Event: Assassin’s Creed III Preview


Welcome to the best time of the gaming year. No longer are we doomed to wait months for the next AAA release. From now until Christmas it’s full steam ahead! This, of course, means more tasty events. The first cab off the rank is Assassin’s Creed III.

Dave and I met up at Circular Quay and braving the sun we walked on over to a waterfront restaurant to get into some midday booze and gaming. As we entered it was clear Ubisoft had gone all out. Delicious food was abundant as were beers and we casually helped ourselves and then joined in the festivities.

I wanted to steal this poster

After a few minutes we were herded into the main room to get a basic rundown of the title. The developers were there to be our guides and kept it surprisingly brief and to the point and this is what I can tell you, Assassins Creed III looks great. The engine really excels at creating a more dynamic environment.

The United States was a good choice for the setting. The wilderness feels alive and rugged with nature working as both your enemy and your ally. Trees, foliage and animals all play their part in your dirty deeds. Relaxing, however, can cost you your life as at any given moment a bear or wolf can leap out of nowhere and end your life.

The control system feels more fluid and the new protagonist of the franchise, Connor, feels tougher than the previous assassins. His health regenerates, he is much heavier set and he takes down his foes with far more conviction and a lot less grace. No longer is the combat all about mashing the counter button. You’ll need to focus on your timing, blocking and attacking in between enemy flurries. Though not a lot has changed here, the experience feels much more refined than seen in previous versions.

Next I had the chance to dive into the Naval Combat, the new replacement for the awful Tower Defense styled rooftop mini-game seen in Assassin’s Creed: Revelations. With Connor at the helm of a large ship, armed to the teeth with cannons, the goal was to fight off an entire fleet of enemy ships while protecting a friendly merchant vessel. The controls were simple enough, with speed and tactics all playing a part in mission success and I enjoyed the distraction from the main gameplay. The developers promised there was plenty of depth to this new mode.

Shhh! I’m hunting wagons

Next up I got heavily into some multiplayer and I have to say the new co-op mode seems to work quite well. You’re given a group of targets to assassinate as a team. You must then get into position, strike together and scatter to the wind to evade detection. Once dispatched a new target is assigned and the assassination clock starts ticking again. After a few rounds the formula became clear and our team began to feel the rhythm with the gameplay becoming more and more addictive as the difficulty went up.

Last but not least I moved on to Assassin’s Creed: Liberation exclusive to the PlayStation Vita. Now, rawDLC fans will know that I am a huge fan of the Vita and the idea of a decent open world game is something I have been pining for since the console’s release. Liberation looks stunning and runs particularly smoothly. The new female protagonist character Aveline de Grandpre moves with the same fluidity as any of the rest of her brethren and the gameplay has that stock standard Assassin’s Creed feeling. There was nothing that really stood out here but if it ain’t broke…

Ubisoft put on food and booze, the best way to a gamer’s heart

Overall the games seemed to offer a little more innovation than the Assassin’s Creed expansions offered in Brotherhood and Revelations. Assassin’s Creed III feels more like a true sequel. Fans will love it and those that have gone dark on the series may find this a suitable point to jump back in. We can now only wait to see what the full game has in store for us when it comes out on October 31st.

Big thanks to the Ubisoft PR team for a great afternoon.

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Joshua Philpott

Tech MacGyver
Games writer, podcaster and tech wizard. Obsessed with obscure horror films, crazy gadgets and caffeine. Passionate, argumentative and open minded. Freelance writer and co-founder rawDLC.

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