Assassin’s Creed II

Formats: Xbox360, PS3 [Played], PC
Published by: Ubisoft
Developed by: Ubisoft Montreal
Released: November 17, 2009
Score: 93%

With a lot of love for the first game most reviews were mixed saying that the missions were to repetitive but I liked the missions and Parkour of the game so for me this was an ideal game for me. After the confusion of the end of the first game this one sets off directly afterwards throwing you straight into battles and getting used to the controls. For the first 30 minutes of the game you will have to follow the story instead of having the will to free roam.

The story revolves around the “Animus”, a machine which makes it possible for the player to view the genetic memories of protagonist Desmond Miles’ ancestors, a long line of assassins. This time you are based in late 15 century Italy during the Renaissance and take control of a young nobleman-turned-assassin named Ezio Auditore da Firenze who after witnessing his family killed goes on a journey to uncover a hidden conspiracy after the murder of his family.

The graphics are pretty much the same as the first game with a few jitters in frame rate from time to time.
Not much has changed in the way of controls, a few more moves have been added and the free running works well it seems until you are in a rush and little things like jumping away from a wall you are climbing or diving off buildings when you didn’t want to can be frustration and time consuming especially when you are against the clock. This however is a small problem and once I learnt to let go of “X” at places I deemed dodgy areas then I found this problem happening less and less.

The battle system is mostly the same, you now can take weapons from your enemies and vice versa but for me this makes the combat even easier than before. When I play assassin’s creed I like to be unnoticed and do everything by stealth but I found with this game it did not matter if I was spotted because I could take all the guards out without any problem and get away with ease. The problem that they need to sort is the A.I. of the enemies, they will just hang back and let you pick them off one by one and you even have time to taunt and change weapons while they attack you one at a time. What should happen is all the guards attack you at once forcing you to make a getaway.

Also added is a meter that will tell you how much guards take notice of you, you can clear this by ripping down wanted posters or bribing a public speaker but they might as well not have this meter as I found I could easily walk around the town with a full meter and no one stop me, the only time I ever had problems was the guards on the roofs.

Assassination jobs are easier to pull off then the first game, you also have more of them which is a good thing but I would have liked them to be more of a challenge. What makes it easier is that you can pay prostitutes and thieves to distract guards or pay a group to attack them, giving you all the time in the world to hit your target.

Like the first game things to collect are back but instead of flags you have feathers to collect also statues and codex’s. There are also Glyphs which will unlock puzzles to complete which extend on the main game. Delivering letters against the clock, beating up cheating husbands and races are also small sub quests but again too easy. You also have stores to fix any broken armor or upgrade, a healer you can buy medicine from but I found this useless to have so much I never even used more than 2 bottles and I had 15. You can buy treasure maps and paintings and also change the color of your clothes.
Also swimming has been added which also adds another way of evading the guards as you can duck under the water and somehow they seem to forget you were ever there. Once out of the water your clothes will look wet and you will be dripping for a while which was a nice small touch to the game.

In short this is an amazing game improving on the first with more missions and a stronger story but it also has some of the flaws from the first game such as poor A.I. and issues when it comes to precise jumping.

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~ by Martyn on December 1, 2009.

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