Archive for AC

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey – From Ancient Greece to the American Revolution and Back with One Season Pass

Posted in Gaming these days ..., News with tags , , , , , on September 26, 2018 by Rabidgames

First of all – the fuck? Whenever Rabidgames buys the ultimate or whatever version of a game to enjoy the complete version with all DLCs or just because it is dead cheap and the 360 version is in a box, boom, a remaster appears out of thin air. Dragon’s Dogma, boom! Far Cry 3, boom! Red Faction Guerilla, boom! And now, Assassin’s Creed 3, boom! How about Oblivion Remastered then? Or New Vegas, you know, the Fallout people fucking want?

Anyway, what were we talking about, oh, Assassin’s Creed 3, right. As you might have heard, the Remastered version will be part of the Season Pass of the soon coming Greek tragedy Assassin’s Creed Odyssey! Or you can buy the game separately if you don’t like Greek culture and food, or if you’ve had one too many ouzos once or twice …

So yeah. There are some reasons to question Assassin’s Creed Odyssey – it is set before the Assassins were formed, it is set only in Greece (which feels a bit sad after the diverse climates and the pyramids of Egypt), people there don’t revere cats as much, and then there’s a focus on naval combat no one has really asked for because let’s face it, naval combat in Black Flag – aye, naval combat in Origins – nay.

But it could still be a great game – there are also tons of good news – exploration mode for isntance. No more “follow the main quest” … well, still a bit, but Odyssey allows you to explore Greece at your leisure even more than Origins did with Egypt. One could say you can have your own open-ended Odyssey …

Choices also appear to be meaningful in this seemingly deep action RPG, at least if we believe Ubi’s PR machine. In many ways, Odyssey sounds like the Bioware game fucking EA has denied us this generation. True, Inquisition was decent enough, although it paled and withered once The Witcher 3 claimed the RPG throne. But Odyssey could have what it takes to best at least Bioware’s efforts. At the very least, we can decide if we support Athens or Sparta, and it seems we can do a whole lot more dirty mercenary work, including recruiting a crew again (there’ll also be a trophy for having recruited an all-female crew) …

And then, all the stuff after release. Sure, it would be nice to have all at once – but have you read the details of Odyssey’s Season Pass? Two expansions, one about Atlantis! The episodic content sucks, sure, but Atlantis!

Here’s the thing. Ubisoft does questionable, very questionable things at times, like still having games with fucking loot boxes, or always-online for The Crew or The Division. And fucking loot boxes! But when it comes to value for money, Odyssey looks like a big fucking deal! Procided you like Assassin’s Creed, you pay 80 to 100 quid (depending on the version) for a 100 hour game. Plus the massive Assassin’s Creed 3 (hopefully a bit streamlined) plus its great tyrannic alternate history, plus the smaller bonus of Liberation!

And then, there’s the free stuff. We’ll get another Discovery tour and more free weekly and daily DLC in the form of mini quests! So, that’s plenty of bang for your bucks. But … well, there’s also a big concern. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey could very well have an expiration date, similar to pretty much every fucking game this year if you own a PS4 or a One. Let’s face it, Red Dead Redemption 2 is already raring to go, and unless Rockstar does a massive, massive fuck-up, it looks like a goddamn serious Game of the Decade contender. But pretty much every game this year has that red dead problem …

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Assassin’s Creed Syndicate or Victorian Rejuvenation

Posted in Hands On with tags , , , on November 4, 2015 by Rabidgames

Another year, another Assassin’s Creed. After the disappointment of Unity with the weak protagonist Arno who couldn’t light up Paris, we can now see what the dynamic assassinating twins Evie and Jacob can do in Victorian London.

And it’s a whole lot they’re doing! First of all – there is no graphical downgrade, at least not one you actually notice unless you’re a graphic whore. However, the game runs fine and neat most of the time. Second, Evie and Jacob are way more interesting than Arno – they fight, they have different goals they are going after … To enjoy Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, you should definitely play them differently – a shame Ubisoft gave each only a handful of exclusive skills. Here’s Rabidgames’ formula for fun: Have Evie sneak around and be an assassinating shadow, while Jacob knocks down the front door and bludgeons and shoots everyone in sight, always accompanied by their gang, the Rooks.

