Assassin's Creed III Reviews

AuthorReview
Chimaera36
269,290 (147,525)
Chimaera36
TA Score for this game: 2,384
Posted on 06 November 12 at 01:38, Edited on 04 December 12 at 03:40
This review has 35 positive votes and 6 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
Having just completed this game, I feel compelled to post my thoughts as well as a review of this excellent, but troubled game. Please be aware that SPOILERS may follow.

In the finale of Desmond's story, which has been with us from the flawed gem that was AC, the incredible sequel that was ACII and the interesting if not generally exceptional following games AC:B and AC:R, we get an interesting (if somewhat naive) hero, a fun new setting with some combat shifts, and a host of new things to do. But how does it stack up?

Overview

The latest entry in the AC series takes place the latest chronologically - during the Revolutionary War, with an earlier prologue. Thus it spans about 1750 - 1782. As a result, firearms are much more prevalent and the style of the game has shifted as a result. There is still a vast Templar conspiracy to thwart in the past, and in the present Desmond's small group must race to unlock the final door to the salvation of humanity (in case the first part of this sentence did not sound suitably epic).

You play as Ratonhnhaké:ton (or Connor, being somewhat easier to pronounce laugh), another of Desmond's ancestors and a man raised by the Mohawk who, predictably, joins the Assassins and spends the next several years murdering large numbers of Templars, Redcoats and anyone else who does something warranting a hidden blade through the eye socket.

Gameplay

Being an AC game, you can expect the normal free-running, stealth assassinations, crowd blending etc. That is all present. But new items and especially new combat modes and combat style really help update the game and keep the formula fresh.

First off, you have several new items. Smoke bombs and poison darts make their appearance, but you now have access to the rope darts seen in other AC media. With these you can either grab an enemy like Scorpion (Get over here!) or if you are above him on a pivot point (like a tree branch or rope line), pull him up and hang him. This never gets old (and there is even an achievement for doing this a few times laugh). You also have trip mines, which can be useful for setting up ambushes of guards. A normal shortbow replaces the crossbow, and is useful for silent kills.

As stated earlier, this era was the last in which melee combat could be considered to be somewhat prevalent, but large-scale ranged tactics have begun to dominate (as pike-and-shot had been generally abandoned about 50 years earlier and the advent of the Napoleonic wars in the 1800's would see the rise of line-volley formations and the end of large-scale melee combat in general). As a result, the combat is much faster and more fluid. You possess a flintlock pistol (and can later carry two, eventually leading to carrying two doubleshot pistols for four quick kills). The counter-kills and resulting kill chains are nice and fast, feeling both sufficiently brutal and quick-working. Stringing together 6-7 quick Redcoat/Patriot kills can feel very satisfying indeed! One downside is that when you are not counter-killing, it can seem a bit ridiculous how many hits it can take to kill someone (stabbing a Grenadier 7-8 times with your blade before he dies seems a bit overkill). A number of main story missions place you in major battles of the Revolution, giving you a good feel for being in the thick of large scale action.

One major change is the addition of the homestead. Early in the game you acquire a manor house in the countryside. Over the course of the game, you can recruit numerous people to join you in the surrounding lands, and over time you will develop a sizable community. These people can craft items that you can then sell in convoys for large amounts of money. Such convoys can be raided, requiring you to help them or lose the cargo (and you can do the same to Templar convoys!).

There is also a completely new type of game mode involving utilizing the swift Assassin naval vessel, the Aquila. In this mode, you take control of the ship from the helm and fight various missions around the East Coast, fighting pirates, escorting ships and causing mayhem. There is a subplot involving finding (very useful!) buried treasure, and the ship is upgradeable (and if you want to 100% some missions, it is almost required to do so).

Additionally, Ubisoft has implemented a Red Dead Redemption-style hunting metagame. One large area of the game depicts the wilderness around the Mohawk Valley extending into the areas around Valley Forge, Lexington and Concord. In this largely forested area you can run into a number of animals, from rabbits, beavers and deer to wolves, bears and cougars (though they are not the insta-death machines they were in RDR laugh). You can kill them with your blade/bow for a nice pelt to sell for $$$, or with your gun for a somewhat damaged pelt that sells for less. You also have snares and bait to catch smaller animals, distract larger ones to help with blade kills etc. If a predator attacks you, you get a small QTE to evade/kill it.

A bunch of challenges have been introduced from various factions, giving you prize animals to hunt (for the hunters), locations to explore (for the frontiersmen) and people to fight in a tournament (for the brawlers). Thee is also a thieves guild that pops up after a number of pickpockets giving you stealth-focused challenges. Courier, assassination and delivery missions round out these additions.

Gone is the extremely tedious den defense. Remaining is the regional map with missions to liberate areas, only now instead of Mediterranean cities you are liberating the original states of the Thirteen Colonies. There are a number of gambling minigames to play, including bowls, checkers and some other, period-specific games.

Graphics

Graphically, this is the best AC yet. An entirely new engine has been developed and is quite noticeable. Lipsyncing can be somewhat off, but the faces are much sharper and the animations/physics more fluid. Very nice environmental effects allow for thunderstorms, convincing fire/smoke etc. These look very nice indeed when you are sailing into a giant storm on the naval missions. Colonial Boston/New York are both nicely rendered with landmarks described, and it can be quite fun to run around Wall Street and see it littered with two story houses as well as seeing farms where skyscrapers now exist!

Sounds

In general the game sounds very nice. The voice acting can sound a little wooden at times (especially Connor's voice), but the environmental sounds are spot on, the muskets sound sufficiently loud and the animals are easily identifiable by their cries. There are some very nice battle music sequences and other scores that play during emotional chases etc that really help heighten the atmosphere. Jespyr Kyd may have moved on, but his replacement Lorne Balfe did a very nice job on the score.

Multiplayer

Like Revelations and Brotherhood before it, MP is provided in AC3. Many of the same modes (ex. Wanted) make an appearance, along with some new ones, most noticeably Wolfpack, where you and up to three other players compete against a timer to score a set number of points (making better kills more valuable). If you meet the score, you move onto the next wave (up to 25) and get additional time. It is quite fun and addicting, and even solo you can get XP and challenges, allowing you to work at your own pace. There is significant avatar customization, and like before there is a metastory for the MP revolving around Abstergo spinning off the Animus device as a kind of VR home entertainment device. You unlock videos featuring the Abstergo dev team talling you to have fun, and can then see Assassin-hacked variants (once challenges have been unlocked) showing the truth behind the shiny facade given to you. It is fun to try do do this, and gives some drive towards continuing in the MP.

Achievements

The achievements in this game are not particularly troublesome (compared to some earlier games).

In terms of SP, there are a good number of story-related unmissables, as well as cheevos for completing all of the new naval missions. There exist two 100% achievements - get 100% on all main sequence missions (which involves fulfilling all optional requirements - in general not super difficult, but there are youtube videos available) and get 100% overall (including collectibles, which can be quite time consuming, but once you get the first 100% one, is not too difficult). One SP one requires you to be online post game to find some Animus 'glitches', but is quite trivial once you get the hang of it. Some miscellaneous ones are easy to get if you follow the guides here on TA.

There are a few MP achievements, none of which are difficult to get in a boosting session. You only need to get to level 20 (like Revelations) instead of 50 (like Brotherhood). The Wolfpack one only requires you to reach level 10/25, and can be done in <10min solo. I got all of them in a 3 hour boosting session. The fact that you can get XP/challenges playing Wolfpack solo makes this much easier.

Overall

Overall this was a very entertaining entry in the series and IMO was far superior to AC:B or AC:R - a true sequel to ACII (though maybe not as good as that game was at the time). The story is engaging, the gameplay and setting fun and the content extensive. The MP is entertaining as well.

