Review: Assassin's Creed: Odyssey

Jimmy Athey reviews his marathon of the latest game in the Assassin's Creed series

Jimmy Athey
22nd October 2018
Image Credit: IGDB

As someone who fell out of love with the Assassin’s Creed series in recent years, last year’s Origins was a nice welcome back to a franchise that, in its early years, contained some of my favourite games.

However, Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey goes above and beyond with the series in a way that I absolutely love. With a limited amount of time for video games  these days it takes a lot to get me hooked, but I can safely say that Odyssey is fishing.

I urge all of you to play this game, and play it the way you want.

First of all, the setting of Ancient Greece is wonderful, and it especially appeals to my inner ancient history student. Wandering round my favourite part in history (431 BCE) had my nerdometer through the roof. Obviously, the map of Greece has been downsized, but the major landmarks are there and, even with many hours under my belt, I still have about 80% of the map to discover.

When at a loose end between story and side quests, I tend to roam the wilderness. From hunting bears to collect their testicles for an ‘old nymph’, to saving someone from a group of cultists, there always seems to be a massive distraction.

Odyssey’s story is very strong, right from the first scene in which you take control of the legendary Leonidas (who is accurately portrayed as an older man: well done Ubisoft) during the battle of Thermopylae, to then becoming a mercenary on the island of Kephallonia.

Without giving away spoilers, the ‘Odyssey’ is about finding out the reason for your character’s tragic past and their path to becoming a legend.

It’s a simple, yet wonderful story which cleverly mixes fictional characters with very real events and people from the second Peloponnesian war between Sparta and Athens.

A noteworthy, masterfully integrated feature in the game is the ability to choose to play as either a man or woman. Even though the core gameplay experience is the same when playing as either character, I love how Kassandra fits in to the world.

Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey goes above and beyond with the series in a way that I absolutely love.

The whole game is built on your choices, with different paths opening based on different dialogue trees. Choosing Kassandra, the female playable character, makes total sense for the way I play; having played as a male for all the games in the series to date, this choice is such a breath of fresh air. You can really tell that this game is built with her in mind.

Ubisoft handled introducing a female lead perfectly. It doesn’t seem forced and she is a total badass. May other developers take note on Kassandra; she isn’t an agenda being forced down our throats - she is a fleshed out, wonderful character who still makes total sense in a world where she probably wouldn’t have existed in real life.

I urge all of you to play this game, and play it the way you want.

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