We’ve learned a lot about Assassin’s Creed Valhalla for the past few weeks, and it’s inspired a lot of people to go back and clean up all those optional objectives in Assassin’s Creed Origins and Odyssey.
Suppose you haven’t played either game, though, and want to dip your toes into the long-running series without dishing out any money. Ubisoft will let you do just that, as it’s offering the Discovery Tour modes for Assassin’s Creed Origins and Assassin’s Creed Odyssey for free on PC. But if you don’t grab them within the next week, you’ll have to pay for them, as usual.
Ubisoft announced the promotion on Twitter, and it’s about as straightforward as it seems. Discovery Tour by Assassin’s Creed: Ancient Egypt and Discovery Tour by Assassin’s Creed: Ancient Greece are both free until May 21. You’ll have to sign up for a Uplay account and download the Uplay client to play them, and the system requirements are fairly steep, including at least an Intel Core i5 processor, a discrete modern GPU and 8 GB RAM. But they are, indeed, free, and yours to keep, provided you claim them now.
You’re probably at least tangentially familiar with Assassin’s Creed, an open-world action/stealth series in which you play as a stealthy killer, hunting down members of an ancient secret society. But the Discovery Tour modes are much more recent, and have nothing to do with the main story. Instead, Discovery Tour takes the meticulously recreated cities and landscapes of the ancient world, then lets you explore them peacefully, hearing informative narration as you go. It’s essentially a guided virtual museum tour.
The important caveat here is that playing the two Discovery Tours won’t actually help prepare you for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, since they have nothing to do with the ongoing series meta-story. But if you want to see what the games look like and how the exploration and platforming gameplay work (there’s no combat), they’re good entry points, and the price is right.
🚨PSA🚨 Claim and keep Discovery Tour: Ancient Greece & Discovery Tour: Ancient Egypt from May 14-21 on Uplay. #PlayApartTogetherMay 14, 2020
Your mileage may vary on Discovery Mode itself, however. Most fans and critics seem to really get a kick out of it, and educators have even used it as an immersive form of learning. But there’s very little “gameplay,” per se, and you can see a lot of the same sights by playing through the regular story campaigns in Origins and Odyssey.
Still, for the next week or so, the it’s hard to argue with Discovery Tour’s price. The games usually cost $20 apiece. You can also access Discovery Tour from the Origins and Odyssey main menus. It doesn’t cost anything extra, but the games themselves still cost $60 each when they’re not on sale.
I don’t know if Discovery Tour is a good indication of what Assassin’s Creed is like, considering that you don’t get any of the combat, stealth or story that’s defined the series for more than a decade. On the other hand, it’s something potentially interesting to play, and if you don’t get it now, you’ll have to pay for it later.
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Marshall Honorof is a senior editor for Tom's Guide, overseeing the site's coverage of gaming hardware and software. He comes from a science writing background, having studied paleomammalogy, biological anthropology, and the history of science and technology. After hours, you can find him practicing taekwondo or doing deep dives on classic sci-fi.