Revolutionary (E3 2012)
Today was a fine day. Today I got to check out the Assassin's Creed III booth at E3. With baited breath I waited for my appointment, and when the time came, what I saw demoed simply took my breath my away.
Assassin's Creed III puts players in the role of Connor during the American Revolution. Gamers are going to be thrown into a new historical era for the series, and it's been so well recreated, you can't help but notice the passion and time it took to bring this past world to life. The first level I checked out was the Boston city map. The developers have recreated the 18th century Boston streets accurate to the era. The details are simply stunning: from pigs wandering the streets, to realistic crowds of 18th century citizens, to rats scurrying beneath your feet. No expense has been spared to recreate this time and place. American history buffs will get a big smile on their face when they see historical buildings still standing in today's time recreated impeccable in game (okay, it made ME smile… But I'm a history buff). I don't want to get too wrapped up on how gorgeous the game looks, because the gameplay looks just as good.
Connor has all sorts of ways to hide, sneak, and kill. In one example I was shown, Connor hid in a hay cart which wheeled slowly through town, where he then would pop out and take down a Redcoat (you'll be fighting the imperial British in this installment). Connor also has the ability to lose himself in the crowd, slipping between people and mimicking their actions, covering his hood over his face to remain anonymous. While the stealth actions were cool, the neck to neck, pistol to pistol fighting was slick and adrenaline filled. If things get too heavy, Connor can run, jump and bound his way through the city, and not just over rooftops, but through houses, escaping and confusing his pursuers.
There will still be plenty of open world missions, wall scaling and slick, smooth jumps, but at the end of the day, what really blew me out of the water were the naval battle levels (wow, I made a pun and I didn't even intend to). Again, I go into describing these naval battles as absolutely insanely gorgeous. The waves and surface movement of the sea water is ridiculously realistic. But the tense emotion that builds with the rain and foul weather as you leave the sunny shores and head out into deeper waters is almost magical. The ship you are on is a fully exportable map, but when you get behind the wheel, that's when the real fun begins. The game camera will anchor at the wheel of the ship, and can be swung around to see where enemy ships are attacking. With epic music, awesome sounds, and the feel of an authentic historical naval battle (again, I'm a geek for this stuff. Give me a Patrick O'Brian novel and I'm set for days) I had never felt shivers up my spine while simply watching a level being demoed before. As enemy ships swung around to broadside Connor's ship, and he maneuvered his own into position to fire back, I was on the edge of my seat, waiting for the next flurry of cannonballs. It was a grand sight to see the sinking huge naval ships as they plunged into the ocean, cut up by cannon fire. When the demo finished, I was aching to see more.
From what I saw, it seems Assassin's Creed III is shaping up to be a great game. For those who have never touched an AC game before, Assassin's Creed III will be something new and amazing. For those long term fans looking for a breath of fresh air, this new setting, along with the new additions to gameplay, will revitalize their thoughts on the series.
Three things describe Rando: Good beer, good food, and video games. On occasion, Rando flies a zeppelin through time seeking power crystals.
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