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Monkichi 3.0

Assassin's Creed 2

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I'm an optimist by heart. :lol:
I don't know. Those free running sequences in AC2 seem to play themselves and the fighting system looks a bit simple as well. After Batman, I'm not too happy at enemies waitinf for their turn to attack.

:lol:

The free running in the first game was fine imho, and I don't care about the combat anyway. What I want from the sequel is an actual game with more variety, more freedom, and stealth as an actual option to kill targets. If they manage that - GotY! If not, welll at least the graphics are purdy.

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I really want this to be good, but I'm still not convinced there will be that much of a game there. The developer walkthrough was interesting, but the new techniques didn't look that interesting. Scattering coins into a predefined crowd 'unit' to cause a fuss didn't look very satisfying. Also, distracting those guards by paying the mercenaries (who just happned to be standing a few yards from the guards) to start a ruck looked pretty disingenuous. It's all to set up and easy - like using the monks to safely pass the city gates in the first one. No thought or cunning required.

Also, as Vemsie says, the combat in Batman has spoiled me. I'm also worried AC2's will be clunky and unfun by comparison.

The new assassination moves were cool, though.

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:quote:

The free running in the first game was fine imho, and I don't care about the combat anyway. What I want from the sequel is an actual game with more variety, more freedom, and stealth as an actual option to kill targets. If they manage that - GotY! If not, welll at least the graphics are purdy.

Hey, I'm still pretty positive about it. But just a bit wary as well. :lol:

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Hey, I'm still pretty positive about it. But just a bit wary as well. :quote:

I think the main difference in regards to our respective optimism towards Assassin's Creed 2 is the fact that (afaik) you love 3rd person games with great combat mechanics, hence your unconditional love for Ninja Gaiden 2. I'm more of a stealth gamer myself, a long-time Tenchu fan, and completely in love with games like Thief 2 and SC: Chaos Theory.

Therefore I'm hoping AC2 will get the stealth right, or that stealth will at least be a viable option. With any game, if the option is there to play it stealth I will play the entire game in extreme stealth mode. I spent 99% of the gameplay sections in MGS4 crawling around on my belly, I'm not even exaggerating. If AC2 gets the stealth right, then I wouldn't care about the combat one way or another, but I can imagine that for you and others it's a far more important factor, especially after playing Arkham Asylum. (I love the combat in AA btw, but I did silent takedowns wherever and whenever the game would let me)

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That's definitely true. I'm a huge fan of combat mechanics, which explains why I can't wait till Bayonetta is out and why I tortured myself until I reached the end of Master Ninja mode on Gaiden II.

And I do actually love the combat animations in this, I just fear it won't have any real depth or challenge to it.

That said, I still look forward to Creed 2 for a couple of reasons. The world itself foremost, which could easily be one of the loveliest settings gaming has ever seen. I also like the variety of gameplay elements we've seen so far. Stealth, combat, free running, hang gliding, climbing, platforming and even some horse and carriage gameplay.

As long as the game allows me to do things in different ways and doesn't hold my hand too much, I'll happily dive into this virtual Renaissance.

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Yeah, the potential is there for this game to be immense, just like the first game had loads of potential. I don't know, maybe all those things they're trying to, all those different gameplay styles in an open world, maybe it's just too ambitious. Batman managed to combine different gameplay mechanics flawlessly, but it's the exception to the rule. And Batman: AA wasn't set in a huge open world.

I can imagine that the most viable solution to all those things they're trying to achieve is to heavily script certain areas and moments, like Pob pointed out with the crowd and the mercenaries standing around at exactly the very place you actually need them. But when the hand-holding is too obvious, the game becomes too superficial and that led to the first game being described as an impressive graphics engine without an actual game in there.

I'm looking forward to finding out if the developers will let the player experiment a bit this time, and whether there are different approaches and solutions to each scenario, allowing for experimentation and improvisation. Imo, allowing both stealth and combat as viable options to complete a scenario would be a step in the right direction and go a long way in making this game really fun to play even if it's still lacking in other areas.

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I love the setting even more than the first game. However I loved everything about the first game except the gameplay itself. The trailers before it came out made it look like the most exciting thing in the world, but the game itself left me so bored of what it was actually about doing.

The trailers and gameplay vids this time around have convinced me again, enough new stuff to make it look like fun this time, I hope it carries through into the full thing.

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To be honest, until I actually see or play a whole assassination through from beginning to end and see it's improved, I'm still going to be incredibly sceptical. It's all very well them showing off new moves and weapons and shops and everything, but the main problem with the first game was the mission design. Well, that and the dodgy stealth mechanics (riding a horse fast is punishable by death, walking through an alert area normally is lethal but hold down A to blend in, i.e bow your head, and you're fine, that is until a tramp punches you and then you get the blame.)

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IGN Hands On Preview. (contains a lot of spoilers from the opening levels of the game)

The Assassin's have an improved animus, they refer to it as version 2.0, and it allows Desmond to communicate with people outside of his genetic memory. From what I played, which was extensive, I never left Ezio's body.
Health is finite in Assassin's Creed II; it doesn't regenerate automatically. When hurt you must use medicine or visit a doctor. The treatment costs money, and it's at this point that you realize the various stalls and shops in Assassin's Creed II will all eventually be accessible. Ezio will be able to purchase and upgrade weapons and strengthen his armor from leather, to Helmschmied, to metal which provides a welcome boost to his health meter. Armor also becomes damaged in battle and needs to be repaired to be effective. Oh, and if you tire of the white assassin garb you can always dye it one of 15 different colors.

