Game Opinion – Assassin’s Creed: Liberation

I don’t really have anything in-depth to say about Assassin’s Creed: Liberation, but since in my current blog post series I write something based on every Assassin’s Creed console title to date, might as well write an opinion piece for this game. In short, I don’t like it, and it’s probably the only Assassin’s Creed game to which I react mostly negatively.

And I tried to like it. I mean, it’s got interesting ideas, like the persona system where depending on how you’re dressed you have different abilities (as well as advantages and disadvantages) and the open-world reacts to you in a different way. That’s interesting, but that’s not enough.

The game was incredibly buggy (for the record, I was playing the HD version, not sure if the original on Vita is as bugged). Here’s just some of the issues off the top of my head:
– Aveline decides to hover swim over ground (requires restart of the game to fix)
– Baptiste, a boss in one mission, somehow is pushed behind an invisible wall and is stuck there and you can’t finish him off (requires restart of the mission)
– Entering a store opened just the background with no input options. Restart of the game was required.
– Aveline got shot while synchronizing a viewpoint, which made her fall and die. And then nothing happened. Restart of the game was required.
And that’s just some of the bugs I’ve encountered. I’ve had bugs in other Assassin’s Creed games as well, after all they’re open-world games, there will be bugs. But not to this extent.

And the mission design is so small-scoped. Maybe it doesn’t feel that way when playing on the Vita, but on the same platform that had a game like Black Flag, the missions are just miniature and linear. Incredibly so. Just for an example. In my post about open-world mission principle learnings based on Assassin’s Creed III I wrote how if you want the player to go from point A to point B it’s enough to just put point B and let the player go there?

Well, at the beginning of the game, in one of the first sections there’s a mission where we have to go to a viewpoint from our house, and the game has a waypoint like every 10 meters which we HAVE to step on almost precisely otherwise the next waypoint won’t appear. And the cutscene triggered by getting on top of the church tower will trigger only if we get through all waypoints.

And the first assassination mission is literally going through a corridor and then when closing in on our target we get forcefully detected. And now that I think about it, the second assassination mission we get forcefully detected as well. And the third assassination mission too, even though technically at the end we don’t actually kill the target. Not sure how it goes from there because I didn’t play until the next targets. And the personas I’ve mentioned in the beginning, they really don’t play that big of a role, that is if there’s a mission where you’re not forced to be in one particular persona.

But I would be able to bear all that, the bugs, the disappointing missions, if the narrative was… well… if it at least it made sense. I don’t know, the story is told in such an abrupt and incoherent way that for the life of me I can’t understand what the hell is going on. I don’t understand any of the characters or their motivations, I don’t understand why at one point we tail and don’t have to be detected by our ally, what’s up with that Spanish captain, what the Templars want, how the chain of events is connected together at all.

And while I didn’t finish the game, I did check the rest of the story on YouTube, and it still doesn’t make sense to me. I just don’t understand it. To me, it’s just things happening.

So, yeah. I don’t like Assassin’s Creed: Liberation. I haven’t finished it, I tried 2 or 3 times to just go through it, but I can’t. Wouldn’t recommend it, there are far better choices out there if you’re searching for an Assassin’s Creed experience.

Thank you all for reading. Feel free to leave any comments below. If you’d like to keep an eye on my future blog posts, feel free to follow me on Twitter

Posted on August 2, 2016, in Games and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Don’t recall any bugs you’ve mentioned in Vita version. But yeah, the game was not very enjoyable. And I probably met a few bugs here and there. Still, one feature was awesome, despite it was used only once or twice – opening letters with a swipe on Vita’s bots sensor panels. That was cool.

    And to defend the Vita itself, I must say, that designing a game for a mobile gaming platform like PSP or Vita is completely different than for a big screen. And for Vita AC Liberation is a pretty good game. It has some problems with using Vita’s features, but it’s pretty good to play an hour in the evening, still the play sessions are quite long, so you can’t do that while waiting on a bus stop. And porting a game from Vita or iPad is not always a good idea, I can’t imagine how disappointing shold be playing this game on a PC. Like playing Angry Birds with a mouse.

    So I still think that AC 1 and 2+BC are best games in the series, still I haven’t played last few titles.

    • Well, it really depends on a game-by-game basis, but porting a Vita open-world game, with its set of design and implementation restrictions, onto a platform with much more advanced games of the same series is problematic indeed. But not all mobile game ports to PC are inherently bad 🙂

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