Do you recommend Assassin's Creed IV Black Flag?

My history:

AC 1- very dull, quit twice

AC 2 - Liked it a lot, but wow, those controls and quests could be annoying

AC 2 Brotherhood - Liked it a lot again, but some frustrations for sure.

AC 3 - Got it free for PC, but it ran too slowly for me.
Did they improve the games further for IV? I may look like a complainer, but I actually did like AC 2 and its direct sequel quite a bit. I did not play Revelations yet, but do own it.

Anyway, how is the fourth game? What improvements/changes did they make?

Yeah, it’s one of the best pirate games in ages. Too bad a bunch of annoying Assassin’s Creed junk gets in the way.

I was meh about AC before BF. Almost didn’t get it because I get bored with AC games pretty quick.

BF is probably one of the top 5 games I’ve played on PS4. The graphics and art style are very awesome. Very colorful. The water looks real.

More importantly the ship sailing and battles. Wow. Had no interest whatsoever when I picked up the game. Then immediately fell in love with that aspect and focused almost exclusively on sailing and ship battles. Very very well done and amazing fun. The realness of the water adds to it greatly. Pulling into dock on some island over the ultra blue water is beautiful.

Just a great entertaining game. Nothing like any other AC. The lead is very likeable and swashbuckley.

Black flag is the only A.C. I’ve played. It was certainly fun for free. The ship battles were fun.

That’s my feeling. Had a lot of fun while I was pirating. Then I ran out of open world piratey stuff (finding 3,000 nodes doesn’t count) and they wanted me to follow a couple guys for ten minutes as they slowly talked or play the exciting role of a tech company intern getting yelled at.

I liked it less than Assassin’s Creed 2, but it was pretty decent. The ship fights were okay (I don’t know if I ever successfully finished any of the mega-ship fights), but that’s not really what I look for in an Assassin’s Creed game.

I like the installments where you can climb on real-life monuments, and Assassin’s Creed 4 had very little of that (more cliff- or tree-climbing than climbing buildings). I also find Renaissance or American Revolutionary history more interesting than pirate history.

I liked it a lot. Ship battles were great (if awfully simplified). Protagonist was a lot of fun, as well as the historical pirates they put into the game (Blackbeard, Bartholomew Roberts, etc.). The sea shanties were awesome. The real world parts were kind of dull.

I thought AC 1 was … ok, especially for the time. A bit repetative.

I enjoyed AC2 quite a bit, even though the narrative was all over the place IMHO.

Those are the only 2 AC games I’ve completed or cared about. But Black Flag was the one that came closest to bringing me back into the franchise.

I loved the ship combat, and exploring the world. I also liked what (at first) seemed like a more streamlined narrative.

But after a few hours the complexity of the AC universe crept in, and not having played anything besides AC 1 + 2, I felt lost, and frankly I couldn’t give a shit about Estergo or the contemporary factions and their weird apples anymore.

If it was just that I think I would have persevered and kept enjoying the exploration and ship combat, but there was also a lot of the usual AC mission structures that you had to engage in, in order to make progress, and a lot of melee combat, which hasn’t improved. So a few hours later I was done with it too.

It didn’t help that the game is all over the place in terms of performance unless you lock to 30.

1: An extremely rough work that has aged very, very badly. The thing I could never get past was how relentlessly IRRITATING it was. Beggars who’d swarm around you and whine their heads off, preachers who’d blather the same six sentences over and over and over and over, derelicts who’d (stop me if you’ve heard all this before :)) smack you around for no damn reason, and any attempt to curtail any of this was at best temporary and would frequently worsen the situation or even cause you to desync. Oh yeah, historical inaccuracy and boring combat blah blah etc.

2: A masterpiece. Strangely enough, I think the main reason was that it came at the right time: Ubisoft got rid of everything that didn’t work in 1 but hadn’t yet fallen into the hardcore/multiplayer abyss. Thoroughly enjoyable from start to finish and extraordinarily satisfying. I must have did six complete playthroughs. This and 1 were the only two, incidentally, where I got 100% achievements (this one on PS3, the other on X-Box 360).

Brotherhood: Not quite as wonderful as 2, but still tons of fun, and Ezio’s new abilities absolutely rock. Definitely get the bonus content; worth every penny.

Revelations: Another step down, but still pretty good; loved using the hookblade, although getting bombs to work was a bit of a chore.

3: Did a lot of things right, actually enjoyed this more than Revelations, but ultimately there were too many dealbreakers…glitches preventing the sacking of wagons, some tasks were flat-out impossible (the execution scene is an endless nightmare if you’re going for the optional tasks)…and the games. The friggin’, friggin’, friggin’ games. DAMN THE GAMES TO HELL.

Which brings us to Black Flag. It fixed some of the problems from 3 (games are completely unnecessary, you have more options in combat, games are completely unnecessary, optional tasks are less brutal, games are completely unnecessary, and did I mention that games are completely unnecessary?) and is richer and has more depth overall. There’s tons of stuff to explore; you can easily spend hours just finding treasure and building up your fleet. One thing that I think deserves special mention (which almost nobody else ever brings up, alas) are the Epic Ships. These are completely optional, and if you take them on, they will fray your every nerve and frustrate you to the breaking point…BUT if you’re calm, persistent, and patient, you will eventually best them, and the feeling of accomplishment will be incredible. I can count the games that successfully pulled this off on one hand. The usual method is to just make the game ridiculously hard and shovel it out the door. To make a challenge that’s JUUUUUST hard enough to be close to impossible yet give the player incentive to keep fighting on until the moment of triumph takes real effort.