Mission-wise, there are a few missions only one can tackle, but most of the time, feel free to traverse London with your favourite. The main missions are nice and varied, and even the side content appears more structured in Syndicate – take over the city to get rewards from one guy, do fight clubs and horse carriage races to rank up with another guy, help a cop here, sabotage Templar stuff there – whatever you do, one person will make it worth your while. Okay, except for collecting flowers, treasure chests, Helix glitches and beer bottles. However, each beer bottle comes with hilarious tasting notes from Shaun, your old Assassin mate, so it’s not too bad here.

And thankfully, there are the Dreadful Crimes, murders to be investigated by our Sherlock and Watson … or rather the twins, sorry although there is a connection with Sherlock Holmes there. Besides this person, you can also have a chat with the likes of Dickens, Darwin or Bell, just to name a few, in Syndicate. And some of the conversations are actually hilarious. Oh, and we even get to meet royal blood!

With the variety above – and from sneaking to horse races to playing Froggers on the Thames while stealing stuff from boats there is quite some to be had – Syndicate feels fresher than Assassin’s Creed has felt for a while. Of course, novelties like the arcady but still fun horse carriages or the grapple hook (known from Batman or Just Cause) help making the game more fun. One letdown though is your headquarters – a moving train. Sounds lame, IS lame. A proper mansion would have been way better.

There’s one question left, right? How’s Syndicate’s London? From a Londoner’s perspective, it is doing okay – of course, some famous sights are easily recognisable, but the geography is not really accurate (to put it that way), and some areas feel rather bland. This might be historically accurate, who knows, but if there’s no difference between rich and poor areas, something feels a bit off. Apart from that though, the city feels like a breathing city in Syndicate – yes, there are less NPCs than in Unity, but train stations are still busy, and many NPCs roam the streets doing something, sometimes drunkenly beating up each other, especially at night when Syndicate’s London looks and plays at its atmospheric best. However, there is one thing that’s unrealistic – London is too bright and sunny, there should be more smog, fog and rain!

It’s fair to say Syndicate is more polished Unity, not just in case of bugs, but also in terms of gameplay elements such as streamlined activities, inventory or icons on the map. It all feels more organised and more accessible – although the fighting is more dynamic this time – and swordless, of course. But most importantly, Assassin’s Creed Syndicate’s protagonists are more engaging and interesting, and last but not least, the game itself is more diverse and, simply put, fun.

Rabidgames cheers: Yes, Syndicate is a successful evolution of Unity’s formula – less clunky, less confusing, more fun, more possibilities. And unless the ending sucks Templars’ balls, it could be up in the competition with the likes of Brotherhood and Black Flag. Excuse Rabidgames now, off we go to to explore the streets of London!

Assassin’s Creed Rogue or Same Old with a Twist

Posted in Hands On with tags , , , , on November 24, 2014 by Rabidgames

Let’s say what we’re all thinking. The Assassin’s Creed double release insanity was idiotic. Period. Because of that, many, many people will probably miss out on Assassin’s Creed Rogue because opting solely for Unity … a big shame.

Arguably, Rogue could well be the better game – sure, there is not much innovation at first glance, and there are no massive crowds to be found, too. But Rogue runs stable and solid, and it ingeniously combines the wilderness of Assassin’s Creed III with Black Flag’s naval battles. And then, there’s the twist: After you think “more of the same stuff”, all of a sudden, a tragedy occurs (and believe Rabidgames, it is a proper tragedy, not just the usual “ooooh my family” routine) and our dear Irish protagonist Shay Cormac turns his coat and joins the Templars! (No spoilers here. You know that already.)

