As expected, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey featured heavily during Ubisoft’s E3 showcase after being previously leaked late last month. The new entry in the series is scheduled for release on October 5th on PS4, Xbox One, and PC. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is set during Ancient Greece, and sees players take on the role of a mercenary – descending from King Leonidas of Spartan fame – on their way to becoming a spartan hero.
Exploring a variety of islands, ports, cities, and mountain passes, players can choose to play as one of two characters, Alexios and Kassandra. These two are not a female and a male version of the same character, but are unique with their own personalities and appearances, though their scripts will remain largely the same throughout the game. Coupled with this is a focus on dialogues choices that have a direct impact on relationships, romance, and the world at large, multiple endings, and a continued expansion of the RPG elements successfully introduced in Assassin’s Creed Origins.
As speculated, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is very much a naval affair with the return of a proprietary vessel that can be customized and upgraded. Find and hire a crew to help navigate the Aegean sea as well. Mythological creatures and legends also feature.
A la 300, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey includes large scale 150 vs 150 battles arbitrated by a meter that determines the player’s impact on overall victory depending on how they perform during the fight. This features is present to underline the backdrop of the ongoing conflict between Athens and Sparta, known as the Peloponnese War.
With Origins’ release less than a year ago, the temptation is to chastise Ubisoft for not learning the lessons from the recent past and releasing a game so shortly after the last. In reality, Odyssey has been in the works since 2015, and is being developed by a completely different team to Origins. Ubisoft, all too conscious of the waning quality of their franchise, have conjured up a multiple phased plan to reverse the trend starting with last year’s Origins, which began the transition towards a bona fide RPG series.
Ubisoft released a game play walk through depicting the general flow of a mission, and though the resemblance to Origins is striking, it feels as if Ubisoft haven’t simply rested on their laurels. New combat mechanics, the idea of players interacting with historical figures and having an impact on how political events transpire all suggest Ubisoft is serious about implementing notable changes and improvements. For the moment, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey doesn’t feel like a disingenuous rehashing of what worked so well with Origins, but a fresh, progressive entry.