The only real downsides I can think of is that way too much is tied to multiplayer and the network (good luck finding any white whales now) and unlike the previous games there’s no way to generate steady income. You have to be a virtual kleptomanic to get anywhere, and you cannot ever pass up a chance to upgrade your ship.

In all, a big thumbs-up from me. I doubt you’ll be disappointed.

As for the rest: Rogue might be worth it if you can get it really cheap. Otherwise don’t bother; too small and limited. Unity…I’ll make it as simple as I can. NO. You will hate it. Trust me, glitches, clunky stealth mechanics, and Arno’s dubious motivations are just the beginning of the endless, massive, gaping problems with this game. Unity is absolute crap. AVOID. (Here, just read this.) I haven’t really gotten into Syndicate yet; from what I’ve seen, combat is way harder than before and you have much less margin for error. If this is the direction AC is going, I may have to give it up. I’d recommend it only if you have a lot of patience.

I’m not sure if you’re the kind of person who’s only satisfied with 100% completion rates and finishing combats without a scratch, but I am a casual player and I had no difficulties surviving combat in “level-appropriate” missions. Once you get upgraded guns/knives/whatever, you can usually just shoot the bad guys anyways.

My feeling about AC: Syndicate was (a) they made it feel way too much like the Batman Arkham Asylum series for my taste (I like those games, but if I play Assassin’s Creed I want it to feel like Assassin’s Creed) and (b) there were way too many steampunk elements for my taste.

I will add a 3) Not enough Creeding. I’m one of those weirdoes who actually *enjoys *the silly overarching plot of the AC games, with the giant conspiracy involving every last person whose name you vaguely remember from a history book or the grandiose tasks and Forest Gumping through their respective time periods.

In Syndicate, most of the time I had no idea what I was doing or why. I mean yes, there’s a Big Corporate Villain which I must stop for… some reason or other ? Actually I’m not even sure the *protagonists *even know why they’re trying to end him, as they’re not very assassin-y at all and mostly just want to have stealy, stabby, zipliny fun in the Big City. And while you do meet period lights such as Karl Marx or IIRC Conan Doyle, most of them just feel there to be there to a point that tops even AC3 (which felt a lot like “let’s have our protagonist fumble into every last historical event and run into everybody, we’ll figure out why later”)

Don’t get me wrong, I liked the gameplay and all, but felt the plot was sorely lacking.

I also thought the plot was weaker than usual, but most of them are pretty weak, so meh.

However, I was irrationally disappointed that nobody in the game said (as far as I can remember) “Nothing is true; everything is permitted”. It’s the name of the game, people!!

Taking away the ships after black flag was one of the worst mistake the AC franchise did. Highly recommended.

I would love to recommend it, if I could get it to run. My computer far exceeds the requirements, but the game refuses to even load. I’ve tried every tip, trick and theory available online to no avail. I eventually gave up and got a refund from Steam. So disappointing.

Kobal2 - If Syndicate is the type of game where the challenge is dependent on how well-equipped you are…well, in my mind that’s a pretty big black mark against it. Not as bad as Unity, which is a torturous slog even with top quality equipment, but front-ending the difficulty is never a good idea. I like repeat plays, and that TOTALLY kills it. I have a vacation coming up; will try to get back into it and see if things get better.

Oh, Mahaloth, if you do get Black Flag, you’ll find this thread useful.

Bump: I’ve just gotten into playing it, after downloading it on a free weekend some months back. It’s ridiculously fun as long as I’m sailing and listening to my pirates sing. It’s pretty fun when I’m assassinating some goober who needs killin. But good god, what are they thinking with the modern bits, and with making them unskippable?

Pretty soon I’m going to abandon my ship and dive underwater to enjoy Subnautica; but for now, blowing things up real good with my cannons is so satisfying.

Somewhat related, if you like AC IV: Black Flag and online multiplayer, Sea of Thieves might interest you.

Resurrecting to say: “Fuck you, Ubisoft”.

It’s like they had a great idea for a pirate game but no brand recognition to give it marketing legs. They also had brand recognition with AC but were running out of ideas so they mushed the two together. It works to the extent you can avoid the AC bullshit and get on with the pirating. I liked naming my toon Guybrush.

Except they got AC’s worst aspects into the pirate game. Some missions require you to tail a ship. Yes, those fucking tailing missions have tentacles which reach up from the depths of AC to bring your pirating ship down with them. Here, it’s even worse because the idea of a ship tailing another ship through line-of-sight in the age of sail is ridiculous. If you can see the other ship, the other ship can see you. In a busy city, they may well see you but not notice you since there are many other people but in the middle of the ocean, they would notice if some ship was tailing them.

But the worst part of that I’ve seen is the mission I’m at right now, The Siege of Charles-Towne. You are supposed to tail a ship through shallow waters with guard towers and lots of small islands to crash into. If you get spotted, you instafail the mission. And then you have to rewatch the unskippable cutscene Ubisoft is so proud of.

See how cinematic it is? It’s like a MOOOVIE. Video games are a serious, grown up medium, see?

You got spotted? Well then, you get to watch our CINEMATIC cutscene again.

You got spotted again? How luck you are to experience our cutscene once more.

Failed it again? You must like our cutscenes as much as we do!
How do you make a game in 2013 and put an unskippable cutscene right after an automatic savepoint during a mission with detection instafail?

Yeah that mission is a miserable pile.I think I failed 15 or so times.

But I think it is the last truly bad mission. There is more of the stupid modern day shit, but those are merely stupid, not excruciating.

I thought the stealth ship scenes were dumb, but I didn’t find them particularly frustrating. No, I save all my frustration for stupid fucking eavesdropping missions.