As we already highlighted back in June, one of the most anticipated AC games is out!
After the reboot of the series with Assassin’s Creed Origins comes an equally worthy follow-up Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. Developed by Ubisoft Quebec for Microsoft Windows, Xbox One and Play Station 4, with a version for Nintendo Switch available only in Japan, the game continued with the new direction and approach featured in its predecessor.
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey takes place in Ancient Greece during the Peloponnesian War in 431 BCE. You can lead one of the Spartan siblings Alexios or Kassandra who are mercenaries. Of course, as its tradition with this series, the storyline is divided into the main narrative happening in the past and overarching plot which takes place in the present. And it is here, in the present day, that the story with Layla Hassan from Origins continues and her efforts to find out the secrets of the old civilization. While roaming around in Ancient Greece, you will experience a lot of adventures like uncovering lost tombs and fighting with ships at sea. But also, you will assassinate certain key figures in the conspiracy to take over domination over the world.
During your escapades in Ancient Greece, you will encounter many historical figures on the verge of making their impression of the society and history. The environments you will go through are full of ancient temples and symbols that pay tribute to the gods. The ecosystem is dynamic and active, although besides everything looking amazingly vivid, you will also get to learn more about life in Ancient Greece. Among other things, the slavery and conflicts between Sparta and Athena which was always an issue back then.
When developers created Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, they did it with the intention for players to explore the world. The map is twice the size of the one in Origins and you will come to realize that your actions have consequences as you progress. While the game will impose gating on occasions so you won’t be able to freely roam the area, you can always try some side content and put the main story to rest for a while. Side quests are actually pretty well done with depth and could turn out into a memorable experience, even more so than some moments in the main storyline.
Some decisions you make won’t have any effect on the overall game, maybe will change some small things in the quests. However, some choices you make in the main game can lead to a dramatic turn of events and even lead to some characters’ death earlier than it should. The main story has nine possible conclusions which are fantastic since it really feels like you had true freedom to influence the narrative. Although the whole feel of the game is a bit gloomy, which we all learned to play and love all those Assassin’s Creed games ago. However, jokes and gags are included which really makes the dialogue more entertaining.
Even though you have to choose Kassandra or Alexios which means they share the same story parts as well as dialogue. But each character has unique abilities and personalities tied to their gender which makes certain scenes more interesting depending on who you chose. Kassandra’s and Alexios unique flavor certainly adds a lot to the storyline, but also do the various characters you will encounter during the game. Some you can even have romances with, although they don’t have any real purpose. Not to mention they come off as most awkward since they appear after traumatic events. So, you can have a romance or not, that won’t leave any effect on the storyline.
As you progress in the game, you will find new game mechanics and reveal side opportunities. The moment you find out about the conspiracy, you will be able to keep an eye on its biggest members by using an interconnected web in the menu. It will help you find out their connections and provide you with more intel about them and how to track them down.
One of the most fun parts was definitely encountering mythological beasts in some of the quests. However, just like those characters from the myths, you won’t be able to beat them by simply using the brute force. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey has antagonists with backstories just like Nemesis system in Shadow of War did, although a tad different. If you are not careful enough, you will get a bounty on your head and draw the attention of rival mercenaries who will appear pretty quickly.
Exploration Mode is optional and when enabled you will be able to find your next target based on the observation and deduction. You will learn a lot about your surroundings from the friendly NPCs and those who entrust you with quests. And when it comes to combat, Odyssey uses stat-based mechanics which is the current trend, after all. You can customize your character even better now with specializing them in stealth or melee combat, even creating a perfect Spartan warrior. Naval combat is also present here, meaning that you can also upgrade your ship and crew. You will find sunken ruins and fight other ships, as well as be able to recruit new crew members.
You can also participate in the Conquest battles which include the conflict between Athena and Sparta. You can choose a side and assassinate the key leaders of your enemy in order to incapacitate them. This is actually an excellent way to earn some resources and partake in the larger battle. However, this is mostly pointless since in times the main story doesn’t take this narrative seriously since you are helping one faction there and then fighting against it this Conquest.
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is not a flawless game. It has some bugs and at occasions, the game may crash. Even the gameplay can be quite exhausting at times making everything less exciting than it was intended to. This is an ambitious game and pays a lot of attention to details especially when it comes to the Ancient Greece era. So, a fan of Assassin’s Creed franchise or not, this game is worth your time and efforts, even with some slight settings back which don’t ruin the overall feel of the game.