Content - 527 video games , 78 reviews , 15 demo reviews

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Assassin's Creed

Publisher - Ubisoft
Developer - Ubisoft Montreal
Engine - Scimitar
Platform - PC, 360, PS3

Story (from wikipedia)
The main story of Assassin's Creed takes place in September 2012; Desmond Miles, a bartender, is kidnapped by the fictional company Abstergo Industries for use as a test subject in the "Animus", a device that can stimulate the recall of ancestral memories buried in the user's DNA. Abstergo has Desmond use the device to recall the role of Altaïr Ibn La-Ahad (الطائر ابن لا أحد), : "The Flying One, Son of None" or "The Bird, Son of None"), one of Desmond's ancestors, in the "Assassin Brotherhood" during 1191 as part of the Third Crusade in the Holy Land. The character and his clan are based on a true military wing, called Hashashashin, the idea for it coming from "Blitzkrieg to Desert Storm: The Evolution of Operational Warfare" by Robert M. Citino along with Bartol's novel Alamut. The order follows a creed of certain rules, also following the famous rule of Hashshashin founder Hassan-i Sabbah "Nothing is true, everything is permitted." Desmond at first has trouble adjusting to the device, but eventually is able to relive Altaïr's exploits over the next several days. Much of the core game is then presented from Altaïr's point-of-view as seen by Desmond, though at times interrupted by glitches resulting from the Animus.

At the start of the memories, Altaïr is shown attempting to retrieve a "Piece of Eden", a strange artifact, from Solomon's Temple with the help of other assassins, but is stopped by Robert IV de Sable, a member of the Knights Templar and sworn enemies of the assassins. While retrieving the treasure, Altaïr breaks all three tenets of the Assassin's Creed (them being: 1) "Stay your blade from innocent flesh", 2) "Hide in plain sight", and 3) "Never compromise the brotherhood.") to attempt to kill de Sablé, but fails; upon returning to the Masyaf, Al Mualim (المعلم): "The teacher", leader of the Assassins, demotes Altaïr to an initiate, making him a novice again and giving him another chance to rise through the ranks of the Brotherhood. To this end, Al Mualim assigns Altaïr the task of assassinating nine key figures across the Holy Land in Jerusalem, Acre and Damascus, to attempt to bring peace between the Crusaders and Muslim forces. Malek, one of the Assassins who went inside Solomon's Temple with Altaïr, however, succeeds in retrieving the artifact, so it is in the hands of Al Mualim. Altaïr methodically completes each task, learning that each target is connected to Robert and the Templars and share their mysterious goals. As he completes each of the assassinations, he finds out that the Templars are trying to trick the Muslim and Christian forces to work together and face a common enemy, the assassins. As he kills each of his targets, each of them talk to him and tell him about their goal to bring peace and unity in this world, the same thing that the assassins want. This is also supported by a conversation by Lucy (Abstergo's assistant). She tells him that what they do is bad, though their ultimate goal is good. Altaïr's final target, de Sablé, reveals in his dying words that Al Mualim is himself a member of the Knights Templar, and used Altaïr to kill the other members so he could keep the treasure for himself. Altaïr quickly returns to Masyaf to accost his master. Al Mualim reveals the truth; the Piece of Eden creates illusions, and he denounces religion and other seemingly supernatural events as illusions caused by it. He then states his intention to use the artifact to compel mankind into a brainwashed state and so bring an end to conflict. Altaïr attempts to kill his former master, but Al Mualim uses the Piece of Eden to warp Altaïr's vision. Altaïr is eventually able to see through the deception and kill Al Mualim, recovering the artifact. As he does, the Piece of Eden activates, showing a holographic view of the world with numerous locations marked across the globe.

