The lights are on
Veteran Member - Level 13
Assassins' Creed III is meant to be a grand finale to Desmond's story in the Assassins' Creed series. Despite a large amount of replay value, and tons of content, the game is really held back by technical issues and a sub-par story.
NOTE: I personally am very familiar with the series, having watched walkthroughs off every game, except for the latter halves of 1 and Revelations, but this is my first time actually playing the series, so I was unfamiliar with the control set up at first. AND, this review doesn't cover the multiplayer part of the game-I didn't play it much, but when I did, I wasn't really enamored with it.
Even with several studios working internationally on this game, it's sad to see how many bugs and glitches this game has. I am not lying when I say I encountered more bugs in this game than any other I have played-I have had to restart missions due to getting stuck on objects, as well as finding some chests and collectables apparently being 10 meters underground, and inaccessible.
Despite these issues, I did overall enjoy playing the game. Revolutionary America is well detailed, and the environments looks great and dense, but the frontier area does feel a bit large sometimes. Facial animation is great, and characters are well detailed. One thing to note however, is the lighting. When I played the game through and HDMI cable, on my HDTV, the lighting and textures of the game were considerably worse than when I played the game on the GamePad. I suspect this is an issue with the game itself, because the GamePad is a direct projection from the Wii U, so it's just a lower resolution, which makes me believe the game wasn't optimized for a larger resolution.
Most of the gameplay is done well, as free running is easy and combat is mostly alright. Getting a long chain of kills is satisfying, and it's easy to get into the combat, though it can be a button masher at times. Naval battles, while interesting and definitely fun at point, can feel frustrating when realize you really have no way to defend yourself-multiple times, even when I pressed for my crew to take cover, I would lose a 1/4 of my health, which in turn led to replaying missions multiple times.
However, the core aspect of the game, the story of Desmond trying to prevent the solar flare, and Connor's overall narrative, are poorly written and not well done. The end of the game feels unsatisfying, and doesn't do the rest of the series justice. Likewise, the end of Connor's story is lame, with the entirety of the final sequence being a boring, frustrating mess; I restarted one of the final missions over a dozen times to get full synchronization because of how poorly designed it was, and how easy it was to fail it. Many aspects of the story too are unexplained or not elaborated on, and most of the side missions were more interesting than the overall story.
Despite the core issues, there is a large amount of content in Assassins' Creed III. There are multiple Homestead missions, and a large amount of collectables, from feathers to Almanac pages, if you're a completionist, as well as the ability to get Pivots, which allow for you to have Animus hacks, essentially cheat codes.
In the end, Assassins' Creed III is a massive, fun game, but it's marred by so many technical issues, and a sub-par story, so it's hard to justify it being a must have title.
-Gameplay and combat are easy and fun
-Environments are well detailed, and the world is dense
-Lots of content
-The buggiest game I have ever played
-A boring, unsatisfying story, and end to Desmond's arc