I hope this review was informative and helped you make a decision regarding this game. If you feel some information was left out, please let me know in the comments and it will be added. If the glitches get fixed, this review will be amended.
Given 4 stars by Chimaera36
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knight0fkh0nshu
406,151 (282,013)
knight0fkh0nshu
TA Score for this game: 532
Posted on 19 November 12 at 23:49
This review has 23 positive votes and 2 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
Very few instances in American history have a greater importance or significance than the Revolutionary War. It marks a time when the colonists stood up to their motherland and fought for freedom and independence. We all know the story… or do we? What if there was a more sinister plot that the history books left out? What if the Templars & Assassins secretly altered history for what they believed was the true vision of America? I can't think of a better point in history to bring one of the most intriguing fictional storylines in gaming today.

Without ruining too much of the opening sequences, you start out as Haytham Kenway which isn't the actual main protagonist of Assassin's Creed III. It's a change of pace for the series and will probably surprise most when the plot comes to fruition. Fans of Desmond will be pleased to find out that he is also still controllable during certain stages of the game. As for how Conner, the Assassin, ties into the plot of things - well the people at Ubisoft did a fantastic job of giving you a reason for vengeance as you will see through the early game progression. The plot is actually very well written. It's filled with twists and turns and plays out nicely if you stick around to see the end.

Never has this much detail and life been breathed into an Assassin's Creed game before. The Colonial-era Boston and New York are full of little things that make the overall ambience of each city come to life right before your eyes. From dogs barking at cats, to newspaper criers shouting out about the latest edition, and busy food markets - these cities are living. Apart from the two cities you will spend a lot of your time in, there are also two other areas that you will free-roam in: The Frontier and the Homestead.

The Homestead serves as your "central hub" where you can do a number of activities. Throughout story progression you will be able to do side quests that will attract all different sorts of people to your humble settlement. From woodworkers to doctors, farmers to smiths and many more - there are plenty of people to recruit to your homestead. These talented people are the replacement for most of the stores you can recall from the previous entries in the Assassin's Creed series. While some will say this is a distraction from the main storyline, it's not required to do these. But if you do take the time to settle these people the benefits are worth it. Each of these unique settlers brings something different to the table. Woodworkers will supply you timber supplies and farmers will sell you vegetables. All of these are used for recipes that can upgrade your pouches, your arrow quiver, or even give you an extra convoy to send to the cities to sell your goods. Recipes are found in a few ways, mostly by finishing missions and opening chests.

As for the Frontier, a whole new aspect is brought to Assassin's Creed III: Hunting. Sure it may scream Red Dead Redemption, but it works. All different types of wildlife can be found throughout the Frontier (and the other three areas as well). You have your docile creatures like hares, beavers, and deer as well as the predators that will attack you, ranging from wolves and bobcats to bears. Predators don't pose much of a problem, even if you get caught off-guard. Most times a simple two button QTE will end the creature's life and leave you to skin the animal for pelts, teeth, and claws among other things. You can even lure enemies into being attacked by the wildlife! Again, it's a distraction from the main quest, but it gives players that are looking for more to do within the game something different.

Probably one of my favorite parts about this game is the naval battles, particularly a specific naval battle that is fought in a huge storm. It almost reminds me of the Pirates of the Caribbean movie (without the huge maelström). The effects and physics are just mind-blowing. The waves crashing into your boat spewing water all over the deck, managing the wind current so that it's in your favor, then lining up to blow a rival ship clear out of the water! I've never played an easier more beautiful naval battle in any other game. The ship, named the Aquila, can be upgraded as well with features such as a battering ram, more cannons for even greater firepower, and a better hull to withstand punishment. In addition to naval battles, there are also privateer contracts that you can take part in. Most of these are pretty straightforward: find a ship, defend it. Variety may be in short supply here, but controlling the ship and partaking in these battles is so much fun.

That's not to say that Assassin's Creed III isn't without its flaws though. One of my biggest pet peeves is the use of the same dialog with the same voice actor/actress. I can't stand it. From the first delivery side quest that is done, all four of the targets I delivered to had the same lines with the same voice. There really is not an excuse in this day and age for this. Surely there are enough members on the development team that could lend their voices to make the dialog not so repetitive. It is a minor flaw, but an annoying one to say the least.

Sometimes the character models would actually walk through each other too. I noticed this several times during cut scenes where Connor would be walking and part of his arm or body would just ghost right through a by standing NPC. It's not game-breaking, but visually it's really unacceptable giving the standard that has been set by previous games in the series.
Those experienced in the combat from the previous entries will find that the formula has been refined and improved upon. The free flow combat has always been a staple of this franchise and there are a few new neat tricks that have been implemented. One that stands out to me is when the British are getting ready to fire upon you, the nearest target you can find to grab instantly becomes a human shield with a simple push of a button. The battle animations have seen an overhaul with takedown sequences that are visually stunning.

With such a big stage as the American Revolution, history buffs will notice plenty of familiar locations such as Bunker Hill, the Boston Tea Party, and the famous "The British Are Coming!" sequence. Nothing has been spared in terms of the history surrounding one of America's greatest wars and it will almost make you feel like you were really there.

The multiplayer aspect of Assassin's Creed has always been one of the most unique experiences I've played to this day. This has been improved upon ten-fold with new game types, even more customization options, rewards, and perks. It's such a big part of Assassin's Creed III that it ships on its very own disc! I'll be the first to admit that I shuddered at the thought of multiplayer in a single player game when it was first announced for Brotherhood. But I was completely wrong about it. Assassin's Creed III's multiplayer is well-balanced; there are team-based match types such as Manhunt which is extremely satisfying, as well as a territory type called Domination.

For those who are into co-op, Wolfpack will be your new best friend. Join up with your buddies while trying to coordinate perfect kills in a timely and assassin-like style. Think of it as horde mode for Assassin's Creed. There are a total of 25 waves for you and your friends to work through that get progressively harder the higher level you get. We all know that the competitive modes are there too for those who love to showcase their skill in Deathmatch, Wanted, and Assassinate.

Assassin's Creed III set out to be more ambitious than its' previous entries. In most ways it surpasses the mark, while falling short on some technical issues. Perhaps with a future patch, this game will be everything it should have been when it launched. It's not perfect but with the unique, satisfying multiplayer that has been a staple to the franchise and the intricate web-weaving storyline makes Assassin's Creed III a game that will keep you occupied for a good 20+ hours.

8.5/10

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This review is written for BrokenJoysticks.net and is the property of BrokenJoysticks.net.
Given 4 stars by knight0fkh0nshu
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ngratz
23,273 (17,270)
ngratz
TA Score for this game: 1,255
Posted on 03 January 13 at 04:13, Edited on 13 January 13 at 08:05
This review has 12 positive votes and 5 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
Remember, if you give a thumbs down, please leave a comment with why. I can't improve my reviews if I don't understand why you didn't like it.


Another year another Assassin's Creed. If you've played any of the previous games you know what you're in for. I know I was excited for this game as I have been a fan of the series since the original came out in 2007. But is it worth all the hype?


Story
Newcomers to the series will be a bit confused although there is a brief intro that tries to sum up what has happened for the last 4 games. I highly suggest playing the other four main games before picking this one up. After this intro and the Assassin crew sets up shop we get into the heart of the game: getting into the Animus and reliving your ancestor's memories. You start the game as Haytham Kenway (not the main character) and learn the basics of the game (again) in what seems to be an unbearably long intro. Finally at the 4th memory sequence you get to start playing as the main character only to do even more painstaking tutorials. At the 5th sequence we finally get into the actual playable content and out of the tutorials.

This game takes a long time to get down to business and because of this I feel like there is a lack of relatability with the main character. You miss out playing as him for 1/4th of the game for crying out loud! If you're looking for other relatable characters you should stop. The characters in this game are flat. From your Mentor Achilles to the heroes of The Revolution such as Sam Adams, Paul Revere, and George Washington you just don't really develop much feeling or emotional connection with them. In fact, not giving anything away storywise, but I felt more connected to the two main antagonists in this game than I did to any of the Assassins or Assassin allies.

