Unbearably tedious plot, with cutscene after cutscene, exposition and more exposition, and not nearly enough gameplay.
The game shows a lot of promise with incredible graphics, very engaging atmosphere and a character that seems a lot more cerebral and dark than his predecessors. What's more, the environments are totally new and begging to be explored.
Unfortunately, before you can explore, you have more intolerably boring exposition to get through, more cutscenes...and you get to walk between them. How generous of this game to let you do that!
And when you do get to take the controls back (finally) you're wondering what the hell your mission entails and what you're supposed to be doing. As a result, the purpose of the game ends up as "run towards the green dot for the next cutscene" .
It doesn't take long to realise that the controls have been changed since the previous AC games. Some are fairly positive changes, but the revised combat system feels little more than quicktime events. You press the right button at the right time and you see a cutscene of him taking out several enemies. This is mixed in with a bit of punching. This is such a disappointment as the combat in AC2 was absolutely perfect and so much fun!
Then comes another major flaw...the introduction of guns. Unlike most other games where you press a button to fire, AC3 requires that you hold the button and release to fire. Sometimes you're automatically locked to a target and will shoot them without much choice. Other times you have to point a crosshair at a target, hold and shoot. This takes long enough as it is and is very irritating, but it gets even worse when you keep trying to shoot and nothing happens. You just stand there and get shot. This occurs when the target is out of range or your gun is empty. But here comes the next annoyance...you need to reload many of the guns after each shot and it's done at realtime speed, so involves waiting around until it's reloaded until you can resume your gunfight. I get that the developers wanted it to be authentic, but what about fun and enjoyment? You know, the entire reason for playing a game!
Maybe things pick up eventually and you're given more freedom to actually play the game, instead of travelling between cutscenes, but I gave it more than a fair chance and was getting so bored I started to feel trapped and desperate for it to stop.