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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Montenegro Review: Assassin's Creed: Liberation HD

You play as the first Assassin's Creed series female protagonist Aveline de Grandpre, an African-French assassin around the end of the French and Indian War during 18th century New Orleans.  This game was first released on the PS Vita and now has been released on the PS3, Xbox 360 and Steam.  Here is my review on Liberation.  WARNING: LIMITED SPOILERS

Assassin's Creed is no stranger to female assassins, as you that played the previous titles may remember that Ezio's sister Claudia joined the Brotherhood as well as the female recruits that reached the level of assassin.  But this is the first time that you can play as a female and Aveline's skills do not disappoint.  She has all the skills like her male counterparts but there are things about her that stand out which makes her unique.  Her gender and her ethnicity helps her get through situations during the middle of the 18th century where sexism and slavery was very much alive.

"I stand with those who stand with me.  I lure my prey through the guise of a lady.  I escape unnoticed through the veil of a slave.  And though I may conceal my identity, one thing is certain: commit injustice in this world, and I'll send you to the next.  I am Aveline de Grandpre, I am an Assassin, and I fight for liberation."

One of the major things that you can do while playing as Aveline is access her three personas.  She has an Assassin persona, a slave persona and a lady persona.  The Assassin persona has access to every weapon as well as she can climb, jump, run and the persona has the most health.  While Aveline is an assassin, she is always notorious, which means that guards will watch her actions when she is in view, there is no way of getting rid of the lowest notoriety level (she can bribe someone to lower it if it's higher than the first level).  As the slave persona, Aveline can blend in with other slaves to find out information and to save and free slaves.  She can run, jump and climb but has access to limited weapons (hidden blade, small weapon, blow dart and smoke bombs).  The slave persona starts of with no notoriety but can gain it by committing crimes as well as climbing, jumping and running on buildings.  You can rip off posters to lower your notoriety.  The lady persona lets you charm certain men into giving you what you want, moving them out of a guarding spot or taking them to a nice secluded area where you can give him your blade to his chest.  You can also bribe other guards so they can ignore you entering areas that you aren't allowed.  The lady persona has the least amount of weapons, usually just a hidden blade and her parasol that is a hidden blowdart.  She cannot climb or jump anywhere, she must remain ladylike.  No notoriety at the start but she can gain some by committing crimes.  She can remove it by assassinating witnesses.

Aveline and Conner

Aveline's story takes you through her life as a daughter of a former slave and a very privileged father.  She was separated from her mother at a young age and is very determined to find her.  Aveline herself is free from slavery but decides to help slaves find a better life in the Bayou.  Also she is living her life in the way of the Brotherhood but during the story she end up dealing with things that make her question their methods as she is dealing with the Templars.  Her story a one point crosses Conner's in New York and if you played Assassin's Creed 3, you can see few similarities with the two of them which ties them together.

Even though I don't think that Liberation's story is one of the strongest in the AC series, I believe that the game is still very enjoyable.  The graphics are mediocre compared to AC III and can be choppy at times.  The 10 hours of gameplay that Liberation delivers might let you forgive those graphic flaws and help you focus on the story.   I think AC fans that haven't played this game already, will appreciate the storyline.  If you are a new comer, I suggest for you to play Assassin's Creed 3 along with this game.

If you played Assassin's Creed III Liberation either on the Vita or the new HD version on the 360, PS3 or Steam, let me know what you think of the game in the comments below.

Lokita Montenegro


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