The game's main plot lines are heavily scripted and cut scened, shying away from previous Assassin's Creed titles giving you barely (in some cases no room at all) to perform your assassinations in a way you so choose. It's very frustrating going from blending with scholars until you assassinate your target with your hidden blade (Assassin's Creed 1) to having to sit and watch your character in a cutscene fight and kill your target.

Story Score:6/10

Game play
Let's take a look at general game play though. When you're not in your very linear story line what else is there to do? What has the AC3 team (who have worked on this title for 2 years I may add, longer than any game since the original) come up with to fill our time this game?

There are 4 main playable areas. We have two major cities Boston and New York as well as the Homestead which acts as your base of operations and the Frontier, touted as very expansive and bigger than Rome from AC:B. Wow! This gives you a lot of exploration room and sets you up with a lot to do in the game. You have hunting in the wilderness, courier missions, almanac pages to collect, the underground in Boston and New York to discover, club memberships and tasks, liberation missions, fort overthrows, settlers to bring to your homestead (and once they're there do menial tasks for them, such as herd pigs) feathers, treause, trinkets, naval/privateer missions to command and Captain Kidd's treasure to uncover. However, since it's all thrown at you from Sequence 5 on (seriously, you can't do any of it for 1/3 of the game) it all feels a bit overwhelming. There are also the usual viewpoints to synchronize your map from but hey! plot twist! they barely uncover any of the map and you have to spend additional time just running around uncovering small portions of the map at a time until you find any side quest you want to do. I am a collector at heart. I have gotten every flag, feather, treasure chest, fragment and other odds or ends in all Assassin's Creed titles but my least favorite so far has been the almanac pages from this game. It's not because there are so many of them (some of you will remember the 425 flags in the original game as well as the 100 Templars to take care of) but of how frustrating each and every one of them is. They are located on top of roofs and once you enter a certain radius they start to blow away and you must chase them down and catch them. Don't get them soon enough? You have to come back later to retry it. Some start blowing away when you are only partway up the building, which makes them nearly impossible to get. The highlight of the new side missions in my opinion are naval missions in which you take command of a ship and are pitted against enemy ships with different objectives. You take full command of the ship ordering how fast it goes, when and where to fire cannons and you can sail pretty openly around the coast where your naval battle takes place. This feature was something that Ubisoft did brilliantly and made you feel right at home sailing your ship.

Assassin's Creed 3 brings some new things into play as far as actual physical gameplay is concerned as well. New to this title is tree running (as opposed to building running in previous titles), a new combat system, as well as an updated and (smoother according to them) free-running system. How do these all work out for the newest title from Ubisoft? In my opinion, mixed.

Tree running has been hyped since the trailer, showing our latest Assassin running comfortably through the trees dropping on an enemy unsuspected and scampering back up to continue flying from treetop to treetop. What they don't mention about tree running? It's all a bit pointless. The trees (as trees tend to do) wind their way through the woods, making direct travel to wherever you want to go very slow going through the branches, and often you spend more time looking for ways to .stay in the trees than getting where you need to go. The houses in the major cities also feel very spread out, making it hard to jump from one to the other, almost as if you are not supposed to be up there. This, along with rooftop guards that spot you and identify you almost immediately makes you spend a lot more time walking around depressed on the ground (which is probably why they want you to get all excited over trees) The new combat system is similar to Batman: Arkham City. The enemies have Red targets appear over their heads when they are about to attack and you can counter then kill them. This is all well and good. I like this style of combat and particularly enjoyed it in Batman. However it wasn't done as well in this game, with some enemies not showing signs of attacking before hitting you and sometimes the counter button not working properly. Ubisoft has a lot of tweaking to do if they plan to release more titles with this combat style. Finally the updates free running system, where you don't have to hold LT and A to run in high profile. LT is now just running, jumping, climbing all with just the LT button. This is nice because it can make for a much smoother free running experience. However that is a 2 sided coin. The experience is smoother but you can also jump off of a building and land on a patrol of guards more easily alerting their attention. Again, needs tweaking.

All said and done when it comes to game play there is plenty to do side mission and collectable wise so much so that it feels overwhelming at first but after you get settled in it is more natural. The new map/viewpoint system is very frustrating and disappointing and a lowlight for the series. Physical gameplay changes though I have to ask why? They started messing with a formula which had been in place for 4 games, worked well and the fans were used to. Bugs abound in this game (there was a first day patch after all) and the environment just didn't seem quite ready. I got caught on the environment multiple times with my character freezing or glitching up to where he or the horse I was on couldn't move.

Game play score: 7/10


If asked if I would spend my money again on this game I would have to think about it for a while but probably say yes. As a long time fan of the series, I had to see where the latest title took us. If this was the first game in the series however, I would be very disappointed. Glitches, unmemorable characters, and a flat plot. Stand alone this game is ok at best, certainly not what I've come to expect from Ubisoft, and certainly the worst game of the series to date. If this is what all the added time gets me from Ubisoft, I'd like to stick to their shorter developing schedule.

Overall Score 7/10
Given 3 stars by ngratz
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iAmTheTot
81,287 (52,498)
iAmTheTot
TA Score for this game: 1,343
Posted on 07 November 12 at 09:30, Edited on 10 April 13 at 05:45
This review has 18 positive votes and 11 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Templars

We, the Assassins, hold these truths to be self-evident: that nothing is true, and everything is permitted. Assassin's Creed 3 has been hyped for a while now, but does it live up to it? The game takes a few daring leaps with the series, a direction in which some fans have not been so happy about. What's new? What's the same? What's the big deal?

This review will attempt to remain as neutral as possible, and most importantly break the game down for both fans of the series and first-time players looking to buy or not. We'll address some of the changes from previous titles, the ups and downs of the new mechanics, some of the game's glaring shortcomings, and a few things that ultimately will have to left up to you, the reader. The review is broken up into segments with concise summaries immediately following each.

Graphics
Graphics have never been any small part of the Assassin's Creed series. Ever since Assassin's Creed came out in 2007 graphics have been a high point in the series, in fact. It was hard not to gaze in awe after climbing to the top of your first “view point” and panning the camera around to view the land and cityscape that went on as far as the eye could see and, often, was entirely explorable. Even with the large render distance, huge open environments, and objects populating the screen at any one time, Assassin's Creed as a series has typically done a great job in utilizing system resources to manage it all. Assassin's Creed 3 is no exception.

Playing through the game I'm met with very little texture pop-in, something of which I am not in the least bit fond. And when it did occur (and it did, on rare occasion) it happened in a way that I found rather pleasing. Most games like to “pop in” their textures, usually in blocks. I'm sure you've played a game and seen what I mean – the blocky or blurry wall, NPC, or sign. Assassin's Creed 3 implements a method that I, at least, had never seen before where objects in view that still need to be loaded “materialize” in a rather surreptitious manner. I hardly ever caught it in the act, and when I did it was already nearly done and the object was loaded in smoothly with no “pop.”

The graphics overall are definitely on par with gaming standards these days, and overall is content with that. The game looks great in high definition, with eye-popping vivid landscapes and detailed textures for all of the important stuff. Where I felt it really stood out was the newly introduced naval sequences, and the way it displays (and controls, though that's hardly a graphics concern) the water of the game. Quite possibly some of the best water I have ever witnessed in a video game; I do not know what else to say other than seek a video demonstration of it.

Character animations are generally improved, too, specifically combat animations. There are some new freerunning mechanics (discussed later) that required new animations and they all flow beautifully, but I was particularly happy the first time I blocked an enemy attack and countered. Assassin's Creed titles always bring in new and exciting counter/kill animations, but this title's combat animations must be among the most pleasing. All of the animations flow very smoothly together and make for fluid combat, and freerunning.

