In a not-terribly-surprising move, Ubisoft has announced that Assassin’s Creed: The Ezio Collection will make its way to PS4 and Xbox One on Nov. 15. This set of high-resolution ports of Assassin’s Creed II, Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood and Assassin’s Creed Revelations will retail for $60, and tell the complete story of Renaissance-era Assassin Ezio Auditore da Firenze. Is it worth the price of admission? For new fans, probably. For returning players, probably not.
First off, here’s exactly what the collection includes, and what it doesn’t. You’ll get full copies of the single-player adventures from Assassin’s Creed II, Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood and Assassin’s Creed Revelations, presented in full 1080p HD and hopefully with a higher framerate (60 fps would be lovely). It will also include the prequel live-action film Assassin’s Creed Lineage and the sequel animated film Assassin’s Creed Embers.
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If you’re the kind of gamer who likes to explore every nook and cranny, you could easily get 100 hours of content from this collection. Ubisoft did not specify whether the games will include their paid DLC content, but they probably will.
On the other hand, the games will not include the multiplayer modes from Brotherhood and Revelations. These stealth-based competitive matches were actually quite fun, and much better than gamers had a right to expect from a series that prides itself on single-player adventures. Ubisoft reminded gamers that the multiplayer mode from Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, which is a refined version of those two, is still up and running, however.
Players will also receive a credit for up to $8 to see the Assassin’s Creed film in theaters come Dec. 21. Depending on where you live, that probably won’t cover a whole ticket, but it’s a sensible, potentially useful pack-in.
For returning fans, I’m not really an advocate of buying the same game again just for slightly prettier graphics. The original games still look fine, so if you have an Xbox 360 or PS3 kicking around, it’s best to revisit them in their current form and save yourself some money. PC players especially have no reason to invest, as they can already run the games at higher resolutions and framerates than even the remasters. Plus, you can already play the Xbox 360 version of Assassin's Creed II on your Xbox One via backwards compatibility.
For new fans, though, Ezio’s adventures were some of the best in the entire series. If you dove into the Assassin’s Creed series with Black Flag or Syndicate, the remastered collection presents an ideal opportunity to revisit some of the games that helped define the franchise’s story and gameplay. Sixty dollars for three excellent titles is not a bad deal, either.
Ubisoft points out that the three games also take place during roughly the same time period as the upcoming film, and it just wouldn’t be an Ubisoft project without a few references to the originals sprinkled throughout.