Monday, November 16, 2015

Assassin's Creed: Syndicate (Playstation 4, 2015)

 Just finished this game and it was pretty fantastic. Not going to get too in-depth on it, but I took some shots.

 In this game, it rains a LOT. At least for the first few chapters. Seemed like it barely rained at all for the last 60% or so of the game. Weird. Not sure if the weather was randomized or planned, but if I had to guess I'd say planned.

 I've had a thing for train-yards for a long time. I think it might have started with Final Fantasy VI... which didn't have a train-yard. It had some trains though.

Here we see protagonist Evie getting spotted by some enemies. This is pretty much how the entire game went. I've never mastered the stealth mechanics of this series, so I'm constantly having to fight.

 There's a good leveling system in place for this one; it's well-paced and chances are you'll hit max level (10) either right before the end of the game or shortly after. I had to play for another 40 minutes or so after I finished the game just to finish getting level 10, but I also did a terrible job meeting objectives (which means extra EXP) during the game.

This has amazing light effects and possibly the best graphics I've seen on the PS4 so far. Especially for an open-world game, this is impressive.

Here I wait for a train to arrive in a station. This is cool, but there's little reason to actually do it since the game has fast travel points you can unlock and it doesn't take long to run around on foot regardless. If you do catch a train, it's a seamless transition. No cutscene. You just jump on and jump off at will, and the train itself is part of the ingame engine (heh).

Aside from catching trains, I also spent a lot of time standing in the downpour to work on catching pneumonia. To put it in perspective, this guy's OKCupid profile would have "Brooding" listed as all of the hobbies.

 A lot of the resolution is lost in these screenshots, but this game is good-looking. It looks amazingly high-res on a 55 inch TV.

The villain of the game is an evil capitalist who likes to play piano. He may be an awful person, but he makes some good points about how many people would be homeless or dead if it weren't for his company creating work for everyone. Good villain, overall. Unfortunately he gets cliche later on when he turns into a power-mad sorcerer, but that's neither here nor there.

Also, thanks for polluting the air with all these smokestacks, asshole!

On the other hand, here's a cool shot of the siblings Frye. I'd rather have had Evie get a solo game, but I enjoy the sibling rivalry here.

The best part of the game is when you play as Lydia Frye, Evie's granddaughter, for a chapter. She's maxed-out (at a point in the game where your normal characters are nowhere near it) and the sky looks like this for the entire chapter. Great stuff, and the best part of the game without a doubt.

Evie sorta resembles Kate from Lost, while Jacob bears a very loose resemblance to Jake from Jericho.

I feel like I'm missing a joke here. Isn't the "Kind of a Big Deal" thing from Anchorman? Did this knife appear in that movie or something?

There's a lot of vehicle-driving in this game and it's fun. My favorite vehicle was this giant horse-drawn bus with 1868-era advertisements all over it. The only thing missing is having a radio station play every time you carjack somebody. ...carriage-jack?

Other Interests: Brooding

My favorite thing to do in these games: Air-assassinations. Few things are quite as satisfying as leaping off a rooftop onto an unsuspecting foe.

 The "computer simulation" elements are downplayed a bit for this one, and there's mercifully very little of the present-day stuff.

Over the course of the game you can recruit members to your burgeoning gang. Basicaly, the objective here is to seize London from the control of corporate-backed red-shirt gangs and establish control for your green-shirt gangs. Hopefully the new boss isn't the same as the old boss.

 Another thing I always do in these games: Synchronize all the viewpoints. Especially now when they're fast travel spots. It's a ton of fun to run up and climb all of the tallest structures.

As you take over sections of London, the super-accurate ingame map begins to change. Areas that glow red are still under enemy control, while clear areas are "liberated". Freeing the entire map is another unnecessary but fun side-objective.

All in all this was a pretty great game, but the AC formula is a bit tired at this point. If this had been my first 'Creed game, I think I'd have enjoyed it more. There's a definite sense of "been there, done that". Looked at objectively and without nostalgia blinders, though, this game is a contender for best in the series. I just wish it weren't so similar to its predecessors.


  1. Some people like to stand in the rain without an umbrella.

    I do like that zone map.

  2. I agree with you that there sure are a lot of these games. And that is looks very good. Finally they have a female main character! Hopefully there'll be more of them.