|System: X360, PS3, PC|
|Dev: Ubisoft Montreal|
|Release: November 16, 2010|
|Players: 1, 2-12|
|Screen Resolution: 480p - 1080p||Blood, Sexual Themes, Strong Language, Violence|
There are plenty of new elements in Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, but there are also improvements made to old elements of the game. Ever since the first Assassin's Creed was released way back in 2007, one of the common criticisms of the game has been the combat. And even though last year's Assassin's Creed II made some serious improvements to the combat system, Brotherhood makes the combat feel seamless. While last year's title let you use plenty of weapons and attack single enemies with powerful counters, the combat still suffered from being too slow, and fighting more than three people at a time could take ages because you had to wait for people to attack before you could land a comprehensive attack. Fortunately, Assassin's Creed Brotherhood has an execution chaining system that allows you to go after enemies in rapid succession, which makes epic battles that much quicker. The game also has some new weapons to check out, including a long-range crossbow that makes taking out rooftop enemies oh-so-simple.
The single-player mode in Assassin's Creed Brotherhood is the main reason to pick this game up, and the immersive plot, expansive setting, and plethora of side missions certainly push this title into the forty+ hour range. However, to sweeten the pot an all-new multiplayer mode has been added. I'll be the first to admit that I was a little skeptical of the multiplayer component when it was first announced. Running around assassinating people didn't really sound like that much fun, and I foresaw this mode being a little bit on the repetitive side. However, I really have to hand it to Ubisoft Montreal on this one, as they have created a multiplayer mode that uses the game's basic features to its advantage. There are several individual multiplayer modes, but the premise behind each is the same: take out a specific target. You may be responsible for taking out a specific person or a team, but the challenge comes not from your speed or deft with a trigger finger, but from your ability to detect enemies when they blend in with their surroundings.
Each match starts off with players selecting a character-based avatar, and it'll be this avatar that players will have to hunt down. However, the world of the game is filled with plenty of lookalikes and you'll have to keep your eyes on your target if you hope to track them down (instead of attacking an NPC, which will result in a loss of contract). The game also rewards your ability to hide, and awards points for spotting, stunning, and running from pursuants. Although the basic premise is fairly basic, the game's leveling system gives the multiplayer mode plenty of variety, and you'll be able to unlock bonuses that will alter the way you play dramatically.
Assassin's Creed Brotherhood is definitely the apex of the Assassin's Creed series thus far. The story does a great job of furthering both the historical plot as well as the overarching sci-fi elements of the story (Desmond has a much larger role here), and the game's new structure is refreshing for those who may have found the back-and-forth structure of last year's title to be a bit tedious. With plenty of story content and even more to unlock online, Assassin's Creed Brotherhood is a must-purchase for fans of the series, and does quite a bit to improve upon an already-solid formula.
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC News Director