Assassin’s Creed Origins will be released later this year and there is a great deal of speculation on whether it will be an improvement on the last few lacklustre entries to the series. Certainly, hopes have crept a weensy bit higher since the a wealth of gameplay videos were released following E3 showing off the gorgeous backdrop of Ancient Egypt and revealing the new series hero, Bayek, as well as some highlighting changes to the gameplay. Some of these changes, such as the new eagle companion, may seem somewhat familiar to those who have played other major Ubisoft franchises, like Far Cry.

To help allay fears about what will be in store, the game’s director, Ashraf Ismail, has been answering questions on Twitter about Assassin’s Creed Origins and his answers have revealed some interesting tidbits about what we can expect in the new game.

1. Friendly, friendly hippos?

As well as being able to ‘warg’ Game of Thrones style into your all-seeing eagle, you will also have the option to learn an ability that will tame and control the beasts around you. Which beasts though is yet unknown. We have seen hippos, crocodiles, lions, gazelle and camels in the trailers, so all of these may be fair game. Assassination by hippo stampede? Fingers crossed!

2. Got skill?

Building on the skill tree and leveling system that was introduced in Assassins Creed Syndicate, the new level cap will now be set to 40. It will be possible to max out the skill tree but only with ‘a lot of time and effort’. This hopefully reflects on the new range of skills that you will be able to learn as your character grows throughout the game – especially in the hippo befriendment tree!

3. Quests, quests everywhere!

Quests should be available everywhere on the map and not just limited to within towns and cities. There will also be ‘hidden quests’, possibly hinting at those pesky map markers being absent for certain quests. Placing quests everywhere will add much more value to the map of Egypt and not just relegate travelling between cities to finding markers for trophies and collectables.

4. Weather or not?

The rain that made Assassin’s Creed Black Flag so atmospheric will return in AC:O. The map is set across the full extent of ancient Egypt, so we can expect plenty of biomes – from river deltas to vast deserts – all with their own weather.

5. The craft of the hidden blade

Bayek, the new protagonist of Assassins’s Creed Origins, has been seen to have some pretty funky looking weapon tech, including in some shots a curved hidden blade. Ismail has confirmed that you will be able to craft different hidden blades in the game, possibly to be able to customise your look or to better match the skill tree you are developing.

Assassin’s Creed Origins will be released on October 27 on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC.

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