It took me 4 months and a little over 60 hours, but I finally finished the main story of Assassin’s Creed Origins. Now before I wind up mis-representing the game, I should point out that the average time to beat the main story is 26.5 hours, according to howlongtobeat.com. I’ve often mentioned that I’m a slow-paced gamer and this is a perfect example.
It took me so long because first, I rarely used fast travel. I found the world so enjoyable to travel around that I generally opted to get from A to B by horseback or boat (or even running). Second, for a long time I was picking my quests by level rather than following a storyline. That caused me to ping-pong back and forth across the map (and I think it took away from the story since it all got fragmented at times…I wouldn’t advise playing this way). I did a lot of side quests and activities too (though not all…yet). Howlongtobeat says 47.5 hours for “main and extras” which is closer to my time.
One of the best post-launch decisions Ubisoft made was to add enemy scaling. This is optional but it’s a good way to remove the pressure to do side-quests before you ‘out level’ them (which was what led to my ping-pong playstyle). With scaling on, if you’re level 35 and doing a level 20 quest, the enemies will be level 33-35-ish, though unfortunately the rewards don’t scale up.
ACO has been my ‘comfort game’ recently. It’s the game I boot up when I just want to relax, explore, gawk at gorgeous visuals, and not stress out too much. I’m playing on the Normal difficulty with enemy scaling turned on and it’s a pretty easy game. If you decide to play and relish a challenge I’d bump up the difficulty a bit.
What’s really surprising to me is that even after finishing the story, I’m not tired of the game. Not in the least. I still have tombs to explore, side quests galore, treasures to plunder and of course the first DLC (The Hidden Ones) is already out and the 2nd is coming out this month. In fact it’s the DLC that caused me to decide to finish the story…I just didn’t want to get too far behind.
So yeah, this game is pretty special to me. Now granted I’m one of the few among my social circles that enjoys Assassin’s Creed games. I’ve finished all but the first. And I enjoy Ubi games. ACO feels different from other AC games; they’ve removed some of the more annoying mission types (like the ones where you have to follow a couple of NPCs while staying hidden) and they’ve added a ton of loot and RPG aspects. In fact it’s such an RPG now that the DLC raises the level cap.
From a purely AC stand-point, this isn’t my favorite AC game since the history they’re covering is not well known to me. One of the most fun aspects of AC games is the Forest Gump angle, where you’re an assassin involved with famous people and events we’re familiar with. Hanging at the pub as Jacob Frye, paling around with Charles Dickens and Charles Darwin? Yes, please. ACO has Ceasar and Cleopatra and those were pretty much the only names I was really familiar with. Just not my era.
But from a GAME stand-point, I feel like ACO is the most accessible game in the series. You don’t have to be a history buff to enjoy it; it’s just a good solid adventure/rpg. If it’s your first AC game you’ll be a little confused by some of the references, but nothing that will spoil the story for you. And for fans of the series, it’s fun to see how this all started, though it’s all pretty dark, as befits the subject matter. Heck they even reveal the origin of the Assassin’s Symbol. 🙂
And now, I’m going to dive back in while I still have some weekend left.