7. Assassin's Creed: Unity
Earlier this month I called Assassin’s Creed: Unity one of my favorite games of the year. I have since recanted those comments and redacted them from the site. It isn’t a terrible game, but my enjoyment of it petered out after a week, and it thus seems unfair to hold it to the same level as Shadow of Mordor or Dragon Age or even Destiny.
I wisely waited to play this game until after Ubisoft patched it to high heaven, so I rarely encountered any bugs and only experienced a freeze once. Releasing a broken game is a horrible thing to do to your fanbase and the consumer alike, and the way Ubi handled it, particularly the entitled, defensive attitude of many of their community managers, is equally indefensible, but it isn’t Unity’s biggest problem. The game’s biggest fault is that it simply isn’t very fun.
The Assassin’s Creed franchise has often been accused of being boring and repetitive; it’s received this criticism since its very first title. The first game was divisive because there was clearly something amazing hidden within its monotonous structure and lackluster gameplay, and in many ways that original game resembles Unity. Both feel more like proofs of concept than actual games; in both cases the tech came first, the game second. But where they differ most significantly, the difference that makes the original AC a good game and Unity a mediocre one, is story and character. (more...)