Assassin's Creed Rogue (PC) Review

By Athanasios 23.03.2015

Review for Assassin

Another year, another Assassin's Creed - well, with both Assassin's Creed Rogue and Assassin's Creed Unity coming out in the same time, it's actually two, making fans go nuts with happiness. Ubisoft's yearly dose of throat-slitting action hasn't avoided criticism, though, due to the fact that extremely tight deadlines can "kill" a videogame, especially a triple-A production such as this - even worse when there are two of them together. Furthermore, Unity, which was the central focus of the developer, since it was aimed at current-gen consoles and PCs, didn't turn out to be as good as expected, making it hard to expect Rogue to be any different as it was designed with previous-gen systems in mind… but that's the least of its problems.

Ubisoft's one-Assassin's-Creed-per-year commitment has been regarded by many as a bad strategy that has led to some mediocre products, and while the game at hand is surely not the worst of its kind, it's nothing more than a lazy copy-paste job, since there is an impressive amount of similarities between it and Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag. Wait, is that a bad thing, though? That turned out to be quite good, so this one should be good, too, right? Well, not exactly…

This swashbuckling adventure begins a bit after the events of Black Flag, yet this doesn't feel like its sequel but rather a replaying of it. The problem doesn't lie in the fact that both of them combine typical Assassin's Creed action with naval exploration and battles, but in how everything feels exactly the same. There is no new equipment, no new ship upgrades, no new fighting or assassination techniques - nothing! Some might think, "The gameplay is identical, but the world it takes place in is completely new. Isn't it?"

Screenshot for Assassin's Creed Rogue on PC

Looking at a couple of screenshots it's hard to find any differences between the locales of Rogue and Black Flag. The gameworld is still pretty and impressively big, but it's not different. Thankfully, it's completely open-ended, and by using the protagonist's great parkour skills it's possible to explore every crack and crevice, yet, apart from those who like searching for the hundreds of available collectibles, there aren't many things to do in this, otherwise gargantuan, world - not to mention that finding those trinkets is not exactly exciting, partly because there are so many of them lying around, making the whole process pretty boring too soon, but mainly because it doesn't exactly challenge the player in any way.

The only big change here is the plot, which is set in the time of the Seven Years War in Colonial America, and revolves around Shay Cormac, an assassin who leaves the Creed to join the franchise's main antagonists, the Templars. Throughout the series' history, it has been frequently suggested that their cause is actually quite noble, and that it was only their methods that were misguided. This concept is explored much better here, to the point that gamers can actually sympathise with these folks, and even justify the main character's betrayal of his former allies.

Screenshot for Assassin's Creed Rogue on PC

While Shay turns out to be an extremely interesting protagonist, though, the actual events that take place throughout his journey aren't. Furthermore, playing as a Templar doesn't really mean anything, since, apart from a couple of new weapons - which are just upgrades of previous ones - this hero is, to all intends and purposes, just another assassin. Being a rogue one, however, means that his former comrades are now his enemies - enemies that obviously have the same skills as him, and are, thus, far more lethal. Unfortunately, these confrontations aren't as hard as they may seem on paper, especially since it's possible to use the Eagle Vision to spot them long before they even dare to come close.

Challenge, or more correctly its total lack of, is another problem here, because, apart from the missions, which can be done by simply following the UI indicators, the combat is practically a hand-holding experience that feels more like a Quick Time Event than a test of skill, something that makes stealth pointless, since entering the battlefield and slaying a whole battalion with starter gear isn't just easy, but also less time-consuming.

Screenshot for Assassin's Creed Rogue on PC

The main storyline is, once again, quite short, yet like all Assassin's Creed games, this is only a tiny part of what the player can do. However, despite tons of side-quests being available, most of them tend to recycle the same simple things over and over. Even worse, instead of being innovative and unique, most main missions feel like introductions to various types of side-quests, something that would be acceptable if it wasn't done so often - and if most of them weren't so dull and repetitive.

The thing is, though, that even without the monotonous missions, clunky controls, giant-but-"empty" gameworld, and hilariously easy combat, it's hard to go past the fact that this is nothing more than a clone of a previous title, and, to tell the truth, a pretty average one. Could this flaw be ignored with a much lower price tag? By all means, no! Spending even a single pound on a piece of software such as this is like congratulating its creators for trying to increase their salary for doing absolutely nothing.

Screenshot for Assassin's Creed Rogue on PC

Cubed3 Rating

6/10
Rated 6 out of 10

Good

Assassin's Creed Rogue is a mediocre-to-decent, open-ended, third-person action game, which many times feels as if the typical Assassin's Creed gameplay has crossed paths with Sid Meier's Pirates! However, it's impossible to overlook an abundance of flaws that are the result of a rushed production, and the fact that this is, in many ways, a reselling of Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag. Cubed3 advises both newcomers and veterans to think about that a lot before clicking the 'Send to Cart' button, since it would only encourage the developer to repeat the same mistake, and potentially damage the franchise as a whole.

Developer

Ubisoft Sofia

Publisher

Ubisoft

Genre

Adventure

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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