Developer: Ubisoft Quebec
Platform: PS4 (played), Xbox One, PC
Released: October 5, 2018
Copy supplied by publisher
At what point does the length of a video game begin to impede on its quality? It’s a fair question to ask when discussing Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, the latest installment in Ubisoft’s long-running historical action series. The title’s invocation of Homer’s epic poem about the Greek hero Odysseus and his decade-long journey home is certainly no accident, as Ubisoft Quebec has crafted their own almost mythic retelling of the Greek Peloponnesian War (431–404 BC). Last year’s soft reboot, Assassin’s Creed Origins, featured its own massive story set in Ancient Egypt, but that game almost feels small when measured up against Odyssey and its immense scope. What Ubisoft has achieved here could very well be described as the biggest and possibly even best Assassin’s Creed to date. It’s a pity then that most players will probably burn out on it before they even get to its best parts.
Unlike last year’s Origins, Odyssey is more of an iterative installment than a major reworking of franchise conventions but the changes it does bring to the table are almost all positive ones. Right from the beginning, Odyssey offers the choice between two playable characters: Alexios or Kassandra. The only other Assassin’s Creed game to offer both male and female protagonists is 2015’s Syndicate, but in Odyssey there’s no switching back-and-forth between characters —you’re locked in for the entire game. I picked Kassandra and have no regrets about my decision as she is honestly one of the most refreshing video game protagonists I’ve encountered in some time.