The latest game in the Assassin’s Creed series – Revelations – is here. Featuring all three major characters from the earlier games of the series – Ezio, Altair and Desmond. However, does it better its predecessors or does it fall flat? As well, as it is the last game to play as Ezio, does this serve as a fitting farewell?
Nicholas Munro reviews Assassin’s Creed: Revelations, which is after the jump.
8.5 / 10
Storyline is strong; further development of Desmond; graphics and features are great and fun.
Little change from previous titles in the series
May be suffering from a little fatigue, but is still a great game.
Warning: this review may contain spoilers.
Story and Graphics
The story in Assassin’s Creed: Revelations follows much the same structure as the previous game with Ezio Auditore and the Assassins in their war against the Templars (a mysterious group intent on world domination). This time round Ezio is striving to find five keys to the ancient library of Altair, the protagonist of the first game, before the Templers.
These keys are artefacts of an ancient civilisation known only as “the First Civilisation” so one may assume that the library holds more than just books. Much like previous titles in this all takes place in the head of Desmond Miles who through a device known as the Animus (which allows an individual to view the memories of their ancestors). This time, however, Desmond is not there by choice. After the events of the last game left him in a coma, he has hooked up to the Animus to keep his mind from shattering, and with the help an individual known as “Subject 16” Desmond must work to unravel his ancestors memories before they all begin to collapse together.
Graphically you will notice little graphical improvement from the previous game. However, that’s not to say that this is not a beautiful game. Yet again, Ubisoft have constructed a rich, vibrant world from the ground up. As with the previous game, this is set in three locations: Constantinople (or Istanbul, it really depends who you talk to), Animas Island (the land where Desmond may wander between memories) and the Assassin’s stronghold from the first game (both in the time of Altair and in Ezio’s time). All these locations have been beautifully crafted to fully immerse the player into this world.
To be honest, ACR has not changed a lot from the previous title in the series, Brotherhood. So let’s just look at what is new. One of the most obvious new features is bomb crafting. Bombs are used in much the same way as smocked bombs in Brotherhood; however this time, they may be customised to serve the player’s purpose. Bombs may be customised for assault or stealth by adding items like shrapnel that can make them deadly or adding sheep’s blood to make a non-deadly bomb that will cause the target to believe they have been hit.
The hook blade is also new. This changes things up a little – it is designed to compensate for Ezio’s age and to make climbing somewhat faster (much like the climbing gloves from the last game). The blade also allows Ezio to use the zip lines that connect many of the buildings throughout the city. This allows for greater ease whilst travelling along the rooftops – the only true way to travel in the Assassin’s Creed series. ACR again lets you recruit and train assassins (like Brotherhood), however their missions have been somewhat tweaked so that their goal now is to take control of the cities around the Mediterranean away from the Templars. A tower defence-styled game has also been added, now Templers will seek to regain lost area within Constantinople and Ezio must use an assorted selection of assassins to defend the base that controls the region of the city.
It is not with Ezio that the player experiences the greatest amount of innovation. This is also found within Desmond’s storyline with Animus Island. As Ezio, you collect various “Animus data fragments” throughout the city; and these can be redeemed when playing Desmond. This allows the chance to travel deep inside the Animus as raw data. Here, the game switches to first person and removes the ability to climb. Instead, you are presented with an alternative to move up levels. Though, you’ll have to find out by the playing the game.
This is quite possibly the best game in the franchise and is a truly great game. However, it is also the sought of game that probably would have benefited from coming out a different time of year and not come up against titles like Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Uncharted 3 and Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary – all of which offer ether a high level of innovation or nostalgia. So although it is a great game, one cannot help but to feel that the changes are just too small to let it stand out from the crowd.