Preview: ‘Assassin’s Creed: Origins’ goes way back to bring series to future


I am sailing down the Nile and four hippos are trying to eat me. I fire a couple of arrows at them, but it doesn’t seem to faze them. They swim closer, jaws open, and I think better of it.

This is all part of dealing with life in Ancient Egypt in “Assassin’s Creed: Origins.” After several yearly iterations, Ubisoft Montreal decided to put in extra development time in the long-running open-world series. The effort shows up as the developer transport players to an era that’s rarely explored in games.

As the name implies, “Assassin’s Creed: Origins” explores the beginnings of the Assassin Brotherhood and its rival the Templars. That starts with the last Medjay, Bayek, who is a preternaturally gifted warrior. He has the ability to fire arrows with accuracy from horseback. He can battle foes in all kinds of environments from rickety boats to the rooftops of hovels. In a surprising supernatural touch, he has the ability to scout areas using his connection to a falcon.

“We need to fundamentally challenge ourselves into finding what ‘Assassin’s Creed,’” said game director Ashraf Ismail.

For the team, that means creating a varied, massive and seamless world where players can go from sailing the Nile to riding on horseback to exploring ruins in the desert to attacking a fort guarded by soldiers. The few hours I spent with the game I ended up lost in all of it. The game is large but somehow not overwhelming like the recently released “Middle-earth: Shadow of War.”

I spent a lot of the time doing side quests to level up Bayek so he could take on the main questline. “Origins” has a revamped gear and progression system in which Bayek levels up and spends points in a skill tree while at the same time he can …read more

Source:: The Mercury News

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