Thoughts so far: Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood

You probably haven’t noticed, but I’ve been struggling to think of anything to write about lately, so I’ve decided to fall back on something I can probably ramble on about for hours: games. I haven’t felt the urge to write anything about Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood since I’ve been playing on it, but I’m still not sure whether or not that’s a good or bad thing. I do have some thoughts on it though, so I’ll share them with you, whether you like it or not.

I think the fairly obvious first thought is “So, this is Assassin’s Creed 2½ then?”, and it’s not really that far off. That’s not really a bad thing, though; I loved Assassin’s Creed 2, so while the game doesn’t look or feel any different in the vast majority of the game mechanics, there wasn’t really any need for them to be updated or improved. There’s been a few additions to the game – the ability to hire assassins and a multiplayer mode being the major ones – so it feels like a sizable expansion pack, certainly too big for Assassin’s Creed 2 DLC, plus there are a lot more of those in-game distractions that made the last game feel so big.

It took a little while for the game to really ‘click’ for me, mainly due to the sheer amount of things to do; I wasn’t really sure whether I should be renovating shops and exploring, or getting on with the story, but that’s kind of where the game succeeds – it doesn’t matter. There’s a huge number of things to do in the game – the map is a terrifyingly overwhelming at first glace – and while there’s a good number of things to buy/renovate on the map, a lot of the distractions are quite entertaining for between-mission fun.

Combat in Assassin’s Creed 2 was brilliantly balanced – simple but amazingly enjoyable, and Brotherhood has only added more to it – the ability to carry two-handed weapons and the lovely, lovely crossbow are major additions. I find myself starting fights with guards for no particular reason sometimes just because I enjoy it, something I spent a huge amount of time doing in GTA. High praise, indeed.

I think one of my favourite additions, though, is the ‘Full Synchronization’ option. Basically, a vast majority of the missions have an extra secondary objective or requirement that is needed to become fully synchronized and reveal more of Desmond’s memories. It’s not necessary, but it often adds an extra challenge to missions if you feel up to it – kill someone without being detected or with a certain weapon, for example – and it means that stealth is often rewarded for a change, unlike in the last two games where if you got spotted, it didn’t matter so much – it still doesn’t if you’re not interested, but, like I say, it’s a challenge.

Basically, it’s definitely worth a buy. I’ve only tried the multiplayer a couple of times and it was fun, but seemed to lack a bit of depth. The concept is fantastic – you’re given a target to kill stealthily, while being targeted by someone else – and feels very ‘cat and mouse’. I expect if it’s included in the next game, and I can’t see why it wouldn’t, it could be fantastic. So, here’s hoping.

I’m very aware this entry is poorly written, but I wanted to write something more substantial than a sentence and a picture/video, which I did.

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