With Altaïr's memory complete, Desmond wakes up out of the Animus and learns that Abstergo Industries is already sending out recovery teams to locations shown by the "Piece of Eden" in Altaïr's memory, hoping to find additional artifacts. Desmond, no longer being of use to the Knights Templar, is to be silenced; however, he is saved by a researcher named Lucy Stillman, who reveals herself to be an Assassin by showing her hand with her ring finger closed as if it were missing. In the conclusion of the game, Desmond, having become "synchronized" with Altaïr and changed by an effect of the Animus called the "bleeding effect" (where the memories and life of the ancestor has bled into the actual life of the subject and allowing them to take on the skills of the ancestor), is able to use the eagle vision (a sort of empathic sight to see hidden messages and tell friend from foe) and by looking at Lucy, he can see that she is an ally to him (shown by her glowing blue), giving further proof that she is a genuine Assassin. He also sees messages that only he can see, scrawled across the floors and walls that refer to the end of the world described by several religions, among other writings; such writings include references to the biblical passage Revelation 22:13 ("I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end."), a Lorenz attractor, the Eye Of Providence, as well as part of a Mandelbrot set and other writings in foreign languages. Additionally, there is the Mayan date of—December 21, 2012—which is three months away within the game's timeline and represents the planned date of the launch of a mysterious satellite the Templars have created, which they claim will "permanently end the war". It shows a picture of all the planets aligned in a row which will supposedly happen on 21/12/12.

The Arabic word " Az-Zalzala", literally meaning "The Earthquake", can be seen, which is the title of a chapter in the Qur'an that talks about Judgement Day. Some Nazca Line drawings are also found. There is also a reference to Yonaguni, a Japanese island similar to Atlantis. Also written on the wall of his room are the Hebrew words "Olam ha-Ba" (עולם הבא), meaning "the next world" or "after-life". Further investigation after the credits reveals an email sent to Vidic by Lucy, stating that the drawings come from a mysterious "subject sixteen" who went insane due to what they described as a "bleeding effect" (essentially, genetic memory assimilation comes to a point where the subject can no longer distinguish between their life and their ancestors' memories. Lucy speculates that, though subject sixteen's "bleeding" was brought on by too much time spent in the Animus, natural forms may occur, such as Dissociative Identity Disorder and other forms of Dementia).

Envy Review for PC

Gameplay - 4.7
Konfigurasi controller yang sangat mudah dan selesa. Pada asasnya gameplay game ini terbahagi kepada 2 kategori, Navigasi dan Kombat. Altair diberi kebebasan untuk menyusuri seluruh Kingdom dan kota samada di jalan atau bumbung. Gerakan Altair untuk memanjat sangat mudah dan natural. Cuma menggunakan navigasi arah W,A,S,D+MB2+Space, Altair akan memanjat seluruh tembok dan dinding dengan gaya dan gerakan yang semulajadi. Kombinasi W+MB2+Space pula membolehkan Altair melompat dari bumbung ke bumbung. Eagle Eye (E) yang dimiliki Altair mampu menunjukkan identiti orang yang dilihat. Warna cahaya yang terpancar dari tubuh orang yang dilihat Altair menjelaskannya. Merah untuk tentera, Biru untuk pemberi maklumat, kuning untuk sasaran bunuh dan putih untuk orang awam. Untuk mengembara, Altair boleh memilih secara stealthy dalam low profile mod atau jika bergegas , High Profile merupakan pilihan yang sesuai. Low profile membolehkan Altair berjalan menyusuri kota di tengah kawasan awam sambil menolak mereka ke tepi untuk memudahkan laluan atau blending dalam kumpulan scholars tanpa menimbulakan syak wasangka atau menarik perhatian pengawal. High profile mode pula bersesuaian jika ingin cepat ke sesuatu lokasi atau menyelesaikan tugas dengan berlari, memanjat atau melompat. Secara amnya, High Profile diaktifkan dengan menekan terus MB2. Namun begitu, High Profile mudah menarik perhatian pengawal jika Altair terlanggar orang lain atau menjatuhkan tembikar yang dibawa orang awam. Apabila dikesan oleh musuh, Altair perlu hilang dari pandangan musuh dan bersembunyi samada di dalam taman khemah, jerami, atau duduk di bangku bersama orang awam sehingga keadaan tenang semula. Tahap kepekaan pengawal terhadap Altair boleh diketahui dengan merujuk kepada Witness Indicator yang dipaparkan pada screen. Imbangan badan Altair juga terjejas jika terlanggar orang ramai ketika berlari mengakibatkannya terjatuh. Sebaik memiliki ability Tackle (W+MB2+Shift) masalah ini diatasi disebabkan kebolehan Altair untuk merempuh sesiapa yang menghalang laluannya. Dalam kombat pula, beberapa abilities Altair ditonjolkan dengan gerakan yang sangat menarik dan amat membantu dalam menumpaskan lawan terutama Counter Attack (MB2+MB1), combo yang menghasilkan gerakan membunuh paling kejam. Selain itu, dodging (MB2+Space) juga amat berguna untuk mengelak serangan pedang lawan. Grab (MB2+Shift) berfungsi menghumban lawan manakala Grab Breaker (MB2+Shift apabila dipegang lawan) mematahkan serangan lawan yang cuba untuk menghumban Altair. Abiliti seperti Combo Kill (MB1+MB1) dan defense break (Space+MB1) agak sukar untuk dikuasai kerana memerlukan timing yang tepat. Tiada cutscene (bink video) diselitkan sebaliknya setiap cerita dan dialog disampaikan melalui gameplay itu sendiri. Altair boleh dikawal dalam cutscene tersebut tetapi masih dalam pandangan watak lain yang yang ditemui atau berkomunikasi.

