Assassin’s Creed: Revelations Review – The Lustrum Of A Lifetime

Assassin’s Creed: Revelations reveals everything in a storyline epic title of the year that took more than five years to complete. Ubisoft Montreal has kept the same action as its incredible predecessor from Assassins Creed: Brotherhood, the title which focused on the next adventure of Master Assassin Ezio Auditore da Firenze. Multiplayer action is still fast paced while a bit more refined, and the singleplayer campaign mode is just as adventurous and bloody. Regardless of these aspects, single-player mode does suffer from a few inherent flaws but manages to make a title that is quite possibly one of the best Assassin’s Creed titles to date. Altair Ibn-La’Ahad and Ezio Auditore da Firenze show the world that being an assassin is just the beginning in what becomes a title all about revealing everything in the secrets of the Assassin order.

Ezio Auditore da Firenze is in Italy where we last left him after 1507 and killing the Borgia influence for good and solidifying the Brotherhood. He soon embarks  on a journey to Masyaf, Syria – the home of Altair Ibn-La’Ahad seeking more from the Piece of Eden. A conspiracy largely unfolds, and there begins another mystery. The storyline of Assassin’s Creed: Revelations is unlike any other title in the series. Assassin’s Creed focused on Altair, while Assassin’s Creed II and Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood focused on the Assassin order and the rise of Ezio Auditore da Firenze and the mystery of Altair while solidifying a brotherhood to kill Borgia. In Revelations, players finally play a storyline with the return of Altair and Ezio together, not to mention the animus-strapped Desmond Miles, a test subject taken hostage by modern day Templars and then consequently liberated in later titles. These 3 storyline arcs meet an apex and converge to a grandiose ending that is simply something which must be seen. The storyline dynamic is fused throughout cinematics which are more refined in real-time and lastly the gameplay where different anachronistic portions of the game fuse together like an abstract mystery novel.

Assassin’s Creed: Revelations changes the formula that made Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood and Assassin’s Creed II encapsulating titles very slightly, hoping not to stray away too far into a confusing game. Some changes are small refined segments, whereas some in particular are overhauled segments of gameplay itself. These changes for a sequel are largely decent, but do come at a price. Button layout has been changed, which allows players to select a secondary weapon on the load out as as well as a primary weapon. This has undoubtedly been the number one most asked change by any fan of the Assassin’s Creed series, and it is simply a great boon that Ubisoft decided to finally include this with all the gameplay combat mechanics. Now Ezio can toss a bomb and attack at the same time, or throw knives and attack right away without causing a disconnect for a wheel-menu layout.  Weapons are largely the same and include guns, poison, and a new weapon called the hookblade. The hookblade is a new way for Ezio or Altair to reel in an enemy, creating for a more realistic environmental sense of danger. Bombs can now be crafted from ingredients, which are variable in their effects but not as necessarily effective or meaningful.  All of the weaponry changes and layout enhancements were helpful to Ubisoft in aiming to perfect the title. Den Defense is a mechanics change in the territories region of Constantinople, Newer territories now focus on reacquisition by generals. Once conquered, they are no longer incapable of being retaken. Territorial defense is a system Ubisoft included, and it feels more like a RTS than an actual function of the game that seems to be important or even meaningful. While still a rational inclusion (considering enemies do not run away forever), the territorial system of managing assassin’s to guard land holdings that Ezio has becomes a bit stale. Ubisoft could have excluded this and produced a more meaningful gameplay change with minor improvements, even if the title feels more similar to Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood.. This is in no way deleterious, however, but with any new title people expect more changes for the better, not slightly detracting considering no title can ever be without the need for improvement.

Multiplayer within Assassin’s Creed: Revelations is delightfully fun and exciting. While leveling up back to level 50 might annoy some, this is standard with multiplayer games and Assassin’s Creed: Revelations is definitely a more enthralling multiplayer experience in comparison to Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood. Various new modes such as Team Deathmatch and Artifact Assault (capture the flag type mode) have been added along with classical modes seeing improvements in gameplay. 2 Vs. 2 partner modes previously found in Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood is also part of the game dynamic but matchmaking has improved in connectivity. Multiplayer aspects of games in today’s landscape come with cooperative mode (which mind you WhatIfGaming has been urging developers to do since Halo 1 and Xbox 1), and a straightforward competitive mode or either of the two. Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood came with an opening Templar CG and competitive/team-based objective modes. Abstergo Facility now has a storyline in multiplayer, and allows players to delve into the history of the Templars. Assassin’s Creed: Revelations answers the calls that many have wanted in the multiplayer aspect. Customization options include animation changes, taunts, designs, and more. The interface layout has been improved and streamlined to also include weapon sets. Gone is the GPS with a blue indicator for targets. Now, a picture appears of a target to assassinate, which will proceed to vary from latent to beating and flashing blue when closer to the target. Punching/Counter dynamic in terms of defense counter has finally finished the unfair timing between punches. Not only improving the animation lag, Assassin’s Creed: Revelations announced contested kills bonus which is earned when counter and kill occur at the same time, giving the stunner “Honorable Death.” This also effectively places a negative effect on a person that does a contested kill for 30 seconds, which is excellent for balancing the gameplay between respawn times. All of these kills and bloody massacres go towards new Abstergo credits, which are awarded to players to buy items from the Abstergo shop.  Assassin’s Creed: Revelations multiplayer is undoubtedly the best one in the series, and makes the game worth the purchase even if for multiplayer alone.

Assassin’s Creed: Revelations comes with minute changes in the singleplayer adventure and a corpus of new features in multiplayer that makes for an assassin action adventure that is completely liberating to play. In contrast, Ubisoft Montreal has added Defense Den which is not the strongest of changes and actually serves to deter gameplay when an assassin is constantly out to defend his territories. Even with whatever changes, positive or negative, Assassin’s Creed: Revelations creates the same game in Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood but refines it with better storyline direction, more plot twists but this time one with a definitive conclusion, and finally multiplayer with the most requested features to date. Assassin’s Creed: Revelations may have kept to the formula and tried to keep safe in its gameplay campaign design, but it still tells a tale that is worth the assassin name. Bloodshed, justice, and the convergence of historical lore brings Altair Ibn-La’Ahad, Ezio Auditore da Firenze, and Desmond Files together in lustrum to create best Assassin’s Creed title to date.

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