I'm going to Brad the Assassin's Creed series - Part 1

Posted by Ventilaator (1501 posts) -

 WARNING! Might contain spoilers for Assassin's Creed 1!
 
"You guys keep telling me not to play Assassin's Creed 1, that's kind of why I want to"
 - Sir Bradley Shoemaker 
 
I've always had an interest in the Assassin's Creed series, but due to some not-so-pleasant experiences with the first one, I've kind of avoided it. Then everyone kept telling me how the second one is an infinity or two better. Then I saw Assassin's Creed Brotherhood get a 5/5 on here and get a #1 spot on Ryan's GOTY list. Then I heard it even has subtitles this time around! Maybe they actually figured out how to make this game properly!
 
So I was willing to give it a chance. Not ready to spend full price on a game I think might be good, I got an used copy for super cheap. I have a week or so until it arrives. That's enough time to go back to and finish the first game!
 
I loaded up my save file I had from a billion years ago, and felt kind of lost. The map was full of "Save citizen" markers, without anything else. What do I do?  Where do I go? Who do I stab?
 
Screw this, I'll start this game over.
 This game starts showing problems after the first few minutes.. First of all, it needs subtitles badly. Second, it needs some good voice actors. I laughed when people talked in the first few hours before I got used to it, that's not good. And third, it needs an editor. This game seriously wins the award for "Most words spoken without actually saying anything", and this is coming from a guy who loves the Metal Gear series.
 
This continues throughout the game, whenever anyone starts saying anything it's very eye-stabbingly slow and boring. After a few hours I stopped paying attention to what anyone was saying, and used the conversation parts to stretch or talk to somebody in the room with me while I was playing.
 
I repeat, this is coming from a guy who loves the Metal Gear series.
 
With this game being called Assassin's Creed and all, you might think that you'll be playing an assassin. Not so, instead you'll be playing an errand boy called Altair, who died and went to hell, doomed to run the exact same errands over and over and over again. The repetitive nature of this game has been talked about a lot, but I cannot stress enough how bad it is. I salute you if you manage to play this game in a marathon-y fashion, because doing the same exact things all the time should fry your brain after a few hours.
 
As a huge fan of the Hitman series, I have an appreciation for a good assassination where everyone is left wondering what the heck happened while you walk away with your target dead. Doing that is completely impossible in this game. You walk to your target, watch them do something evil, take a step towards them, alert every guard on the planet, fight for an hour, kill your target in the process, and repeat. There was only one target who I managed to kill without him seeing me, but that still alerted every guard on the planet. It was hard for me to let go of that, because if that happens in Hitman you're supposed to restart the level.
 
Storywise, there's no story. You're an assassin who is supposed to kill people because that's what you do. All of this is completely meaningless though, because you're actually a future-dude in a future-chair seeing past-things. There's absolutely no story to the past parts, and having it made completely meaningless like that doesn't help.
 
And then, suddenly, in the last 15 minutes in the game or so, everything turns awesome. It's revealed that your boss told you to kill those people so those people would get out of his way so he could run away with this magical sci-fi artifact. You obviously aren't too into that and go to kill him. He waves his artifact around and stuns you in place with Random Yellow Magic. He then waves it around some more and makes every assassination target from the entire game appear around you and fight you. After that he makes like 12 versions of himself and fights you. After you do all that, future-man steps out of the future-chair and shows some past-powers he randomly gained.
 
I was a fan of the endgame, not so much the rest of it. The climbing around mechanic is as stable as Fallout New Vegas. When it works, it's awesome, when it doesn't, it's so bad it's funny. I can't count the times I ran away from guards, started climbing a building, suddenly stopped and couldn't move in any direction at all until I got rocks thrown at me and fell down. There was an obvious direction to climb, Altair must have gotten cramps or something. The combat looks completely awesome, but it's way too slow. If you want to get through it without getting beat up too much, you need to rely on the counter, but to counter someone they need to attack first, but often they stood around you and....stood around you.
 
After a GTA game rolls credits, I immediately go back and start doing some side stuff and other things I missed. After this game rolled credits I took the disc out, put it on my shelf, and never plan to look at it ever again. There are brilliant ideas here, all done in a half-assed "Let's just do this so we could go home" kind of way. If the second one is this, but good, it will probably be pretty amazing. 
 
We'll see.
 
*checks mailbox*
 
We'll see at some point.

#1 Posted by Ventilaator (1501 posts) -

 WARNING! Might contain spoilers for Assassin's Creed 1!
 
