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Air to Assassinate Guide

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vkR1NrtRTw8

A recurring theme in the Stylish Assassination series is the "air to assassinate" move. Both Ubisoft and Prima hint that it's possible but neither elaborate on how or even when you can do it. An internet search reveals only partial answers and misinformation ("press X while in the air" pffft Puzzled).

It turns out there are four different ways to initiate an air to assassinate! Altaïr's position and posture will determine which one to use.

  • Low Profile: X button (Square on PlayStation 3)

    This only works if Altaïr is climbing a wall immediately above the target. (Tip: This often works on Templars because they tend to stand in front of walls.) Keep an eye on your Control Heads Up Display. Whenever the label for your Armed Hand says "assassinate" you can press that button (X on Xbox 360, Square on PlayStation 3) to drop and assassinate. I'm not sure how "low profile" it actually is. It looks exactly like a high profile air.

  • High Profile: Right Trigger + X (R1 + Square)

    Whenever Altaïr stands on a beam or narrow wall, he naturally assumes a crouching position. When climbing a ladder or wall, he often has his feet tucked up against the vertical surface. These are the postures that allow a high profile air to assassinate. Just hold the Right Trigger (R1 on PS3) and look at your Control Heads Up Display. If it says "assassinate", continue holding the trigger and press X (or Square on PS3). Altaïr's range is much better with high profile than with low. He'll jump clear across a room to kill someone.

  • Running: Right Trigger + X + Left Thumbstick up (R1 + Square + Left Stick up)

    When standing with upright posture on a roof or wide platform, your only option is the running air to assassinate. Face your target and start running towards him by holding Right Trigger and pushing the Left Thumbstick up (R1 + Left Stick up on PS3). As you near the edge, continue holding those controls and add the X button (or Square). Again, your Heads Up Display will indicate when you can do this but it all happens pretty quickly. I prefer to watch Altaïr's feet to get the timing right. Hit the attack button as Altaïr takes his last step to the edge of the roof.

  • Edge: Right Trigger + X + Left Thumbstick up (R1 + Square + Left Stick up)

    If you're already standing at the very edge, peering down, you can still do a "running" air to assassinate. Start by holding the Right Trigger (or R1), and then simultaneously press X and push the Left Thumbstick up (Square + up). Don't be intimidated by the word "simultaneously". The timing requirements are not strict at all. In fact you can hit X first, causing Altaïr to check his Hidden Blade, and then push "up" about half a second later. As long as he hasn't resheathed his blade, this will trigger the air to assassinate.

Of course, there are times when you can't attempt an air to assassinate at all:

  • hanging from a beam or wall with feet straight down
  • too high up
  • too far away from target
  • standing at the same level or lower than target

It's always a good idea to target your victim (with Left Trigger or L1) before attempting any air move. First of all, it's embarrassing when you accidentally assassinate the wrong person (often a civilian). Secondly, long range airs fall short if the victim isn't targeted. Beware that some attempts can be deflected by a suspicious target (who will throw Altaïr to the ground) or by obstacles in your flight path.

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Just perusing some older videos on a slow day at work. This one will be extremely helpful.

Once I finished AC!, I convinced a buddy of mine that he should play it as well. I think I've got him hooked. Anyway, he just finished AC1 and essentially dared me to complete the game using only the hidden blade. (This should definitely be doable, since people here have done it with only the fists).

I learned some things that will come in handy here. Mostly, I was not aware that you could hidden blade counter. This was my question to my buddy, and his reply was something to the effect of "huh?" So I'm glad to see that you can, indeed, hidden blade counter in AC1. In addition, the animations look awesome for the countering.

Also, would Shock and Awe not count in this video as it's simply an extension of the Prone Assassination and the Taunting Penalty (sorta)? I guess it's not so much a technique as it is a strategy.

Again, thanks for the pointers. Big smile

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
Just perusing some older videos on a slow day at work. This one will be extremely helpful.

This is by far my most popular video. 130,000 views so far if you add in the original version (which I took offline after it was muted due to a music copyright claim). Ubisoft left air to assassinate and hidden blade counters undocumented. This video became the de facto documentation of both.

He essentially dared me to complete the game using only the hidden blade. (This should definitely be doable, since people here have done it with only the fists).

My second playthrough was hidden blade only. I expected to rely on hidden blade counters while in Open Conflict. My first obstacle was the mandatory Save Citizen outside of Damascus. You don't have the counter ability in Memory Block 2. No counter means no hidden blade counter! Eventually I realized that Prone Assassination was available.

