The story of Aveline is an enjoyable adventure to take. Assassin’s Creed: Liberation HD features some unique changes such as the guise system. With this you’re able to switch between three outfits, an elegant lady, a look to blend in with slaves, and of course a more traditional Assassin’s garb. With a faster paced storyline and some different areas such as the Bayou to explore, this is a nice take on the series.
Most of the game takes place in 18th century New Orleans which as always in the series is wonderfully detailed. It’s a pleasure to just wander the streets and thankfully there is a decent mix of things to do, such as discovering treasure chests as usual along the way. There is a lot to see. You’ll be leaping along tree branches in the Bayou and scrambling across rooftops in the city.
This may all sound like much of the same, but the main star here is the story. Aveline comes from a wealthy home it seems during a time when slavery is common and New Orleans is transitioning from French to Spanish rule. As always the history of the time is a highlight of the game. Not only are you an Assassin who is at odds with the Templars as is usual in the series, but the world around you is set on a historical stage.
One of my favorite parts of Assassin’s Creed II and III was sadly absent in this title, which is the descriptions you’re given to locations. You do get a database to explore about characters, but location text seems to be left out. This is a minor inconvenience since if you weren’t up for it at the time, it could be a distraction in other titles of the series. It is fun however and I do hope that Ubisoft continues to add such details in the future.
It’s exciting playing these games since you do get these detailed areas to explore as well as historical facts and events to experience. With Assassin’s Creed: Liberation HD you get a focused adventure that fits the price point. While this title isn’t as long as other Assassin’s Creed games, it does hold up to the quality of the series I found. Missions at times can seem a bit more easy going with a few where you’re following people. Combat is relatively easy too. I didn’t really have an issue until what seemed like the second boss battle and even when the game glitched (or everyone got killed by the environment somehow) and I was taken to the winning cut scene. Perhaps you’re only given so many chances until the game realized I just wasn’t good at that battle.
Otherwise there is a lot of the usual stealthy action of sneaking around, avoiding enemies realizing who you are, and taking out various opponents along the way. With the different persona’s Aveline can take on, you get some change in tactic as well. The elegant lady outfit looks wonderful and allows you to fit into high class situations, but it doesn’t allow for climbing and leaping all over. You’re more of a charmer in that outfit. When Aveline is dressed as a slave, she can fit in and sneak around with slaves to free or blend with them as the mission calls for. I think in both the lady outfit and the slave outfit, you’re not as strong though as in your Assassin’s garb.
There are no modern day parts to this title it seems. The game just loads you right into Abstergo’s software to begin your story as Aveline. You do however come across parts that allow you to find an assassination target that unlocks an uncensored conversation from the game that Abstergo altered to not make the Templars look bad. This reveal is displayed as a glitch in the actual Abstergo software. You do still have intentionally glitchy graphics to show this is indeed an in Animus adventure. Loading screens also allow you to walk around as Aveline as well.
After a very brief intro where you play a childhood Aveline, you’re placed right into the role of an Assassin. Which is alright. It gets you right into the story and sends you off to work for the brotherhood. As mentioned earlier this keeps with the faster pace of the game. You go back and forth between New Orleans and the Bayou quite a bit as well as another smaller area that I won’t spoil here that is quite cool. Though it may be faster, the progression feels good.
There are the rare moments where you may be unsure of what to do, or like me you’ll run forward and take out a target that the game clearly tells you in the top left to follow. Considering the game doesn’t take long to reload, these moments aren’t a big deal. Some high up vantage points in the Bayou are a complete mystery to me as to how you reach the tops of them though. I picked up a treasure chest or two in that area and it’s a bit more of a puzzle trying to figure out how to reach them, which is actually a plus. You can add a waypoint to things on your map to see where they are in the world, which is handy for plotting out your route to reach the trickier ones.
Assassin’s Creed: Liberation HD is a treat. I hadn’t played the PSVita version and it’s fantastic that Ubisoft brought the title to Xbox 360 and PS3. For everything you get at such a low price, and for such an enjoyable story and detailed world as in AC3, it’s worth giving a go! These games seem to very much be about experiencing the world Ubisoft has made. Aveline is a wonderful addition to the series and the whole game has memorable characters along the way.