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4.6 out of 5 stars
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag (Xbox 360)
Platform: Xbox 360Edition: Standard EditionChange
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139 of 143 people found the following review helpful
on 29 October 2013
I rarely review things, but after reading the negative reviews, I felt obliged in this case. People are complaining its similar to Assassins Creed 3. Tell me, what did you expect?
Now let me be clear, this is no GTA 5. But that's because its not meant to be! This game is designed with a completely different aim. But enough of that, let me get into it.

Gameplay: Now if your a fan of any other Assassins Creed game, your going to love this one. All the free running and movement has been refined, I have noticed very little of the bugs that used to annoy me all the time - I am yet to plunge fifty feet to my death accidentally jumping the wrong way because of bad controls - even after several hours of gameplay. Assassinating is as slick as ever, and having four guns as opposed to one finally makes them worth shooting! If you enjoyed the Naval battles on AC3, this is definitely for you! So much of the game is based on the open sea, but only if you want is to be. Sure, many missions involve boarding and plundering a ship, but if this isn't your cup of tea - though it is great fun - then you can stick to the cities for the most part (the 3 main ones all being large enough). I haven't yet reached the main idea of harpooning in this game, but thats probably because i spend most of my time causing havoc in Havana, and if the rest of the game is anything to go by, it will be good.

One thing that has been greatly improved is the stealth aspect in this game. It is possible to do almost every mission without entering open combat, and for this I greatly applaud Ubisoft, as stealth had all-but been abandoned in Assassins Creed 3.

However, while everything as been refined and added to, apart from the Naval battles, there isn't a huge amount of new features here, so if you don't like captaining a ship, I would have to recommend you stay away from this one.

Graphics: The graphics in this game are breathtaking. Even on Xbox 360, and I cant wait to see them on next-gen. If i compare it to AC2 (my favorite AC game) they are amazing, but however, if you played AC3, there really isn't that much new in the graphics department, as they were extremely detailed.

Storyline: Reasonably predictable overall, but it's always interesting to learn of Edwards struggles throughout his life. The new Abstergo modern day events that have taken over from Desmond are just about perfect - I personally find them interesting, but they never take you out of the game for too long!

Multiplayer: Not a big multiplayer fan on the AC games, so havent played it yet.

Conclusion: I would give this game an 9/10. Its an excellent game, and any die-hard fans of Assassins Creed will love it. Even if you simply enjoy playing them once in a while, I suggest you pick this one up. It has great gameplay, a decent storyline, and kept me glued to my TV for 4 hours straight when i got it today.

Ignore the other 'supposed diehard fans of AC' and look at it this way. If you enjoyed other Assassins Creed games (here I mostly mean the Ezio era, as many agree AC3 was a step back) and you liked the naval parts of AC3 then you will enjoy this one. If you don't like the Naval Battles, or the Assassins Creed format in General, stay away from this one.

Overall I would highly recommend it, Great game!!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 12 February 2014
Absolutely brilliant. It restored my faith in the franchise, which had been going downhill, particularly with 3. The characters are brilliant and Edwards progression as a character is interesting enough to keep you engaged.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 28 February 2014
I'll admit, I wasn't too keen on AC3. In fact, I ended up trading it in soon after I had bought it. So when I heard that ACIV was going to be about pirates, I lost all faith in Ubisoft.
Being a loyal fan from the very first game, I decided to give this game a go and try it. It restored my faith in Ubisoft, I have to say.
The story wasn't as strong as I would've liked and the modern day Abstergo parts were strange to get used to, but all in all, the characters were memorable and the locations were beautiful. Not to mention the crisp and clear blue sea you spent most of the game travelling on.
Though a lot of the missions got repetitive i.e. eavesdrop ones, there was a lovely blend of stealth and fun which I didn't expect to see.

I would definitely recommend this game.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 11 November 2014
I have played most of the AC games over the years and this is a great addition. The running around town bit, clambering onto rooftops and assassinating people seems to be a smaller part of this game and that detracted from this a bit. But anyway, a list or two.

