Assassin’s Creed Rogue is the fifth game in the series I ever played, after AC II, AC Brotherhood, AC Revelations, and AC III. Having been away from a game console for more than 2 years, I never got to play the acclaimed Black Flag and the highly anticipated Unity. I have also installed the first AC game in the series in my PC but never got around with keyboard control.
During the Thanksgiving holiday last month, I got this opportunity to borrow a PlayStation 3 console from my cousin. Rejoiced, I immediately ran to a local E-Mart (a Korean equivalent of Wal-Mart) and purchased the very first Assassin’s Creed game I found in the shelf with a relatively huge amount of 59,800 Won (68.93 Canadian dollar -_-;;) compared to the Canadian price of $29.99. (Yes, electronics are more expensive in this country for a reason not yet known to me…) Anyway, I repeatedly convinced myself that any price was worth for fulfilling my longtime thirst of an AC game. (Really?? -_-;)
So, here it was. It took roughly two weeks for me to complete all the main missions. Far before actually playing the Rogue, I was intrigued by the novel and striking feature of a Templar protagonist, in opposite of all his Assassin predecessors. Yet, I was baffled to meet Shay Patrick Cormac introduced as an Assassin in the beginning. So I had to be patient to witness his dramatic transition almost in the middle of the game.
Compared to the callous one in the Third (the last AC game I played and the main frame of reference in this post), Shay was a generally likable and complex protagonist. I guess Shay is the most ambivalent protagonist in the AC history, having been both an Assassin and a Templar. I lost most of my faith in the quality of AC’s storytelling since the Revelations, but the plot of Rogue was sufficiently engaging with the sudden turn of the sides and the ensuing process of butchering Shay’s old colleagues, which was more heartbreaking than Connor butchering his daddy.
Like many previous titles, Rogue also features several plot points that just don’t make sense: the Morrigan appearing out of nowhere after Shay escapes Davenport, seeing a secret gathering of the Assassins Shay did not personally witness (we’re reading Shay’s memories when we play Rogue…), Shay not killing Achilles in the end (Because Achilles appears in the Third for Christ’s Sake!) and so on. Since the Revelations, I realized the story is no longer a primary concern in the AC games, solely for the interest of gameplay. So it was fine with me. (sarcasm)
In terms of gameplay, most was fun except the ship upgrade part… I don’t remember the Third had this feature but I do remember it wasn’t this baffling. Collecting metals was the hardest part in this game… The naval battle with Adéwalé was memorably challenging. I put all the collectibles and side missions aside to come back as soon as completing all main missions, only to find there wasn’t a lot of side missions as significant as the Homestead missions or Assassin’s Tombs in the previous games. So for the first time since AC II, I’m navigating every corner of the map to obtain all collectibles.
I’m planning to entertain my newly installed PS3 with another AC game, most likely Black Flag. Yes I know I’m far behind, since the new game of the series, AC Syndicate, is to be released today. I don’t know when I shall be holding the new-gen console… :(