bill-swift - June 5, 2012
In the opening shots of the E3 demo for Assassin's Creed III we're actually on board with our hero as he runs with a galloping herd of deer. The first person perspective comes undone when, like the cool assassin that he is, Connor takes to the trees and branches above the snow-covered forest floor.
To show off the bow and arrow mechanic, Connor shoots a deer who does the whole stagger and dying animation. It seemed like he was about to chow down on a fresh kill when some hungry wolves come to jack him for his venizen. Of course they get dealt with. However, the more important point here is that the venizen turns out to be an objective that you needed to get in good with the Revolutionary Army camp cook.
I knew Assassin's Creed hadn't suddenly turned into an animal hunting game. That would've been weak. The action during the deer-wolf sequence was spectacular even if it felt a bit overdone because the animals are such a weak threat.
Striding through the camp full of battered militia, Connor still stands out with his low hood and white clothing. Plus, he's totally focused on finding the templar and could care less about whatever the militia men are babbling about.
The assault on the fort hiding the templar is interesting because it shows how Connor takes on a crowd of enemies. It seems bad guys never looked up back in the 1700s either. The redcoats are especially docile for soldiers only moving to engage Connor one man at a time. They end up being as bad as stormtroopers from Star Wars. Also we'll have to check our history books because we can't recall what kind of redcoat wore a kilt. In AC3, the answer is: the toughest redcoat out there. These microbosses are pretty tough and dangerous as Connor takes a few extra seconds to take down these guys.
The solo, assassin style of gameplay stay intact even when chasing down the templar through a fortress full of troops. The satisfying ending to this sequence has you dealing with the templar and his devious ways with a flying bayonet dive. Vicious. He must have done something wrong.
Like we've seen in the other Assassin's Creed games, the integrity of the illusion/hologram world starts to stutter and crackle before we're fading to black.
Important to note: the game covers 30 years before and after 1776. For us history buffs, maybe AC3 will finally clear up all of that confusion around the French-Indian War? And can we get a battle during the Whiskey Rebellion?