Assassin’s Creed: Origins – the latest Assassin’s Creed
The Assassin’s Creed series has been around for more than a decade and it has gained a substantial supports from gamers and gradually become a flagship title for Ubisoft. As I could recall, I witnessed multiple releases of this title almost every year as the sales figures climbed up. Unfortunately, the hay day of this franchise seems to be interrupted when it launched Assassin’s Creed: Unity which packed with unexpected glitches and bugs. The company received a countless number of complaints from gamers around the globe and yet Ubisoft still addresses those problems as “something’s unperfected” even though the company finally released a 6.7 GB updated patch to fix that “something”. The sales plummeted and Ubisoft was forced to early launch Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate but the situation didn’t get any better since a majority of fans has already lost fate to the franchise. Worst after worst, the movie adaptation of the same name was a flop at the box office despite an excellent cast of Hollywood’s top stars.
The first priority for Ubisoft is to rescue the sinking flagship before it’s too late. The company has been pouring tons of cash to develop the latest Assassin’s Creed title hoping that it will take this franchise to the summit again and the latest Assassin’s Creed series has finally been released.
The Story of Assassin’s Creed: Origins
The latest Assassin’s Creed has exceptionally done well for seamlessly casting the main protagonist to take part in the world’s history. If you are obsessed with the history of western civilization, you definitely love this game like I do. Being an assassin, you are the key to turn a tide of a major event in the world history.
In the latest Assassin’s Creed, you assume the role of Bayek of Siwa, the protector of the ruler of Egypt or Medjey. Bayek married to an Alexandrian woman named Aya and had a son named Khemu. The family of Bayek was caught in the conflict between the current Pharaoh Ptolemy XIII Theos Philopator and his older sister, Cleopatra VII who later sought an alliance with the leader of Roman Empire, Julius Caesar.
After being overwhelmed by an unbearable tragic loss, Bayak and Aya devoted their entire life in pursuit of revenge. As the story has progressed, both of them have begun to realize that the devotion of true freedom carries much more meaning than vengeance. It was later led to the establishment of the order of the hidden one, the origin of the Assassin’s Brotherhood.
From my point of view, the story of Bayak and Aya is well written with an interesting plot twist. The motive behind their cause of action is first driven by vengeance and later has been transformed to the desire of true freedom, a self-actualization. Admittedly, I was so enthralled with this moving plot.
On the other hand, the present-day part of the game seems to move forward. After the death of Desmond, Ubisoft has almost abandoned this part and seems to shift its focus to the adventure of the assassin in the past. In the latest Assassin’s Creed, they have introduced a new character named Layla Hassan who used a portable Animus to retrieve memories of Bayek and Aya. After playing the present-day part, I have noticed a possible cross-over with another Ubisoft’s title, Watch Dog.
Gameplay of the latest Assassin’s Creed
The gameplay was redesigned to be more challenging. In the previous game, you could simply get rid of the target and continue to smoothly handle one another by tapping a few buttons. And even after being surrounded by swarms of enemies, you may easily escape by pressing a counter button. Well, those days are over.
In Origins, the development team decided to remove automatic chain killer and counter-attack button. The game would instead focus more on the full-scale action. It is much a reminiscence of Dark Soul or Nioh to me. You will have an enormous amount of weapons to choose ranging from swords, sickle swords, Dual swords, heavy blunts, heavy blades, Scepters, Spears, and multiple types of bow. Each type of weapon has a unique set of attributes and effects. Some may automatically heal you while the other can poison the enemy.
Even with the major overhaul in a combat setting, this latest Assassin’s Creed still maintains its core gameplay with an improved stealth action. Bayek will be able to enlist his eagle companion to identify the enemy, treasure box, or even a hidden passage in bird-eye view mode. Try to imagine about sending the drone out to capture the top-view image of the fortress you are infiltrating, then you get the idea of how this eagle vision works. It also reminds me of other titles from Ubisoft like employing a drone in Ghost Recon: Wild Lands or sending out an owl in Far Cry: Primal.
Ubisoft made an attempt to mix up the RPG elements with stats building and weapon upgrade. Players will soon find out that dealing with high-level enemies can be troublesome and head-scratching without spending a considerable amount of time to grow your stats and upgrade weapons and armors. With a huge success of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunts, you are likely to have many action-RPG games lining up in the pipeline and this latest Assassin’ Creed has no exception. The game offers tons of main and side quests for you to play. To boost your skills and stats, you need to complete as many side quests as you can. One such quest may require you to infiltrate the fortress and take the leader out while another will demand you to enter the thief’s lair and loot all treasures inside. The mini-games such as horse race in Hippodrome or gladiators fight in the arena also reward you with money or a legendary weapon.
The long-absent naval combat has been brought back in the latest Assassin’s Creed with the same battle system. Unlike Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag, you are not allowed to cruise freely in the open water and most of the naval combats are regulated by a storyline. Forget about a severe gunfight or a smoke of gunpowder, you would rather see the ancient Egypt archery battle which is visually impressive to me.
The visual graphic of the latest Assassin’ Creed is superb. With the power of next-generation consoles like PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, you can appreciate the extraordinary graphics of bustling fortress, spectacular Egyptian palaces, the Great Pyramid of Giza and the gorgeous library of Alexandria. If you are a big fan of Egyptian civilization, you will definitely enjoy the game.
The latest Assassin’s Creed also provides the Photo mode which the player can access this mode to capture desired images at any time. You can rotate the camera angle to fire your best shot. Additionally, the game even let you use different types of filter to apply special art effects on the image.
The background music of the game is lively and upbeat with a sense of ancient Egypt civilization. The opening theme song has introduced an immersive yet mysterious touch while the combat BGM strikes me with an upbeat theme that causes my blood spurting in the vain. An excellent performance from Ubisoft again.
The Microtransactions System
The microtransactions have become a norm in the game industry today. It started with free-to-play games on mobile phone and now it has come to console games. Frankly speaking, at first I’m quite concerned about it but, after 80 hours of gameplay, I did not spend a real-world money to purchase Helix credit for special items and can still enjoy the game. From my point of view, the microtransactions system has no negative impact on the perception of the game at all. It does exist as an option for some handful players who want to possess special weapons or armors.
The bottom line
This latest Assassin’s Creed does remind me of the Creed’s motto “Nothing is true, everything is permitted”. There is no “true” restriction in this world and we can do everything as we desire. This proverb was mentioned by Ezio in Assassin’s Creed: Revelations. No matter what you do, you must accept any consequences of the action whether it is glorious or doom. I think that the development team is now following this motto even though it means that they have to abandon the old mechanism and embrace the new pathway. For me, the result of their action is very impressive and Assassin’s Creed: Origins is definitely the game you should not look over.