Assassin’s Creed 2
A very good friend of mine told me the other day that he loved movies that incorporated parts of history within the storyline. Examples of such cases were films like Inglorious Basterds and X-Men: First Class. Well there’s also video games that do the same thing. And this is a prime example of one that does so extremely well.
Assassin’s Creed 2 is the continuation of the original that received mixed reviews due to its shameless repetitiveness. But this time, as Desmond Miles plugs into the Animus again, you’re not in the late 1100’s, you’re at the start of the Renaissance Period spreading yourself ever-so-thin across Italy. Truthfully, even though the main goal of this game is exactly as the first, (find your target, assassinate, rinse, repeat) it has become so much more intricate now with an INCREDIBLE story, weapons, skills, secrets, and a list of characters from every side of the socio-political coin that it’s hard to keep up. But here’s what you need to know…Desmond Miles has been broken out of Abstergo Industries by their most trusted employee and moved to a secure location where he must be plugged into a modified Animus to unlock the secrets of his ancestors. Once plugged in, he is now noble playboy Etzio Autidore da Firenze who lives a carefree life. But when his father and brothers are betrayed and killed by one of his father’s most trusted friends, Etzio goes on the warpath fueled by an undying
thirst for vengeance.
Realizing that the reasoning for his father’s death runs far deeper than simple betrayal, Etzio moves from city to city using his uncle’s house in the country as a base. As the game progresses, you first realize that you are assisted by none other than the master of masters, Leonardo Da Vinci who is constantly supplying you with upgraded weapon designs, tools, and even a flying machine!
I won’t say that this game has “side missions” or “mini games”, but I will say that the game is filled with “optional missions” that if you do take the time to complete them, they will never be in vain because the more you complete of these “optional missions” the more rewarding the game is. It caters to your achievements along the way.
Speaking of achievements, if you’re what I call an “achievement whore” on your X Box Live or PSN, you’ll definitely want to get as much done with this game as you can. You seem to get achievement points, generously, with everything if you put in the effort. Again, the story is phenomenal filled with twists and turns that you won’t see coming and it ends, as the first one did, with an amazing cliffhanger that makes you want to keep going.
The voice acting is phenomenal. None of the main characters sound dry or disinterested with what’s going on around them and a lot of the games cut scenes seem to jump back and forth between English and Italian. There is a subtitled option in the Options menu that will translate everything for you and if you put in enough time, you’ll definitely learn a few Italian phrases here and there; whether you want to flirt with a woman, or give a final “blessing” for your targets as they slip into the afterlife.