Since everything costs money, the player has a legitimate reason to pick pocket his targets. There are also hidden stashes of money everywhere giving you a better reason to explore than the hundreds of flags strewn about the environments of the first game. Ezio can also toss coins in the street, a great way to disperse of annoying gypsies or cause a commotion that puts bodies between him and an enemy.

Feathers have replaced the flags of Assassin's Creed I. There are 100 feathers and they are placed along the main quest areas of the game -- unlike the flags which appeared seemingly randomly throughout the world. Collecting these items will also lead to tangible rewards within the game. I'm not going to spoil what it is, but it's something Ezio could use in his quest.
Missions that are critical to the story are always marked on the map with an exclamation point. Side quests are also indicated on the map, but unlike the first game players aren't required to rack up these minor activities to access the next segment of the main story. When running through Florence there are plenty of high points to access and "sync" by surveying the landscape. Reaching these points unlocks other missions but none of them are necessary to advance the game.
In response to the outcry against the "sitting on a bench" missions from the first game, the stealth elements of Assassin's Creed have been streamlined and incorporated into the gameplay. Crowds and benches act as safe zones as you track your targets through a city, and you'll mix hiding and hiring help as you try to maintain a close proximity without being noticed.
Ezio can travel by horse, or steer a gondola in Venice, or to save time he can hire transportation and fast travel to locations on the map.
Ezio's villa starts off in ruin and it's up to him to restore it to glory. By investing the money he collects in the villa, Ezio is able to rebuild and improve a Blacksmith, Taylor, Brothel, Doctor, Barracks, Bank, Art Merchant, Church, Mines, Wells, and Thieves Guild.

As elements of the town improve, its inhabitants go from peasants to upper class citizens and they start to bring in tax money. Ezio can return to the town treasurer from time to time to collect these earnings. He can also reap the benefits of improved shops and services. For example, an upgraded blacksmith gives players a discount on weapons purchased there and upgrading the wells allows Ezio access to an underground aqueduct with hidden treasures.

http://uk.xbox360.ign.com/articles/103/1037089p1.html

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Just taking the first three paragraphs...

In the two years since Assassin's Creed was shipped, the team has been working full steam on the sequel and this time with the benefit of a proven engine. It's one thing to address complaints from the first game, to maybe add a few new features, but Assassin's Creed II does quite a bit more than this. We're talking about new additions like upgradeable armor, a notoriety system, tons of weapons, and an entire villa to restore complete with shops and a brothel. Prepare to be overwhelmed.

First sentence. Clunky.

Second sentence. Very clunky second clause and one that's actually unnecessary, because we're about to describe the new features.

Third sentence. List. But a list with the final bullet point containing two bits of information rather than just "an entire villa to restore" (the description of the villa should be somewhere else).

Fourth sentence. I'm already overwhelmed.

That's not to say there haven't been technological improvements. You'll notice straight away that Assassin's Creed II (ACII) runs slightly more smoothly than its predecessor, with less noticeable frames dropped and a very cool new effect where environments spring forth from a three dimensional matrix. But having seen the trailers and the walkthroughs you already know that Assassin's Creed II visually recreates the renaissance. But how does it play? Will it silence the critics of the first installment? I sat down with the game for numerous hours and we're here to answer all of these pressing questions and more.

Second sentence. "Notice" and "noticeable". "Less", rather than "fewer". "Numerous" hours? Change from "I" to "we" in the last sentence.

You may remember the ending of the first Assassin's Creed raising more questions than it answered. Desmond, the main character in present-day, was still trapped by the evil company Abstergo in a sterile lab. The company had forced Desmond to relive his genetic memories in hopes of finding an ancient relic known as a Piece of Eden. By the end of the game you were trapped seemingly indefinitely, but also able to use your "eagle vision" to read a series of codes and glyphs written on the walls of your cell.

Check out that "seemingly indefinitely". Not only is it a painful construction, but it's also going to appear later in the article as "seemingly randomly" according to the quote above. Seemingly is an awful word.

I've not actually read the rest of the article, but I can see what Zy means.

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First Review.

dZQmv.jpg

OXM may not have a fancy-pants past-rewriting animus at its disposal, but the magazine’s still making some history of its own with the world’s first ever Assassin’s Creed II review. So, how’d Ezio and co. stand up under OXM’s unfaltering scrutiny? Pretty well, as it turns out. The numbers nine and ten were apparently mentioned once or twice, or so we’re hearing.

“OXM’s Mike Channell was the first non-Ubisoft person in the world to complete the game, the company tells us, and he was impressed,” said a post on OXM’s official site. “It addresses nearly all the gripes we had with the original game, including all that artificial flag-collecting nonsense, and delivers a brilliant single-player experience that’s built around a cracking story.”

http://www.oxm.co.uk/article.php?id=14630

http://www.vg247.com/2009/10/23/first-assa...tands-is-a-910/

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Was I alone in finding the whole concept of the Animus fascinating? As well as all of the most welcome improvements to the core Assassin gameplay I hope this game delves a little deeper into the usage & potential of the device.

On another topic, I really like how Ezio has that half-cape over one shoulder. I think I read somewhere that it was fashion among nobility at one time?

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I just got around to reading Edge's preview from last month. I got the strange impression that they had no idea what they were going to do with the game except "fix it". There's no unique appeal there, just a gaggle of crap. For example:

initial five squares of vitality can withstand four basic hits, and regenerate after time if life juice remains. Completely depleted squares are only recovered with health vials purchased from doctors, equipped through the new inventory wheel

I can't read about a game mechanic like that without feeling I'm being mocked by the designers.

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