Because they effect no notable change in actual gameplay, I'll mention here that the addition of weather (and seasons) is well received and well executed. Snowy weather is seldom experienced until you are able to choose so yourself, but dynamic weather is always active and from an instant it could go from sunny to stormy. The newly implemented weather system could conjure a light sprinkle, or full on downpour. In winter, rain is replaced with snow flurries and white-outs.

Lastly, the HUD is entirely compartmentalized and customizable. This is a huge plus in my book, and a feature that more games really need to enact. You can entirely turn off the HUD (leading to a very unique cinematic experience, I may add), or just bits and pieces as you see fit. Map, weapon displays, health, assassins, you name it.
Summary: 10/10
Pros:
-Vivid high definition landscapes
-Little to no “pop-in”
-Outstanding water is simply mesmerizing
-Overall improved animations, from freerunning to combat
-Weather is a subtle but welcome addition
-Compartmentalized and customizable HUD
-Experienced no fps slow-down or lag throughout entire game

Cons:
-In a few instances, objects spawned inappropriately (such as an item in a character's hand in a cutscene)

Sound
Sound, from score to voice work, is important in a game like Assassin's Creed, which tried to spin a very strong narrative. Almost everything in the game is voiced (returning characters voiced by returning actors), and at some points can briefly seem like an interactive movie. And it's mostly voiced very well. All of the main story-related dialogue is pretty well written, and very well voiced. Characters are voiced to be period-accurate as best as possible, meaning you're going to hear authentic native American dialogue, to cockney English accents, and everything in between. It's an incredibly interesting blend.

What I'm ultimately going to have to detract points for, however, is almost all of the non-story-related scenes. Much of the side quest dialogue is not only poorly written (bland, generic), but it carries over to the actual voice work itself. A lot of emotion is lost from the voice actors, and it's almost as if they didn't even want to be reading those portions of the script. Notable exclusions to this are the homestead and naval side missions (discussed later), but those are just a fraction of the offered side missions. I realize they're called side missions for a reason, but it's almost a chore listening to some of these NPCs talk about their task at hand with little to no emotion and through bland, boring dialogue.

The score is well done though I found it mostly forgettable. At no point did the music really stand out to me, apart from the title theme – and you don't really hear that except during the credits, or if you're going to just sit at the menu. There were a few exciting scenes in which the music roared and made the mood, but these were typically optional parts of the game and it was generally underwhelming for the entirety of the game.

Back on the up-and-up, though, are the sound effects. They're all great, but to really exemplify my point I had two examples stand out for me during the game. One is the sound of the snow crunching beneath your feet – so subtle, so easy to overlook. The other is the sound of your ship's cannons firing (and subsequently barraging an enemy ship). Both of these sounds in their own ways were wholly satisfying each time they came about, reminding me that they paid attention in this regard from the small to the large.
Summary: 8/10
Pros:
-Excellently voiced main portions of the game, with a wide interesting cast of voices
-Sound effects, from the subtle to the super, can really set the mood

Cons:
-Poor writing, voice acting, and timing plague most optional parts of the game
-Generally underwhelming score leaves some of the atmosphere to be desired

Plot
Assassin's Creed 3, like the previous main installments (non-handheld), are direct sequels in the truest sense: beginning precisely where the previous title ended. This immediately places a handicap on any new players looking to jump into the franchise, as the series' plot could be somewhat, or entirely, lost to new players as soon as they stick in the disc. The game makes a little effort to help out players just starting now with a quick intro movie that “sums up” the precursors' plots, but it's pretty hard to compact four games worth of story into a few minutes of video.

Like previous Assassin's Creed titles, the player takes the role of a “present protagonist,” and a “past protagonist.” The present protagonist, Desmond Miles, has been the main character since the initial game in 2007, and gives the player access to the past protagonist via a fictional machine called the Animus. The idea is that by using this machine to explore a person's “genetic memory,” they can relive ancestors' lives and learn things – in this case, the location of a hidden so-and-so. As explained in previous titles, the Animus cannot simply call up a specific memory to learn what they want to know immediately. Instead, memories must be played out in order chronologically to “synchronize.” Herein lies your task as the player: to play out the life of the past protagonist, your goal ultimately being to reach a crucial point in this ancestor's life which will let Desmond learn something of critical importance.

Because of this format, the series has always generally had two plots unraveling side by side: the present, and the past. In this title you live out the past life of Connor, an Assassin from eighteenth century America. To a new player, this may quickly become too convoluted. In addition to not having most of the backstory from previous titles, the new player will be expected to keep up with not only the goings-on of Desmond and Assassins from the present, but of Connor and his dramatic life from the eighteenth century.

The present aspect of the game is handled is very bite size chunks, however, giving new players a fighting chance. The vast majority of the game is played via the past protagonist, Connor, and follows his trials and tribulations as a half-English, half-native American man fighting for the protection of his peoples. The perspective of this title's protagonist is a refreshing unique third-party take on good versus evil. There are the colonists, and there are the British – each are righteous in their own minds, and unjust in the other's. But to Connor we're given an outside look at the conflict, one in which both sides are the invaders.

The perspective of Connor is one with which players are meant to not immediately empathize. It's a breath of fresh air in today's game market which skews the lines of good and evil, of right and wrong. I suspect there will be many times you ask yourself “is this right?” as the game utilizes a few plot mechanics to quickly establish a moral ambiguity.

Ultimately, however, the game is a continuation of the modern story; Desmond's story. A story that has spanned four titles to get to here. As such, quite an expectation has been built up – in this regard, new player's may actually benefit (from not having built up expectations). Being one of the players that has been following the series from 2007 and completed each title, I felt the plot of the present and the continuation of Demond's story in this title left a lot to be desired. Naturally I won't spoil more than that, but I'm sad to say I consider it a detractor to the game's overall score.
Summary: 8/10
Pros:
-Unique and interesting plot
-Protagonist sets the player in a unique set of shoes
-Plot (of the past) should keep you on edge
-Protagonist is wholly original and not just a rehash of previous titles

Cons:
-New players immediately at a disadvantage having little to no explanation of plot prior to this title
-Two plots may be hard to keep track of for new players (and indeed, for some returning)
-Five games later and overall plot still leaves something to be desired

Gameplay
Single player
The core gameplay to Assassin's Creed 3 remains the same formula from the previous three titles: large free roam action adventure, with some platforming sequences. There are enough little tweaks to this iteration however that set it apart from the games that came before it.

Treerunning
One of the most significant changes in Assassin's Creed 3 is the introduction of freerunning mechanics that actively includes trees (I call it “treerunning” - get it?). This mechanic is particularly useful in the large wilderness section of the game, the Frontier, as buildings are few and far between. It doesn't lose its usefulness in city limits though as sometimes the gap between two buildings can be managed with a tree in between.

At face value, the added treerunning isn't too different than the freerunning schemes that were already set in place. Controls aren't at all different and essentially the tree branches are just beams you can walk on. To make it really seem like its own big addition to the game, a few new freerunning mechanics were introduced to make navigating the trees feasible. Your character can step around an obstacle in his way as long as there is another beam on the other side (for example, stepping around the trunk of a tree from one branch to another on the other side). Additionally, your character can now navigate Y-shaped sections of trees (or otherwise), either passing through them or using them to climb even higher into the tree (if there is something higher to climb onto).

The most pleasing part of this added aspect is that they were not utilized solely for the trees. Both the obstacle navigation and Y-shaped segment navigation is implemented in more than few places other than trees in building structure, fences, and etc.

Naval missions
That's naval, not navel.

Entirely new to the series, the player is capable of captaining a ship and take to the seas for varying purposes. Most of the time you'll take to the seas optionally; there are a few chains of side missions that take place exclusively at sea. A few times however you will be forced to participate in naval battles for the sake of the story and plot progression.

As previously mentioned, getting onto your ship each time is worth it just to see the open seas again. Atop that, though, the naval sequences play quite enjoyably. They're simple enough (and explained thoroughly enough) that no player should really have trouble understanding what is asked of him or her, but they're still challenging enough to require a little use of tactics against some enemy ships.

