When this came out I was whooping with joy. Then I read a lot of reviews by disgruntled buyers who claim the DRM is ruining the gameplay by loading in the middle of a chase, randomly disconnecting, not being able to connect at all etc.
So I got upset about the whole thing. I'd been watiing for so long to get this game and now people were saying you can't play it?
In the end I figured that you can't rely on the reviews of a few disgruntled punters, you have to make your own mind up.
I bought it, installed it, signed up for the UbiSoft account and crossed my fingers.
To my great surprise the game works flawlessly. Not once has it been loading in the middle of a chase, or disconnected me pre-maturely. I've had it for a week now and play it for about 3 hours every day. I love it! They've taken the great Assassin's Creed I and made it even better!
Now it's not all straight forward though! The game tutorial tells you to press the red button with a hand symbol on it or the green button with a foot... Err... what key?
Ok, so they've ported it from console and on console everything is colour coded and ergo the buttons that show up are also colour coded.
In the begining I was pressing every button trying to figure out what was what until I realised I can go to the Settings menu and look at the controls. Hey presto there's a full list of what button (and colour) is what on your keyboard. Problem solved. Not only that, there's a reference in the manual as well... but hey, who reads manuals!
The game runs very well on my aging computer (I still have an AGP card and XP 32bit!). I set the settings to medium though but it runs so nicely and looks very slick that I don't mind it one bit.
The game itself is set in italy and they do occassionally talk in italian but it's no big deal. I play with the subtitles on and you get an english translation, so hey, you can even pick up a bit of italian playing the game (provided of course you have use for phrases like 'retractable blades' and 'hidden knives').
There are new assassination techniques added in the game such as being able to lay in the trusty old haystack and pull enemies into it and kill them, or pull an unsuspecting enemy off a ledge.
You also find upgrades for your weapons as you go along and you end up with dual blades and the ability to kill two enemies at once (very useful when you need to get through a guarded door without raising the alarm).
In this game you also become responsible for upgrading a town with weapon smiths, art dealers etc. and you're the head of a household where you have to collect things like fine art, statues, weapons etc. to increase your income.
This can then be spent in various shops to buy upgraded weapons, armour, art and that oh so important medkit bag.
As in AC1, the conspiracies are thicker than a room full of politicans and the story twists and turns with every mission. I often find myself saying "I'll just play one mission..." and all of a sudden it's 2am in the morning.
I honestly wish I didn't have to get up at 5 in the morning to go to work! Then I could stay home and play all day long. Sad but true!
So ladies and gentlemen, I hope you find my review somewhat useful but as I've mentioned before, don't take my word for how brilliant this game is, buy it and find out for yourself. :)
One thing I would recommend though is that you play AC1 first if you haven't or you will miss a lot!