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'Assassin's Creed: Revelations' more of the same

(Image courtesy of Ubisoft)
(Image courtesy of Ubisoft)

'Assassin Creed: Revelations'

3.5/5 Pitchforks

PS3, Xbox 360, PC

Rated: M

Released: Nov. 15


“Assassin's Creed: Revelations” is the fourth installment of Ubisoft's award-winning franchise. The series began in 2007 and has released a new game every year since 2009. “Revelations” marks an ending for the franchise — and hopefully a new beginning.

The “Assassin's Creed” series centers on a power struggle between two groups known as the Assassins and the Templars. The story focuses on Desmond Miles and his ancestors Ezio Auditore da Firenze and Altair Ibn-La'Ahad. Desmond uses a device called the Animus to relive his ancestors' lives in order to better understand the present. The story of “Revelations” picks up soon after the cliffhanger from “Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood” and features major repercussions for Desmond. Desmond is trapped in the Animus and is forced to relive Ezio and Altair's lives yet again to escape.

The game's story is far more complex then anything the series has done in the past; most games wouldn't be able to handle three main characters with three separate story lines. Of the three, the star of the show is by far Ezio. His material comprises most of the game and also has most of the game's best moments. Add to that an incredibly convincing romance — something most games don't get right — and you have a story worth playing.

The story is far better put together than anything the franchise has offered in the past. The game has a more cinematic feel that never gets in the way of the gameplay.

The story does keep with the frustrating traditions of the past games, though. Desmond's storyline in the present has always been intriguing. Unfortunately, “Assassin's Creed” makes this the least interesting aspect of the game's world. Desmond's experience as his ancestors has always felt like training for the present storyline, but the games go nowhere with it. “Revelations” is no different; in fact, Desmond is almost entirely optional.

“Revelations” is the end of Ezio's and Altair's story line. If Ubisoft wants to keep releasing a new “Assassin's Creed” game every year, they are going to need to find a way to make Desmond relevant to the story again.

The gameplay of “Revelations” is much like the past games. You will stalk targets through the historically accurate Constantinople and upgrade your equipment much the same way you did in “Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood.” The combat system hasn't changed at all, either. You will still stand in a circle of enemies and rely heavily on counter attacks. If you were a fan of this in the past, you won't have a problem, but anyone who may have had an issue with it won't find anything new on the release.

The additions the game do try to work into the formula don't work that well, such as the new den defense levels. Den defense is basically a tower defense game awkwardly plugged into the world. Ezio stands on a rooftop commanding his troop, firing arrows at Templars trying to move up the street below. The whole feature feels very out of place and could have been removed with out hurting the game at all.

“Assassin's Creed: Revelations” builds an interesting story around a proven gameplay system, but there is still a feeling of “been there, done that” to the game. If you liked the past games or are just looking for a break from “Modern Warfare 3,” you won't go wrong with “Assassin's Creed: Revelations.”


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