The July 2017 issue of Game Informer has leaked ahead of its planned release, lifting the veil on Assassin’s Creed Origins, its cover story, ahead of the game’s June 12 announcement.
Due out for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on October 27 (and optimized for Project Scorpio), Assassin’s Creed Origins has been in production since before Assassin’s Creed Unity. It uses a brand new fighting system with new A.I., and rather than a mini-map features an Elder Scrolls-like compass at the top of the screen. There is no longer a button to sprint, as running speed depends on the analog stick. Crouching will also return, and buttons for free running up and down have been removed. Everything in the game can be climbed, including mountains and rocks. The series’ mainstay Eagle Vision will return, which is done through an eagle named Senu, but is now a subtle pulse that highlights objects rather than enemies. Puzzles will return, but promise to be more challenging and have less switches.
The story is being kept secret for now, but the game is set during the ascent and reign of Cleopatra. The main character is named Bayek, a man in his 30s who starts off as a Medjay (sheriff-type character) before becoming founder of the Assassins Brotherhood, and although he is not the only playable character, the other character is being kept secret. Cities large and small with many landmarks including Memphis and Alexandria will appear. Non-player characters follow a day and night cycle in that there are times that they eat, sleep, work, and “answer the call of nature” (everybody poops). There are also gladiator battles in arenas.
Combat is free-form, more hit box-driven, and free of counters. The right shoulder and trigger buttons are used to attack, while the left shoulder button is used to lock-on. A.I. enemies no longer take turns to attack. An adrenaline gauge builds up as you fight, which can be used to unleash powerful attacks when both attack buttons are pressed. Enemies more powerful than yourself can no longer be one hit-killed with the hidden blade, which the player will have to enhance. Enemy arrows can be deflected with your sheild, and those that stick to the shield can be picked up and added to your inventory. You can also poison dead bodies, lure enemies, and tame animals.
Treasures can be found in the depths of the water, such as in sunken ships you can swim to and long-forgotten ruins you can tomb raid. There are also legendary items that players can loot. The stat element of customization has been removed, meaning you can customize the character’s appearance without it affecting his stats. A new gear system where players can improve specific parts of gear by crafting materials is in place. Two bows or two Merle weapons can be equipped at once, and you can also fire multiple arrows at once—even from a moving camel or horse. The leveling system is capped at level 40. There is also a more in-depth ability graph with three paths (Seer, Warrior, and Hunter).