Assassin’s Creed Rankings: 7 & 6

What’s up everyone, with Assassin’s Creed Syndicate due to drop on Friday, as TGI’s resident Assassin’s Creed fan/the only one to properly play the franchise, I thought I would drop a list of the previous games ranking them from (in my opinion) worst to first.

For this list, I am only including games from the main series, therefore discounting any of the handheld games. Also, I must confess that due to the timings of switching from previous to current generation consoles, I did not pick up Assassin’s Creed Rogue, as this was the previous gen’s offering as opposed to Assassin’s Creed Unity on the PS4/Xbox One. Because of this, I have left Assassin’s Creed Rogue, off this list, simply because I cannot give a fair opinion of a game I haven’t played.

Today we will be taking a look at numbers 7 and 6 on the list. Without any further ado, let’s get started:

 

7. Assassin’s Creed III

 

AC3

 

What Worked: To be honest, not a lot. One of the few and very enjoyable parts about Assassin’s Creed III was getting to captain your own ship and take on adventures and a privateer for the Colonial Navy. These missions were relatively short and there was only a limited number of them, but they helped break up the gameplay and offered something new to the franchise. The popularity for these missions inspired a much larger portion of Assassin’s Creed Black Flag’s gameplay.

What Didn’t: Unfortunately, too much failed to come together, despite what could have been a really fun setting. Conor was a dull protagonist, who’s more solemn demeanour was highlighted further by following not only Ezio, but also scene’s earlier in the game where you played as his much more charismatic father, Haythem.

Additionally much of the gameplay suffered too. The openness of the world, wide streets in the Colonial towns and low rooftops seemed to take away a large proportion of what felt should be in an Assassin’s Creed game at that point. The controls felt clunky compared to previous games as Ubisoft tried to let Conor do too much, but ultimately cut him short of that target.

Worst of all, was that the period with Haythem started so smoothly and then when you started playing as Conor, players were forced into what must have challenged for gaming’s longest tutorial! Maybe it’s the sour taste this game left, but it really felt like I was forced to play tutorial missions for hours, which, as an experienced Assassin’s Creed player, was hard to stick with. I get the need to educate new players to the series, but such tutorials should be optional or easy to opt out of once started.

Why Rank It Here: Assassin’s Creed III was the first Assassin’s Creed game that I walked away from before it was finished. I only went back, months later, when I looked to see how close I was to the end and even then, it was more about just finishing the game to say that I had, and therefore received my money’s worth, than really wanting too.

 

 

6. Assassin’s Creed Black Flag

 

Assassin's_Creed_IV_Black_Flag

 

What Worked: Edward Kenyway was an instantly likeable rouge, who stumbled upon the Assassin’s Order more by chance than by choice. You did not have to go through hours of obligatory tutorial missions, which are often tedious to returning players, as the game already credited Kenyway with certain abilities right off the bat. Oh and did I mention that Kenway was a pirate who ends up with his own ship that he can take where he wants, raiding on the seas of the Caribbean as he fancies?

Assassin’s Creed Black Flag was the first game to really paint a different light on the protagonist. They were not a member of the Assassin’s Order because of family or honour. No, Kenway was in league with them because it helped serve a purpose.

What Didn’t: The size of the map, pure and simple. Bravo to Ubisoft for being bold and taking Assassin’s Creed in a new direction, but unfortunately the time it took to reach new locations by boat could become tedious at times. Throw in the fact you could suddenly be set upon by other ships just made it more frustrating if you spent ages on reaching a port, to only end up wrecking just before your final destination. Yes it added to the whole tension that a pirate’s journey must have felt, but ultimately it just made me consider the fast travel option when available, just to spend less time sailing, which I know what not the objective.

Sticking with Kenway’s ship, you had to take a chunk of time to build up resources in order to upgrade it. If this was a side project I think I could have let it slip by, but it was needed in order to progress with the game, otherwise ship to ship combat would have become impossible. I feel like too much time was spent at sea, when the core of the game was still meant to take place on land.

Why Rank It Here: Assassin’s Creed Black Flag was the revitalising breath of fresh air that the franchise needed after the disappointing Assassin’s Creed III. It opened up to Ubisoft that new ideas were welcomed by the fan base and that the Assassins Creed games could evolve. It gave players a diverse and colourful setting, with equally colourful characters and was a game worth playing, even if a bit too much time was spent in boats! What hurt this game the most was the longevity of travel and upgrades. It made it hard stick with the game and I must admit that this was the second in the series that I had not finished at first play through because of this. In fact, Assassin’s Creed Black Flag remains the only game I have not finished. Unlike the previous title, Assassin’s Creed III, this time it was the set up to progress the story that held me back, rather than the story itself, which is why I’ve given it a higher ranking. I wish I could rank this one higher, but like with Assassin’s Creed Rogue, I can’t really rank a game that I haven’t played to completion.

That’s it for today, tomorrow we’ll move on to 5 & 4 on my list.

Dan