Sunday, 10 February 2008

In Limbo

I probably spent more time pulling together the template for this blog than I've spent actually playing the game.

Needless to say, my initial enthusiasm for what was going to be my new passion has waned. It may have been premature to have registered the '' domain and to have fantasised about hours on end of role-play fighting and puzzle-solving intermingled with writing about role-play fighting and puzzle-solving. I probably should have read others' reviews first.

The FIFA player has asked me to hurry up and finish Assassin's Creed so that we can turn it in for some other game. Such drastic action is itself premature. I still don't think I've given the game a fair shot. If the FIFA player makes more trade-in overtures, he'll find a fight on his hands.

My complaint about "save game" stands: it is ridiculous that in order to save multiple games you need to either create a new profile or save your current game to some other location (USB stick?). Granted, it's not difficult to create a new profile; but, how difficult is it to code a game to allow multiple game saves? If it is so hard, why have so many other games succeeded in giving their fans the OBVIOUS ability to save multiple games.

I guess that's my biggest complaint: the lack of intuitiveness / transparency in this area. I shouldn't have had to google to figure it out.

Sunday, 6 January 2008

Save Me

To Do:

Research Game Save.


As I said before, players and non-players get sucked in by the life-like details. The FIFA player asks me to play just so he can watch. At some point watching isn't enough. The FIFA player wants to be Assassin's Creed Boy if only for a moment. I growl, but relinquish the controls.

He uses no tact. He storms through town on the back of a galloping stallion. Soldiers circle. They attack. The FIFA player cum Assassin's Creed Boy attacks. His play demonstrates a complete lack of finesse, which, although I've not gotten far I know is required.

I'm not worried. I figure I just won't save his progress.

Should I have been worried? It seems Assassin's Creed doesn't have the save options that I would hope it would have. Can't I have more than one game in progress (i.e. saved) at any given time? Did the FIFA player really steamroller over all my progress, and is there no way to go back?

I do not know the answers to these questions. So far the game save functionality does not appear to be as robust as I would expect it to be. If my I'm wrong on this point, then the functionality is not as intuitive as it should be, because a player should be playing his/her game, not researching it.

Tuesday, 1 January 2008

Second Impressions

I've brandished my sword.

I've slept a sleep of death.

I've mounted a horse and scaled numerous buildings and eavesdropped on a conversation about a basket weaver. I've picked a pocket.

After all this, the promise is still a promise, neither confirmed nor repudiated.

My almost-initial impressions are this:

a. The graphics have me tongue-tied. AC is visually beautiful. So beautiful that I found it difficult to shake my audience: players and non-players alike get sucked into the life-like details: the swoosh of robes, the feathers of a bird, the clippity-clopping of a galloping horse. It's a compelling game to merely watch.

b. From a story/action/puzzle-completion standpoint, Assassin's Creed hasn't sucked this girl in the way my good friend Lara Croft did. One could argue I'm more mature now, and so less easily ensnared by a game, less prone to addiction. That would be a spurious argument: anyone who witnessed my alcohol intake this holiday season would know I have the makings of an addict. There is something -- or rather there is not something -- that hasn't pull me in as immediately as I had expected. I'm making no definitive judgements yet. Who knows what tomorrow will bring?

First Foray

The FIFA Player laughed at me as I tried to handle the new Playstation 3. I found the main power button without difficulty. It's just just like a normal on/off button and sits right where it did on the PS3's predecessor. The Eject Disc and Reset Game buttons were the ones that caused me frustration. The FIFA Player and I are space conscious, and consequently have the new device set up vertically between a couple of fancy art books, which results in the already camouflaged futuristic, flat Eject Disc and Reset Game buttons in being more camouflaged. After some swearing on my part and chuckling on the FIFA Player's part, I figured it out. The game slid into it's slot. Our screen burst to life.

As I suspected, the intial familiarisation with the controls, the moves, walking, running, blending in, was dizzying. I lasted about 15 minutes before I turned the game off. Learning the basics is something you want to do alone, not in front of the seasoned fingers of a FIFA player.

Sunday, 30 December 2007

L'Aventure Commence

Hello and welcome to the almost-start of my journey.

Some weeks back, during a bout of increased television viewing, I lay on the fluffy cushions of my sofa and watched an advertisement that made me sit up and pay attention: a new video game promised to deliver what no game has delivered since Tombraider II -- when I became an addict and spent over $100 on calls to a 900 'dial-a-clue'number. This game, as you should have gathered from my blog title, was Assassins Creed.

The deflation of my initial excitement did not take long. My other half, whom I shall call 'the FIFA player' pointed out (correctly or incorrectly, I haven't yet sussed out) that the game just advertised would require an XBox or PS3. We (the FIFA player and I) had already assessed the payback of an investment in a PS3, and had determined that the investment did not make sense to two relatively innocent gamers such as we. I fell back into the fluffy cushions and proceeded to flip between Super Sweet Sixteen, America's Next Top Model and Charmed, a menu encouraged by gaming despondancy.

Somewhere amidst that despondancy, a seed was sown.

Days later as I travelled the normal journey to my ordinary job, and as the 14 bus drove by what was previously the Virgin Mega Store at Picadilly Circus (and is now some ridiculously stupid and difficult to remember name: zeezu, zavvy, vavoom, wizzy, baboom!?!!?) my eyes widened in greed at the sight of the larger than life assassin in the larger than life window display. Being a realistic sort, I narrowed my eyes and returned to my Sudoku.

That might have been the end of it, but for a friend who had recently ordered a new mobile phone from 02.

The new phone ordered by our friend from 02, was accompanied by a free PS3. For Christmas, our friend re-gifted her gift from 02 to us. She is a dear friend, and I may just be falling in love with her, contrary to my heterosexual propensity.

Upon receipt of the regift, I rushed out of the house with Assassins on my mind. I hightailed it to the nearest zeezu, zavvy, vavoom, wizzy, baboom!?!!!? I could find. I had 50 quid in my pocket (on my credit card) just itching to purchase entertainment of a lifetime.

Zeezu, zavvy, vavoom, wizzy, baboom!?!!!? told me they were sold out.

God damn it!

But, an order was due in the next day!


The next day, after calling to confirm that the order had arrived, -- Indeed it had! --I hightailed it back to [insert name here].

When calling to confirm availability of the game, I had, however, neglected to specify my playing platform, so when I arrived, eager and confident in my gaming future, I discovered that the order that had arrived was limited to those lucky Xbox players.


I didn't dare go home empty handed. The FIFA player does not exclusively play FIFA, and he was looking forward to a little mano a a mano.

I searched high. I searched low. Eventually I found it. In Woolworths. Of all places.

And now I should be playing rather than writing about playing, except that I'm still struggling with nervous pre-game anticipation, and the writing about playing (not to mention the friggin' blog-site design) drags out the almost-start, which really is something to aim for.

More to come. Love, ACG