The Pros:

- More of the same. If you like the series then you will like this game. Climbing and parqouring around town is endlessly diverting and stealthily taking out enemies is never boring. There is a small RPG element to this game but it is very much a linear progression and that keeps things interesting.
- Ship Battles. I wasn't expecting to take to the high seas and engage in ship battles but you do. It feels a bit awkward at first but once you get the hang of it it is huge fun and I would quite happily play just a game involving naval battles as they are quite tactical and boarding a ship and looting it's cargo is a hoot.
- beautifully presented. There are not many bugs in this game and it is very well made with a clear and concise interface. There is a companion iPad app and this works seamlessly...but is a bit of gimmick to be honest.

The Cons:

- Not enough assassinations. You spend a lot of time climbing and accessing towers but once you've done that then the town is yours. The amount of difficult assassinations is very small and none of them are that challenging. The forts have been replaced with Naval forts that are very easy to defeat.
- Too easy. I just haven't found a mission or an assassination that is tough, maybe I'm playing it wrong. The naval battles are easy once you figure out how to range your firing and the assassin bit of the game is very easy.
- Collecting things is pointless. You can clear out an island or a town...but to what end? There is no loot as a result so I did a few and then gave up. Animus fragments are the same - I want to clear a region but I want an incentive.
- Legendary Ship battles are just a boring war of attrition.
- Returning to the future. You go back to Aspergo entertainments modern day office and it makes you undertake some the most boring things in video game history...like take lifts, collect packages from couriers. I have work for that.

Seems there are more cons than pros but this is a good game and a great addition to the series...but Assassins Creed 2 it ain't.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 31 May 2015
Oh dear...AC has lost its way,AC one was amazing on release..no doubt.But had issues with hindsight.Over the last few AC games combat has become fast..flappy..glitchy.

AC one combat was very real,the weapons had clashing weight sounds and delay,combat was realistically slow.AC 4 has just gone silly,slashing around so much the sounds are behind the movement.. (through tv speakers).

AC games are pretty,but your brain tells you when what your seeing doesn't look or feel right.All assassins creed games from 3 period on are look and feel odd during combat.

Its a shame i loved playing them,but il never buy 1 again because its so frustrating.I just played shadow of mordor and expected little but was blown away .Visceral fresh dynamic combat style,once you are upgraded,its alot of fun.Someone tell ubisoft,because AC aint doing so good..
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 12 August 2014
This isn't a meerly a game; it's a life.
I am probably the biggest critic when it comes to realism and gameplay but this game is on another level.
If you have a soul that seeks adventure and you love sandbox (do whatever you like) games then this game will haul you in and drop your anchor.
Gta5? AC 4 blows it out the water.
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I loved AC II, liked Brotherhood, started to get bored by Revelations, hated AC III. AC V, with some of what started to make the AC series different in 3, has taken that a step further towards a pirate, open world adventure, and it's great.

It does run into the same issues as previous games in the series readily do, such as the character trying to jump up to unreachable platforms, or up and off course, when trying to maintain a steady pace in pursuit of something, or when fleeing, a certain number of tasks then start becoming very repetitive - rescuing pirates, or capturing ships. All those additional pursuits are very entertaining in the start, but do become a little plodding, especially when trying upgrade your ship, and sneaking out needful supplies.

The above activities do however make nice breaks from the story, when exploring and opening up the map, commandeering forts, and the like.

The story missions can at times be tricky, but quite often the game is more hazardous when venturing out, running into 'legendary ships,' of which there are 5 monster Man O War's, any of the larger ships in the opening parts of the game, hunting, particularly on land, Jaguars and the like. The game can be completed without overdoing the exploration tasks, which yes do become boring, however a good balance struck between the story and other self lead discoveries is a very satisfying gaming experience.

I do believe the next AC will draw a focus in on the French revolution, which I'm looking forward to. I just hope it isn't a step backwards, and breaks some of the traditional repetitive strains.
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on 14 March 2014
WARNING: MAY CONTAIN SERIOUS SPOILERS!

