Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood review (Xbox 360)

Again another Assassin’s Creed game and this time it’s Brotherhood’s turn. As you can probably guess by now I’m a huge fan of the AC series and I was actually kind of disappointed to find that I was going to have to wait for the release of Brotherhood. So when November rolled around, I couldn’t wait to go to the local game shop and get my hands on Brotherhood.

Brotherhood is labelled a historic action adventure game and once again the game was developed by Ubisoft Montreal and published by Ubisoft.

 

The story

At the end of the last game, Ezio was able to hunt down Rodrigo Borgia and take him down. So when the game starts, you pick up where you left off in the previous one, which means that you’re inside the Vault in the Vatican. Mario Auditore and Ezio will then fight their way out of the Vatican and you will get thrown in a different memory, the fall of Monteriggioni. Basically what happens is the brother of Rodrigo Borgia, Cesare Borgia will attack the Villa Auditore in Monteriggioni and in the attack casualties will fall that will lead Ezio towards Rome where the game will take place.

Meanwhile, in the present, the hide out of the modern-day assassins was attacked by Abstergo at the end of AC 2 forcing them to move locations. They end up in the Villa Auditore in modern-day Monteriggioni which is their last safe house in Italy. The group install themselves into the Sanctuary where they will be safe from being detected by Abstergo.

After getting themselveses installed into the Sanctuary, Desmond goes back into the Animus and submerges himself into Ezio’s memories that now take place in Rome. Now Ezio will have to deal with the influence that the Borgia family has on the city. To do this he will have to recruit apprentices and forge an alliance between all the guilds (courtesans, thieves and mercenaries) that have a base in Rome.

 

The Brotherhood:

As I mentioned earlier, a big part of the game will now be that you have to create a Brotherhood. This you can do by saving citizens in trouble and if you’re successful in it, meaning if you manage to get them through their ordeal alive, they will join the brotherhood. As soon as this has happened, you’ll be able to call on your troops at any given moment, providing that you have assassins at your disposal. Having said this I should mention that you can send out assassins to go on missions the continent, giving you more money, sometimes items, and more control of an area. Although being able to win area control of an area also means that the Templars are also able to win it all back if you don’t keep an eye on the area’s that you’ve conquered.

Still having a brotherhood makes things somewhat easier. Imagine that you’re about to take down a vital target, but just before you are able to catch him, you find that he’s alerted the guards which are all about to converge on you. Well that won’t be a problem anymore; seeing as now you can just press a button and have your apprentices take out the guards for you while you focus on getting the main target. Or suppose you’re up against an impossible odd number of guards who have cornered you while you were trying to escape, again simply press a button and get a rain of arrows land down on them, killing all the guards and allowing you to get away.

All this can happen if you’ve got some apprentices at your disposal, as long as you make sure that you don’t send out a minimum of 2 apprentices, you will always have someone to back you up.

 

Gameplay:

This game is basically the same as what you’re used too with AC II. There are a few changes however. One of the main ones being the fact that you now are able to control Desmond for bigger portions of the game. Even as you’re controlling him, it’ll feel like you’re controlling Ezio as Desmond will have all his abilities. This makes for a nice change though; you’ll be able to get to know Desmond a little better.

Another thing which I’m a fan of is the fact that you can finally ride a horse inside the city. That’s the one thing that annoyed me a little in AC 2, the fact that some roads in the cities of either Florence or Venice or whatever were wide enough to be able to ride a horses in but you were never able to take them into the city walls. In Brotherhood this is fixed as you can just steal a horse from a guard or grab one that is standing around and cover a lot of distance a lot quicker than if you went on foot. This is probably because of the fact that Rome is pretty much massive and going everywhere on foot would just take way to long. Still it makes a nice addition to the game as you can now do a few extra moves when you’re sitting on a horse, for instance you can now ride up to a guard on horseback, tap a button and Ezio will jump of his own horse onto the one of the guard and throw him off, or you can stop underneath a beam and jump up to grab it.

Another thing that they’ve added now is the fact that you have a few missions that you can complete for Leonardo Da Vinci. The story basically goes that the Borgia have forced Leonardo to design machines that the Borgia can use to win control. Because they can be used for mass destruction, Leonardo asks Ezio to destroy the machines along with their plans so they can’t be rebuilt.

 

Multiplayer:

Brotherhood is the first game in the series that has incorporated into the game. I have to admit that I haven’t played it myself so I wouldn’t be able to tell you if it was any good enough, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t tell you a few of the basics.

The story for the multiplayer goes that Abstergo is going to train Templars to fight the Assassins in the upcoming war. To do this, they’re using the Bleeding Effect from the Animus to make sure that their soldiers get the skills to be able to defeat the Assassins. In the multiplayer you’ll be able to have the choice of different characters, 21 in total plus you get the chance to revisit the locations from Brotherhood and AC 2 as well as new maps like Castel Gandolfo, Siena and Mont Saint-Michel.

You are also able to level up your character, meaning that you can upgrade their abilities and the way that the character looks and using different gear.

 

The conclusion:

Well, once again Ubisoft has created another brilliant game in the AC series. Sometimes you’ll get the feeling that when you play a set of games in a series that you’ll get bored as it’s the same concept again and again with a few additions, but I find that for AC Brotherhood that isn’t the case at all. the fact that you now have apprentices that can back you up during missions keeps the gameplay fresh and at the same time it doesn’t take anything away from the gameplay as you will still have to make sure that your apprentices survive the battle you send them into.

So over all, AC: Brotherhood is a game that you can’t miss if you want to keep following the story of Ezio Auditore Da Firenze.

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