|System: PS4, Xbox One, PC|
|Dev: Ubisoft Montreal|
|Release: October 27, 2017|
|Players: 1 Player|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p||Blood and Gore, Drug Reference, Intense Violence, Nudity, Sexual Content, Strong Language, Use of Alcohol|
The slice of Egypt is loaded with sandstone and beige hues, but the landscape is far from barren. Ancient monuments cover the map, as do bustling villages and wildlife-infested islands. The sandy colors make the green oasis patches all the more vibrant, and the attention to detail is astounding. With a daily cycle delivering a plethora of lighting effects and the shadows of tombs instilling claustrophobia, there’s visually very little to complain about. Apart from the pyramids in Giza, the structures don’t have the verticality of past Assassin’s Creed games, but it’s still a far cry more interesting than the dull and congested streets of Paris and London. The only distortion, as with every open-world game, comes from animation glitches. I’ve seen rats suspended in midair, body parts disappear through walls, and an NPC that doesn’t trigger a quest related conversation now and then, but nothing that has affected gameplay in any serious fashion.
The musical score is also brilliantly composed, and feels authentic to the period, highlighting ancient instruments and leaning heavily on the Phrygian dominant scale that is typical of the Egyptian locale. It’s a bit over-cinematic at times, but finds a good balance between moments of heightened tension and the myriad of occasions where it’s just you and nature, letting the environmental ambience play in the foreground. From the clashes of metal in combat to the groans of a camel while riding, the superb voice acting, and all the Assassin’s Creed signature synchronization effects, the entire audio team deserves applause for near flawless execution.
Assassin’s Creed is one the greatest action-adventure franchises out there, though its hidden blades have been dulled of late from overexposure. After its brief sabbatical, Assassin’s Creed: Origins enters the arena glistening in the Egyptian sun with quality and quantity. Whether you’re a devout member of the Creed, someone who’s fallen off the hay wagon, or even a prospective new member of the Brotherhood, this is the time to dig your blade deep into a succulent new Assassin’s Creed.
Senior Contributing Writer