The ship can be upgraded (with hard earned money, and no small amount either) to be swifter, more deadly, better armoured, or have various additional shot types (such as cannonballs that light on fire! I mean come on, that alone is awesome!). These will aid you in your endeavours to rid the sea of pirates, protect allies from enemy aggressors, hunt for a buried treasure, and more.

Hunting
Whereas hunting Templars is by no means a no concept to Assassin Creed fans, this title takes hunting in a more literal sense. Being half-native American (and raised that way), Connor is an expert at living off the land and hunting for his food (and other resources). This is reflected in the new hunting aspect of the game.

You can hunt everything from rabbit to bear, and use any method from attacking your prey head-on, to methodically setting a trap and luring it with bait. While one sounds tedious and useless, the game rewards those more methodical and patient with better (and more) resources from the kill. Resources can then be used to sell for a pretty penny, used for a side mission, or used for crafting other goods (explained in a bit). So you may think twice before rushing in recklessly.

Hunting primarily takes place in the large wilderness section of the game and the prey you will find may vary from area to area, so learning where certain creatures live may become part of your hunting ritual. There are few times this mechanic is required to progress the story at all, and is almost wholly optional.

The Homestead (and Crafting)
In previous Assassin's Creed titles, the player was able to purchase various properties for varying reasons, usually for monetary assets. That same general idea resurfaces this time around but with some majour plastic surgery. Your main base of operations for the game is an area known as the Homestead, which begins barren and boring when first encountered save for a lone old manor. Unlike previous iterations you no longer simply purchase property, but much in attitude of the era you must complete side objectives for characters to convince them to settle on your land and help your community grow.

As the Homestead grows, more and more missions will open up for either recruiting more residents or upgrading those who already live on your land. By convincing people to settle on your land you gain access to their services, be they blacksmiths or lumberers. Many of the settlers will be complementary (such as a miner, and a blacksmith) who will provide services to each other allowing you to benefit even more.

Instead of directly buying goods or services from these NPCs, however, you're tasked with consulting a crafting screen which will give you access to all their services and resources. You may use a miner's talents in conjunction with a blacksmith's to make yourself a fancy new blade. Conversely, you may utilize a tailor to craft up shoes and hats – not for you to wear, but instead to sell for profit.

Growing the Homestead and using the newly implemented crafted system is entirely optional, and is in no way tied to the plot. In fact, it could be skipped over entirely with no real detrimental effect on your play – you could still hunt for plenty of money, though you'd admittedly miss out on a few things that are only obtainable via crafting. Still, though, each and every time I completed a mission for one of the settlers it was exponentially satisfying to watch them settle in my little community and grow until, eventually, I had a small village outside my door.

Freerunning and Combat
Both are cornerstones to the gameplay, and both have been tweaked for this title.

The controls in general have been simplified throughout the game, but in regards to freerunning the actual mechanics have been tweaked slightly to become what they refer to as “safe freerunning.” In previous titles holding both RT and A were required to freerun (climb, jump, etc). Now holding down just the RT button will activate “safe freerunning” in which your character will actively climb, jump, etc as long as it's “safe.” That is to say that holding RT will still not make the character jump from unsafe heights, and will not make leaps beyond a certain distance. This ultimately leads to easier navigation on rooftops and through trees.

Pressing the A button while freerunning still functions, and can be used to force your character to do things he wouldn't do during safe mode – like jumping a wide gap or dropping a very high distance. It also will make your character climb Y-shaped intersections (when possible), and fluently pass over low objects without climbing on them (like fences, short walls, logs, or merchant stands). This overall leads to a smoother interaction with the environment.

Fighting controls have also been simplified from previous titles, and the use of RT (previously the parry button) has been abolished. Now, simply holding B will initiate the parry stance, while timing a short press of B will initiate counters. From a counter you can throw (B), disarm (A), or kill with your main weapon or equipped tool (X or Y). Less complicated combinations of button presses to execute your combat commands leads to smoother and more enjoyable, but no less challenging, fights.

Rather pleasantly, combat commands will now also take into consideration the objects and environment around you when executed. Your actions, counters, and kills may very well differ when you are near a wall, ledge, table, or barrel. Add in double counter-kills, and the combat this time around is arguably the most refined that the series has ever offered.

Miscellaneous additions/tweaks
Assassin recruits make a return from Brotherhood and Revelations, with slight alterations this time around. They more or less replace the factions from previous games – the courtesans, monks, thieves, and mercenaries. They're also no longer randomly generated as you recruit them; they're NPCs with stories of their own. And as you recruit each one, they'll make a new Assassin skill available to you: from the very basic and straightforward assassination, to more complicated ruses like having them dress up as guards and feign escort you behind enemy lines as a prisoner.

Various minigames in the form of mostly board games are available for the player to pass time (or make some money). They're probably not games you've ever heard of: Fanora, Nine Men's Morris, and Bowls are the three main games added. Bowls is like Bocci Ball, but Fanora and Nine Men's Morris are interesting board games that I had never seen anything like before. They can be enjoyable time passers, and on their harder settings can be downright frustrating.

Fast travel isn't new to the series per se, but Assassin's Creed 3 allows players to utilize it unlike the other games. Now when a fast travel station has been unlocked (not always an easy task), you can warp directly to it from the map granted you aren't in open conflict or in a mission. This not only includes instantaneous map-to-map travel, but allows players to quickly navigate inside of a map too (such as from the very south of New York, to the very north of New York).

The introduction of single player leaderboards leads to an interesting sense of competition even when offline, as you can compare every stat from time spent playing, to total distance walked, to number of bears hunted with friends or the world for the day, week, month, or all time. Even if not used to compare with friends or strangers from around the world, this allows you to track pretty much any stat you could imagine for yourself.

The rest of the game (that is not a main story line mission or covered above) is spent exploring, finding collectibles, or completing side missions of the most arbitrary design. The collectibles, which are nothing new to Assassin's Creed, are as tedious as ever but are at least revealable with a purchasable map. The only improvement here are Almanac Pages, a collectible that can actually be fun as they try to run away from you as you near them.

The side missions for various “clubs,” such as the Boston Brawlers, are monotonous and boring. They do, at least, offer a list of challenges to be met which in some cases really can be challenging. They can be completed at any time and are rather manageable. But the actual side missions handed out by them and other clubs are pure garbage – running letters around town just to hear each recipient say thanks, killing arbitrary targets (that offer absolutely no challenge whatsoever) scattered around town, or going half way across the game world just to investigate some clues (and then do so again in another part of the game world). They are almost utterly without substance and the game would be no worse off without them entirely.

Glitches and Bugs
Unfortunately, an undeniable issue with the game (straight out of the case) is the overwhelming amount of glitches that plague many players' games. Assassin's Creed 3 is without doubt the most big-ridden Assassin's Creed title in the series. There really are too many to list, so I'll be concise.

Luckily, very few are actually game-breaking. So few of them that I'm comfortable telling you not to worry about that. Through my play I had a few glitches prevent me from progressing a mission (never a main mission, either), but restarting from the last checkpoint or altogether restarting the mission would always fix the issue. Other glitches I experienced included persistent redundant tooltips, doors I had unlocked resetting, a graphical hiccup here or there, and guards becoming hostile for absolutely no reason (particularly in New York).

There are more, too, that many other players have run into. Many are not game-breaking but that does not change the fact that they are numerous and annoying. They are so rampant that I simply cannot give Gameplay a full score with all of these inexcusable glitches. It's detrimental to the game when you are doing something in a game that is not working, and you assume it's a glitch before you assume you're simply doing it wrong.

Multiplayer
As soon as you load up multiplayer this time around, you're immediately aware that they put significantly more effort into this aspect of the game. The rousing success of Brotherhood and Revelations' multiplayer must have really pleased the developers.

