Assassin’s Creed: Revelations Review
The final episode of Ezio’s journey in a trilogy of epicness. With this story coming to a close, we will finally see an end to Ezio’s long.. looooong.. adventure, but does anything ever end?
The whole game is pretty much set up in the city of Constantinople. However, with every series, Desmond will always show up first in the beginning of every installment and this time is obviously no different. The game begins with Desmond waking up in a virtual island of sort, and the island actually represents the inner side of the Animus. When Desmond’s mind breaks down, his consciousness was sent to this location, “Animus Island.” This is where he meets Subject Sixteen, and guided him through the ordeal, so he won’t end up being just like him, trapped within the prison island forever, only waiting for his doomsday. Ezio’s story kicks off to a great start, with political unrest and assassinations being the main focus. The game, however, doesn’t forget that actions make a game kick ass, and the game opening sequences with high quality action sequences certainly cater to any gamers well. However, it’s not all about Ezio or Desmond, fans of the franchise will obviously know the main selling point of the game: All three heroes: Ezio, Altair and Desmond will be playable characters in the game. Yes, you get a chance to play as Altair as well, the legendary Syrian Assassin. His section of the story dealt much more with the foundation of Assassin Creed, how everything ever came to be in Assassin Creed 2 and later series, his books, his journals, his codex; everything he wrote about his life, his legacy and the Apple of Eden, everything is passed on, to a certain someone centuries later.
The plotlies can be a bit diverse and at times, a bit perplexing, and at times, a bit distracting. If you’re playing Desmond’s Journey, you will be too busy creating ramps and platforms just to quickly finish up the annoying 3D dungeon instead of listening to Desmond’s rants. If you’re playing as Ezio, you will have too much fun jumping across buildings rather then proceeding the plot (I guess this is nothing new though).
For Altair’s part, his segments are short and limited. In fact, Altair’s segment aren’t meant to be fun anyway, they are meant to increase the overall storytelling experience of the game and it did it’s job fine. It is certainly nice to see more of him which we haven’t seen in previous Altair games. He is developed finely, since young until his death, his character is fully fleshed out. Ezio, on the other hand, feels incomplete and it is recommended to watch Embers so that Ezio’s story will finally be brought to a close. Desmond is probably a character we need more answers and revelations from,
like just how his face had changed so much as if he had plastic surgery. However, because the game make good use of the plot’s basic foundation, the plot shines even brighter as it progresses and by doing so, they connected Altair, Ezio and Desmond excellently, entities separated by time and dimensions. Their subtle reunion and interactions can be nothing short of epic.
The gameplay is actually so entertaining you wouldn’t even remember what the main story was about in the first place as you immersed yourself in additional missions and objectives. While horse riding is disabled completely, the game doesn’t fail to come up with even more newer and interesting things. The main addition would be the hookblade, it is an interesting weapon, and is an alternative to Assassin Creed II’s leap grab. The blade can also be used to trip an enemy unhurt (useful for separating an enemy away from a crowd of civilians so that you can kill him more easier), or perhaps just use the blade to swing over him (useful for escaping) and can even be used to swing across leylines.
Next would be bombs. Other then plain old explosions, Ezio can now toss all kinds of bombs, gold bombs, poison bombs, smoke bombs, etc.. All kinds of bombs can be served as an aid to your tactical assassinations. You can also craft your own bombs, various ingredients can be found in chess located throughout the city, and using those, you can make bombs to your liking, and with such a wide selection of bombs, it IS certainly fun creating them. You can choose the effect you desire, the power of the bomb and other kinds of ‘settings’. With so many weapons and accessories added throughout the series, Ezio probably have weaponry strength close to a platoon.. scary.
While the new weapons are certainly nice, the most entertaining part of the battles are still your swords. Like before, counter kills, kill streaks and double kills are all available and make the battles fun as hell. A lot of new animation kill sequences are added for Ezio and it’s just so much damn fun seeing Ezio instant killed someone, and immediately leaping across acrobatically to deliver another kill. The eagle eyes are highly upgraded as well, and is evolved into “Eagle Sense.” Other then tracking an enemy’s identity, the eagle sense can detect an enemy from afar and can even foresee the path taken by an enemy, making it easier to chase an enemy’s cold trail.
Certain things are fleshed out too, and one of these is the “Assassins Recruitment”. Just like in Brotherhood, you can destroy enemy towers and take over the land. In doing so, you can recruit new assassins to your team. What’s different is that you can now assign your top assassin to an enemy den and with him defending the den, it will be invisible to enemy attacks. Training an assassin is harder now too since the maximum level for them is 14, instead of 10. Your “top assassin” will also have their own separate missions which you can carry out as their mentor.
Without your assassin’s “protection” on the dens, you will be forced to join in the tower defense mini-game when the Templars initiate an attack. Ezio would stand at a safe-point and assign your fellow assassin crossbowmen, riflemen and other assassins, commanding them killing off wave of Templars who come in and attempt to overtake the dens. While the concept is fun, the gameplay certainly is not. The mini-game is dull and doesn’t even add much to the game. Most of the time, the mini-game feels just like boring, additional chores.
The visuals didn’t change much from Brotherhood, and they don’t need to. They are already beautiful and Ubisoft’s visual reconstruction of the 16th century city of Constantinople is as breathtaking as Rome in Brotherhood, and also looks just as realistic. Character expressions look as expressive as a real movie character, and above all, the vibrancy, the lighting, the detailed structures, the graphics are crafted with precise focus, making this game looks good, literally. The music is surprisingly an improvement as well, strolling around the city can be pretty calming due to some of the soothing tracks.. when you’re not overrun by wave of Templars that is. I dislike the new “view point synchronize” track though, which doesn’t even feel like a song in the first place.
Another main problem for the game is the length, which is incredibly short. Even when I’m busy, I finished the game within a span of few days. Both Assassin Creed I and II have more then 10 sequences, and Brotherood and Revelations only have 9, and the main problem with Revelations is that Sequence 9 is mostly storytelling CGs and less gameplay, which makes Revelation even shorter then Brotherhood. I ended up not being able to enjoy my new armor much in Brotherhood but it’s a good thing Revelation make the armor accessible earlier. The armors Assassin Creed series come up with are just eye candy to look at after all.
Overall, Assassin’s Creed: Revelations is a great game, despite having a lackluster ending and some tiny flaws. I’d definitely recommend in to fans of Assassin Creeds, for non-fans who haven’t even started on the whole franchise, I would actually recommend to start from Assassin Creed I since even with the game’s beginning introductions, you wouldn’t be able to enjoy the games to their utmost enjoyments due to their heavy relations to each other.