Assassin’s Creed Origins had a ton of hype surrounding it once Ubisoft started showing off gameplay and scenes from the newest addition to the AC series. And after getting the chance to finally play it — I don’t think I’ve been this excited about an Assassin’s Creed game since, well Ezio’s story.
Origins is everything you’ve come to expect from a typical Assassins Creed game plus everything that fans have been dying for.
While it has the same awesome cinematics and immersive soundtrack, Origins offers a bunch of new elements to get longtime fans excited. It’s a fresh experience thanks to the open-world aspects and the all new landscape, ancient Egypt.
Origins follows the story of a medjay in ancient Egypt named Bayek. Following a tragedy involving those in power, Bayek’s quest for revenge transforms into something much bigger the deeper his journey takes him.
Early on in the game I had a lot of curiosity for the protagonist of the story, Bayek, especially after the cinematics opening scene and an odd 1 year time jump straight after. After you casually assassinate someone who vows that ‘they’ll find you’, suddenly, you’re thrown into an intense fight with a hulking guard that towers over you in ruins. Welcome to the combat tutorial for new and old fans.
The combat system feels very Dark Souls 3 inspired. You’ll need to use a combination of dodging/parrying while using both quick and heavy attacks. While the weapons have never been too expansive in AC, the ones you do get in Origins all have a useful purpose whether you’re using a bows and spears for long-range or axes and swords for short range (just to name a few!). I also seriously appreciate the special attack Bayek can unleash once a power bar fills up – it’s saved me from sure death too many times. In short, when it comes to combat in Origins, I’m really enjoying it! It feels way more challenging this time around and I think it’s pretty great once you get the hang of it.
My favourite part of Assassin’s Creed Origins is probably all the exploration that’s available! I was sceptical when I kept hearing how ‘open-world’ Origins felt because while AC has given us a taste of fast-travelling and exploring, it’s never been on the same scale of some of the more famous open-world titles. But, I think Assasin’s Creed Origins does a really amazing job at being this wide-open, sprawling desert for us to ride through in the blazing sun and explore.
At the start, you’re only introduced to a small village – which was pretty sweet on it’s own. But then the story took me on a ride through the desert and I found myself chasing all these markers on the map, finding enemy camps to raid and ruins to explore.
And then, I finally made it to Alexandria. Saying I was blown away is a massive understatement. Like I said – the villages were nice and all – but the sheer size, attention to detail and overall beautiful take on a major Egyptian city was really well done. When it comes to finding treasure and looting random peoples houses, the tool ‘Animus Pulse’ is really useful for finding the good stuff.
I loved the little details in the bustling streets, how if you stay still long enough, your eagle Senu will perch on your arm, how the people and soldiers interact and how many of the sidequests feel like a typical AC quest (save prisoners, help shop owners, take down a specially irritating captain etc,) but because there’s so many, it’s hard to find yourself bored and out of things to do.
And finally, one of my other favorite things about playing Origins so far is how so many of the things I love from other Ubisoft games, have been introduced into this game too. Like in Far Cry, Bayek has a perk tree (which is split into three parts, The Hunter, The Warrior and The Seer,) and all of them offer unique skills to help you become stronger. Whether it’s becoming stronger by adding faster health regeneration, upgrading weapon damage or even getting special abilities like Eagle Harass which lets your pet eagle, Senu, stun your enemies, there are a ton of ways to play.
The hunting system is pretty fun too and also much like Far Cry’s hunting/crafting system. Hunting a few deer during a main quest at the start earns you a new breastplate. Even Senu will occasionally take out pray for you which is cool! I’ve always liked how in Far Cry you can work with the animals in a sense so it was really awesome to do that again in Origins – and even see in Senu’s point of view! That’s right. Every time you approach a target’s location during a mission, you can suddenly have a bird’s eye view and use Senu to pinpoint where your target is! It’s also really useful to gauge how many enemies you’re about to run into and even what treasure you can find.
If I had to change one thing about Origins, it would probably be the pacing of the story. At the start, it’s a little confusing and it sucked because I wanted to know more about Bayek but there was all these quests to get through before it felt like the story really took off – but once it did, I got really sucked in! Soo if you don’t mind waiting a little, you won’t be disappointed!
So before this review gets any longer, I’m gonna say that if you aren’t convinced yet then go watch this trailer and soak up all that desert that’s dying to be explored!