Assassin’s Creed 2 -PS3-
Assassin’s Creed 2 builds on both the storyline and gameplay of it’s predecessor in several intuitive and meaningful ways. Anyone who enjoyed the first Assassin’s Creed, or better yet, enjoys any sandbox adventure game in general will be turned on by Assassin’s Creed 2 and you’re life will change instantly.
What the game is in a nut shell: Assassin’s Creed 2 is an open world game where you can wander wherever you like. You play as a super agile / strong character who can easily climb about any wall and runs on rooftops. Your character is well versed in methods of combat and will kill a lot of dudes. To progress through the game you’ll need to find places on the world map that will activate missions. In these missions you’ll be usually killing dudes, or delivering letters or something. Story progression and additional abilities are awarded as you progress through the main story line.
In my review for Assassin’s Creed 1, my primary complaint about the game was that the missions structure really stagnates after just a couple of hours into the game. The game would have you doing the same 3-4 types of missions over and over again. And 1-2 of them were not fun to begin with. Now with Assassin’s creed 2 I believe that they remedied this problem. As I beat the game, I found each new mission fun, and it made creative use of the game engine and the protagonists abilities.
In Assassin’s Creed 2 you’re no longer playing as Altair in ancient Jerusalem, now you’re Etzio running around in Florence Italy! Etzio is another ancestor of the ongoing protagonist present time Desmond (If you played the first game you should know who Desmond is) Etzio looks just like his ancestor Altair and he has all of the same abilities as him too. With Etzio though, he’s got a much stronger personality and comes off as very charismatic. At the beginning of the game Etzio is pretty carefree and spends most his time chasing skirts, but as the game progresses, the events of his life and the choices he has to make, make him hardened and mature. It’s really a very well done transition. It would seem that the developers over at Ubisoft wanted to make Etzio the new face of the franchise as they have planned several sequels as him as the main character.
In Assassin’s Creed 2, the story arch of Desmond continues from Assassin’s Creed 1 and you’ll get bits and pieces of it all through the game. Meanwhile the bulk of the story will revolve around the developing Etzio. I don’t want to spoil anything in the slightest for anyone yet to play the game so i won’t go into any detail. After beating the game, I thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of the story. It may as well have been a best selling sci-fi novel it was so good.
Combat with Assassin’s creed remains the same as the original with a couple of improvements. There is two kinds of combat 1. there are stealth kills by assassination and 2. there is combat where what you’re fighting is fighting back. I can’t really put it much better. There are new weapons like swords and axes available for purchase as shops for melee combat, and there are some ranged weapons too. I don’t remember any of the melee weapons doing anything different in battle, like axes don’t having a different ability or different range. The different weapons probably just did more or less damage to an enemy. But really, when I played the game I pretty much did the same one or two moves in combat to kill my enemies. There is a move where you can grab the enemy, then cut their throat. It works on 90% of the enemies in the game and you’ll be wanting to do it. I think there are combos or, timing hits or something but I never used them. Nope, I just grabbed dudes and cut throats.
When you pass missions and do stuff, you’ll be given some kind of currency. And as you get far into the game, you’ll begin to collect a ton of money. What you can do with this money is restore old run down buildings and shops. Restoring more and more buildings and shops will give you a regular income. So then with the new income you can restore more and more buildings and shops. I had fun restoring buildings but really it’s just a side quest kind of thing to mix things up a bit. There are also hidden items all throughout the world map that give extra perks and achievements if found.
The best parts in Assassin’s creed 2, for me, came mostly from the smooth rooftop chase scenes. Several times in the game you’re required to to quickly make your way from one point to another and the fastest way is generally by rooftop. In these parts, I would be running and jumping from rooftop to rooftop, then the in-game music would kick in with a soft electronic beat. At these moments, it would seem that everything in the world is in it’s right place and then I would feel warm fuzziness in my heart . Few games achieve anything close to this.
As I’ve stated in other reviews, I’m really a guy that likes sequels, and with Assassin’s Creed 2, it does everything right that it did in the first one, but then it adds so much more. I love the creativity of the team making these games and I’m certainly a fan. 5/5
Review by Pete July 28 2011