"You guys keep telling me not to play Assassin's Creed 1, that's kind of why I want to"
 - Sir Bradley Shoemaker 
 
I've always had an interest in the Assassin's Creed series, but due to some not-so-pleasant experiences with the first one, I've kind of avoided it. Then everyone kept telling me how the second one is an infinity or two better. Then I saw Assassin's Creed Brotherhood get a 5/5 on here and get a #1 spot on Ryan's GOTY list. Then I heard it even has subtitles this time around! Maybe they actually figured out how to make this game properly!
 
So I was willing to give it a chance. Not ready to spend full price on a game I think might be good, I got an used copy for super cheap. I have a week or so until it arrives. That's enough time to go back to and finish the first game!
 
I loaded up my save file I had from a billion years ago, and felt kind of lost. The map was full of "Save citizen" markers, without anything else. What do I do?  Where do I go? Who do I stab?
 
Screw this, I'll start this game over.
 This game starts showing problems after the first few minutes.. First of all, it needs subtitles badly. Second, it needs some good voice actors. I laughed when people talked in the first few hours before I got used to it, that's not good. And third, it needs an editor. This game seriously wins the award for "Most words spoken without actually saying anything", and this is coming from a guy who loves the Metal Gear series.
 
This continues throughout the game, whenever anyone starts saying anything it's very eye-stabbingly slow and boring. After a few hours I stopped paying attention to what anyone was saying, and used the conversation parts to stretch or talk to somebody in the room with me while I was playing.
 
I repeat, this is coming from a guy who loves the Metal Gear series.
 
With this game being called Assassin's Creed and all, you might think that you'll be playing an assassin. Not so, instead you'll be playing an errand boy called Altair, who died and went to hell, doomed to run the exact same errands over and over and over again. The repetitive nature of this game has been talked about a lot, but I cannot stress enough how bad it is. I salute you if you manage to play this game in a marathon-y fashion, because doing the same exact things all the time should fry your brain after a few hours.
 
As a huge fan of the Hitman series, I have an appreciation for a good assassination where everyone is left wondering what the heck happened while you walk away with your target dead. Doing that is completely impossible in this game. You walk to your target, watch them do something evil, take a step towards them, alert every guard on the planet, fight for an hour, kill your target in the process, and repeat. There was only one target who I managed to kill without him seeing me, but that still alerted every guard on the planet. It was hard for me to let go of that, because if that happens in Hitman you're supposed to restart the level.
 
Storywise, there's no story. You're an assassin who is supposed to kill people because that's what you do. All of this is completely meaningless though, because you're actually a future-dude in a future-chair seeing past-things. There's absolutely no story to the past parts, and having it made completely meaningless like that doesn't help.
 
And then, suddenly, in the last 15 minutes in the game or so, everything turns awesome. It's revealed that your boss told you to kill those people so those people would get out of his way so he could run away with this magical sci-fi artifact. You obviously aren't too into that and go to kill him. He waves his artifact around and stuns you in place with Random Yellow Magic. He then waves it around some more and makes every assassination target from the entire game appear around you and fight you. After that he makes like 12 versions of himself and fights you. After you do all that, future-man steps out of the future-chair and shows some past-powers he randomly gained.
 
I was a fan of the endgame, not so much the rest of it. The climbing around mechanic is as stable as Fallout New Vegas. When it works, it's awesome, when it doesn't, it's so bad it's funny. I can't count the times I ran away from guards, started climbing a building, suddenly stopped and couldn't move in any direction at all until I got rocks thrown at me and fell down. There was an obvious direction to climb, Altair must have gotten cramps or something. The combat looks completely awesome, but it's way too slow. If you want to get through it without getting beat up too much, you need to rely on the counter, but to counter someone they need to attack first, but often they stood around you and....stood around you.
 
After a GTA game rolls credits, I immediately go back and start doing some side stuff and other things I missed. After this game rolled credits I took the disc out, put it on my shelf, and never plan to look at it ever again. There are brilliant ideas here, all done in a half-assed "Let's just do this so we could go home" kind of way. If the second one is this, but good, it will probably be pretty amazing. 
 
We'll see.
 
*checks mailbox*
 
We'll see at some point.

#2 Posted by Hunkulese (2641 posts) -

The story was the best part of the game. I don't see how you can say you tuned out everything everyone was saying and then go on to say there was no story. The bizarre monologues after each assassin were awesome.  
 
