Assassin’s Creed Origin: An Ancient Adventure

Assassin’s Creed Origin is set in Ancient Egypt near the end of the Ptolemic Period (49 – 47 BCE). The game follows the story of a Medjay names Bayek and the conflict between Bayek and his wife Aya with the Order of the Ancients who killed their only son in front of Bayek. Along with this you get to play a part in the civil upheaval happening across Egypt as the Pharaoh Ptolemy XIII struggles to maintain his rule and his sister, the recently deposed Cleopatra, begins to prepare for a counter-coup against Ptolemy. Bayek and Aya support Cleopatra. And if things couldn’t get more complicated, Julius Causer and the Roman Empire are also involved in the mess!

This is my third Assassin’s Creed game (have played Black Flag and Syndicate before). I love the Assassin’s Creed series. The massive open world setting with beautiful and scenic views combined with a rich story imbibed with history; what is there not to like? Origin’s in particular was fun to travel around in. The Sahara desert was surprisingly dynamic. As you travel, you occasionally start seeing mirages or get caught in a sandstorm depriving if your vision. Random fires would prop up here and there caused by the scorching sun and a pack of hyenas or bandits would suddenly attack you. For me the best part about adventuring in the world was climbing pyramids! I don’t understand why but, I loved scaling up them for the breathtaking view the summit provides followed by the fun slide down the slopes. Staying on the topic of pyramids, it was intriguing being able to explore them from the inside which sometimes was confusing. Although the lack of any booby traps could have been worked more on.

I frankly liked the gameplay of Black Flag better than Origin even though it wasn’t drastically different. I enjoyed simultaneous double assassinations in Black Flag which you couldn’t do in Origin. Also, I miss the naval battles in Black Flag (there were one or two naval battles in Origin but naval battles weren’t the focus of the game). What Origin does really well is portray the ancient Egyptian culture. Maybe it isn’t 100% accurate but it was done well enough to make you enthralled.

Some of my favorite moments were:

  • First Phylake kill. Phylake’s are strong bounty hunters after you with the sole mission of killing you. The first Phylake I fought brought my health in the red with just one strike! I barely managed to escape. So the first Phylake I killed was actually 5 levels higher than me. I was attacking a military fort and the Phylake decided to join in the fun. I was terrified and hid in a corner. A corner with extra ammunition supply. Hence, I took out my predator bow and stealthily started picking away at the Phylake’s health, finally killing him. Like they say, brain over brawn! Haha!
  • Killing the first war elephant. Those animals are ginormous! There front is impregnable and they’re surprisingly quick. Of course the first time I fought one, I instantly perished. But even when I did manage to cripple one, it took my around half an hour of dodging, screaming and slowly damaging the animal. One of the most frustrating yet satisfying moments in the game.
  • Assassinating Julius Caesar. This mission was tough. You play as Aya (Bayek is your main character) so you don’t have any of the good strong weapons and skills you’ve painstakingly acquired. You have to fight/sneak your way through a large mostly open area swarming with strong soldiers. Was tough, nearly died multiple times but made it. We are first to strike Caesar followed by Brutus and the gang. I guess Shakespeare was wrong; it wasn’t Casca but Aya who strike first! Et tu, Brute?
  • This something I love about all Assassin’s Creed games, jumping from tall places and Synchronization. The scenic view from these high vantages never fails to take my breath away complimented by the rush of diving from them.

Going to start Assassin’s Creed Odyssey soon. Cannot wait for another spellbinding adventure; this time through Greece. Also the new Assassin’s Creed Valhalla trailer looks incredible! However, it does raise a question: vikings aren’t particularly know for being stealthy. I wonder how the gameplay is going to be.

Some scenic vistas I happened to capture while playing Assassin’s Creed Origin.

Mohit Jain

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