Assassin’s Creed Syndicate: First Impressions

I’ve got to say, when it comes to marketing, Ubisoft is a clever snake. Watching the reveal today gave me high hopes (to be fair, none of which are “demolished,” but more on that later), as this is teased as a new era for Assassin’s Creed. Like the game before it. And the game before that one. And the entry before that one. This is the first Assassin’s Creed to really have merit to that idea however. Entering the “modern era” is a huge leap for the franchise, since previous games always touched on it but always seemed to shy away from modernization. Which did really work for the franchise; I mean if you look at the parkour movement system, your weapons, even how you’re supposed to assassinate someone “your way.” In a modern setting none of that really works with wide-open streets, railroads and carriages. Ubisoft Montreal seems pretty aware of this though, and it shows. I was impressed that they were willing to admit the previous entry, Assassin’s Creed Unity was just not the sum of it’s parts, and admit to all the horrible bugs in the game. Honestly I’m not sure how you spend four years on a  game and still forget to put  A FACE on your characters like so:

Pretty sure even his mother couldn't love this face...
Pretty sure even his mother couldn’t love this face…

But at this point, there’s no way we can believe Ubisoft that THIS IS THE NEW BEGINNING, unless there’s some proof right? Well they were smart enough to also include some in-engine footage and a trailer, which I’ll drop here:

Done watching those? They look incredible right? And that pre-order bonus involving Charles Dickens sounds awesome. But, what about the actual gameplay?

A little different, right? It doesn’t look bad, but it doesn’t look nearly as exciting. The story looks like it could be a hit-or-miss, which tends to be the case with most Assassin’s Creed stories anyway, but the brother-sister dynamic could be interesting. My two pet-peeves are the gameplay and the setting. It just doesn’t look like anything’s changed from Unity aside from the hand-to-hand combat, but at least that can change in the next 5+ months.

My real issue is just with the where. I mean they could’ve chosen Feudal Japan, the Wild West, Egypt, I mean they even hinted at the Summer of Love, which genuinely might be better than a bunch of murky buildings in a pretty grim time for anyone who wasn’t an inventor. At least with unity and the French Revolution, there was potential for something great. But this just feels like it’s a copy-paste job. I’m not holding out high hopes, but that whole gang mechanic has potential, as does the story and gameplay (especially fighting on a train or a carriage). But I can’t help but feel disappointed that no one could think of a better location.  But what’s your opinion?

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One thought on “Assassin’s Creed Syndicate: First Impressions

  1. Great review, thanks.

    It will be interesting to see if they venture into previously unexplored aspects of industrial England. But all my mind conjures up are more characters from Dickens novels. Hope the game goes well beyond that.

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