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Assassins Creed III Remastered (PS4) some things are best left in the pastUbisoft

2019-04-03

Bring the American Revolution to life for a new generation of consoles but are the adventures of Connor really worth reliving Borderlands: Game Of The Year Edition coming next month for consoles and PCWhen Assassins Creed III was first released, almost seven years ago now, Ubisoft themselves described it as the last of the dinosaurs The implication was that primarily single-player games of such size and complexity were not only becoming prohibitively expensive to make but increasingly out of step with the contemporary games scene of the time All of which sounds very similar to the laments of the current day and makes this a very curious game to look back on now Despite their apparent self-awareness nothing about Assassins Creed III stopped Ubisoft from releasing the even bigger Assassins Creed IV: Black Flag a year later, or indeed Assassins Creed Unity the year after that Although that games fumbled attempt to bring the franchise to the current gen saw a decline in interest for the series that was only reversed with 2017s Assassins Creed Origins Advertisement Advertisement For many though the rot set in with Assassins Creed III, a game which on the face of it seemed to do everything bigger-er and better-er than its predecessors but lost much of the charm and novelty along the way Its reputation today is as one of the weakest games in the series but Ubisoft appear committed to remastering every entry and so its the turn of Ratonhnhak:ton (aka Connor) and the American Revolution to get the makeover treatment Although Connor is generally regarded as one of the series least interesting protagonists, being something of a charisma vacuum compared to the roguish Ezio of Assassins Creed III, the games plot is surprisingly even-handed in its treatment of British and American characters, Connor preying on either if they happen to be Templars Unfortunately, the storytelling is also incredibly long-winded and dull, with an almost unending series of prologues, that lasts longer than some other games in their entirety, and a much-derided finale What stands in the games favour though is its vision of 18th century colonial America, with the cities of New York and Boston, and the wilderness in-between, still managing to look surprisingly good today Not only is it a novel setting but the remaster goes to an unexpected level of effort to improve the textures and upgrade the lighting system, to the point where if you squint it can look almost as good as the modern games Assassins Creed III was the first time naval combat was added to the game and although its absurdly unrealistic its still a great deal of fun, even if it does feel like youre burning round Chesapeake Bay on a motorboat The on-foot combat is enjoyably gory too, but thanks to its simplicity it remains the least interesting aspect of the game Advertisement Advertisement Wed say the combat remains the weakest element of the whole franchise but that honour undoubtedly goes to the present day sequences, with Assassins Creed III being the last in the series to feature Desmond Miles as a playable character And considering how dull and frustrating he is to control here its no wonder Ubisoft has never really tried to replace him Assassins Creed III Remastered (PS4) the Redcoats are coming, againIn the end, its the wilderness areas that impress the most, filled as they are with wild animals to hunt, weather that changes with the seasons, massive cliff faces to climb, and numerous smaller settlements to explore You can capture minor Templar forts, harass randomly encountered convoys, craft weapons and equipment, search for a range of different collectables, or just go to the pub and play board games The problem is that while all that was brand new in 2012 it now seems like nothing but a collection of open world game design clichs Which is the problem when you go back to remaster a game which, while enjoyable in its day, was quickly superseded not only by its rivals but later entries in its own franchise More: Gaming Elder Scrolls Online: Elsweyr hands-on preview the dragons are back FromSoftware working on new game with George R R. Martin claim rumours Xenoblade Chronicles developer making new Legend Of Zelda gameViewed purely as a remaster this is actually an extremely impressive effort, with an upgraded interface and mini-map, an expanded crafting system, and tweaks to the stealth and combat mechanics to help make the game feel more modern What hasnt been fixed though, at least not enough to pass without comment, are the bugs many of which seem to be exactly the same as they were seven years ago Advertisement Also bundled with the game is the Tyranny Of King George DLC and Assassins Creed III: Liberation, which started out as a PS Vita game before being remastered on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 It features the series first female protagonist, but shes no more interesting than Connor and the whole game feels even more shallow and repetitive in terms of both gameplay and storytelling If it wasnt for the bugs wed regard this as one of the best remasters of recent years But despite all the tweaks to the gameplay and graphics theres no way to update the underlying game without completely remaking it As such, it feels like an evolutionary step that, while important at the time, was quickly made redundant by its own sequels let alone the rest of gaming It wasnt really a revolution at the time and it certainly doesnt feel like one now Assassin's Creed III Remastered In Short: Even a high-quality remaster such as this cant hide the fact that Assassins Creed III is too much a product of its time and has little to offer modern gaming Pros: The setting still looks surprisingly impressive, thanks to an ambitious remaster that also tweaks and improves elements of the controls, interface, and crafting Cons: Gameplay mechanics and design are badly outdated, with shallow combat, simplistic stealth, and an unremarkable game world Connor is a painfully dull protagonist. Lots of bugs and glitches. Score: 6/10 Formats: PlayStation 4 (reviewed), Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PCPrice: 29 99Publisher: UbisoftDeveloper: Ubisoft MontrealRelease Date: 29th March 2019 (21/5 on Switch)Age Rating: 18 Advertisement Email gamecentral@ukmetro co.uk, leave a comment below, and follow us on Twitter Advertisement Advertisement