Assassin’s Creed Syndicate was officially unveiled this week, but many fans are still feeling the sting of the previous entry in the series. To say Assassin’s Creed Unity had issues is an understatement, one that even the developer, Ubisoft, has publicly admitted as early as this week as well. Because of this, Syndicate has a tough road ahead of it in order to win back the trust of even the most ardent Assassin’s Creed fans. Here are some things Assassin’s Creed Syndicate needs to do in order to make this entry wash away the stain of Unity.
It Needs to Work
This should be a given, right? I mean, consumers should expect a product they bought to work. Unfortunately, Assassin’s Creed Unity defined what a broken game looks like when it released in such a bad shape last year. In fact, the developers seemed to know how bad it was that the review embargo in place made it so that the issues couldn’t be reported until a full 12 hours after Assassin’s Creed Unity was available for purchase. This simple yet oft-missed standard in today’s gaming world needs to happen. Otherwise, it just shows another example of a tone-deaf developer not heeding the message from a year before.
Evie Needs to Have a Strong Presence
Evie and Jacob Frye, the two twin siblings at the heart of the Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, marks the first time two protagonists have headlined a game. Yes, you could play as Altair and Ezio in a prior game, but this is the first time two main characters, both playable, have taken center stage — together. Not only that, but it marks the first time a woman has had a playable role in a major Assassin’s Creed release, Liberation notwithstanding. Evie needs to have a strong, well-defined role within the game and not simply feel as though she’s in there to appease fans who were outraged at Ubisoft’s comments on female roles in a game last year. Evie not only has to be a strong lead in the game, but she has to feel unique and not handle the same exact way Jacob does. Make the two compliment each other in more ways than personality. Evie absolutely has to help make Assassin’s Creed Syndicate stand out.
Syndicate Needs to Change Gameplay Meaningfully
One of the hallmarks many point to with Ubisoft games is a lack of any risk-taking. Many games in the library share the same features, such as using towers to unlock sections of a map (Watch_Dogs, Assassin’s Creed, The Crew). Assassin’s Creed has similarly been labeled as being stagnant in terms of gameplay design. The reason why Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag was so praised is because it added an entirely new element to the game not there before. Assassin’s Creed Syndicate seems to be trying to do so with the new, faster-paced combat as well as the Zelda hookshot-esque way of traversing and parkouring. The game needs to take that next step. Adding brass knuckles and horse-carriage chases are great additions, but the core gameplay has been what’s become stale in Assassin’s Creed, not the settings or the people in general. Unity made some strides by finally adding a dedicated stealth button and giving you multiple avenues to dispatch an enemy, but Assassin’s Creed Syndicate needs to take it a step further and make each mission not feel like you’re simply finding another way to take out a bunch of guards.
What do you think Assassin’s Creed Syndicate needs to do in order to move the series forward from Assassin’s Creed Unity? Sound off in the comments below.
[Images via Ubisoft, Reddit]