Almost every assassination in the game can be done stealthily but it requires a lot of planning and as a result feels very satisfying when you manage to pull it off.  
 
I'm not saying the game was great but those were the only two fantastic elements from a mediocre game. 

#3 Posted by TooWalrus (13135 posts) -

A few months ago, I marathoned the AC games, I played through all of them in about 3 weeks, and loved every minuite of it. I think I'm the only person on the planet who genuinely liked Assassans Creed 1. The voice acting was a little doody, and it was repetitive, but those things just didn't bother me. It's one of the only series' that's got me wanting to play the PSP and DS games just to know more about Desmond, Altier and Ezio. Get back to us after you've actually 'pulled your brad' and play the rest, because they're great.

#4 Posted by DeeGee (2113 posts) -

There's a huge amount of story in the past parts. Listen when people are speaking.

#5 Posted by xyzygy (9891 posts) -

I freaking loved the first game. Not as much as the second, and about the same as Brotherhood. I thought that AC1 felt like the more stealthy game because it was more rewarding to you after doing something stealthily and it was a lot harder too. The guards were a lot more ferocious. Some people hated it, but I mean if I was a guard in such tumultuous times and knew of the Assassins in that huge tower and seen one of them riding like a maniac armed with throwing knives, a dagger and a sword I'd get suspicious too.

#6 Posted by nintendoeats (5975 posts) -

I finished ACII last night and went straight into AC:B. ACII also tends to drag a bit in both story and gameplay, but its not nearly as grating as one...and it has one of my favorite endings of any game ever period full stop wow. So have fun.

#7 Posted by Ventilaator (1501 posts) -
@Hunkulese said:
" The story was the best part of the game. I don't see how you can say you tuned out everything everyone was saying and then go on to say there was no story.  "
I got bored to tears from the stuff everyone was saying, if I had actually payed attention I would have never finished this game, because the boredom would have killed me. The monologues after each assassination were the worst parts of the game to me.
#8 Posted by Kermity (75 posts) -

I love the story (or rather stories), but it must just get lost on a whole ton of people who play these games.  The assassin's arn't really killing for "peace" (as many of the templars do), they are fighting to promote individual thought and free will.  The games are set in places where it is easy to see how those in power are manipulating the thoughts and actions of the populace, but the core tenants of the assassin's belief (or creed) are still very applicable today.   
 
I really think this series has one of the deepest stories of any video game franchise, it has so many layers and depth to it, but sadly it seems that people just want to play it for the gameplay, and it often goes unnoticed.
#9 Edited by HarlequinRiot (1098 posts) -

I'm doing the same thing, actually. I finished up AC1 a week or so ago. The game was...okay. The repetition didn't really bother me, but the frustrating and inconsistent gameplay did. I hated alerting guards for not doing anything, hated the combat, and hated constantly running away from guards. The story in the past was horribly told and completely unintelligible (by which I mean, I can't remember who any of you are so your specific references are lost on me), not to mention it lacked any emotion/personality. The voice acting and acting is atrocious too. BUT the feeling of having an assasination mission go off without a hitch (happened like 3 times for me) is awesome. 
 
The second game is much better so far.
 
EDIT: Also, the ending was cool but I didn't like how they handled it. At the very very end, there was no drama to it all, no music, no anything. Just walk around and hit Y.

#10 Edited by Rockanomics (1150 posts) -

I actually just finished AC1 not too long ago. It came about because I wanted to play AC2 but figured I should finish the first one, even though I gave up on it a long time ago, on a different system.  
 
But I actually finished the whole thing in surprisingly satisfying fashion. I think the main reasons I enjoyed my time with Altair is  

 
  1. I pulled off all but one of the assassinations without fucking up and having to just sword fight the guy to death. Which is odd/impressive because last time I played I boned ALL the ones I got to.
  2. I critical-pathed the HELL out of that game. I probably got like 10 flags total, barely ever helped out the citizens and did the minimum number of investigations almost every time. 
  3. I played it on PC which had a bunch of new mission types. So that in combination with the low number of missions I did meant I didn't repeat many of them. (It might have added fast travel as well, either way I used it with relish)
#11 Posted by NekuCTR (1663 posts) -

Okay so two things I got from this. You liked Metal Gear Solid, and second you do not understand what "ramping up" means. Of course the beginning of the stoy is going to be slow, it is establishin the story and plot of an entire world. Most Eastern games, including MGS like to start in medias res. A story can have several archetypes, and categorizing them under broad categorizes like "drawn out" or "concise and to the point" is missing the point of the narrative. So basically, maybe you would want to try having a bit more patients with the storytelling.
 
