Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Preview - Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag

Despite how you may feel about the Assassin’s Creed franchise, you have to admit that it is proving itself to be a force to be reckoned with.  Ever since the release of Assassin’s Creed II there has been a new title every year and somehow they manage to keep things solid.  But the question is, "what is Ubisoft doing to avoid the sixth installment from becoming boring and repetitive?"

In Assassin’s Creed III we played as Conner, a young Native American.  In Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag however, we will play as Captain Edward Kenway, the father of Haytham Kenway who is the father of Conner.  The real kicker is that Edward is a pirate and he seems pretty Boss.  

The game is set during the “Golden Age of Pirates” in 1715, when the pirates had a lawless republic in the Caribbean and had control of everything on, and off, the land.  The pirates ruled with an Iron Fist and took what they wanted, when they wanted it.  Edward Kenway was a loose cannon, with practically no limits to his ferocity.  He excelled in every skill under the sun; he was vicious with a sword, deadly with a pistol, and just crazy with the hidden blade. He was so widely acclaimed for his skill and brash, unpredictable behaviour that even Blackbeard spoke highly of Captain Edward Kenway, at times fearfully.

The main appeal in Black Flag is that we will get to play as a pirate. The clever integration of the Naval Warfare system in Assassin's Creed: III so far has been well received, and it will be interesting to see how they go about improving  this already solid system. The main difference we know is that you can now upgrade Jackdaw, Kenway’s ship, and advance through dangerous waters and scour uncharted terrain, in search for treasure and upgrades.  Another new feature to the series is the ability to free-aim instead of the questionable auto-aim system from the previous games; this will steer in a new importance for gunplay in Assassin’s Creed.  Additionally, we can now seamlessly chain together attacks combining multiple weapons via the new combat upgrades.

Sure enough the game will still play like every other Assassin’s Creed game, as the Pirate era is so rich in history and excitement that I believe Assassin's Creed: IV will have more than enough new gameplay elements to make the game exciting. But as to how will the storyline progress without Desmond? We will just have to wait and see…

- Frank Van Der Merwe

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