Black Flag is both a sequel and prequel. Spoiler for anyone who has not played Assassin’s Creed 3: But now that Desmond has died, who will be the next hero? What will happen to the enslaved world controlled by Juno (end spoiler)? Sadly, the continuation of the modern storyline does not seem very appealing. The main character is now an Abstergo Entertainment research analyst who will investigate Edward Kenway, the father of Haytham Kenway, and grandfather of Connor. Edward’s story will take place around the Caribbean islands during the Golden Age of Pirates. From the trailers and game demos, there are some new and captivating aspects of Assassin’s Creed 4.
The Assassin’s Creed series has been remarkably good at capturing historical settings. The main cities are Havana, Kingston, and Nassau in the new game. The players will also be able to explore many locations on the Caribbean islands by traveling on Kenway’s ship called the Jackdaw. There will be specific locations where players can dive underwater in search for treasure. But of course there will be enemies to fight underwater as well. Imagine fighting a giant shark in an Assassin’s Creed game!
Missions can also start on land and continue on sea. There will finally be seamless gameplay with minimal loading. Players will not be interrupted by the blinding white loading screens. Transitions from one place to another and even to cutscenes should be smooth. Assassin’s Creed 4 has also upgraded its combat. Kenway can carry more pistols, have the ability to free range shoot and wait—yes, he can finally wield two weapons! There will be intense fights on land, ships, and underwater. Naval combat will be more prevalent than it has been before. Players can choose what ships to attack and then decide how to board the enemy ship.
Even with the new additions to Black Flag, the game might not be as great as it could be. Storyline has played a big part in the previous games and this time, the plot is not as engaging. It is difficult to determine if rushing to release Assassin’s Creed 4 may be a mistake for Ubisoft. Impressive trailers will be enough to captivate fans, but it will not be enough to make Black Flag a fully developed game (showing off an incomplete build at the Sony Press Conference does nothing to alleviate the worries of fans that the bug issues from Assassin’s Creed 3 will be fixed). There is much love for the series and the bigger the love, the higher the expectations are for the next game. Let’s hope Ubisoft will continue to impress its fans with the release of Assassin’s Creed 4 this Oct 29 on Xbox 360, PC, Wii U, PS3, with Xbox One and PS4 version coming out later (with the Sony version getting exclusive content).