Revelations: Developers in Denial

Assassins Creed: Revelations

I should be over the annual Assassin’s Creed formula that Ubisoft has set into motion this generation. Sure, Assassin’s Creed 2 and Brotherhood both happened to be great games, but there’s no way that lightning can strike three times, right? That’s the gamble that we take by playing yearly re-hashes, and Assassin’s Creed: Revelations is no different.

So far, I’m actually enjoying the game quite a bit. It’s kind of a rinse and repeat job, but the promise of learning Desmond’s fate and seeing the close of the Ezio storyline certainly has me hooked, and I like to see Ezio as a bit of a grim, grizzled old man, complete with salt-and-pepper beard and all. To Ubisoft’s credit, they’ve done what they could to mix the gameplay up, but unfortunately, some of these additions are where the game’s cracks are most evident.

For starters, the game adds a tower defense mode that while not terrible, is certainly obtrusive, shallow and lengthy. It really adds nothing to the game except the looming threat of a several minute diversion, which is killer if you’ve got some great momentum going on the narrative and the Assassin training missions. However, the worst addition that has been added to Revelation would have to be the Desmond memories.

You see, Desmond is stuck in the Animus, and in order to find his way out he has to jump into these first person memory sections that feel like a cheap knock off of a knock off of Portal. Yes, you read that right. While a first person section that played like a Mirror’s Edge might have been welcome, all you really do in these segments is listen to Desmond talk and walk around with really terrible first person controls.

The thing that really shocks me about sections like this isn’t that developers try them out – it’s that they somehow make it into the final product. I don’t understand how a number of people can play bits of a game like this and nobody ever stops the production to either rethink it or scrap it altogether. How does that even happen?

So what other forms of developer denial have you guys spotted in games? What other sections have really driven you nuts – and marred an otherwise pretty decent game? Go!

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I write about samurai girls and space marines. Writer for Smooth Few Films. Rooster Teeth Freelancer. Author of Red vs. Blue, The Ultimate Fan Guide, out NOW!

7 thoughts on “Revelations: Developers in Denial”

  1. The end of Devil May Cry becomes a shooter, like Galaga or something. So weird.

    As for Ass Creed Rev, SEVEN different developers worked on that game, so I am not surprised there are things in there like that. It’s a miracle the game is as good as it is, honestly. Kudos to them, but they should take a break a bit.

  2. Dear God Brutal Legend was the worst offender of this. I absolutely loved that game until it suddenly became a wonky, hard to control RTS, and no amount of witty dialogue could have kept me from being unnerved by it. And I love Tim Schafer, but for some reason he denies its RTS-ness.

  3. I must be in the minority, because I actually enjoyed the RTS-ness of Brutal Legend. I found those sections to be pretty fun.

  4. So Desmond is stuck in the animus jumping into peoples memories trying to get home am I the only one thinking quantum leap ? On topic i liked the devil may cry shooter, on the other hand Uncharted 1 turning into a zombie shooter that I didn’t very much enjoy.

  5. The stamina bar in Skyward Sword. Seriously, what were they thinking? I carried a barrel half way to the destination and had to put it down to regain my strength and carry it the rest of the way. Why. Why.

  6. Ran into this kind of ill-advised genre switch-up long ago playing Ripper, an adventure game featuring the likes of Christopher Walken, Burgess Meredith, and John Rhys-Davies in possibly the worst performances of their respective careers. 3/4 of the way through the game, you are thrown from your point-and-click world into a glitchy, difficult FPS on rails for absolutely no good reason other than sapping your remaining will to finish the game.

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