Assassin’s Creed 3: First Impressions

Assassin's Creed Connor

So, as long as I own the console the game is released on, Assassin’s Creed is a series I will never skimp on when it comes to buying the new games.  Naturally, I had mine preordered, but didn’t attend the midnight opening because of severe weather.  Due to my work schedule, I couldn’t start playing until Wednesday anyway, so it really didn’t matter.

I’m about six hours into the game and still playing around in sequence 1.  You see, I have a problem when it comes to these games in that I feel compelled to do every single last side thing as early as I possibly can.  That’s why it takes me a whole year to finish them on average.  So, the first side thing I tried to do was jump into the Atlantic Ocean from the ship.  You can’t.  I was kind of disappointed.  Then when we actually got to Boston there’s the issue of the the Almanac pages and the viewpoints, and, oh, you can pet the animals.  All of them except the horses and rats.  Believe me, I tried so very hard to pet the rat and was devastated when I squished it instead.  What sort of fresh hell is this?  So, naturally, being compulsive like I am, I have to pet every animal I come across, even though it’s the exact same animation every time.  Note to all compulsive people: this is probably not the game for you.

Now, I’m sure the story is going to be wonderful, but I want to talk for a minute about the glitches.  First of all, there was the Captain screaming at you when his lips weren’t moving.  Telepathy much?  But the reason this bothers me so much is because someone took the time to make sure there was a smushed rat animation for when you stepped on the poor things, but no one could be bothered to make sure the code was working for the Captain’s mouth to move when he’s screaming at you?  Priorities, dev team, learn to get some.

Then there was the issue where I picked up a barrel and my game went absolutely batshit crazy.  There was an exploding noise, and my tv started shaking from it and then my screen went gray and I had to shut off the system.  While not technically gamebreaking as I don’t have to pick up that barrel, it is fairly annoying, and I’m not the only one who has had this problem.

They say the game has been in development for three years.  Yet, Brotherhood and Revelation, both of which had a one year turnaround time from numerous dev teams working on only parts of the game, were technically superior games.  There is no reason to have this many glitches out the door on a game you’ve been working on for three years.  And don’t give me that crap about how it’s impossible to test every facet of the game before you send it out.  You’re telling me none of your test players tried to pick up that barrel in the prologue section of Boston?  You’re developers.  It’s your job to look at the code and know how it’s going to work.  I know a thing or two about programming, and when I was being taught, we were tested on how well we were able to look at the code and tell you exactly what it was going to do, whether it was going to work properly and, if so, what was properly, or conversely, what sort of fatal errors that code was going to produce.  So get your act together, dev teams!  This goes for other game companies, not just Ubisoft.  The fact remains that there is absolutely no reason for you to shove flawed products out the door other than greed.  Guess what?  We had games that couldn’t be patched for years, and they usually worked just fine out the door because of this little thing called accountability.  But all your excuses about how it’s too hard?  Well, maybe you shouldn’t have gotten into the programming business, because obviously you can’t handle it.

Update: 7/3/2012 8:00 PM – It has since come to my attention that there are actually glitches that could spoil the game for you. If you compulsively read all the database entries like I do, Connor’s mother’s entry has the updated version the moment you meet her. The update entry that spoils what Ubisoft considered to be a key reveal two hours before it actually happens in game.

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