Assassin's Creed IV Black Flag
Close to perfection
Assassin's Creed Black Flag is the greatest of the series to date. Not only because of the release on next-gen, but because of the sandbox effect that is well presented. In Black flag you gain added replay value do to the constant respawn of community based objectives. This allows you to compete with friends to see who can get there fastest as well as encourage you to keep exploring even after you finish the story. The best way to increase the value of your experience here is to play this game to complete, not just to beat. Take plenty of time exploring and treasure hunting and pirating in between the main story line and you will find that you are striving to get rich and complete the game and find every secret, and that it doesn't seem like an after game perfection task but rather your main quest which perfectly goes hand in hand with this installments character Edward Kenway. Every now and then you come across a free running glitch but given the size of the world it doesn't happen enough to even be noticed. Multiplayer has been revamped and now single player awards for multiplayer help fuel the strive for exploration and perfection. The sounds of the sea and battle are unmatched in any game I've came across to this day. The soundtrack compliments this nicely as I thoroughly enjoy the shanties that you can tell your crew to sing as you sail about looking for treasure or your next prize. Simply put. Loved it.
Even if you haven't played the previous titles...
This game is great for the casual gamer. There is only an online competitive mode for you hardcore gamers, but the single player mode is very relaxing especially after a long day of work/school. Even if you haven't played the previous titles, that's OK. The storyline does not have much to do with any of the previous titles. You play a pirate who comes across an assassin's equipment, which all of a sudden gives you his abilities as well? They didn't really explain that part, which is the only reason I did not give this game a 10. If you like the idea of being a pirate, taking over towns, upgrading your ship to combat other ships, and even commandeering a ship with your crew, then this game is for you.
The graphics were incredible, the map was huge, and the side missions almost overwhelmed you with wondering what to do next. Do I want to take over a castle by the sea for my own army's use, play the main storyline, or run a casual side mission like hunting sharks/whales/animals or go deep see diving to find treasures. You can even rally up crew and fellow assassins to fight for your selfish cause of getting rich while in the cities. There is so much to do it is hard to get bored of this game. I gave the sound a 10 because not only was the music good, but they added in over a dozen songs that your sailors will sing, if you choose, while you are sailing the open seas.
Pro's: Next Gen Graphics, Ship battles, numerous side missions, large open world map, smooth gameplay engine, YOU ARE A PIRATE!
Con's: The storyline. A: They do not explain how you all of a sudden have assassin powers. B: It doesn't seem to be linked to the previous games, if you were hoping it was, you will be disappointed. C: The protagonist (main character) is selfish and greedy. I would go as far as lable him an anti-hero. He kills people for money, hunt endangered animals, and you don't really feel good about some of the missions during the game. If you liked the GTA characters, or like playing a bad guy, you may like this one.
If you are new to the franchise, and like the idea of playing a pirate, I recommend getting this game.
Story line is incredible! I could actually watch the previews again. However, I am surprised there is no special edition available. Regardless, looks like a proper game. Definitely pre-ordering this one for the Xbox One.
This is an amazing game. There is so much to do. The pirate theme is perfect for an assassin's creed game. Highly recommended.
Pirate of Nightmares!
Ubisoft delivers another powerful game in the legacy of Assassin's Creed. However, this game is not without flaw, but to highlight the positives first: While it may have seemed awkward at first to go backwards in time line rather than forward (especially the way how AC3 eneded), this is positive of a game as it is the first unorthodox Assassin experience in the franchise; taking the time line to where pirating was famed in the early 1700s onward creates this unorthodox experience. Edward Kenway is a privateer turned pirate turned Assassin. While some may have qualms of his transition to Assassin, it's only a minor detail of the game that soon fades as you further into the story.
Naval combat has become more challenging and at times can be difficult rather than enjoying. While you spend a lot of time on the sea sailing, more often than not will you find a schooner or brig you can board for a break off the seas while obtaining material to upgrade your ship. However, it can get repetitive after the first 30-40 ships, especially when it comes to material hunting. Speaking of upgrading and material, building your ship to become a worthy vessel takes time and requires plans to perfect your ship. The added customization of your ships with features such as the sails, wheels, and figureheads gives the player to make the Jackdaw their own. The environment is very aesthetically pleasing, given that the game takes place equally on land and sea. The movement of water (though many might find this meaningless) impact the maneuvering and combat ability of the ship with environmental forces of rogue waves and water sprouts. This increases the difficulty of some forts/naval battles you'll encounter as you have to be maneuver smarter while focusing on combat and defense.
To move on to Kenway combat, typical AC controls still are implemented: B=Counter, A=Break Defense, X=Death; nothing much has changed. The addition of having the ability to carry four pistols and dual wield swords makes combat slightly more interesting. The killing animations though took a long time and requires no skill to defeat enemies. Maybe Kenway likes to mutilate his enemies as a pirate, which is sort of justifiable. It may even be on par with or regressed from AC3. I wish they'd bring back High/Low profile combat, rather than mashing the buttons to get chained kills as combat is too easy.
