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These days, keeping up with games can be a full-time job.
So how do you separate the signal from the noise, the wheat
from the chaff, the Temple Runs from the Temple Jumps? Allow us
to help by regularly selecting a game You Should
Play.


Assassin’s Creed Identity
isn’t the first mobile
Assassin’s Creed game—but it’s the first mobile Assassin’s
Creed game that really embodies the open-world, role-playing
style of the franchise.

The good news is that you don’t have to be a fan of Assassin’s
Creed to play Assassin’s Creed Identity—in fact, you don’t even
have to really know what Assassin’s Creed is to enjoy this
game. The game’s controls can be tricky, but they’re fairly
easy to pick up quickly, and you don’t need to learn an entire
battery of skills for sneaking about, dodging enemies, and
performing parkour to become a competent mobile assassin.

Assassin’s Creed Identity is a premium title, so it will set
you back $5 for the first 10 missions and another $2 for
additional content—but it’s one of the most deluxe mobile
gaming experiences you’ll ever have. Here’s why: 

It’s got console-worthy elements: Assassin’s
Creed Identity looks and feels like a real (albeit scaled-down)
chapter in the franchise—this game plays more like a port of
the original titles instead of a supplementary afterthought.
All the elements you love from the console games are present,
including relatively open-world gameplay, the ability to scale
walls and stealthily take down guards and enemies, and
impressively detailed (and beautiful) graphics.

Ubisoft

The controller scheme, which features two virtual d-pads, can
be trying at times…

In its attempt to stay true to the original Assassin’s Creed
gameplay (scaling walls, jumping from building to building,
performing aerial assassinations and leaping into haystacks),
Assassin’s Creed Identity does struggle a little with its
controller scheme. The game is played with two virtual
d-pads—tapping and holding down the left side of the screen
gives you a movement pad, while tapping and holding down the
right side of the screen lets you look around. All things
considered, these controls aren’t the worst I’ve used in a
touchscreen world, but they occasionally get confusing (you’ll
tap and hold the right side of the screen to look around and
end up walking off a building) and that’s enough to cause
frustration in a game that requires sneaky finesse. Pairing the
game with an external MFi controller improves the experience
significantly, though.

It’s been scaled down nicely for mobile: While
the regular Assassin’s Creed games are played in an open-world
format with ongoing missions and objectives, Assassin’s Creed
Identity is divided up into mobile-sized missions.

main objective mission Ubisoft

The game is divided up into short, mobile-sized missions that
feature objectives and challenges.

You still get a relatively open-world experience within each
mission, but you don’t have to worry about losing significant
progress if you’re playing the game casually while waiting at
line in Starbucks or on your commute. It’s not the longest game
you’ll play—the initial $5 gets you 10 storyline missions (set
in Monteriggioni, Florence, and Rome), and an additional $2
in-app purchase offers 4 extra storyline missions (set in
Forli).

While the game’s controller scheme can be a little clunky, the
game does offer concessions that make the Assassin’s Creed
style more playable on a mobile device. The game automates some
of your assassin’s movements—for example, to climb a wall all
you need to do is run toward it and follow the white arrow that
appears to let you visualize your parkour path—so that the game
ends up feeling smooth and effortless.

There’s plenty of content: The storyline of
Assassin’s Creed Identity may be short, but it’s well
thought-out and deeper than you might expect. Each mission and
challenge rewards you with currency, weapons, armor upgrades,
and codex entries.

codex Ubisoft

The game is full of info and lore to unlock.

The codex features information on the different characters
(including generic NPCs, such as guards and Templars) you
encounter, as well as city information and lore told through
journal entries.

create assassin Ubisoft

You can choose your assassin’s class, develop individual skill
trees, and customize armor and weapons.

Your assassin is customizable beyond just weapons and armor,
too: Each assassin has a class (Berserker, Shadowblade,
Trickster, and the initially-locked Thief), and each class has
its own skill tree. If you don’t like your initial choices, you
can use the game’s currency to unlock a second class slot or to
create a new assassin. Like many mobile games, Assassin’s Creed
Identity has both a regular currency and a premium currency,
but you won’t feel like you need to spend more money
to get the full experience.

Developer: Ubisoft
Platform: iOS (Universal)
Price: $3

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