Don’t worry about Assassin’s Creed 3’s naval battles

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AssassinsCreed3

If you played Assassin’s Creed: Revelations, you probably (as I sure as hell did) hated the Den Defence missions that forced a tiresome and pointless mini-game in the series – that had no place being there. If you’ve been keeping an eye on Assassin’s Creed 3, you’re probably a little worried that the game’s Naval battles will be similarly unfun. We had a look at the game’s gloriously detailed sea-battles – and they actually seem pretty engaging. Even if they’re not, they won’t make up much of the game.

That’s what Steven Masters, lead game designer at Ubisoft told us at Gamescom; the game’s sea battles will extend to just two main missions, padded out with  two hours of optional side content.

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One of those missions – and the one demonstrated to press at Gamescom was the historic battle of Chesapeake Bay; one of the most important naval battles which saw the French hammer the British Royal Navy – and  helped turn the tide in the colonialists’ favour during the American War of Independence. In the demo the player was tasked with manoeuvring the hefty Saint Esprit through a flotilla of enemy ships after defending the harbour from attacking frigates. The end goal? To board the Man-of-War steered by a Templar, and relieve him of his duty…and life. The twenty minute demo, Masters said, was about roughly half of one of Assassin’s Creed 3’s two main naval missions; that happens towards the end of  the game.

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The more surprising thing? The game was demonstrated to us on the Wii U – and it looked fantastic.  Masters said the team had very little time to get the Wii U version up and running – but that they managed to do so using “about 99%” of the assets from the other versions of the game. On the opposite end of the room, the same section was demonstrated on a PlayStation 3 – and you’d struggle to see much of a difference unless you were really looking.

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To my eye, I could swear the Wii U version was a tad crisper, with slightly better water effects, but beyond that, they were nigh indistinguishable – which bodes well for Nintendo’s new console.

Last Updated: August 20, 2012

Geoffrey Tim

Editor. I’m old, grumpy and more than just a little cynical. One day, I found myself in possession of a NES, and a copy of Super Mario Bros 3. It was that game that made me realise that games were more than just toys to idly while away time – they were capable of being masterpieces. I’m here now, looking for more of those masterpieces.

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