Now to move on to Kenway himself: he portrays characteristics of the Anti-Hero. The player may start to generalize his character as greedy and selfish, but develops well throughout his story as a good person. This complex character of Kenway transitions well throughout the entirety of the game smoothly as the player progresses further in the story. They are able to understand and experience the struggles of Kenway himself through drunken flashbacks with his love Caroline. While some may not care for the paramour of Kenway, it is what drives him throughout the entire story. He may commit evil actions, but has good intentions. I would go in-depth with his character, but that may lead to spoilers. Perhaps the biggest question that may be skipped in this long review is (if you're reading this, I applaud you for sticking with me): How did Edward have the skills of an Assassin with no formal training? From this, it is explained in the story that he's been on seas for three years, so he likely has some sort of experience in climbing and combating to survive on the seas, so at least there is a start in understanding his Assassin abilities. Kenway is not an average person dawning the Assassin robes, he has purpose and meaning (riches, love, etc.) and experience on the seas that may develop his Assassin abilities. However, this is not a good reason to support the question, just an opinion based on facts in the game, but at least Kenway did have experience prior to putting on the robes (irrelevant to the review, but many people have asked that question. Just stating my opinion is all). Overall, his path of redemption is what makes the story unorthodox as I've said before, giving an interesting twist in the AC franchise.
To speak of the famous pirates and figures of the game, they truly make the game interesting and the story riveting. In short, the appearances of historical figures such as Blackbeard and Mary Read are well integrated into the story to their historical counterparts through which Kenway experiences first hand. In my opinion, the band of characters and how they are portrayed in the game are the most enthusiastic and interesting cast I've encountered since I've played Mass Effect. To speak of the story, it is well written and intriguing from the first scene to the end. For half of the story if not more revolves around piracy and obtaining riches, which is self evident. The first main game without Desmond Miles, the player is a research analyst of Abstergo Entertainment researching for "Pirates of Nightmares". The outside world of the Animus is first person, which is an interesting approach in contrast to Miles' third person. I assume the idea of first person is to make the player the actual person who is doing the research. There isn't much to do outside of the Animus other than hack computers/play mini-games, collect sticky notes, and admire your action figure collection, but a couple of the missions in Abstergo Entertainment slightly reflect Kenway's story which are quite interesting. You might also meet a couple of familiar faces outside the Animus to bring remembrance of the past games too.
Side missions and activities: A neutral addition to the game. These missions/activities do not contribute to the story progression, but are an OK addition to the game. Templar hunts were, in my opinion, the only side mission worth doing, mainly because it felt like a mini-DLC with 4 extra missions and the ability to unlock Templar Armor (not much of a spoiler here). While I will say it isn't a positive or negative aspect of the game, it's there for replay value and adds to the environment of the time period to bring the liveliness of the game. Multiplayer and Co-op continues as it carries over well from AC3. With Discovery Mode added to Wolfpack in AC4, it is a small story integrated with the game mode and allows easier transition into MP by learning the basics of the game if the player has never played before. Overall, it is your typical AC MP experience, but is still a great addition in the game.
Overall, I enjoyed well over 40+ hours of AC4 and enjoyed every single aspect of the game. From plundering ships to learning the ways of the Assassin through Kenway's adventure, this is a definite must buy for anyone who is a fan of the AC franchise or is new to it. Hopefully this review helped in some way shape or form into your decision to play this great installment in the AC franchise leading into the well anticipated AC Unity.
Another great AC
I have loved Assassins Creed more and more each new release. Minimum glitches in the graphics except one part. The sound and gameplay is awesome. I will remember all AC games for years to come.
The game is addicting unlike all the other Assassins Creed. Theirs is a unique genre to the game that allows you explore so much more content then all the other Assassins Creeds. From Island to Island it's a mystery and you will become hooked on the fact of treasure hunting (which is only one of the addicting factors of this game). The story of the game is just simply amazing and the game never ends once you complete the full story mode. For me it’s rare to be beat a game and still have the enthusiasm to keep wanting the play the story mode. This game by far blew my expectations of me wanting to keep pirating, exploring, and not be bored of the same repetitive game play. I strongly recommend anybody that wants a game to kill time, this is your game by far. I mean who doesn’t like grand theft auto in the Caribbean’s, also seeing how old school warfare was back in the day at first hand.
Best Game I Ever Played
I bought this among other games for my new XBox One and this so far has been my favorite. It took a long time to finish it and then finish all the assassination and naval contracts. I didn't think I would like the ship battles but after a few times I got the hang of it and realized I could buy things to improve my weapons and boat. I found it very addicting and fun. I also liked Laura Croft Tomb Raider and Call of Duty Ghosts but I didn't like Titanfall or Theif. Battlefield 4 and Need for Speed are next.
I've been a hardcore AC fan since AC1, and I can easily say this is their best game thus far. The graphical reward of climbing a huge tower is worth it, seeing a bustling town or an island with a variety of animals. The Naval combat is amazing as well. Raiding a Naval Convoy as looting all of their reales (R) is so satisfying. Best game I have seen so far on the XB1, but it is heavily dependent on the campaign. There are plenty of side quests and objectives, but they are tedious. I would definitely recommend this to a friend.
Can't wait to play this game on my new Xbox One! The visuals look fantastic, the gameplay looks solid, and the story is killer (no pun intended)