Even though it had been two years since the last Assassin’s Creed game, we still expected the new one to be announced with the same spiel. And it was. This was a new Assassin’s Creed. It had a new larger world. It had totally re-imagined combat. It was revolution, not evolution. Unfortunately for Ubisoft, the only revolutions in Assassin’s Creeds history were American and French. So, when we were watching the reveal of Origins, we still expected the same thing; all talk and no change. We were wrong. We were so wrong. And we like it.
Assassin’s Creed Origins will take the series away from the stale action-adventure format it has called home for so long and move it to a more RPG-action-adventure format; exactly the way it has needed to go. By taking the series down this route, with a proper leveling system and graded loot drops dependent on rarity, Ubsioft are finally delivering the revolution Assassin’s Creed has needed.
Working in tandem with a new approach to the story, more quest-based than mission based, Ubisoft finally gives us a reason to explore the always well-made worlds of the series. Before, the only reason to explore in Assassin’s Creed was to collect the bajillion collectibles they stuffed in the game. Ordinarily, finding hidden collectibles was a fun challenge, except in an Ubisoft game, once found, the collectibles you spent so long collecting amounted to nothing; a literal time sink. Now though, with the offer of levels and the sweet smell of a legendary bow, or a rare sword, we have a proper reason to explore. If we know that there is a chance that if we look hard enough we might find something extremely useful to our journey, and actually enjoy the search, then we are far more inclined to go on said search. Look at The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild (because all modern games must be compared to Breath of the Wild, apparently) the majority of that game was about exploration, not because we had to go and collect feathers, or pages, but because the world was so engaging and well built, and the chance of stumbling onto something worth finding was so high.
If Assassin’s Creed can marry a system that rewards exploration with an engaging world, like Ancient Egypt is promising to be, then this will truly be the revolution the series has needed for a long time.