Multiplayer in Assassin's Creed is played out similar to single player – all the freerunning mechanics are still there, and your objective is still to kill others while avoiding being killed yourself. Seems like a simple enough concept, but it's really a deeply tactical game of deadly cat and mouse. Simply scoring the most kills will not win you a match, as winners are determined by points. And points are determined by kill quality. Running around blindly will get you nowhere, as you get huge point bonuses for using cover, remaining undetected, using skills at your disposal, and varying your methods of felling your foes.

The multiplayer interface has been wildly altered. Users can stroll through menu categories like friends, options, character customization, and more with the LB and RB buttons and from the home screen can join matches. The revamped interface comes hand in hand with all new multiplayer skins and maps (which can be set in clear or stormy weather).

A few game modes are done away with, but two new game modes premiere as well: Domination and Wolf Pack. Both a team game modes, but both are very different than each other and the other available modes. In Domination, two teams fight for control of checkpoints on the map. Each team starts with one and must capture the others to keep a steady stream of points incoming. Teams must balance defending their already captures points with trying to capture new ones. Wolf Pack is wildly different than the previously available modes in that it's entirely cooperative. Players team up to take down computer controlled opponents while racing against a clock, and although it's cooperative that doesn't mean you can't fight for the top spot in points.

Each session, whether you won or not, nets you your point total in experience points, which goes towards leveling your multiplayer account up – the higher the level, the more customizable your personas can be and the more skills you'll gain access to.
Summary: 9/10
Pros:
-New treerunning mechanic makes navigating even more enjoyable
-Naval missions are a nice break from normal game play
-Expansive hunting mechanic added for those that desire to utilize it
-Extensive side mission chain based around expanding your Homestead can leave player feeling accomplished
-Controls for freerunning and combat simplified and generally smoothed
-Fast travel makes moving a cinch for those in a hurry
-Acclaimed multiplayer returns better than ever with new game modes and skills

Cons:
-Side missions are initially unmarked on map in a massive world, leading to a lot of blind searching
-Bulk of side missions are bland, boring, tedious, and without substance
-Minigames on hardest difficulties can downright infuriating
-Glitches and bugs inexcusably rampant (right out of the case; not accounting for updates)

Length/Replay Value
Down to the nitty-gritty of the review now. My playthrough of the single player campaign included every main mission, every naval mission, and every homestead mission. I moderately employed the use of fast travel, and collected little to no of the collectibles. I did less than half of the side quests. With all of this, the game net me between thirty and forty hours. Buying the game new at sixty dollars, you're looking at a little over half an hour of playtime for each dollar spent when you play through the single player game alone.

If you spend the time to do all the side missions, collect all the items, and basically all around 100% the game, I suspect you should easily surpass an hour for each dollar spent. Furthermore, if you enjoy the multiplayer aspect of the game, there is plenty of leveling up to do and stuff to unlock for your online character. This can lead to many, many hours of gameplay per dollar spent.
Summary: 10/10
Pros:
-Near endless replay value if you enjoy the multiplayer aspect of the game
-Even without all the optional stuff, single player game should net around 1:2 hours to money ratio

Cons:
-As a single player game alone, the game has very little to no replay value

Should you buy it? My overwhelming reply to fans of the series is: why are you reading this? Go pick it up now and give it a thorough playing. The gameplay elements have only but improved and become smoother, so if you enjoyed the previous three you should enjoy this one too. As for what to make of the story, that's up to you. For new players who have never played an Assassin's Creed before, I'd highly recommend it for fans of other action adventure games, or free roam fans. The game has a lot to offer in these departments and does so in a unique game setting.
Total Score: 9.0/10
Given 4_5 stars by iAmTheTot
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xinfestedovarie
133,923 (89,482)
xinfestedovarie
TA Score for this game: 1,671
Posted on 09 January 13 at 18:09
This review has 7 positive votes and 8 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
An average game overall with a lot more cons then there are pros. As a long assassins creed fan I did not like this game very much.

Graphics:
Overall the graphics for this game were amazing. The little details really come a long way. A new game engine to for your character which you will notice when climbing trees and buildings. It's much more fluent and makes a lot sense. I will give them an A in this category.
Multiplayer:
Now let me start by saying I do not support companies like ubisoft and EA making multiplayer games but requiring you to buy an online pass. ITs such a scam and it is really starting to get out of hand. If you are like me and have more than one account in the household you will have to buy a uplay membership as the game only comes with one. So also take note that if you are going to buy this game used there is a good chance you will have to buy a uplay account.My first impression of this game was multiplayer and I did not like the obvious fact that the multiplayer and single player were on separate discs which doesn't seem like to big of a deal but just gets annoying after a while. The first game mode I played was wolfpack with some friends and I have to say of this entire game this is the only thing I really enjoyed. A competitive mode where you challenge yourself to do better and get to higher rounds against npc. Then the actual multiplayer I hated. The matchmaking system isn't fair and you will get put up against level 50's when you are level 1. Not to big of a deal but when the pistol can shoot you from half way a cross the map it gets annoying. The game modes suck, the only one I found exciting was Artifact hunter but still didn't enjoy it.
Single Player:
Such a boring and dragged out single player. Its almost as if you are watching a movie and not playing a game. You walk into a building and cut-scene, then turn around and walk outside and cut-scene, then you walk down the street and cut-scene. Then you do a mission which takes 30 seconds and then CUT-SCENE. Now you can skip most cut-scenes (not all though) but the loading screen after you skip it gets annoying very fast. For the missions it seems the assassins creed games are turning more into fighting big groups of people with the help of militias and what not instead of actually stalking your targets and performing assassinations. The only plus side to the single player mode is the side missions which i found to be mediocre at best though.
Overall:
If your a huge gamer like myself and play every game that comes out defiantly go and pick a copy up because yes, I was harsh on it in my review but it still is an okay game. Ultimately, my point being is that there is a long list of games that came out during fall 2012 and a long list of games coming out soon that are just way better then this game. I would suggest getting one of those instead.
Given 3 stars by xinfestedovarie
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ShinMasaki528
132,470 (85,165)
ShinMasaki528
TA Score for this game: 1,851
Posted on 09 November 12 at 00:10
This review has 5 positive votes and 7 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
Assassin’s Creed III
3.9 / 5.0
Review by: Jeremy Credo (ShinMasaki528)

Assassin’s Creed III has been out for a little over a week now. A lot of people have managed to get their hands on it and give it a go, some have managed to work their way through the entirety that the game has to offer.

SUMMARY
In Assassin’s Creed III, you take on the role of new protagonist Ratonhnhaké:ton, or Connor. During your time in the Animus, the story takes you all over the Atlantic during the times of the 7-years war and the American Revolution, from England, to the Americas, from the Caribbean to the glaciers of the icy north-west passage. Of course, the main focus of the story takes place among the colonies, specifically in Boston and New York, but there are elements to the game that extend out to those far reaching destinations. The story also smoothly facilitates the inclusion of these locations, so there is no wonder why we are climbing a glacier, or running through a seeming haunted castle in the jungle. Outside of the Animus, the story also unfolds, taking us to new places such as New York, Italy and Brazil, again with relevant ties to the main focus of the game. As with Brotherhood where you could explore Monteriggioni, you are able to wander around and explore outside the Animus as well, although the exploration is quite limited compared to Monteriggioni, there are still necessary story elements to find.

Those of you who have been around since the beginning, Assassin’s Creed (the first), and especially through the story with Ezio, will be proud to know that the outside story with Desmond finally feels like is has some closure. The game doesn’t end on another mind-blowing cliff hanger. Rather, the cliff hangers from before all lead up to this pinnacle moment where ***[redacted] *** and finds ***[redacted]***. Then, when the ***[redacted]***.

Despite the story that is happening with Desmond, it is still hard to remember at times that Desmond actually is the story’s protagonist and the memories he is reliving are merely a means to extract information. Altaïr, Ezio, and Connor are not the story protagonists, but elements that lead us along the story. That isn’t to say that they aren’t pivotal characters that sell these titles, they absolutely are. Nobody would pay to buy a game where you get to watch Desmond sit in the Animus for days at a time with nothing exciting going on.