Thankfully, fighting Assassins introduces new gameplay mechanics in Rogue – you’re not just the hunter, you’re the hunted now, too. Just as we’ve been doing for years, Assassins now lurk in bushes and hiding spots searching for you. Taking down a “boss Assassin” has him fleeing, throwing smoke bombs and stealth attacking you, so stealth should be priority here.

Apart from that, Rogue is a big basket of fan service – synchronising viewpoints? Check. Collectibles (more than ever this time)? Check. Raiding warehouses? Check. Naval battles? Check? Your own fleet? Check. Taking control of areas? Check. If that’s good or bad, well, up to you. Mind you, there are small changes to the formula – there’s more verticality, some new or tweaked weapons (for Shay and for his ship, the Morrigan), and some new sidequests.

Besides, there are lots of areas in Rogue to discover and explore – you have a pretty big portion of New York, the Arctic Ocean resembling Black Flag’s map, substituting tropical flavour for icebergs and snow, and finally the River Valley; waterways and lots of wilderness and almost as big as the ocean map … and a tiny, oddly familiar location named Sleepy Hollow, among other things.

So far, Rabidgames has only found one complaint with Rogue: Some sequences are too heavily scripted, and one storywise important section felt exactly like ripped out of Call of Duty History Warfare. But if you don’t mind Rogue feels like a best-of with the best parts of the series, this should be your “safe” Assassin’s Creed to get this year – at least until Unity is properly patched.

Rabidgames nods: True, Rogue is fan service, but hey, it’s what we wanted – less tailing, more naval fun, lots of ground and water to cover, and after all, refined gameplay that feels mellow and relaxed and invites you to experiment with all these well-known tools. Since it’s also the swansong on the old consoles, it’s a gentle goodbye … with the twist of a blade, of course.

 

 

Assassin’s Creed Unity or Between App Insanity and Failed QA Lurks a Great Game

Posted in Gaming these days ..., Hands On with tags , , , , on November 20, 2014 by Rabidgames

First of all, Ubisoft should be ashamed of themselves. Google “Unity bugs” in youtube, and you know what Rabidgames means. Fuck it, just watch this shit:

To be fair, Rabidgames has not had that massive problems with Assassin’s Creed Unity, so maybe a day one patch has cleaned up the biggest mess already. But still – how is that possible? Can Ubisoft actually spell QA? (Well, it seems so, Rogue and Far Cry 4 running relatively fine after all.) And furthermore, the loading times can be a joke, too. And don’t you dare to access a menu … unless you want to have your PS4 sound like a plane during take-off!

Apart from technical aspects, there’s another major annoyance which makes the name Unity a joke – in order to get every weapon, armour etc. the game has to offer, the game is not enough: you need the companion app, Initiates, Unite and, of course, Uplay as well. That’s 5 different fucking things to meddle around with, and we’re talking about fucking exclusive things here!

But despite all that, Unity is still a good game beneath all that; Paris looks incredibly detailed, the crowds are massive, everything from dirt in the street to bushes, trees and buildings really looks good … Paris feels like a breathing, living being. Plus, there’s shitloads of stuff to do … assassinations, rebuilding your HQ, investigations, collectibles and many more things, including the awesome rifts. It doesn’t get boring during a revolution, that’s for sure. The missions themselves are pretty diverse, too, and while the new climbing and stealth of Unity feel weird in the beginning, they’re quite comfortable when you get used to them.

Rabidgames sighs: Ironically, Unity is not an unity. The technical fuck-ups and the device insanity mar the good gameplay considerably. After some sequences, Paris still feels fresh, but there’s also the stench of rushed release and microtransactions lurking around. Let’s hope the scent of fresh gameplay will be the lasting impression …

 

 

Bollywood meets Assassin’s Creed

Posted in News with tags , , on March 11, 2012 by Rabidgames

Rabidgames stumbled upon a really weird piece of work: Can you imagine combining Assassin’s Creed with Bollywood?
If you can’t this video will disabuse you:

Pretty … unique, isn’t it?

Rabidgames laughed: Whoever got that idea – kudos to them. Well done, lads.

