Old Man Climbing Simulator

This post contains spoilers for Assassin’s Creed III. But I’m so late to the party people probably don’t care anymore.

Probably because it didn’t look as pretty as this.

A few months ago I finished a cheap copy of Assassin’s Creed III on the Wii U. Completing that game and seeing Desmond make his grand exit AKA get zapped and fall flat on his face made me remember that I never actually finished Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood.

That made me play it for the sake of finishing Ezio’s story – you have to go from seeing him as a young whippersnapper to being The Big Daddy.

So I ditched the beauty of the Frontier (boo) and Connor’s grumpy face (yay) for Italy and Ezio and pigeon coops. AC: Brotherhood, or maybe I should just call it AC: B or maybe ACB or whatever was only… okay. I remember playing ACII or AC2 or AC Ezio or whatever and enjoying it but I can’t remember the details – did I kill the Pope at one point? Anyway, ACBros With Hoods was only okay as well because I realised I had dropped out of the game around halfway through thanks to encountering an annoying side mission with a poisoned courtesan and a dodgy doctor and came close to dropping it again when I couldn’t remember the controls. I persisted anyway, re-learning how to kill people ‘stealthily’ i.e. by accident, skipping the side missions and sitting through a frankly ridiculous story where that one guy just. Wouldn’t. DIE. OH MY GOD.


After that, I had to go on to Assassin’s Creed: Revelations. Someone remind me why I stopped playing this series! It’s so much fun to wander around climbing towers and buying shops and building things! Not so much playing through the story missions although Ezio as a bard was hilarious enough. A bit telling though that the thing I find the most entertaining isn’t the story but the exploration of the environment.

But then still, this game was only okay. For one, it made me sad. What made me sad about Assassin’s Creed: Revelations or AC: Rev or ACR or The Last AC With Ezio is exactly that – it’s The Last Game With Ezio. That made me play it for the sake of finishing his story – don’t talk to me about how his story actually ends, just don’t – you have to go from seeing him as a young whippersnapper to being The Big Daddy. Or actually, not so much since he seemed to spend most of the game getting told how to do things by young ‘uns and being the butt of (good-natured) jokes about how he can still move like a twenty year-old.

He certainly has some moves since he impressed Sofia.
He certainly has some moves since he impressed Sofia.

Someone called ACR or AC: TLGWE ‘Old Man Climbing Simulator’, which is not only pretty funny but highly accurate. Sure, he’s old. That’s kind of sort of the point. But the game itself really makes you feel the formula. Maybe it’s a symptom of playing three AC games consecutively, but it just felt like going through the motions. It was fun enough but not massively entertaining. The Ezio parts were good but the meta ‘Desmond explores his past through blocks’ sections can burn in hell.

Ezio makes those painful grunting noises when he lands heavily on his knees because by this point he probably has little to no cartilage left like Batman. The Old Man Climbing Simulator name just seems more and more fitting since I did spend 75% of the time on rooftops, or falling off rooftops, or trying to detach my Sticky Assassin from surfaces that he climbed without me intending him to. I pushed the button to run around the building, not hang by a ledge — why in the hell are you jumping on those market stalls?

One more thing about this game: I swear that Altair wasn’t quite as good-looking the first time I met him. Well, that’s progression in graphics for you. I finished ACR/AC Ezio With Flashbacks and immediately threw it back into the drawer. Consider me officially back into this series, although it might be a while before I embark on AC4/The Piratepocalypse/The One with the Pirates.

And whales! Or dolphins?
And whales! Or dolphins?



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2 responses to “Old Man Climbing Simulator”

  1. Thomas William Haley avatar
    Thomas William Haley

    Can’t help but agree with you about the story, I always felt like the stories set in the past were just obstacles to getting to the good sci-fi-y stuff that’s at the end of each game. I played through all of AC2, skipping every cutscene after the opening up until that guy at the end who had the hilarious combination of taking forever to die but being able to be tripped infinitely and didn’t feel that I missed out on anything. But still, Aliens! woooo!

    1. Susan avatar

      Aww, I like the Past Assassin stories and the People Who Came Before aka ALIENS stories. Actually, I like the Past Assassin stories. The Desmond sections are the ones where I wish I could skip completely but don’t because boo, they contain important bits of alien information. Aliens! Woo!

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