PAX Prime 2012 may have come to a close, but Ubisoft definitely left a huge impact on the show floor. It had a booth right in the center of the hallway, featuring a number of its upcoming games, including Wii U titles like Rayman Legends and Zombi U, as well as its sequel Far Cry 3 and even a video presentation booth for next year's forthcoming Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Blacklist.
Perhaps the title that had the most attention at the event was Assassin's Creed III, a game that's set to make a killing on the American Revolution in less than two months time. During the ten-something minute video presentation (hosted by the lovely Melonie Mac, with some help from Ali "Alibakes" Baker), we got a look at a number of weapons that the main "hero" Connor can use to his advantage. And we don't just mean the usual hatchet jobs, either. This assassin comes loaded with goods that can easily put red coats in their place, whether it's assisting rebels or a rope dart that gives new meaning to the phrase "public hanging".
Let's take a look at some of the things Connor can use!
Granted, the bow by itself isn't the best weapon in the world, though it's useful for short range combat. However, pair it with an arrow, and Connor becomes a lethal force, able to chock someone in the head with a well-placed shot. It's just as effective as a sniper rifle, and in some ways, even more satisfying, as an enemy slumps to the ground with a huge arrow sticking out of his skull. We only briefly saw this during the demo, but rest assured, if you've got the arrows on hand, you can do some major damage with this bad boy.
Well, technically, what we saw in the Assassin's Creed III gameplay involved someone else's bayonet, and not necessarily Connor's. Regardless, the way he can effortlessly turn someone's own weapon against them in small-range combat is nothing short of amazing. While fighting off enemies both bigger and smaller than he is, Connor can mix up his attacks and actually grab an opponent's rifle or bayonet, and use them against them with a well-placed shot, or a pretty nasty stab. Unfortunately, we couldn't get a glimpse of how this gameplay worked with an actual controller, as this was a hands-off demo. However, if the combat is anything similar to what we've seen in previous AC games, we expect these moves to come off effortlessly, and in a satisfying -- and rather brutal -- manner. And whoever's carrying a musket -- well, you might want to put on some stronger head gear than just a hat. You've been warned.
Yes, the hidden blade returns in Assassin's Creed III, and continues to be one of the best assets that a warrior could possibly carry. Especially in public. The blade remains hidden in Connor's sleeve as he slowly creeps up on his target, then, with something as simple as a button prompt, he can flick it open, grab his enemy, and stab right into his neck, guaranteeing the kill. However, the hidden blade isn't just useful for stabbing. Combined with a sword (or a mace), Connor can also put it to good use in melee combat, quickly impaling someone with it or getting in a quick stab to bring them to the ground. It isn't as strong as a regular blade, due to its lack of length, but it's excellent when it comes to bringing someone down in a subtle manner. Truly an assassin's master tool.
While rope darts aren't as effective as, say, using a bow or arrow, they're still worthwhile when you're in a tree. Here's how they work. You find someone who's a target on the ground, then aim the rope dart somewhere around their head area. From there, you fire off the dart, then descend from the tree, as they raise off the ground and eventually hang from it. This may not be the most ideal weapon when it comes to groups that are around (they'll see the body that you leave behind), but regardless, it's terrific when it comes to wanting to take out a solo target, and not minding where you leave the body.
The power of stealth
Obviously, one of the assassin's greatest assets is being able to get away with murder. Because, really, what good is a jailed hitman? And so, in Assassin's Creed III, Ubisoft showcased how you can blend in with groups of two or more people in a crowd, ideal for escaping from red coats or trying to avoid creating a scene in a public case. No longer do you need to worry about sitting down or walking with a fully enclosed group, just a couple of strangers who aren't concerned about the presence of a hooded figure. Remember, you don't always want to take the action route, as sometimes the odds are stacked against you. THINK.
The power of allies
Finally, one useful ability that was shown during the gameplay demo was the ability to call upon cohorts in case you need to get past a checkpoint or a large group of red coats. By calling upon a few of your allies, you can put your hands behind your back and pretend you're in captivity as they surround you, in disguise, and walk you into an area you wouldn't be able to approach otherwise. When the "jig is up" or you're close enough to your target you can strike, you can call them off and immediately strike with one of your weapons, like the hidden blade or the Sawtooth Sword. Sometimes deception is one of the best things you'll have.
Various other weapons are included in the game, including bombs, a Flintlock Musket, Naval mines and so much more, so this is just an opening primer to what you have on hand for this latest adventure. Still, it's quite a bit when it comes to spilling some enemy blood, isn't it?
Look for Assassin's Creed III in stores on October 30th.