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Assassin's Creed: Unity!

The latest in the critically acclaimed Assassin's Creed franchise has arrived to much hype, but will the title known as Unity succumb to the curse of so many other long-running, increasingly disappointing franchises?

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A Tale of, What Else, Revenge: Following in a similar vein of past titles in the Assassin's Creed franchise, Unity puts you in the shoes of a scorned killer with strong reason for the murder and mayhem he sets out to produce in the world.

Filling the role of Arno Dorian, a Frenchman born to an assassin father, the young Dorian is thrust into a pursuit of revenge and answers when his father, and adoptive father 7 years later, is killed.

Dorian is folded into the Brotherhood of Assassins as a result of his quest and much like Altair and Ezio, protagonists of past iterations in the series, he slowly ascends the ranks of the order whilst obtaining answers and honing his skill.

The story line is not entirely original, it would be a flat out lie to suggest that it is revolutionary in really any way, particular for veterans of the franchise, but it is engrossing enough that most people are likely to watch and sit through the occasionally long winded cut-scenes and lengthy explanations of things.

Tree of Murder: Perhaps the most significant change present in the gameplay of Unity is the inclusion of a skill tree system that allows you to develop your individual skills, talents and capabilities in a more individualized, specific manner. No longer will everyone get the same skills at the same time, and as you progress through the game you have an increasing amount of freedom to assign the murderous abilities of your personal Arno Dorian as you see fit.

Categories of Melee (offensive abilities), Health (defensive), Ranged (navigation and aid in traversing the environment), and stealth (self-explanatory) are at your disposal as you gain more experience points to put into the individual trait lines. It is possible to unlock every skill available, but it takes a fair amount of time as there are also roughly 200 possible augmentations to Arno's gear and armor.

Swapping out his boots can alter falling damage and his noisy, lumbering feet during stealthy times, whereas altering his gloves can see differences in the appearance and functions of even trademark armaments such as the Hidden Blade.

The combat has been very slightly overhauled, with allegedly fencing being used as inspiration for the battles in Unity, but realistically it has only marginally been altered this time around. Although the combat is decidedly less effortless with the removal of "counter kills", an ability that, in the past, allowed you to mow down swarms of enemies with a single well timed button, it essentially feels just like Assassin's Creed titles of old when you happened to not be countering everyone to death.

However, while there are many skill and gear options available to you as you progress through the game, as well as numerous interesting storyline developments, the biggest surprise you are likely to see comes in the form of unintended mishaps throughout the game.

Assassin's Creed: Unity Glitch Failure

Assassin's Creed: Unity Glitch Failure

Comedy in Tragedy: Quite simply, Assassin's Creed: Unity is rapidly becoming synonymous with a train wreck, as the title runs poorly, is marred with countless bugs and hilariously pathetic glitches and generally feels like an unfinished product.

For starters, although the title is supposed to run at a locked 35 frames-per-second, the actual number tends to gravitate at around 20, with even that paltry number dipping lower at certain intervals. Much of this is due to the inclusion of hundreds of NPCs in the world at once, something Ubisofts engine is clearly incapable of handily smoothly, but even when traversing in-door environments there have been instances of slideshow-like frame rate drops.

NPCs in the world teleport from one place to another, flat out propel into the sky and disappear, some of them casually walk over large objects (flying to the top, walking, and launching back down in their same trot), clipping is abundant in both combat and navigation, and environmental and namely NPC pop-ins are a regular occurrence.

If the game manages to run smoothly, the graphical glitches and bugs will surely rear their ugly heads. While many of them are hilarious and will provide an entire source of entertainment themselves, there is something to be said about this virtually unfinished product that clearly did not have the time to be completely refined and smoothed out. That is no laughing matter!

Assassin's Creed: Unity Glitch Failure

Assassin's Creed: Unity Glitch Failure

Rent vs. Buy: The game itself is a very respectable title. Perhaps not quite on the level of "Black Flag", but a passable iteration into the Assassin's Creed franchise. However, being pressed with the multitude of frame rate drops and choppy, frankly lazy graphical mishaps and shortcomings very much takes away from the experience of the game.

If you must, find a way to enjoy this game for a limited time. A purchase of this title is something that should not be condoned though, as even with the infamous "Day One Patch" on its way, the title in and of itself was put out in an unrefined state. Even still, the patch itself cannot possibly fix every issue in the game at once, and the generally sloppy work done on the graphical aspect of this title simply cannot allow for a higher score than it received.

Report Card

If you must, find a way to enjoy this game for a limited time. A purchase of this title is something that should not be condoned though, as even with the infamous "Day One Patch" on its way, the title in and of itself was put out in an unrefined state.

Assassin's Creed Unity - PlayStation 4



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