Ubisoft and Sony partnered up to offer gamers a bit more incentive to invest in a PlayStation Vita when they announced Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation. It promised to be the same open world adventure we’re used to, but with a new protagonist and a whole new story. From what I played at Gamescom this year, it’s shaping up to be a worthy addition to the franchise, and not just a low budget throw-away title like previous handheld games in the series.
The demo gave the choice of two different missions, but I was only able to play one. I don’t understand German, so it wasn’t obvious what my objective was. I wondered around the city a little bit only to discover the texture pop-in. It wasn’t too bad because it only happened to distant locations, but it was still noticeable. Climbing buildings and trees, running and jumping felt naturally fluid. It felt exactly like playing any other main Assassin’s Creed game which is definitely a plus. I decided to try my hand at taking on a fort full of guards and found that, for the most part, the controls were like the console counterpart. The only differences I found were that eagle vision was relocated to ‘up’ on the D-pad and triangle used your secondary equipped weapon. Even though I was limited to two items (a tomahawk and a pistol) battles remained the same as previous games and still fun. Circle to counter, square to melee attack, and triangle to use your secondary equipped weapon. As always timing is everything with counter-attacks. When your timing is perfect you’re rewarded with a cool and gruesome death animation to slaughter your opponents.
Overall the Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation demo felt just like a fully-fledged console game moulded onto the Vita. This gives me a lot of hope for the Vitas future. The visuals were impressive, the controls were great, and the animations were smooth at 60 frames per second. The only thing I have to look forward to is whether it’ll have as much variety as the console versions, whether there will be multiplayer, where Aveline’s story goes, and how it links to the rest of the Assassin’s Creed universe. This game is definitely one to be excited for if you own a Vita. If not, it might be the extra push you need to coerce you into buying a PlayStation Vita.