The latest entry in the Assassin’s Creed series is Odyssey, which uses the Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta as the backdrop for its heroic story. Befitting its name, this is a mammoth game with a staggering number of tasks to complete, but not all of it is top-tier content.
In Odyssey, players will start out as a lowly mercenary and work their way up to the centre of power in the Greek world and beyond. The beautiful recreation of the Mediterranean region shows off the power of the current generation consoles wonderfully.
Ubisoft has incorporated many role-playing game mechanics such as branching dialogue, the ability to romance different characters, and consequences tied to players’ choices into Odyssey. It now feels more like a Witcher game than the early action-oriented entries in the Assassin’s Creed series, which is a step in the right direction for many fans who look for meatier levelling systems in action games.
In gameplay terms, this year’s Assassin’s Creed feels a lot like last year’s Origins with many missions which require sneaking into fortified areas to steal things and eliminate targets. The addition of an enhanced skill tree and Diablo-style equipment and loot system make the combat more fun to experiment with. However, the enemy AI is weak and can be easily exploited with careful positioning.
Similar to last year’s Origins, players also take on the role of Layla Hassan who is reliving the “genetic memories” of the avatar in the present via a machine. These sequences are a fun break from the ancient setting and provide more insight into the overarching plot of the series. However, be warned: there are countless optional side quests to complete, but not all of them offer a big pay-off.
Overall, Odyssey is a visual treat backed up by solid mechanics, but anyone with a shortage of time on their hands may want to go sightseeing elsewhere.