I've been a dedicated fan of the video game series of Assassin's Creed for eleven years. It was not always a happy relationship. While the first games excited my imagination and introduced me to completely new game modes, the mid-years of the series were fraught with misfires, bloating and other serious issues.
I often look at fans ranting about the companies that make their favorite franchise – Bethesda or Blizzard are the two most common goals I see – and shake my head in confusion. "If you hate your work so much, why not just play something different and let everyone else enjoy their games, it's not that there are not enough great games to try," I say.
But when I looked back on Assassin's Creed games of more than a decade to write this article, for the first time I somehow understood that I love something so much that you're not just disappointed by the tripping, but also a bit crazy.
And Assassin's Creed has made some exciting missteps over the years. But it also has something in common with many of my favorite music artists, such as David Bowie and Radiohead: it's ready to reinvent the wheel of regulars and try out new things instead of establishing themselves in a Call of Duty or FIFA-like pattern from barely there refinements.
My ups and downs with the series reached a new high point with this year's Assassin's Creed Odyssey . Just as I gave up on one of my favorite franchises, this reinvention gave me the feeling that I had not had any more since the best days of the show (that's the Ezio Trilogy by the way). And while the deepest heart of the new game was still Assassin's Creed, Odyssey was a wild departure.
But that's fine. Because Ubisoft threw away the old ideas of this beloved franchise, she actually saved her from destruction. What you are about to read is not a review – Ars has already done that. This is just a super fan who ponders his geek-out hat to consider why Odyssey worked as well as other Assassin's Creed games.
Table of contents
11 games in 11 countries years
It makes sense to start with a summary of the journey so far, so that we go through the individual main series individually. To understand why Odyssey is great, it is important to know why not all of them were their predecessors.
If you're only interested in Odyssey you can skip this step Be bloated and lengthy like a modern Assassin's Creed game. You probably will not agree with all my settings. That's fine, it makes for a good conversation. Think of it as a "best and worst" list with no fixed leaderboard. Also included here is a link to each main series that Assassin's Creed had ever released on Ars.
Assassin's Creed (2007)
This was a shabby, broken, frustrating jumble of ideas. The potential was there and I was thrilled, but Assassin's Creed was not always fun to play. Still, it was a revelation. I could see what it wanted, and in 19459020 I loved it . How many times did a Triple A game come along that tried so many ambitious new things? Even if it did not always work out, you had to respect the game if you tried it at a time when it seemed like almost every major release was a Call of Duty Grand Theft Auto . or God of War imitator.
Today, the series has a reputation for adopting the best ideas from other franchises and adapting them for the Assassin's Creed formula, and that's true. But sometimes we forget that the first game was really imaginative. Not only other games were imitated – at least no other Triple A games. While the first version of anything is usually spared and this title was no exception, I still remember very much whether he is ambitious. You know?
(Even the most courageous protagonist was the worst worst .)
Assassin's Creed II (2009)
What followed two years later was one of my favorite games of all time. I almost never play games multiple times. However, three years ago I played Assassin & Creed II three times. II took over every great idea of Assassin's Creed refined most of the rough edges and added even more to the love.
II launched a trilogy of titles (with Brotherhood and Revelations ) revolving around the Italian protagonist of the Renaissance era Ezio Auditore. This trilogy is considered by most fans as the heyday of the series. To date, the Ubisoft games for mobile games are still located in this era, if something comes out of it.
While Assassin's new ideas Creed were janky and unfinished, II fully realized. It's definitely not perfect, but it's a big game .
Assassin's Creed Brotherhood (2010)
The Brotherhood was a direct continuation of II and more of it. While II did some equipment upgrades, Brotherhood introduced deeper progression systems that became an important part of the advancing series. Many people think it's the best in the show, and I enjoyed it a lot, but I was not so much into it, and the freshness of the first two games was a bit faded – the first sign of a curse Publication schedule of the series would be – so I remember II . Nevertheless, this game was in the series Sweetspot series.
Assassin's Creed Revelations (2011)
Revelation's was a good game, but it was also the first time since the pardonable experimentalism of the first title that the series stumbled a bit for me. Ubisoft claimed she wanted more action-set moments in the game, but trying to plug Naughty Dog's / Uncharted style into on-rails moments into a system-based game was confusing and dire at best Case frustrating.
Ubisoft also began to install completely different, less-well-performing games and systems that had nothing to do with the core experience – in this case, the terrible tower defense mini-game for territorial control.
In Revelations ] those down moments were marginal cases in an otherwise good game – after all, the problems were marginal, but the core gameplay formed a good complement to the previous titles – but the problems that Your seeds would be tense here in future titles.
Assassin's Creed III (2012)
III was the true beginning of dark days to the satisfaction of the players in the following years. It could have been the worst game in the history of the franchise. (For the other candidate, jump to Unity for two years.)
Control precision was never the strong suit of the series, so III decided to revise the entrances. The resulting control mechanism, however, was spectacularly worse than the one he replaced. Every time you climb like a ninja before falling on your target, you try to jump from a branch to a roof at least twice, and climb 80 degrees in the wrong direction a cliff to your death – or you would fall into one of the game's brutal mission error state. (This was a persistent design problem in the franchise until 2017 Origins .)
There was the notorious final mission, when you rushed through a burning building and chased an enemy that only ran the route you expected Percent of the time. It was awful – it was almost as if Ubisoft had designed a misrepresentation to portray everything that was wrong with the franchise.
Revelations introduced these problems, but III really drove them home. Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag (2013)
I'm having trouble judging Black Flag as Assassin's Creed game helpful because 70 percent of them are none. III introduced a series of combat missions for boats. I thought they were the best part of a bad game, and some others too. Similar sail gameplay played a major role in IV which occupied the player as a Pirate in the Caribbean.
The Caribbean has been the largest and most realistic backdrop to date, and the immersion was aided by the fact that Black Flag was the first in the series released on today's generation consoles that had much more memory than yours Predecessors were better equipped for open worlds.
But you could easily spend more time on your boat than with the traditional Assassin & Creed stuff. Do you remember how Revelations had problems because there were separate games like Tower Defense? IV went crazy with it. I'm not sure if I could even count how many different games are included on this one CD, and they were not all interested in the same type of player as they gave pretty much anything to anyone they just wanted to cope with part. Systems such as underwater diving, boat combat, ground combat, ground combat on boats, ground control at sea, stealth, boat collections, mission tables, resource management, etc., were separate and did not support core experience.  In a system-based game, the systems must lock each other and talk to each other to create emerging stories for the player. When they are separated in this way, it feels like bloated.
Many people like black flag and that's fine. However, it was a game co-developed by half a dozen different Ubisoft studios, and it felt like it. Incidentally, was too long to allow for an annual publication. Ending the end before the next came out felt like pressure – I remember I had made it just a few weeks before Unity . I really started to feel the tiredness.