Back to Connor. A Mohawk-English Assassin. You are able to wander many historical moments with Connor from the Boston Tea Party to the Battle at Bunker Hill, from the Ride of Paul Revere to the Battle of the Chesapeake. These characters play the part well, each with their own reasons for doing the things they are doing. Because of this, at times you don’t realize what you are doing is actual historical fiction, but feel it is merely elements of the chapter you are on. The natural progression is so smooth and fluid that it is almost too easy to forget you are playing at a pivotal moment in history.

GAMEPLAY

The gameplay for the series plays out much like the Assassin’s Creed games did since AC II: a free world exploration, side-quests, collections, missions. The counter kills which have been around since the beginning are stunning to watch and gruesome and amazing at times. The free-running/parkour aspect is back as well. The parkour aspect to the game is probably the single most identifying feature of the Assassin’s Creed franchise, and they do it so well. Connor has the ability to free run through the trees, being more connected to the nature of things than any of the previous assassins we have seen. Running from branch to branch, skimming around tree trunks, making your way through the branches, it is so very fluid, it is rather scenic to watch.

While we have lost the tower defense from Revelations, which a lot of players did not enjoy, we did get a whole new gameplay element that I feel was well thought out and incredibly fun to go through: naval combat. Captaining the mighty Aquila, you get to pilot a ship about the high seas and engage in naval warfare with many different enemies. Calling the shots, quite literally while piloting a ship through narrow passages and managing your placement among the wind is a lot of work, but it was a really fun and engaging part of the game. And what would make it more complete than pirating about and boarding other ships, because that is in here too. Although boarding ships is only doable as the story allows, it is still neat to watch happen. Unfortunately, the seas are not as open as one would like, each naval mission is constrained to the mission parameters; there is no open sea exploration to be allowed. Maybe, should there be more games focused on Connor, content such as that will be available, but not for now.

Back on solid ground, Connor gets the ability about halfway through the game to train assassin recruits. Each have their own preference and style, so unlike in Brotherhood where you chose HOW you were leveling each recruit, as in what weapon, armor, skill set they learned, in AC III each recruit has their own style and method to assassinate. Furthermore, they each come with their own unique trait that will be of aid to you as you call them. For example, you can use the abilities of the assassin recruits to lure enemies, shoot them from a distance, run in and assassinate, create a riot, and more. Each assassin recruit brings to the collective their own unique skills.

STORY

The story takes you through many parts of the American Revolution, but does not center on the Revolution. Rather, the story is always on the Templar and how Connor can do what he can to stop their goals. As it so turns out, this has him siding with the Patriots much of the time, although that is not by his choice.

The story itself jumps from time to time and skips over parts of the Revolution, but as stated, the Revolution is not the main focus of the story, just coincidently happens alongside Connor’s story.

The story itself is told fairly well and follows fluidly. Even with time jumps, there is no real question about what is happening now or what the purpose of the mission is for. Everything is being done because of the Templar.

From a gameplay perspective, the story is well thought out and executed well. The dialogue is a little odd at times, but the general feel of the game is solid. The story is well written and there is no real confusion with story elements. The story itself is unique and engaging, while the overlying story with Desmond finally feels complete.

While not the best and exciting story in the Assassin’s Creed series thus far, it is still a very well done story. There unfortunately is nothing that goes ‘above and beyond’ about the story, but it is a great play nonetheless.

STORY – 4.0 / 5.0

GAME ELEMENTS

As stated before, this game is all about the parkour and the assassinations. There are numerous side-quests to be done as well, from collection quests to completing all the quests for various clubs. The naval warfare quests are great as well. While the collection quests can get rather repetitive and the clubs a little tedious, they don’t distract too much from the main game. The naval side missions offer a break from the regular climbing and fighting, while the collection quests let you go out and explore a bit. The clubs can get a little tedious, especially when you get to the level 3 quests for the clubs, but nothing a little bit of exploration and trading can’t fix.
One of the harder challenges to get requires you to have a lot of money. I won’t go into detail, but learning how to master the trade screen will help you get money in this game. No longer can you buy stores and have them generate money for you as in Brotherhood and Revelations. Now you must use the selling and trading aspect that would be around considering the time period.

Connor is adept with many different weapons, as you will find out with this and his lethality with any weapon he picks up is astounding. Of course, you will need to use that lethality to its fullest when dealing with some of the enemies and fight sequences in this game. With the ability to block and attack and either counter with your current weapon, disarm, throw your opponent, attack with your ranged weapon, or counter with your sub weapon, there are many different methods to combo kill your enemies. Additionally, from Brotherhood and Revelations returns the kill streak chain, where after making a counter kill, you can chain kill many other enemies. It makes Connor seem even more lethal of an assassin than ever before.

Considering the time period, muskets and flintlocks are available and readily used. Expect firing lines to be used against you. What better way to deal with them than to grab a foe and use them to take the brunt of the bullets for you.

In the untamed wilds of the eastern union at the time, wild animals are aplenty. You will find yourself hunting different animals throughout the game, especially if 100% is your goal. Different methods of hunting are present including trapping and hunting with arrows, firearms and poison. Against larger adversaries such as cougars, bears and elk, a new quick action sequence is initiated where by pressing the right button combinations in time, you will get to see Connor deal with attacking animals and put them down, assassin style.

Overall, the gameplay elements to this are larger than ever before. It helps you get away from the linear storyline and gives more to do with the game. There is so much to do, in fact, that getting lost in the game itself is very much doable.

ELEMENTS – 4.5 / 5.0

SOUND

From the hustling and bustling of the busy portside of Boston and New York to the quiet outdoors of the wild frontier, there is always something to listen in to. The music itself is enticing, although repetitive, and you can always know what is nearby because of the sounds that they make. Animals in this game are incredibly noisy, in fact. Animals are noisier than the people that you meet, more often than not. You always know when there is an animal nearby by the growling, squeaking, grunting and howling. From all the times I’ve personally seen, animals generally are fairly quiet. Maybe I’m missing something when I see animals, but I don’t know them to be as loud as they are in this.

One of the neat things about the game is as you progress, you begin to grow your own community, the Homestead. The citizens of this community live their lives out and it is rather neat to sit and watch them, however one of the most interesting things is to listen to them in their activities. The characters will talk with one another, communicate, complain and gripe, be happy and engaging. The team that worked on the Homestead did a great job and I feel that the community at the Homestead is much more lively and inviting than anywhere else in this game.

There are many different conversations that you can have in the game. However, Connor just seems really difficult at social situations. He seems to have trouble talking with people, either that or just trouble talking. Sure you can give the excuse that English is not his native language, but as a kid, he seemed to talk better than he does when he is an adult. His speech pattern is awkward and sometimes it is difficult to listen to him talk because the intonations used are not where a person would normally use them naturally.
As far as being on the captaining the Aquila, Connor yells out and commands his men. He actually sounds like a captain, or at least someone in charge of things. However when on the ground and talking with his crew commander, you don’t get that sense at all.
In a surprising turn from the politeness and honorable method with which Ezio addressed people, Connor is very direct, straight forward and, at times outright rude. He is very aggressive when talking with people he doesn’t like and not afraid to point out what is wrong with them and how he dislikes them.

Overall, the dialogue in this game could use a little bit of work. The ambient sounds are, at times, a bit too much, and the music is perhaps a bit too repetitive. The music however is well done and brings life to the game and events, but maybe a little less at times.

SOUND – 3.5 / 5.0

REPLAYABILITY

Unfortunately, replayability is where this game falls short. Having completed the game a full100% myself, I feel there is little else to do in the game. There are no world events that occur aside from the occasional courier to catch. The naval missions which are really fun are simple once you get them down the first time. The missions themselves have nothing exciting to offer a second time. Additionally after completing 100% of the game, there really is nothing left to it. You can wander the countryside and go hunt animals, but you have no need for the money anymore at this point.

