AC2 is essentially a 3rd person action adventure game that in some ways has RPG elements including upgrades, weapons and armors and playing the character how you want. Where the first Assassin’s Creed was very repetitive in terms of combat and gameplay, AC2 is a large step ahead of its predecessor. They have added multiple new weapons including a hidden pistol, poison darts and smoke grenades. On top of that the counter system is much improved and Ezio has many more moves when killing someone.
Another thing that AC2 improved on is that they did away with the horse riding between cities as a lot of people felt that was a boring and unnecessary part. They leave you to exploring just the cities and if you have the money later you can buy maps to even find all the feathers and flags later in the game. It isn’t without its bugs, sometimes Ezio won’t counter and you’ll get hit or you’ll slightly get pushed off a ledge and fall all the way to the ground but these are very minor problems in a very good game.
If you have never heard of the Assassin’s Creed series or never played the first one I’ll give you a quick synopsis to get you caught up. The Assassin’s and Templars have been at war for close to a millennia. You are actually an assassin from the future that was captured and forced to use a device called the animus that allows Desmund, the main character, to relive his ancestor’s lives in order to find out about the Apples of Eden. In the first game Desmund goes through the memories of Altair, labeled as one of the greatest assassins of all time. Eventually other Assassin’s free Desmund and takes him somewhere safe to go through the memories of Ezio, the assassin for the next 3 games.
It starts out when Ezio was a women chasing young whipper snapper in the year 1476 B.C. and he comes to find out that the men of his family, he still has a younger sister and his mom, have been captured by the Templars and are hung in front of a crowd. Ezio escapes and is taken in my his Uncle Mario in order to train him to become an assassin and get his revenge on the Templars. I shit you not the line Mario says is what you would what him to say. Who says Ubisoft doesn’t have a sense of humor:
Ezio goes through the trials of becoming an assassin while meeting more allies including a very young Leonardo da Vinci. As he progresses he gets more weapons and discovers more about the truth involving the ancient humans and the “Pieces of Eden.” Many years pass and Ezio doesn’t get his final revenge until much later.
As for the graphics, this is an older game and was ported from consoles but that doesn’t mean it can’t have some impressive visuals. The scenery is very nice and they did a really good job of re-imaging 15th century Italy that includes locals like Rome, Florence and Venice. The voice acting is all top notch and the music matches up with the events in game really well.
Because this is a console port, like the first game it is recommended you have a machine more powerful than just the recommendation. I would say at the very least have a quad core CPU and a 200 series Nvidia (4000 ATI/AMD) GPU along with 4 gigs of ram. Overall though they took the criticism from the first game very well and looked to improve the second. It does have its problems with a few bugs and sluggish or poorly designed keyboard/mouse controls. However those are really the only problems with the game and it is well deserving of being played.