Try Assassin’s Creed Mirage – Back to the Roots Very Enjoyable

When talking about the Assassin’s Creed series, gamers, especially those who are big fans, maybe some of them really miss the early era where stealth and parkour were the main parts of the mechanics. Ubisoft itself has granted this through Assassin’s Creed Mirage which will be released soon next October.

Before that, we had the opportunity to try out Assassin’s Creed Mirage in a hands-on session shared by Ubisoft. At least we tried it for the first hour of the game. What would it be like if Assassin’s Creed returned to its roots? Let’s look at the article!

Storyline

“In the ninth century AD, Baghdad was at the peak of its glory, leading the world in science, art, innovation and trade. Amidst a bustling cityscape, a conflicted orphan with a tragic past must navigate the streets to survive.”

In Assassin’s Creed Mirage, we play as Basim Ibn Ishaq, a cunning street thief with terrifying visions who seeks justice and answers.

After carrying out his revenge, Basim left Baghdad and joined an ancient group called The Hidden Ones (now called the Assassin Brotherhood). He did so under the guidance of a Persian woman named Roshan and was tasked with finding members of the Order of the Ancients (now called the Templar Order).

In this game you will see a younger Basim, who was previously seen and played a large role towards the end of AC: Valhalla, where the narrative was described as a “tragic tale of coming of age”. Since the game is set in the 9th century, this places Mirage in line with the canonical timeline before the events of Valhalla and even before the first game in the franchise.

From this perspective, this new series will be interesting because it will likely explain more about Basim, a character we don’t know much about, and the historical background of the Assassins before they were defeated by the Templars. Now, you can’t choose between two playable characters in Mirage, and there are no dialogue options available in the narrative.

Stealth Gameplay Emphasis

Yes, several previous series of Assassin’s Creed have turned into an RPG game over time with a very massive open-world world and takes a long time to complete. But Ubisoft now aims to attract the attention of long-time players of the series with a more concise game.

It’s important to note that Assassin’s Creed Mirage will not feature the expansive world that Origins, Odyssey, and Valhalla provide. Instead, Mirage will be divided into several different small areas. Baghdad will be the main setting for this game, although I also explored Anbar and Alamut while trying it out.

Apart from being more concise, Mirage will place more emphasis on stealth and parkour abilities which have been the roots since the first series was released. What’s more interesting? Black Box missions will return, and Basim will be able to look around and find new ways to approach and kill his targets.

Basim, unlike Bayek, Kassandra, and Eivor, is not a fighter who can attack multiple enemies openly while blocking attacks. When trying to kill a target, you have to be strategic, setting traps secretly and hiding out of sight. And if found, it’s probably best to run away and try again later because if you force yourself to fight, you’ll likely lose.

You will die faster if you start fighting with big and strong enemies and imagine it as playing like the Valhalla series. Take your time, look around, be smart, move fast, kill, disappear. That’s how to play in Mirage.

There’s a ton of added stealth variety, which is one of Mirage’s most important improvements. You now have more options to become a silent assassin besides hiding behind walls or using crowds to avoid detection. The most practical is Assassin Focus, which allows to mark and kill targets quickly.

You can use chain assassination when you have several targets in a row, and ideally, remain undetected. However, strategizing how to use chain assassinations as well as utilizing the “tools” available, such as blowpipes to put enemies to sleep or traps to poison enemies if they get too close, all encourage players to think strategically and place a focus on stealth.

Additionally, the eagle you have (Enkidu) can be very helpful; however, due to better enemy AI, the eagles are now vulnerable to enemy archer attacks. For stealth fans, this adds a new layer of strategy to the game and makes it more interesting than before.

There is also a “Wanted System” in this game where if you “barbarize” more often, aka kill opponents while in sight, then you can get a bounty which will disrupt exploration. To lower the Wanted level, we can lower the wanted level by bribing. The developer will really force players to play stealth.

Parkour

When we tried it for the first time, we had to admit that this game had the best parkour system, Basim had various abilities that allowed him to move around Baghdad quickly, compared to the previous game, parkour moved at a much faster and freer speed.

Since corner swings are now behind, players can simply move the controller quickly, turn around, and continue in a different direction while pole vaulting allows them to quickly cross gaps while running… It combines old and new mechanics, for a slightly fresher look.

The city was built specifically to encourage parkour, and the entire area is covered with balconies and columns for seemingly no other reason than to help the assassin carry out. The game’s level design places a heavy emphasis on vertical buildings. This means that even though the streets become busier, the developer ensured players can climb on and off the rooftops, and explore the heights that Baghdad has to offer.

Visual and Environmental Quality

As I said, Assassin’s Creed Mirage promises to take players on an exciting journey through vibrant middle eastern culture. The story takes place in the ninth century, which is the period of the Abbasid Empire.

In terms of graphics and visuals, this game is fantastic. The environment in this game is made lively and busy with stunning graphics. If you enjoyed the early Assassin’s Creed games and their Middle Eastern settings, you’ll enjoy this one for the attention to detail in the architecture, clothing, and cultural elements.

Additionally, the game has received praise and attention for its accurate depiction of Muslim religion and culture. Examples include appropriate clothing at that time such as hijab, taqiyah, etc., Azan, the language spoken with accurate greetings: the companions will say Assalamualaikum and so on.

Conclusion

Honestly, I enjoyed every second I played during the preview session. I myself haven’t played an Assassin’s Creed game in this style for a long time. This game combines various elements from several Assassin’s Creed games from previous years, but in the end it is very similar to the design and atmosphere of the original game, going back to the roots.

In short, this game looks promising. Assassin’s Creed Mirage should be a distinctive and interesting addition to the AC series thanks to the game’s new stealth system, complex open world setting, and attention to the series’ origins. For fans of the early era of Assassin’s Creed, you likely won’t be disappointed again.

Assassin’s Creed Mirage will be released on October 5, 2023 for Xbox One, Xbox Series, PS4, PS5, and PC via the Ubisoft Store and Epic Games Store. If you are interested in playing it, you can pre-order via the official website HERE.

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