Ezio Auditore returns in the latest Assassin’s Creed title, Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood. There are many questions that Brotherhood will answer after the success of Assassin’s Creed II. These questions I myself wondered such as, what happened to Ezio, what happened to Desmond, and more importantly is the new multiplayer mode going to be a hit or a miss? Well here is the review that will answer those questions, as well as let you know if this title is worthy of the Assassin’s Creed name.
First off the story begins with the Modern Assassin crew trying to access Ezio’s memory through Desmond in the Animus. However, Desmond cannot access that memory so he must yet again go through the life of Ezio Auditore to access that moment in his life to discover what the Modern Assassin’s are looking for.
As for Ezio’s story it starts off right where Assassin’s Creed II left off. Ezio returns to the Auditore Villa in Monteriggioni after his victory in the Vatican. While Ezio is relaxing, the Borgia decides to attack the Villa to obtain the Apple of Eden. The attack is led by Rodrigo Borgia’s (the villain in Assassin’s Creed II) son, Cesare Borgia. This causes Ezio to lose everything such as money, weapons, armor, and everything he worked hard for in Assassin’s Creed II. So now Ezio sets out to Rome to find Cesare Borgia and to restore the Assassin Brotherhood.
The gameplay in Brotherhood is pretty much the same as Assassin’s Creed II with a few changes. One change is the ability to ride on horseback in the city. Riding on a horse in the city allows faster travel within the city and the use of horseback combat. The second change the Borgia towers. The Borgia have put towers in keys areas within the city of Rome and in order to reduce Borgia presence players must kill the captain of the tower and then set it on fire. The third change is the city of Rome itself. Rome is in shambles and if Ezio wants any new armor, weapons, or money at that matter he must restore the buildings so he can buy armor and weapons. The gameplay also focuses more on the stealth aspect than the previous two Assassin’s Creed titles.
Ezio will be calling upon the help of the people of Rome on his quest to reclaim the Apple of Eden with the help of Thieves, Mercenaries, Courtesans, and Assassin’s. Each faction has their own set of missions and tasks for you to complete. Thieves, Mercenaries, and Courtesans are from the previous title normally distracting guards to allow you to escape or to go through an area undetected. Assassin’s, the newest addition of allies will aid you in battle and can also create distractions to allow an easy escape.
Virtual Missions are another new single player addition. These Virtual Missions provide challenges which players must complete. For those that have played the Metal Gear series they may find this familiar with the Metal Gear VR missions. This is a great way to increase the single player experience providing unique challenges to where players will want to go for the gold.
Aside from these new additions the gameplay is still pretty much the same you walk around the city to do missions and assassinating the target. You also have a slew of side missions such as climbing up towers to synchronize view points, assassination contracts, and finding keys to obtain the ultimate set of armor.
Combat is still the same as the predecessors with the addition of two new weapons, the heavy weapons and the crossbow. The counter attack has also been fixed to be more responsive than the previous title when counters were hardly responsive.
The visuals are a slight improvement from the predecessor. Ezio’s robes look more detailed and rich. The environments look lush and rich and helps create the atmosphere of the once great city of Rome in shambles. All the buildings and the architecture are greatly detailed as well as you climb up buildings and glide along rooftops.
Now for the question that many of you are wondering, the multiplayer. The multiplayer actually has its own storyline; you are an Abstergo Agent using the Animus to train for the upcoming war between the modern Assassin’s and Templar’s. During your training you will be fighting other Abstergo Agents (aka other players) to learn the ways of the Assassin so you can know your target and use their abilities against them.
Matches can hold up to 8 players and there are 4 different game types, Wanted, Advance Wanted, Manhunt, and Alliance. Wanted and Advance Wanted are the Free for All game types where everyone is against everyone. How the game works is players are given a target to assassinate and you must track down the opponent with the radar. While you are hunting for your target, you are also being hunted so be discrete and use the crowd well when hunting for your target.
Manhunt and Alliance are the team variants. Manhunt has players in teams of two hunting for their targets as well as watching out for their hunters and assisting teammates. Alliance has two teams of four in two rounds one team being the hunters and the other team the hunted.
The multiplayer is unique and does a great job explaining what Abstergo is doing during the story. However there isn’t really enough variety in the multiplayer. True the multiplayer game is unique and a great variation of hide and seek but with the little variety the game has the multiplayer life isn’t going to last long in this game.
Overall, Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood is a worthy sequel with a good idea with multiplayer; it just needs a bit more variety. The single player story is very well done and will only leave gamers wanting to know more of what will happen to Desmond in the end of this tale. We’ll just have to see if Assassin’s Creed III will give a truly wonderful conclusion or the start of the conclusion at least.