Assassin’s Creed 2

It’s no doubt at all that Assassin’s Creed 2 is an outstanding game. Even having never played the first, and the start of the game dumping you right in the deep end with the plot is was an instantly likable game on so many levels. Easy controls, and just as easy to slip into liking the characters and plot, you quickly start carving out a roaring path of revenge across renaissance Italy.

One of the things that grabbed me about the game right from the start is the setting. Just like the first of the series, Assassin’s Creed has just been set in parts of history so ripe for gaming. Areas of our history that are so tantalizing in terms of the possibility for storytelling that it’s a wonder no one hasn’t done it sooner. Originally in the Great Crusades in Jerusalem. The Crusades are just a great period of history. So much going on, and such a key period in western history.

This game is set in just as lush a period. Who else sets a game in Italy? During such a cool and relatively unexplored period of history? Ok, other than Merchant Prince. The game does the period great justice, and the graphics and general mood and feel of the game just brings it alive, with its curious (and albeit amusing) mix of English and Italian language (I tried playing it in Italian with subtitles, but the voice acting is excellent in English).

I had heard the soundtrack before I’d played the game, and although dubious at the equally curious mix of styles, that too seems to work perfectly also. Is there nothing bad I can say about the game?

Good question. Not really. I’m still yet to finish it, and have been hacking away at it now for a good while. It’s definitely a tightly developed and nice game. Anything bad that I can think of is just niggles next to the rest of the game, barely worth mentioning.

Also, one key beauty about this game that I just love. I hate heights. Totally. This is the first game since Half Life that truly made me sweat in that regard. Some parts of the game aren’t so much difficult because of the jumps you have to make, but for me personally are because of the realistic sense of height. A small thing, but just another sense of how emersive the game is.

No doubt you’ve read plenty of previous raving about this game, so my words are just adding to the pile. It will be interesting to see where the series goes from here. I had heard rumors that it was going to be set in WW2, following a female lead character. That seems so mundane after the first two games, I hope it’s not true. Having said that, I wonder what the team could do with that almost overused setting?


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