Assassin’s Creed: Liberation is hotly tipped to become a must-have title for PlayStation Vita owners when it’s released this October. During Gamescom 2012, we sat down with developers from Ubisoft Sofia to see the game in action. With Conner plying his trade in Assassin’s Creed 3 on home consoles and PC, you play a female assassin called Aveline. Ubisoft Sofia revealed that the campaign within Liberation would be between 15-20 hours long which gives a good indication how much time has been spent making this a fully fledged title for the series rather than a poor spin off like we have seen with other franchises in the past. This is a title which really does take advantage of the power that the PlayStation Vita has under the hood and it’s clear that the team had this in mind when developing the game.
Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation is set within New Orleans in 1771 and features the ability to complete missions with three different outcomes thanks to the ability to change Aveline’s costume attire. First off we were shown her typical assassin style costume and a mission in which she has to acquire some top-secret military documents. Using her climbing abilities and a whip, Aveline scales rooftops and then uses one of her weapons, a blow pipe, to take down anyone that gets in her way. Once she has eliminated various soldiers, she then descends to her destination within the compound where she is met by more guards. Using her whip in combination with her hidden blades, she lets out a fury of ferocious attacks before acquiring the highly secret documents and then using the rooftops to escape.
Within Assassin’s Creed III: Liberations is an option to change clothes by entering a costume booth and then exiting with a new look to take on the same mission a completely different way. This time round, Aveline appears dressed in a high end gown that would only be associated with a wealthy family. Ubisoft Sofia revealed that this option is available in the campaign because she is the daughter of a wealthy merchant so wealth and money is not a problem for her. Dressed in her wealthy attire and a parasol (equipped with a gun), she uses her feminine charms to get herself an escort to keep her safe and lower any suspicion about her before disposing of her escort guard in a quiet area using the gun within her parasol. Once she has retrieved the documents (just like before) she than has to make a break for it but due to the weight of her gown, she cannot climb or scales walls so her strategy has to change for him to make her escape. Seeing a group of guards near an exit, she uses a dart from her parasol to distract the guards and then makes a break for it without being detected.
The last and final option that we were shown for the same mission sees Aveline working as a servant. With a crate in hand and dressed in poor clothing, due to her working as a servant for the guards, she walks straight past the unsuspicious guards and then uses money to offer poor residents of the city to challenge some guards to a fight. Once the distraction is in place, she then nears closer to her target and once in close proximity, uses her hidden blade to kill her target in one mighty blow to the heart. Once her target has been eliminated, she then has the ability of scouring the rooftops again due to her costume being very lightweight and in turn, she is back to being a nimble assassin again. Using the rooftops to escape and out of the clutches of pursuing guards, the mission and the presentation ends.
One thing that really stands out with Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation is the huge replay value that the game offers with each mission having three alternative ways of completion and its up to the player to decide which way they want to complete a mission. This adds a huge amount to the game and with a campaign that features 15-20 hours of main and side missions, thats huge. Graphically the game looks beautiful. It may not have the swagger and scale that its big brother has on the main consoles, but considering this title is on a handheld system, it’s incredible and it’s clear that Ubisoft Sofia have used the Vita’s powerful hardware very well indeed to create what is one of the best looking titles on the Sony handheld. Before I had seen any gameplay footage, I’ll admit that I was skeptical as to how good Liberation would be as it didn’t really grab me like I expected. But now that I’ve seen it with my own eyes, it has changed my philosophy completely.
Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation looks like a brilliant addition to the AC series and a title which all PlayStation Vita owners will be very happy with once the game is released in October. With multiple mission types, a huge campaign and all beautifully rendered on the super high-res screen, this could well be a game that will spark a huge interest in the PS Vita. There were worries that this addition to the series would hinder the main Assassin’s Creed games on consoles, but after what I have seen, this is not the case at all.