Action - 4.7
Assassin's Creed berkisar sasaran Altair untuk membunuh 9 sasaran yang diarahkan oleh Al-Mua'lim. Untuk mencari maklumat mengenai mangsa sasaran, Altair perlu ke beberapa buah kota di Holy Land dan bertemu dengan agen yang berperanan menyediakan tempat perlindungan dan memberikan maklumat asas mengenai sasaran. Maklumat selanjutnya diperolehi dengan menyusuri segenap kota bagi melakukan penyiasatan. Beberapa jenis penyiasatan boleh dipilih untuk diselesaikan meliputi interrogation, pickpocket atau eavesdropping. Selain itu, maklumat juga boleh diperolehi daripada pembunuh lain atau informer dengan menyelesaikan tugasan yang diberikan seperti time sprint, memusnahkan kiosk, mengumpul bendera dalam masa ditetapkan, escorting dan membunuh pemanah atau pengawal. Altair boleh memilih samada mencari sendiri tempat penyiasatan berkenaan atau memanjat bangunan tinggi (view point) untuk meninjau kota. Sebaik tinjauan dibuat, lokasi penyiasatan akan dipaparkan di dalam peta dan memudahkan Altair mencarinya. 2 atau 3 penyiasatan diperlukan sebelum pembunuhan boleh dilakukan. Altair juga boleh memilih untuk meyelesaikan ke enam-enam penyiasatan sebelum ke tindakan seterusnya. Langkah berikutnya, Altair perlu kembali kepada Agen dan menerima arahan untuk membunuh sasaran. Sebaik sasaran dibunuh, Altair perlu kembali kepada Agen bersama pelepah burung yang dibekalkan sebelum ini dengan kesan darah mangsa sebagai bukti sasaran telah dilenyapkan. Kemudian, Altair perlu pulang ke Masyaf untuk melapor kepada Al-mua'lim dan menerima ganjaran serta abiliti. Beberapa sub objektif boleh diselesaikan untuk melengkapkan memori seperti membunuh Templar Guard yang sering berada di tempat tersembunyi, mengumpul bendera dari setiap kota, menyelamatkan penduduk dari gangguan pengawal kota serta membuat tinjauan pada semua view point. Setiap tugasan yang diberikan amat menarik dengan halangan dan kesukaran tertentu. Tugasan Pickpocket atau membunuh pengawal sering kali disulitkan dengan kehadiran pengemis, pemabuk atau orang gila. Interrogation pula bertambah sukar apabila samseng-samseng sering campur tangan apabila Altair cuba mendapatkan maklumat daripada ahli politik. Selain itu, ada juga tugasan yang perlu diselesaikan tanpa terdedah kepada pengawal atau musuh. Semuanya ini menambah keterujaan, keseronokan dan tekanan dalam menyelesaikan setiap penyiasatan. Abilitiy counter attack oleh Altair sangat mengagumkan. Dengan timing yang betul, combo MB2+MB1 akan menghasilkan satu short scene serangan pedang Altair yang membunuh musuh dengan kejam dan segera. Sebaik abiliti ini diperolehi, menyelesaikan musuh dengan cara kombat tidak lagi menjadi masalah besar. Walaupun sedozen musuh gerakan ini mampu menyelesaikannya dengan kecederaan yang minima. Aksi-aksi yang ditonjolkan samada kombat atau pergerakan tampak semulajadi dan menarik.

