AC revelations

Not Just The End – Assassin’s Creed Revelations Review

Revelations paints the late stage of the legendary assassin, the mentor, and the successor of the Creed, Ezio Auditore.

In his 50s, Ezio is old, yet still vigorous and passionate about his seeking of the forefather’s legacy. He has already transformed from that young lad that was vengeful and resentful about his family’s deaths, by tracing the steps of his father and brother, to a leader who single-handedly founded the Assassin Brotherhood across Europe and to the extent of Middle Asia. Now, he is the twos before, although an aged body, but still a young heart with passion.

Revelations is indeed revelations about many things.

Ezio trilogy’s greatness comes from how Ubisoft Montreal critically assess the angle of history. The original concepts of Assassins and Templars represent the contrary of “liberty, freedom” and “orders, oppression”.

Philosophy

If we are simply assessing the ideas of liberty and orders, we’d find it’s rather hard to determine which is the justified one.

I really like how the Ottoman prince perceives this eternal conflict, in a confrontation with Ezio.

We both strive for the same end, Ezio. Only our methods differ. Do you not see that? Peace. Stability. A world where men live without fear.

People desire the truth, yes, but even when they have it, they refuse to look. How do we fight this kind of ignorance?

–Ahmet

Liberty can be messy, Ahmet. But it is priceless.

–Ezio 

It is the mere perceptions, of ours, towards liberty and orders.

However, the freedom looks pale from this statement of Ezio’s. And really throughout history, it is orders, oppression, that makes great empires.

The idea of freedom is a modern concept, it seems like, it does not apply. Not that humans naturally are born as slaves of their masters, but I think, it’s rather, an end of an era.

The history in Assassin’s Creed is very judgemental, it does not prevail the correctness of history, but rather the contradictions of it.

Ezio killed the wrong man of Suleiman’s army. The person was a loyal guard who disguised himself as a Templar in order to track down the Templars in palace.

Ezio killed Ahmet because he sided with Templars. However, the new reign of the empire does not look any better than Ahmet. In fact, as Ahmet stated, his brother is a murderous monster with cruel and aggressive personality.

We seem to always end up at, seemingly, wrong side of history, doing what we deem as true, and justifiable.

Revelations is preaching to us. This critical and clear view of history is throughout the whole story.

What makes a game interesting is when you treat this game as a work of art, rather than a mere product of sales. You put into a bit of philosophy, not too tedious, but just enough to get players interested. This kind of storytelling is hardly seen in later games. At least, Assassin’s Creed III did it.

Other than these things, the lores of Ezio and Altair are mostly fascinating. It really does feel like you are reliving the lives of Ezio and Altair when you walk, climb and talk as them. The personal stories of these two legendary persons are just so engaging and relevant.

We’ve seen Altair lost his wife, his son, and his organization, in bloody confrontation against his brothers.

We’ve also seen Ezio so furious and panicked when he knew Sofia was in enemy’s hands. The romance of Ezio and Sofia is so lovely. Ezio was in good hands, in his late years.

In the end of First Civilization, it even expands the original sphere of Assassin’s Creed–ancient history, to pre-history. The revelation is that, there were 6 worlds before 21st century. It goes even beyond humans, it enters space, and alien technologies. Sometimes I have a hard time to grasp the scale of Assassin’s Creed, it’s so grand.

Gameplay

Revelations is also a game that incorporates all of previous games’ elements into the gameplay. There are various ways to tackle a problem in Revelations, which was rather limited, or not as much as Revelations, in previous games. The gadgets you have, the level designs, these things enable so many new playstyles.

If you want to distract some soldiers, a bomb, some Romanis, some thieves, or a bunch of sell swords, or you can ask your Brotherhood buddies, or your toxic darts. There, are, so MANY ways to solve a problem.

The new bomb system is definitely a great and intricate feature. The bombs enable new playstyles as much as possible, and with great physics of the game, you can use them to do all sorts of crazy things that you wouldn’t have done in previous games. Trick a solider into inhaling toxic gas when he comes to check on his companion’s body. Splash a ton of blood in front of soldiers faces and they are scared shitless. Stick a bomb on a soldier so he may die 5 seconds later. It’s so fun just playing with these bombs.

What about the good ol’ interactive crowds in trilogy? The beggars on the street that automatically come and “harass” you, in desire of a few pennies. The people who are disturbed or interested of your wall-climbing, your “uncanny” behaviors. Random ass people who seek to fist fight you. Or the fact that people just rash into collecting money on the ground? These are all elements that make the city alive.

What about the good ol’ stealth mode? You can stay within a crowd and move detectlessly. Or sit on a bench. Get into a hay. By the way the hays are beautiful in this game, much as how previous games are as well. Or use some Romanis. Stay in a smoke. Damn so many ways to stay hidden. You don’t need a cover system to be hidden among the crowd.

The good ol’ tombs. All the seamless (almost) free-running with cool and quick-paced background music? These things are so good.

Also the fact Ubisoft Montreal made another small map for this game? How exciting is that? I have yearned for multiple maps like in Assassin’s Creed II, the beautiful town of Venice, Montreal Mansion, Florence?

They could make so much content in these old games is because it did not require that much of graphical polish back in the time. So they could make budget for other more engaging core elements of the games. Graphics is a thing, but it does not trump all other elements of a game–gameplay, story, music, level design……

Conclusion

Assassin’s Creed: Revelations is not just a game, but something beyond. Like many great open world games, Revelations did a fantastic framework of open world elements, with its impeccable story and gameplay, historic elements, beautiful music compositions, it is one of the best games I have ever played. This is most certainly a 10/10.

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