One thing that is unlocked after the game is complete is the Animus Hack which is available in the Options menu. With this on, it prevents saving of the game and achievements from being achieved. However, it allows for neat little things such as: Infinite Ammo for your guns, Never Reload, Don’t Take Damage, Thunder and Lightning after every kill, Insta-Assassinate, and Infinite Recruit Tokens. Basically, it lets you run around and fight any amount of enemy as you wish and just fight them just because. While this may attract some people, again it is only available after the game itself has been concluded, so there is not much that it really offers aside from a little rampaging to do.

The game itself unfortunately does not offer much in the replay value and after achieving 100% completion, could very well and easily just be another one that sits on your shelf you never pull again.

REPLAYABILITY – 3.0 / 5.0

MULTIPLAYER

The multiplayer gameplay returns with this AC III. As opposed to Revelations, you no longer are a ‘volunteer’ at Abstergo, rather Abstergo has released the Animus game platform to the public and people are now able to play this game from the comfort of their own homes. Taking to the streets comes the familiar game types from before: Manhunt, Capture the Artifact, and Deathmatch. As before, you take the role of one of several different avatars and have to identify who your kill target is before they find you. Killing is an art and the more artistic and graceful you are, the more points you may get. Stacking bonuses such as: Hidden, Focused and Incognito in one kill is worth maybe 4-5 times that one kill you got for running around and chasing your target across the map.

New to this game comes the Wolfpack mode which puts you and up to three other people in an open world with set targets to take down. Again, how you kill your targets is more important than how many. Quality over quantity. With 25 sequences to go through per session, you have a time limit that extends each time you hit a new sequence or point checkmark. Each sequence is reached when a new point total is hit. Hitting that point total extends the time. Each kill has their own challenges to be had as well, so there is variety as well instead of the same thing over and over.

Another new thing to the game are public ladders. By this, I mean that every game you play, you are rated on and places you on a public ranked ladder. Are you good enough to make the top placements on the worldwide scale? Find out. The more kills you get on people ranked higher than you, the more points you receive, whereas losing to someone with a lower rank will drop your score. How can you prove you are the best out there any better than a system like this?

Finally, customize your character to your own liking with the character and abilities customization. The character customization really doesn’t do anything much and changes are so minute that you really won’t notice them at all, so that really isn’t anything to worry about. The abilities customization, however, changes your load out of different skills and abilities and allows you different methods to kill and deceive your opponents. Mastering the different skills is what will get you to be a master assassin.

MULTIPLAYER – 4.5 / 5.0

ACHIVEMENTS

With many achievements given for completing chapters, it is easy to get a decent 500-600 point score on this game. However, for completionists, such as myself, aiming for that 1000/1000 it does take extra effort. Getting a full 100% synchronization on every memory is not the easiest of tasks with some of the optional objectives they give. Some of the boat missions are outright ridiculous to get as well, not to mention completing all the clubs. The collection quests are what get people the most up in arms currently. With quest givers not appearing on the map until you are almost right on top of them, it is difficult sometimes to even find where to begin a quest.

Some of the quests, such as the “An Extraordinary Man” achievement is nothing more than a tedious grind, whereas achievements like “Completionist” actually feels like an achievement to have been able to complete it. Overall, the achievements for this game, half are given out, half actually require work to get done. For those that are going for the full 1000/1000, it is not something that can be done in a day, but requires a bit of time, effort and a little bit of love for the game to get done. Overall, though, I am very happy of my 1000/1000 score on this game.

ACHIVEMENTS – 4.0 / 5.0

*******

STORY – 4.0 / 5.0
ELEMENTS – 4.5 / 5.0
SOUND – 3.5 / 5.0
REPLAYABILITY – 3.0 / 5.0
MULTIPLAYER – 4.5 / 5.0

OVERALL RATING – 3.9 / 5.0
ACHIVEMENTS – 4.0 / 5.0



FINAL THOUGHTS

Assassin’s Creed III is a great addition to the Assassin’s Creed lineup of games. Despite already listed as the finale in the Desmond trilogy by Ubisoft, there is unofficial news of Assassin’s Creed IV on the way soon, so don’t be upset by the end of a great series, there is still possibly yet more to come.

As far as a game goes, this was a rather enjoyable game to play. It was not the best in the series, nor was it the worst, it fit somewhere in between. Visually, the game was astounding, audibly, the game needed work. The gameplay was satisfactory and I thoroughly enjoyed my time through this entire game, although at times it was repetitive and difficult to get through.

The lack of replay value really hits hard though, as the game can be finished in a week’s time, if not less (as I have proven) and will likely be one sitting on the shelf for a long time to come. The multiplayer is a nice addition, but with other big multiplayer titles coming out this season, it may not be as big on peoples’ lists as was intended. Especially since nothing new really was brought to the multiplayer since Assassin’s Creed Revelations.

My final thoughts on this game? If you are a fan of the Assassin’s Creed series, this is a definite must get. If you are not so much a fan of the series, perhaps this would be best as a mere rental title. Connor doesn’t have the air that Ezio has about him, but still enlightening to see a new face in the lineup. The multiplayer is fun for those that liked the previous multiplayer, but if you were not a fan of it before, there is nothing new to it that would attract you to this one.

This game finds itself on my shelf after a week’s time, but I am waiting for the DLC content and hoping to see more of the Assassin’s Creed series more in the future.

FINAL RATING

Assassin’s Creed III
3.9 / 5.0
B+
Given 4 stars by ShinMasaki528
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minimonkeyk
40,020 (29,465)
minimonkeyk
TA Score for this game: 1,118
Posted on 04 November 12 at 00:55, Edited on 06 November 12 at 09:24
This review has 12 positive votes and 14 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
I pre ordered the collectors (join or die) edition of this game, and it hasn't let me down. Although it isn't without its down side assassins creed 3 is one of the best games of the series.

One brilliant freature of this game is the gameplay it's self, anybody who has been a long term fan of assassin's creed will agree with me that the fighting and free running style of Ezio had begun to get boring and samey. And if I'm honest it was what i was expecting seeming that i didn't know how it would be any different. But as soon as I started playing AC3 I knew it was different. the fighting seems much smoother, With different types of people needing different moves to beat them. although AC2, ACB and ACR al had different types of soldiers you always knew that either counter or dodge would defeat them, but in AC3 that isn't the case with dodging being removed you end up with more choices, with counter and throw, counter and attack, counter and disarm or just counter, or alternatively you can just break defense out right and in some cases you are required to use the envrioment and throw people through barrels and tables. with all this you are often left trying to find out what combo will best defeat your enemy. Also the free running which has also always been a major part of AC has had a major upgrade with safe running it means no more RT and A. and again it feels so much more smooth. when it comes to rock climbing in this game, i don't think i've ever played anything like this, instead of what seems like very odd shapes sticking out of the side of the cliff for you to climb, it actually looks like cliffs you see all the time and it feels so natural climbing up them. jumbing through the tree's also feels soo smooth although it can seem very strict at times giving you only one possible root through the trees to go most of the time.

The story is also superb, not predictable apart from a few minor things, but even they have their own twists and also there is the Desmond plot which with his first real interactions with his Dad is actually really interesting.

However I can not make a review of AC3 with out talking about the gliches, and there is alot of them. although none of them game ruining and most of them funny with flying deer etc it doesn't make the game wholely bad for it, just a simple patch in the next few months and everything will be fine.
I would give this game a 4.5 star but since i can i rounded up for it. this definatly the best game since AC2 and it changed the gameplay and enjoyment level for the better just as much. I really hope Ubisoft has learnt it is better to spend 3 years developing a game than to rush one game a year. I really hope that they spend a good amount of time for the sequel which it definatly appears there will be i would rather wait 3 years and have it amazing than for a ACB repeat.
Given 5 stars by minimonkeyk
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