NOTE: This gonna be kinda spoilerific blog about Assassins Creed 3 and AC3: Liberation.
I finally finished Assassins Creed 3: Liberation. I guess it had the same sort of problem as Assassins Creed 3 had where it takes a very long time to get going. Except where AC3 had you playing as Haythem for a few hours then passing it off to Connor, AC3L just takes a long time to get going.
Around half way to near the end of the game the dynamics of Avelines family start to come to the fore. [spoiler] I was shocked to find Aveline siding with the Templars then suddenly switching sides killing off the Templar lead who was *DUN DUN DUUNN!* your own doting step-mom! [/spoiler]
Connors story seems a little under baked, like there is clearly something important going on between Connor and his dad Haythem, and Connor questioning his own motives. To me at least as the player there seemed to be this unspoken thing with Connor saying to his dad you were right as kinda confirmed evident from the deleted soliloquy.
This mudding of the waters seen in both Connors and Avelines morality between the principals of the Assassins and Templars is a welcome addition to the lore. Its why I find the characters and factions of like Battlestar Galactica, Game of Thrones, Mass Effect so fascinating and often make for my absolute favorite pieces of fiction.
However Aveline and Connor both suffer from the syndrome of being good for being good. Though in Avelines case, just have simple understanding that shes still colored women in 1700s New Orleans when slavery pervades over the society, who is protected, educated and loved by her auspicious father. It is not a great leap to understand Avelines disdain for slavery, its not simply rooted in the beliefs of team Assassin (as evident from Haythem segment in AC3), and its personal.
Ironically, Aveline and Connor I end up liking, but between the two, Aveline more so. In AC3:L you have the three personas Assassin, Lady, Slave, for the first time an Assassin really uses their guile, cunningness and whit. That isnt to say that this is offsetted by making Aveline a weakling, she is absolutely not in her assassins outfit, Im just saying I find it refreshing that Aveline is an Assassin who has a mind and often uses disguises well. They are times a little video-game like but if you have the bare minimum imagination you can fill in the gaps of what's supposed to be going on in each segment.
Connor I find interesting, as a case of being a futile cause and making a problem much worse when you think your part of the solution. The whole point was as I got that Connor is a stubborn driven individual who has a cookie-cutter look at who the Templars are. And in this case in AC3 the Templars are kinda the good guys here, but that is consistently being over-written by Connors antics.
When I look back at AC3, I remember the homestead that you run and the types of people who come to it. The female hunter, the woman who wants to get away from her abusive husband and live her life, the black couple who have a baby and all of them are not treated any differently or any worse. Contrast this with as Connor sees the last shot of a British ship in New York, he looks to his right at the dock and sees slaves still being auctioned off, also knowing that his tribe have abandoned their lands with irreparable damage done to them.
Thats probably why I like Connor, hes not at all my favorite, but hes certainly more interesting than the overall dour Altair. And Avelines character and her stories twists from half way onto the end had me really engaged.
For me, so far, the best Assassins go as follows Ezio > Aveline > Connor > Altair. I like both games a lot and will likely try to platinum both in due time, especially the multiplayer ones before their communities dry up.
Am I looking forward to Assassins Creed 4 : Black Flag? Sure am, little surprised that theyre going the pirate route, along with following Edward Kenway, Connors grandfather. My biggest lament is that Assassins Creed 3 : Liberation is its only on the Vita and that the Vita is not that great of a success yet. Im not one of those folks who bemoans for every other game to have a female lead, but Assassins Creed series is one of those series where its themes and universe is so wide open and diverse that it is a crying shame that Ubisoft hasnt at least tried by now to make a mainline entry with a female lead. But if the Vitas was a test of anything, it was a great success selling some 600,000 copies of the game. Pretty damn good for a game with a system install base of just over 2 million. So heres to hoping.
I will very likely go back to try to platinum these games in due time, targeting first their multiplayer trophies before their communities dry up. Hopefully they'll have gotten the rest of glitches taken care of.
One More Thing: the one thing I hated about playing the AC3:L? I hate those put the vita in front of a bright light that mini game is so broken, and I often found myself playing in a room that was too dark that I really wished Ubisoft had just give the option to get of having to play that mini game. Got incredibly aggravating at times when it wouldnt work.