Mar 232011
 
Authors: Ian Hopkins

Rule number one of the Assassin’s Creed: You don’t talk about the Assassin’s Creed. Rule number two of the Assassin’s Creed: Playing “Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood” is a perfect example of a gaming experience –– it’s not just another game. There are no other rules to the Assassin’s Creed.

The gorgeous environments of a stunningly lifelike Italian Renaissance city and the Italians that populate the world of “Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood” look more realistic than any game I have seen to date. The cut-scenes look even better. Ordinarily, I skip over a game’s cut-scenes even though they are key elements to the story because they are worse than watching crappy reality T.V. shows like “Keeping up with the Kardashians.”

In “Brotherhood,” the cut-scenes worked to wrap me up in the life of main character Ezio Auditore da Firenze. High definition sporting events are the only thing that can compare to how fluid and lifelike “Brotherhood” is.

I was so caught up in what was going on in the game that I didn’t notice any real background music. That doesn’t really matter though because the ambient noise of the fictitious Italian city reminds me of walking through any modern city –– minus the cars –– because “Brotherhood” is just that real and engaging. The small touches like walking into random citizens even produce believable, yet amusing, responses.

If the graphics and sounds didn’t mesh together I doubt “Brotherhood” would be worth a second look. Even though the game play and controls are precise and in-depth, the audio/visual strengths of “Brotherhood” are just so engaging and mesmerizing.

The only thing I didn’t like about the controls in this game was how touchy the parkour maneuvers were. I struggled to get the hang of their nuances, but as soon as I did, I was flying around the rooftops, building sides and numerous other interactive environmental structures.

Going into combat with foes was much simpler. This game successfully recreates fighting in a time when guns were ineffective, cumbersome weapons, and it shows when trying to wield the firearms. I enjoyed the different combat techniques to block, counter and slash enemies in half. When I was flying around the city like an Italian ninja, all I could think of was the “Hardcore Parkour” scene from “The Office.”

Unfortunately, while I was playing “Brotherhood,” nobody was around or I would’ve run around the city while saying “hardcore parkour!”

There is an incredibly deep story behind this overwhelmingly large Italian city that revolves around –– from my understanding –– delving into the minds of past people. The story is incredibly complex though and warrants several play-throughs because the intricacies of specific details get very complicated. That is definitely not a problem though. It’s what made Roman mythology my old favorite type of game to play.

Now, thanks to “Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood” and the past “Assassin’s Creed” titles, I think my favorite time period for a video game is going to be the Italian Renaissance.

Video game reviewer Ian Hopkins can be reached at verve@collegain.com.

 Posted by at 3:24 pm

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