Beautiful World and Detail -4.5
Landscape 4.5, Karekter 4.5, Weapon 4, Kostum 4.7, Building, 4.7, Objects 4.5 Babes 2

You Live in It - 4.7
Detail dan realiti, perkataan awal yang mengambarkan keseluruhan Assassin's Creed. Assassin's Creed memberi peluang kepada Altair untuk mengembara ke seluruh pelusuk Holy Land. Open World yang disediakan memberikan pelbagai pemandangan yang cantik dan terperinci. Daripada kesenian ukiran bangunan-bangunan, keindahan alam, hiruk pikuk dan kesibukan pasar hingga keperincian setiap objek memberikan game ini keseronokan dan kepuasan dalam bermain. Beberapa perkara yang menghidupkan game ini seperti nyata adalah:
  • bayang-bayang
  • tindak balas orang awam terhadap setiap tindakan Altair
  • voice acting dan dan reaksi muka yang semulajadi dan tepat.
  • Objek yang boleh dimusnahkan
  • mayat yang kekal ditempatnya
  • pergerakan setiap watak yang semulajadi
  • Percikan darah
  • Konsep kombat yang realiti dan menarik menonjolkan kemahiran sebenar Altair sebagai Assassin.
  • Bunyi tetakan Altair yang amat mengerikan.
  • Teknik berlawan dengan musuh yang ramai sangat menarik dan boleh diterima. Musuh menyerang Altair seorang demi seorang.
  • Suasana kota yang hidup dengan beribu-beribu penghuni menjalani kehidupan mereka.
  • Hampir keseluruhan tempat di Holy Land samada di Kingdom atau kota boleh diteroka dengan invisible wall yang sangat terhad.

Overall - 4.7
Game yang wajib dimain, tak kira samada di PC atau console. Antara game terbaik pernah dihasilkan dalam genre ni. Penuh dengan aksi, darah dan akrobatik. Assassin's Creed lebih mengagumkan berbanding beberapa game sebelum ini seperti God Of War I dan II ataupun Elder Scroll IV dari segi keperincian, grafik, seni artistik dan taktikal. Assassin's Creed akan tambah menarik dan realiti jika ditambah elemen cuaca seperti putaran waktu siang dan malam serta perubahan cuaca seperti hujan dan ribut seperti yang ditonjolkan dalam Far Cry 2.

1 - Bad 2 - Fair 3 - Good 4 - Great 5 - Perfect

Assassin's Creed Screenshots




A port at Acre

A device that can stimulate the recall of ancestral memories buried in the user's DNA

Desmond Miles
A bartender and former assassin. Altaïr Ibn La-Ahad is Desmond ancestors in the Assassin Brotherhood during 1191.

Lucy Stillman
One of Abstergo Industries researcher's. Lucy is the one who saved Desmond at last when Abstergo want to silence him forever. She also revealed herself as assassin.

View Point
climbing tall towers to map out the city

Mobile hiding spot.

The Agent
Providing a safe house, gives Altair minimal knowledge about the target, and requires him to perform additional intelligence gathering missions before attempting the assassination.

Informer challenge

Beat his target to get an information

Save the citizens
After saved citizens from threatened of the city guards, you'll rewarding a group of vigilantes

Hinder any foes that chasing Altair

Riding a horse

Gentle push


Rooftop Garden

Sitting on bench to hiding from guard


Blood splash

Jump off the view point


Look at reaction of Altair's face

Opening note

Profile interface

Menu interface

This is how counter attack solve Altair enemies

Counter Attack Screenshots

Rise Of The Argonauts - Atalanta

Game - Rise Of The Argonauts
Publisher - Codemasters
Developer - Liquid Entertainment
Engine - Unreal 3
Platforms - PC, 360, PS3

Rise Of The Argonauts - Medusa

Game - Rise Of The Argonauts
Publisher - Codemasters
Developer - Liquid Entertainment
Engine - Unreal 3
Platforms - PC, 360, PS3