Assassins’ Creed 3 or Red Dead Assassin?

Posted in News with tags , , , on March 4, 2012 by Rabidgames

Thanks to a huge massive leak(?), we now know shitloads of stuff about Assassin’s Creed 3 – and all of it is awesome! Let’s we what we can expect in late 2012:

The World

According to the leaked source(s), Assassin’s Creed 3 will feature not only two cities – Boston and New York – but also a huge wilderness, called “The Frontier”. If we believe Ubisoft, the wilderness alone is whopping 1.5 times bigger than the entire places of Brotherhood. It also will consist of different areas (probably villages, forests, plains etc.) and we will be able to climb trees and mountain tops. Assassin’s Creed 3 will also feature seasons which in turn will have an effect on movement.

Due to the vast world, we will have a fast travel system again. That’s a rather obvious one though.

The Protagonist

Finally, we will get to meet a new character: He is the son of an English father and a Native American mother.The protagonist of Assassin’s Creed 3 is named Connor or – rather hard to pronounce – Ratohnhaketon (allegedly pronounced Radoonhagaydoo). We will witness his childhood trauma (quite likely a disguised tutorial): Raised by Mohawks, his village fell prey to greedy white settlers. It remains to be seen how this will impact Connor in Assassin’s Creed 3

Connor (Rabidgames calls him Connor because the other name is too long and copy & paste doesn’t really count as remembering a name), OK, Connor will learn new moves and he will fight with new weapons – Ubisoft said all animations would be new, too.

Of course, we will get to know lots of stuff about Desmond Miles, too.

The Story

Assassin’s Creed 3 will take place between1753 and 1783. While the central story hubs will be Boston and New York, we will also witness some famous battles during the American Revolutionary War, the big fire of New York in 1783 and probably many more historic events. Another great announcement is that we will see different shades of grey in Assassin’s Creed 3 – the Templars and the Assassin’s believe they’re fighting the good fight – we’ll see if there are some faction choices involved – which wouldn’t make sense in the context of the game unless the ultimate focus of Assassin’s Creed 3 is using the Animus to change history – but that would be a bit to far fetched – wouldn’t it?

During the game, Connor will meet the likes of George Washington, Benjamin Franklin and Charles Lee who might be an ambivalent character. We will also meet kind Brits and rather unkind Americans. Oh, and the French and Native Americans will be involved as well.

There might be even sidequests from different guild-like factions, e.g. hunters which might be triggered if Connor hunts a lot.

The Gameplay

Ah, hunting. Sneaking through the wilds, hunting deer or predators … sounds pretty much like Red Dead Redemption, doesn’t it? Don’t get Rabidgames wrong, this is by no means a bad thing! The Assassin’s Creed series urgently needs a change of pace, a fresh setting – and it just looks like we might get it! For instance, hunting comes with a twist: When you kill a deer with one hit, its meat and fur are worth more than battering it to death with a stick.

The fighting system seems to have changed as well in Assassin’s Creed 3: It is supposed to be more versatile, faster and more tactically. Connor will use pistols, a hidden blade (hooray!) and his standard weapons – a tomahawk and a knife. According to Ubisoft the new and way more powerful engine will allow for insane stuff: we might be in the heat of huge battles with thousands of characters. Now that sounds fucking awesome!

There will be more platforming action (not Rabidgames‘ favourite), more puzzles – Ubisoft mentions some “first person Tetris“, a different element of recruiting assassin’s (fuck yeah), upgrades for Connor’s gear and outfit and a new, dynamic camera. Luckily, the Tower Defense borefest from Revelations is gone!

Rabidgames swoons: Holy shit, Assassin’s Creed 3 sounds too good to be true. While all previous games were good open world experiences, Ubisoft might grant us a perfect sandbox experience here – and as you know, Rabidgames is all up for sandbox fun! Gameplay and story definitely sound good and especially fresh. Sure, there might be comparisons to Red Dead Redemption, but it does not really sound like a copycat mechanic so that should be fine, too.