bring in your Assassins as per usual, as well as triggering the Arrow Storm as long as you have 3 full bars on your meter.
New to the series is bomb crafting, where you can combine an array of shells, with gunpowder and an effect to make lethal, diversionary and tactical devices to help you in your quest to find the secrets of Altairís library. Bomb crafting is simple and effective, you can make a variety of devices and there are quite a lot of combinations to play around with. For causing sheer havoc to your enemies, you can set up an impact shell with some large radius, British gunpowder and say...lambís blood. People caught by the impact will be covered in fake blood and be momentarily confused, allowing you to get the upper hand in a fight.
There are also bomb stations all over the city. These are usually with a pigeon coop that allows you to access the Assassin Management. Like in Brotherhood you can send your assassins out on missions to get xp, though this time thereís a mini-game involved with this...called Mediterranean Defence. You can take control of various cities and keep them from Templar hands, as you do so...you get income, daily xp and other bonuses from the captured cities.
Itís a fun way to level up those assassins and makes things far more tactical.