Assassin’s Creed Syndicate Review!!

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Developer(s): Ubisoft Quebec
Publisher(s): Ubisoft
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows, Playstation 4, Xbox One
Release Date(s): October 23, 2015 (Playstation 4, Xbox One), November 19, 2015 (Windows)

First there was Constantinople during the crusades. Then a trip through the Renaissance Era followed by helping the Patriots defend the new country from the British soldiers. Afterward, we sailed the high seas during the height of piracy in the Caribbean and jump started the French Revolution. For ten years, Assassin’s Creed has been shedding new light on important event throughout history. Ubisoft is now tackling an era close to the modern age. Assassin’s Creed Syndicate is the ninth major installment in the Assassin’s Creed series. Set during the Industrial Revolution in 1868 London, the story follows twins Jacob and Evie Frye as they navigate the corridors of organized crime during the Victorian Era and fight against the established order, controlled by the Templars. The game retains the series’ third person open world exploration as well as introducing new traveling systems and refined combat and stealth mechanics. However, it does not feature any form of multiplayer gameplay like its predecessors.

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For the first time in the series, you can freely switch between two characters and it is also the first time you can play a female lead. Although Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation did feature a female protagonist, that game is not a part of the main series. Jacob is the hot-headed brawler who specializes in close combat while Evie is strong in stealth and relies on her intelligence and wit. The twins use weapons fitting the period, as with all the Assassin’s Creed games, including brass knuckles, a combat revolver, a cane sword and the traditional Nepalese curved kukri knife. Combat is faster paced with almost no latency and the protagonists are attacked by multiple enemies at once. There are new ways to travel around in Syndicate. Players can use the rope launcher to repel up buildings, eliminating tedious climbing, as well as creating a zip line in between buildings ala Rocksteady’s Batman Arkham game series. Being that this is Victorian London, traveling around on simple horse back is not enough. Carriages play an incredible role in this game. Players can either travel inside for stealthy movement or pilot the carriage themselves. Fighting and parkour chases can also take place on the roof, adding a new dynamic.

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Inspired by chamber music, Grammy Nominated composer Austin Wintory brings the game to life with a score that is rooted in 19th century London. An orchestra of cellos, violins and flutes move the story along, ranging from a subtle andante when cruising about to an exciting accelerato when entering a fight to a grand orchestral masterpiece. Even if you’re not a fan of classical music, it is hard to resist amercing yourself into the music while fighting street gangs and Templars. Syndicate’s score is like the absolutely perfect sound and aesthetic for a pair of sibling assassins in Victorian London. Bold and dangerous but nimble. The graphical look of the game is just as impressive as its predecessor, Assassin’s Creed Unity. The slums and factories of Victorian London are captured beautifully down to the finest detail. Jacob and Evie look especially stunning. Looking at him, Jacob’s clothes are a bit tattered and worn, illustrating his rough and tumble personality even more. Evie, in contrast to her twin, is well kept with her outfit being more refined and resembling the traditional Assassin clothes familiar to the series. Even so, the detailing on her outfit are far from subpar.

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Ubisoft has once again delivered another quality annual title with Assassin’s Creed Syndicate. While the action stealth formula is beginning to run thin, Syndicate still offers a fresh take on the genre with its list of new innovations. Jacob and Evie help defend Charles Darwin’s discoveries from those who would kill to silence him, help a friend of legendary writer Charles Dickens keep a secret that could get him killed and chase down Jack the Ripper, keeping with the series’ ongoing theme of meeting historical figures. With improved combat, new gadgets and a larger world to explore, Assassin’s Creed Syndicate is a worthy entry in this nearly decade old series. The exploration and combat will draw you in and the musical score will keep you engrossed. And the ability to switch between two Assassins adds variety that long time and new fans with certainly enjoy.

Assassin’s Creed Syndicate gets 4 out of 5!

Assassin’s Creed gameplay by me!!

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