Also can't help you with the game play. It pretty much sucks. play it with friends.

#12 Posted by ArchScabby (5809 posts) -

So you're going to die over and over again in it?
 
That doesn't sound fun at all.

#13 Posted by PrivateIronTFU (3874 posts) -
@Ventilaator said:
" @Hunkulese said:
" The story was the best part of the game. I don't see how you can say you tuned out everything everyone was saying and then go on to say there was no story.  "
I got bored to tears from the stuff everyone was saying, if I had actually payed attention I would have never finished this game, because the boredom would have killed me. The monologues after each assassination were the worst parts of the game to me. "
Ugh. Ditto. Most Boring Monologue award goes to Assassin's Creed. 
#14 Posted by JBird (489 posts) -

I started doing exactly what your doing a few weeks back. And i agree, assassins creed 1 is a massive pile of horse shit. Drove me insane at times, but number 2 is awesome. All i need now is to finish my christmas essays so i can play more of it.
#15 Posted by Enigma777 (6057 posts) -

One sucked. 2 was better, but boring as fuck (also had a really shitty ending). Brotherhood was actually good and had some decent missions that deviated from the usual "go here and stab this dude" formula (but it's ending was worse than 2's - they srsly need to stop with the cliffhangers).

#16 Posted by kingzetta (4307 posts) -

Your going to die a lot in those games?

#17 Posted by Ventilaator (1501 posts) -
@JBird said:
" I started doing exactly what your doing a few weeks back. And i agree, assassins creed 1 is a massive pile of horse shit. Drove me insane at times, but number 2 is awesome. All i need now is to finish my christmas essays so i can play more of it. "
I don't think Assassin's Creed 1 is a massive pile of horse shit. 
It's more of a box of chocolates that fell into a pile of horse shit.
#18 Posted by dudeglove (7684 posts) -

Like yourself I decided to play AC1 via PSN. 95% of the game could have totally been cut out, but there were some good moments. I wasn't too bothered by the dialogue, though I might have been less engaged in it had I not already played ACII and Brotherhood (hooray for introducing skippable cutscenes in the sequels!).

#19 Posted by pekoe212 (434 posts) -

I thought the warring philosophies and motivations in the story were really deep and fascinating, but the rambling, vague dialogue made it very difficult to get much clarity about said philosophies or motivations. I love stories in games, so I listened very patiently to all the dialogue, and I found it so long-winded  - especially the assassination speeches - that I wanted an option to go back and read through it all to try to uncover whatever shreds of plot were there.  After hunting down a Templar doing awful things to people, it's very frustrating to have each one simply say, "No, I'm helping them!" and no further explanation, over and over again. For such an interesting story I felt that the key ideas were somehow muted by all the philosophical rambling. I never felt the Templars really explained themselves terribly well beyond, "whatever you say I will contradict without explaining myself so I can remain mysterious." Even at the end of the game though, I just didn't feel the Templars' motivation. I dunno. It all felt very flat to me, and the parts where you actuallly learned some information were too rushed. Subtitles would have been helpful. 

#20 Posted by Eric_Buck (1290 posts) -
@Ventilaator said:
" @JBird said:
" I started doing exactly what your doing a few weeks back. And i agree, assassins creed 1 is a massive pile of horse shit. Drove me insane at times, but number 2 is awesome. All i need now is to finish my christmas essays so i can play more of it. "
I don't think Assassin's Creed 1 is a massive pile of horse shit.  It's more of a box of chocolates that fell into a pile of horse shit. "
Best analogy ever.
#21 Posted by ApolloBob (570 posts) -

Assassin's Creed (which I finished last night as part of my own Bradding) is the game that has convinced me once and for all that most game reviewers don't finish games before they review them.  This game squeaked by on elements that were considered novel at the time - no one would review this game as favorably if it were released today.  The parts of it that are truly impressive I can appreciate when I'm not actually playing the goddam thing. 

But yes, thankfully it did well enough to secure the extra time and resources needed to put out an improved sequel - I was not aware the improvements primarily came in the form of "GTA-ing" it up.  What I really appreciate is that the franchise actually has some personality now - there is even some humor!  The first one was so far up its own ass that I had to gallop my horse into a crowd of people just to make myself smile.

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