Despite the title ending with a question mark it's not because this is a bad thing, the complete opposite in fact. How long has the idea of Assassins and Pirates being together in one game been a fantasy for many gamers? Well now it's a reality and a damn good one at that; the world oozes with creativity and detail as well as accuracy and realism, I even find myself sometimes stopping to merely stare at scenery because it's that impressive what they have done with this game. The amount of customization you can put into your ship and town certainly makes you WANT to go and plunder some ships or find some buried treasure unlike in say AC2 where it felt like a chore hunting for treasures and finding those stupid feathers not to mention the best cash earning method in number 2 involved no effort of your own as all you had to do was keep pouring money into your villa and it would pay out 10,000 every 20 minutes in the end. The crafting system has had a lot of thought put into it to so that every animal related item has a use that actually matters to the degree where you WANT to go and hunt animals. On top of that the ship battles have been vastly improved from number 3, some would say easier I say it allows you to have more control of your ship and allows you to actually concentrate on the battle rather than taking 1 specific shot. The melee combat is flashy and over the top, as would be expected of a dual sword wielding pirate and the pistols are single shot flintlocks but they have a clever way to allow you to fire more than 1 shot in a row. Weather is also dynamic which leads to some very interesting and strategic elements in ship battles which even without the dynamic weather is jaw droppingly fun and a beauty to behold anyway.

(Note: A lot of things are compared to Assassin's Creed 2 due to the fact that I haven't played as much of number 3 as I have number 2)
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on 25 February 2014
I was really looking forward to this game, as a big fan of the AC series! And I personally was one of the few who quite liked AC3 for all its shortcomings i found it an enjoyable game and a refreshing change of direction after 3 games with Ezio! And now they took the acclaimed naval combat sessions from AC3 and made that into a game! Now onto black flag! The game takes place about 40ish years before AC3 where you play as Edward Kenway, Grandfather of Ac3's Connor, he is a headstong selfish dick but a likeable one at that and a much more interesting character than Connor.
I found it very enjoyable, the naval open world is huge and crammed with things to do such as whaling, boarding other ships, ship battles, fort battles and underwater ship wrecks to explore! And the modern segments are pretty good as a new memner of Abstergo entertainment with your own animus, it was pretty fun and a nice change of pace after being with bloody desmond for 5 games! haha I glady put about 20 hours into it and got about 86% completion. and yes it is a gr8 game
but there are things that sadly held it back from being the best game in the series, the mains story is a bit of a letdown and is probaly one of the weakest in the series, as it doesnt take itself too serously and some of the main mission are way too short and easy and forgettable ! And those godawful tailing missions are back too and there are a lot of them too! Why Ubisoft?! They are not fun, and boring! get them out for AC5! And as fun as the gameplay is, it is 85% similar to its predecessors, it needs freshening up in AC5, the mechanics and even the visuls are starting to show their age! If this things had of been better this game could and should have been the best AC yet, its better than 3, Revealtions and Brotherhood, but doesnt quite knock 2 off its perch. But i still found it a fun game with a good lead assassin. But Ubi need to freshen it up for the sequel or even the most devoted AC fans will start to turn away. .
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on 25 January 2014
Once again another Assassins Creed game has come, a lot of people say that they are starting to make too many and the game has run its course, I completely disagree, This is one of my favorite Assassins creed games yet, Next to 2 and Brotherhood. You are a captain of your very own ship called the "Jackdaw", your name is Edward Kenway, you have a full crew behind you. You are able to take part in ship battles between the British and the Spanish, you are able to capture ships and then decide what to do with the particular ship. Different ships have different levels, the higher the level, the bigger your take, what I mean is, you are able to take their money and other resources that help you upgrade your own ship. In Assassins creed 3 you were able to liberate certain areas so that they were no longer under Templar control. This has been carried over to this game, however in AC4 you destroy forts, infiltrate the fort and that's how you liberate certain areas of the map. The map is huge, you are able to go wherever you please as it is a free roam game, you are able to use an old fashioned diving bell, go underwater and look for treasure in shipwrecks. The combat system is the same as AC3 which I prefer to the older games. The game is not purely on the sea, although this is a big part of it, you are able to visit different cities and towns which makes you feel like you were in a town like AC3.
As great as this game is, there is one flaw however, Edward Kenway is technically not a master assassin like the others in the previous games, He has the skills but does not become a true assassin until the end of the game. As stated before in previous games, the assassin life chooses someone, and the master assassin of the 18th century (1700's) was Connor, Edward Kenway is the grandfather of Connor and therefore the time span is too close together, they never do meet each other though. Altair was in the 1200's and Ezio was mainly in the 1500/1600's, the time span between Kenway and Connor is less than 100 years. This is probably why they did it.
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