Game Summary: Step into the past and relive history through the eyes of Edward Kenway a Pirate in the Carribean during the early 1700’s.
After AC3’s horrible main character in Connor, who was as likeable as the trees or stones he free ran over, we finally get an interesting character in his grandfather Edward! That isn’t to say that he’s a likeable pirate, he’s pretty much a jerk ass to everyone for most of the game. However he does learn in the end after the deaths of a few of his friends that he needs to grow up and do more than just think about himself and his dreams. Of the side cast I like James Kidd the most. Blackbeard is pretty fun to be around as well, although he’s as much a jerk ass as Edward is.
Gameplay: I have to say that I really like how they’ve fixed lots of little things that bugged me in previous games, but there were some things that felt worse. One thing that could have been better was the tree running. There were very few places to get up trees and sometimes they weren’t very obvious. Also they seemed to remove most of the cliff climbing from AC3, which kind of blows because it would have made a few missions more interesting in the variety of choices of how to go about them approach-wise if I could climb up more than just 3 or 4 cliffs in the entire freaking game. Combat is much improved, although I wished Edward would do more of the roll evade and counter attack into the opponents backside more often. Another other thing that really bugs me is that they removed the ability to use the Rope Dart to easily dispatch heavy enemies, who are not counterable without being in a killchain already. I thought that this was an interesting option in AC3 and that the lack of it makes the combat a little more shallow. Other missed things about combat is the lack of an efficient ranged kill weapon that was silent. I loved using the Bow in AC3 and the Crossbow in Brotherhood to easily dispatch rooftop guards so I could get the drop on guards below me without alerting them to my presence. Sure I enjoyed the blowgun, but it wasn’t nearly as efficient in removing those pesky rooftop guards that plague me in every follow and eavesdrop mission. In terms of mini-games, something I either hate or love depending on how they are done, I enjoyed most of the Hacking mini games, except the Frogger like one. I really hope that I never have to see another one of those in an AC game again, along with those freaking tailing and eavesdropping missions.
Story: Interesting, and the present day stuff is pretty good. Even without the Present Day hero Desmond from the previous games it still feels pretty good, plus Shaun and Rebecca even show up!
Music: Amazing, but the best part are the Sea Shanties that you can get your crew to sing while you travel around the Caribbean. My favorite is “The Fish and the Sea”
Overall: Good game. If I could go back in time and tell my past self whether or not to buy it, I’d tell him to buy it.
For those who enjoy: Pirates, Alternate History Fantasy series, A decent stealth game.
Not for those who don’t enjoy: Frustrating mini-games that hide some of the games more interesting lore bits. Lots of Trial and Error when you try something and need to try a different way it can be frustrating to those with little patience.