Thursday, July 8, 2010

Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood To Improve Upon/Continue AC 2

Assassin's Creed 2 was a huge improvement over the first game. Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood aims to improve upon AC 2 and continue the story of the Italian protagonist, Ezio. Along with the advancement of combat, horse riding, and AI, the folks at Ubisoft are bringing multiplayer for the first time to the Assassin's Creed universe.

Ubisoft showed off multiple gameplay improvements and additions, starting with cannons. Yes, cannons. At the beginning of the game your villa-that you worked so hard to repair in AC 2-is attacked and mostly destroyed by Cesare Borgia, the son of Pope Alexander VI. Briefly, Ezio will be able to man cannons and defend the villa from an onslaught of soldiers. On the villa's walls was also introduced a new traversal mechanic; lifts allow the player to pull themselves up a few stories, almost instantaneously, by using what looks like a pulley system. Lifts will be included in single and multiplayer. They will definitely ease frustration when climbing certain buildings.

A common complaint about Assassin's Creed's combat is that it can be too slow for some players. Ubi's heard those complaints and is speeding up combat. Fights will not only reward patient players who like to counter their enemies but also aggressive players. Enemies will now attack at the same time which may force some players to be more aggressive. Three particularly exciting aspects of combat are the new crossbow, weapon throwing, and the use of swords and guns at the same time:

  • Crossbow-(As seen in the first screenshot.)This weapon was shown in the first trailer for the original Assassin's Creed. Two games later it's finally playable.
  •  Weapon Tossing-Weapons that you take from enemies can now be aimed at enemies and used as a one hit kill. It takes a couple seconds to aim the weapon so choose your target wisely.
  •  Gun/Blade-The gun that was rarely used in AC 2 can now be used anytime during combat while a blade is being used.
Rome is the new major city in Assassin's Creed Brotherhood, said to be three times the size of Florence in the previous game. A factor to the city's size is the country side in the center of Rome. Due to the large open areas horses will be ridable throughout the city. The horse has also been improved in unspecified ways, including combat. Rome will also work as the new villa in terms of buying and managing buildings. In Rome, Ezio will have to rebuild the brotherhood as well. By helping or saving assassins you'll be able to recruit them and build up your guild. You'll then be able to send them on missions which will allow you to level up their abilities. It is currently unclear how managing these assassins will work.
Finally, one of the multiplayer modes, Wanted, has players take the role of the people of Italy. One may be a courtesan, another an executioner. Players will be assigned an assassination target and are then pointed in the direction of their mark by a blue compass at the bottom of the screen. The compass pointer will become wider until it is a full circle indicating that the target is within proximity. At which point the player can kill their target. While you may be hunting someone down someone may also be hunting you. Points are gained by assassinating and escaping assassins. The majority of play involves reaching your target, which means that once you start getting close you must slow down and blend with the crowd. Alerting your target by running or climbing or jumping down buildings will allow them to runaway, giving them points and assigning a new mark for you.

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