Assassin's Creed Mirage: Is it all good in the hood?
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Assassin’s Creed Mirage brings us back to the basics of the franchise. Gone are the huge maps and witcher-esque fighting of the last three instalments. Ubisoft takes us down a nostalgic Animus trip by stripping the game back to where it began, with stealth, and a lot of stabbing. Was this a genius move or just laziness? Let’s find out.

Looking back, over my shoulder

Assassin’s Creed Mirage is set in 9th Century Baghdad, it tells the story of familiar face Basim Ibn Ishaq first seen in Valhalla, so it serves as a prequel of sorts, from lowly thief to master Assassin, a story that kinda features a lot in the franchise. Mirage simplifies the battle between the Hidden Ones and The Order (Assassins vs Templars). It plays much like the earlier games, with diverse mission designs and set-pieces, all framed around investigation and stealth in carefully designed city areas.

Parkour has also been stripped back, with just holding a button to automatically leap from obstacle to obstacle. This is maybe a little too stripped back, all the way back to when it was clunky at times. Sometimes you just leap off a building in the wrong direction for no reason or can’t parkour over a small wall when you just climbed up the huge city walls.

I’m glad that there is such emphasis on stealth kills. When you do mess up and alert the numerous city guards the fighting is less than desirable. I found that a lot of the time pressing the attack button didn’t register. When it did the enemy didn’t flinch or react.

It’s the little things

Places where Assassin’s Creed Mirage excels are the story missions, Contracts, and pickpocketing of unexpecting victims. Mirage has some great missions that remind you why you fell in love with the series. Whether it’s stalking victims, or infiltrating Baghdad’s most secure areas. It never fails to keep things interesting and varied, without getting overly repetitive.

The contract missions are also good fun. Each bureau has a contract notice board with various types of requests. You can be sneaking your way into a camp to save a prisoner in one. Then the next stealing a boat in a merchant compound. They are a nice break from the storyline and a way to grind much-needed materials and tokens. But my favourite thing to do in the whole game is pickpocketing. Nothing joys me more than sneaking up to someone, relieving them of their wealth. Then I hide just in earshot and wait to see how long it takes for them to realize they’ve been robbed. It’s the simple things in the life of a master assassin.

Lightening doesn’t strike twice

When Mirage works it really works. There is a great Assassin’s Creed game hidden in there but all the great missions and beautifully crafted city can’t paper over the buggy cracks. Just like in other pop culture platforms nostalgia can only get you so far. I hope all the die-hards who were crying to Ubisoft to bring back old-school Assassin’s Creed are happy because I would kill for another Odyssey.

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About The Author

Dec is a married gamer of 4 kids and 3 dogs so how does he get the time to game? only the gods know

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