Friday, December 4, 2015

Cowardly assassins

Syndicate was good. It was more than a good Assassin's Creed game, it was a good open world(ish) romp with plenty of side quests and more stuff to collect than anyone has time for...

Wait a second, that describes most of Ubisoft's game as of late. Is the Far Cry/Assassin's Creed crossover in the works? They are coming from the same basic mold, one with vehicles, one without. Can an assassin hopped up on hallucinogenic mushrooms be too far off?

I refuse to apologize for that outburst as I would play the shit out of a game like that.

Where was I? Oh yeah, I was about to get to Syndicate's cowardice. The game is good, but the plot is boring and wastes what could have been a very interesting twist: an assassin leaving the order for his own path. Technically, this has happened before, in Rogue, but Jacob is a more interesting character than the protagonist from Rogue whose name I have forgotten. Jacob is doing what he thinks is in the best interest of the people, he just never sticks around long enough to see if the outcome is what he was looking for.

Minor spoilers incoming.

Jacob starts out murdering a corrupt doctor who was performing lobotomies for an audience. The doctor got what was coming to him but the panic that followed shut the hospital down and many innocents suffered. Evie had to come to the rescue afterward and steal medicine to keep children from dying. The aftermath was of no on interest to Jacob.

This happens twice more, once with a prominent banker, whose murder nearly crashed the economy, and with Jacob's gang replacing the Templar gang. Evie is more or less on board with building their own private army, but only because they are no worse than what was already there. The results of Jacob's action explains why the Templars hate assassins so much and how close ideologically the groups really are. One kills those who get in the way and the other manipulates them into doing their bidding. Is one really worse than the other?

Then there is Evie, the boring assassin who only wants to find the piece of Eden because she thinks that it will solve all of their problems. Jacob and Evie have a falling out, agree on one more mission, kill the bad guy with the power of sibling friendship, and then fight to the death over the piece of Eden, right?

No, because that would be interesting. They do kill the bad guy, but then the hug and make up, Jacob admitting that he was wrong, and they live happily ever after. Boring. This is series that has had the main character assassinate the pope, and now it gets bashful about seeing conflict through to its logical, brutal conclusion?

Oh well. There is no point bitching, I will play the next one. I always do. 

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