Assassin's Creed: Revelations

Reviewed by Syrsly on Dec 07, 2011
Game Overview
Release Date:
November 29, 2011
Platform Reviewed:
Personal Computer
Platforms Available:
Playstation 3
Xbox 360
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Assassin's Creed: Revelations, or ACR, may as well be called AC4, because it is the fourth major release in the game series and is the third direct sequel to the original game.

I am biased about ACR, because I am invested in the story. I am a big fan of the series, and I have played and owned all previous titles on both PC and Xbox 360. That said, the series is plagued by frustrating gameplay moments, and the original game looked horrible.

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"Look! I think that guy's about to jump!"
"Don't do it, man! Life's worth living for!"

ACR's visuals are impressive, and technically, they are more advanced than the visuals of previous games, but the characters look a lot more ugly in ACR than they looked in Brotherhood, and in all honesty, the game seems to have trouble supporting high resolutions. I was noticing some stuttering to the framerate even in areas which look very bare. Brotherhood and AC2 both have much better performance.

ACR is a good game, and it is an even better sequel. Many people seem to be under the impression it is the same game as Brotherhood, but I do not think so. ACR offers new tools, new meta-games, or mini-games as we used to call them, and most importantly, more story. Brotherhood was too short and, while it offered a decent ending, it was a cliffhanger, so those of us who want closure need ACR to give it to us.

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The hookblade allows you to use ziplines.

ACR introduces zip-lines and a form of grappling hook called the hookblade, which makes me think "Batman?" However, I found that the new zip-line features work well and offer a sense of speed in a game that so often seems slow-paced.

The hookblade also helps speed up the climbing of walls. I noticed that climbing walls is much faster than in Brotherhood, once you have the hookblade, because your character will leap up and hook onto the next ledge and simply boost you that little bit higher. In addition, the hookblade offers two new combat tactics, the hook-and-throw and the hook-and-dodge. I may have the names of those moves wrong.

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Now you're thinking with portals.

In previous AC games, you could get out of the Animus and walk around in the real world, but in Revelations, technically the end of Brotherhood, that ability is stripped from you. Instead, Desmond can roam a small area within the Animus that is not part of his memories. It acts as a hub to load the game world and the many unlockable memory segments from a meta-game called "Desmond's Journey."

That meta-game puts you into first-person controls with a very retro feel. It also runs separately from the main game, though I am not certain it would work the same way on consoles. What that means is the main game application closes and the "Desmond's Journey" game opens like a hacking terminal. It even flickers the screen, though I think that was unintentional.

One of the weird things in the meta-game is the ability to spawn shapes. It reminds me so much of when I used to mod Halo 2 and use the plasma pistol to spawn platforms. The shapes only seem to collide with Desmond, though. In this meta-game, you get to spawn two shapes, a bridge and a slope. The slope is not very useful but can save you from having to jump when trying to get higher.

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The only other meta-game I have encountered is a tower defense game aptly titled "Den Defense." You place assassins on rooftops and try to slow the enemies down with obstacles and the assassins shoot the enemy hordes as they progress up a street path. It may sound simple, but when you first start playing it, you may feel disoriented due to the very limited camera angles and a lack of clear explanation of what to do. Thankfully, the first Den Defense level is very easy, and a couple minutes of experimentation allowed me to figure everything out.

The music is beautiful and just sets the tone for the entire game. Even the meta-games have great music. The voice acting is top notch, and the sound effects are great, but they're pretty much the same sounds we heard in previous AC games.

Overall, ACR is worth the full price to those who want it for the continuation of Desmond's story and the end of Ezio's story. Those not interested in the story may want to look at other games. For the stealth gameplay, I recommend Splinter Cell, which is also by Ubisoft.

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"He jumped! He actually jumped!"
PC When we refer to PC, we mean personal computers, so be sure you read what operating systems support this game. Currently, we review games for Mac, Windows, Linux, and DOS.

Another thing to look for when browsing PC games is the system requirements. There are really 4 things you need to worry about: RAM or memory, processor, video card, and finally, the hard drive space. Memory can be upgraded fairly easily, and it shouldn't cost much. We recommend having at least 1GB memory, 2GB if possible. Your processor needs to be fairly modern, and a Pentium 4 probably won't cut it. We recommend a 1.8Ghz Core 2 Duo or better. Your video card should support DirectX 9 (or higher) and have a minimum of 256mb memory attached to it. We recommend 512mb or greater. Hard drive space is subjective, but we recommend having a fairly large amount of space. You could settle for as little as 40gb and be able to play most games, but we recommend having 80gb or more space to make sure you have room for multiple games at once. Most PC games don't run straight from their disc. They usually require an install process, and most modern games require around 8gb of free space to install.

PC controller PCs are the ultimate game console, because they can be upgraded, and they will never go out of style. PCs can also play most old game systems through emulators, so if you lose your Playstation, you can just play your games on your PC. You can also play classic arcade titles and have infinite coins!

A lot of people complain about having to use a mouse and keyboard to play PC games. This isn't a requirement, fortunately, and we have what we call gamepads or joypads. Yes, we can use game controllers! We can even use Xbox controllers! That said, it's not as plug-and-play as a game console, and some games simply will not work with your joypad. Fortunately, Steam tells you if games support controllers, and if your favorite game doesn't support them, you can map the controllers to keyboard and mouse controls.

Just be careful when buying PC games. Read reviews carefully. If a game gets a 1/5, don't buy it. If your PC is a cheapie, don't expect modern 3d games to work. Read the system requirements very carefully. If you don't know anything about your system, you can find help in the PC Stuff forum.
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