Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood is the 3rd instalment in the Assassin’s Creed franchise but not the 3rd numbered game. Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood continues the story of Ezio from Assassin’s Creed II. Picking up instantly after the anti-climactic ending of its predecessor, Ezio leaves the Vatican to find the pope AWOL. Guess he wasn’t dead after all. From there we start the journey through Rome to rebuild the Assassin’s Brotherhood.
Let’s talk specs. As you can see, they’re the exact same as the previous instalment. Want to know why? Well, Ubisoft started a cycle that I like to call ‘Tick-Tock’, not to be confused with the video-sharing platform. Every year from here on out we got a new mainline Assassin’s Creed game, with slight variations in specs. This time, well they told us what they meant by ‘512 MB DirectX 9.0c–compliant card with Shader Model 3.0 or better’
|2.6 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo E6700
Athlon 64 X2 6000+
| GeForce 8800 GT
ATI Radeon HD 4700
It’s great that we can use the Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood specs to gauge Assassin’s Creed II, only took a year. Well, 364 days to be precise. Yes, releasing November 16th 2010, 1 day before we were initially introduced to Ezio. Spectacular. What’s even more spectacular are my system specs below.
|Intel core i7-7700k
|NVIDIA GTX 1080
Now we shall move swiftly on to the performance section where I can tell you how this game ran.
Well, it wasn’t great, but it was better than Assassin’s Creed II. Initially not, the game did chug on a little near the start. After reaching Rome however, I very rarely left the 60fps mark. That is good. It also appears that a little extra time in the oven could have helps fix the issues of the previous game. Now I will say that the scope of Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood is much lower than Assassin’s Creed II. The game takes place solely in Rome and as such it is less graphically demanding.
I can’t complain either, it ran so smooth that I could just easily play it without issue whilst locked to the highest graphical preset.
As states previously, Brotherhood picks up exactly where we last left off: In Rome being lectured by Minerva. Soon after this Ezio leaves the room to find the pope missing. After this he leaves the area with his uncle Mario. Ezio with the Apple of Eden in hand, makes his way back to his uncles Villa. After some much needed R&R, Ezio awakes to a cannonball decimating his bedroom and Cesare Borgia knockin’ on the front door. After the villa is destroyed and the Apple of Eden now in Borgia’s hands, Ezio makes it to Rome… somehow.
In Rome, he meets Machiavelli who tells him of the Borgias grasp on the city. With nothing left to lose Ezio makes short work of a Borgia stronghold and vows to take back the city, kill Cesare Borgia & reclaim the Apple. In doing so he rebuilds the Assassin’s Brotherhood and in doing so swears in his sister Claudia before being crowned mentor, the highest rank in the Brotherhood.
Though a good story, the game both strides and falters in how short it is. There is much to do in Rome though and you do get to meet up with some old friends. The biggest filler for the story though is the creation and maintenance of the new brotherhood. At any point, once you have the new brotherhood you can just send the recruits around Europe to undertake missions. In that time you will find yourself filling time to see if the mission was a success. It is rather fun
The gameplay of Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood is standard fair for the series at that particular moment in time. Ezio is a little slower clearly having lost a step in his old age, this does help show progression as Ezio would be closer to 50 than he is 40. Apart from that, all the usual elements are there, not much changed between Assassin’s Creed II and Brotherhood.
Some new and welcome editions would be the Borgia Towers. Strongholds in the city that allow you to reduce guard presence and freely walk the city streets. Simply kill the captain and burn the building down. Many of these buildings are also synchronisation points so you can check most of them off the list. This game was also the first in the series to introduce Optional Objectives, these allowed for full synchronisation within every mission as well as added extra challenge.
In burning down these towers you can also renovate the city allowing for a greater income and reduced prices. It’s like upgrading the villa in the previous game, but on a larger scale.
As previously stated, the Assassin’s Brotherhood was also added to this mix. You can recruit people from the streets to join you. In turn, you get to send them all over Europe to complete assassination missions. This, in turn, gets you money, something I was always short of this playthrough, and also levels your assassins. This allows them to undertake harder missions and makes them better fighters when called out in the field to aid Ezio.
All in all, welcome and enjoyable additions to great gameplay. They even fixed the overcorrection in movement that plagued me previously.
Let’s get down to brass tracks here. Overall, I enjoyed Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood more than I did Assassin’s Creed II. Shock horror I know but the smaller scale played a huge part in that. Nothing changed dramatically either. All changes were small and aided gameplay. When a fight got too tough, call in the assassins to help. The story also played a great part in this, though they did meddle with history. The pope is killed with an apple that was poisoned. Though it was theorised he was accidentally poisoned or died of malaria, Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood paints a different picture.
Anyway – Numbers:
The story does not outlive its welcome. It is perfectly paced and though there are some timeskips here and there that leave blank patches, the dialogue fills them out well.
Gameplay… everything I wanted. There is enough there to keep you going and many things are carried over from Assassin’s Creed II. The new additions do help the game, a slower Ezio show us aging, the rebuilding of the brotherhood show progression, the new Borgia towers show escalated threat. Even the additional side objectives, they add a fun challenge that often goes overlooked. At it’s core, Assassin’s Creed is a stealth game. It’s even in the mantra ‘We work in the dark to serve the light’. But stealth is optional.
Performance could have been a perfect 10 were it not sluggish to begin with. It didn’t last long, but it was there. I cannot attribute this to the computer. It happened in the opening half hour, two of the smallest locations in the game and never happened again. I’m sorry, you were close Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood, but no dice.
Anyway guys, onto the next, hopefully the next thing you see will be Assassin’s Creed Revelations – The end of the Ezio trilogy!