Also, would Shock and Awe not count in this video as it's simply an extension of the Prone Assassination and the Taunting Penalty (sorta)?

Shock and Awe was discovered after this video was published. However, I would agree that it's two Prone Assassinations followed by Taunting Penalties and doesn't belong in this video.

Many have pointed out that there's an alternate animation for Running Assassinations (both front and back) if you press Armed hand at the last second before bumping into the target. Perhaps I should have included those as you do have control over them (unlike the kill animations that are randomly selected by the game during combat).

You won't even feel the blade.

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stabguy wrote:
This is by far my most popular video. 130,000 views so far if you add in the original version (which I took offline after it was muted due to a music copyright claim).

Also, sometimes when youtube videos are embedded in other websites, it doesn't count as a view... even if you can like the video. I think I saw a video with more likes than views one time.

If we watch videos here on THB, does it actually count towards the youtube viewcount?

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
If we watch videos here on THB, does it actually count towards the youtube viewcount?

Having a video front-paged on here usually guarantees me hundreds of views, so I believe the answer is yes. Smile

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stabguy wrote:
Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
He essentially dared me to complete the game using only the hidden blade. (This should definitely be doable, since people here have done it with only the fists).

My second playthrough was hidden blade only. I expected to rely on hidden blade counters while in Open Conflict. My first obstacle was the mandatory Save Citizen outside of Damascus. You don't have the counter ability in Memory Block 2. No counter means no hidden blade counter! Eventually I realized that Prone Assassination was available.

thanks for the heads up!

Many have pointed out that there's an alternate animation for Running Assassinations (both front and back) if you press Armed hand at the last second before bumping into the target. Perhaps I should have included those as you do have control over them (unlike the kill animations that are randomly selected by the game during combat).

You're talking about the "stab and let down gently" animation vs the "jump through the air and get you in the neck" animation, right? Is that still running? Can you do that in high-profile? It's been so long... yet was only 3 months ago... Wink

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
You're talking about the "stab and let down gently" animation vs the "jump through the air and get you in the neck" animation, right?

A good place to see both of the "last second" running assassinations is in Eleven Man Blitz 2.0. At 0:50 is Garnier (front) followed by Talal (rear) at 1:20.

Is that still running? Can you do that in high-profile?

I consider both of these to be running assassinations because you must be moving with High profile trigger + Analog stick to trigger these animations. They are also high-profile by definition: running is a high profile action. If you meant can you do these assassinations in high profile while standing still then the answer is no.

You won't even feel the blade.

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This has consistently been my most viewed video on YouTube. As of today it has over 111,000 views and 363 comments. That's not counting the original version (muted due to music copyright) which had 11,000 views and 40 comments. The reason it didn't get much attention on THB is because it was already old news when I copied the article here from its original location on AC-maps.

The dubious inspiration for the video was a topic on another forum (GameFAQs?) where someone asked how many ways you could use the Hidden Blade. One person mentioned that air to assassinate thingy Jade Raymond demonstrated at E3 but immediately dismissed it because it wasn't actually possible in the game. Nobody corrected him. In the end they came up with 6 or 7 ways. I thought it was a silly question and that my video answer wasn't much better. If I had known it would become the centerpiece of my video collection, I probably would have omitted the blooper reel at the end but kept the "Entering Jerusalem" intro - that was too good to pass up. Big smile

You won't even feel the blade.

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haha, you could have combined "Entering Jerusalem" with an air to assassinate from a horse. That maybe quite difficult actually, is it possible to gallop towards the entrance do a high profile dismount early and then do a high profile assassinate after the "drop and roll" move has been done (I assume this is what would happen if you lept of the horse at high speed) Great video, stab.

يمثل الحشاشون أشياء عدة ولكن فوق كل ذلك هو العدالة
(The Hashashin stand for many things, but above all it's justice)

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Looks like we need more comments on this topic. Would you consider the low profile assassinations on targets to be using the blade the same way as on other characters? Same goes for last second running assassinations. And lets not forget air assassinating targets on the ground, although that way wasn't intended. But anyway it's great to know that video has become popular. My most popular is Fast and Easy way to get Items for Shop Quests at 44,960 views. My total video views are 89,480. From that video it's been established that I recorded with a toaster.

Livebythecreed9 wrote:
haha, you could have combined "Entering Jerusalem" with an air to assassinate from a horse. That maybe quite difficult actually, is it possible to gallop towards the entrance do a high profile dismount early and then do a high profile assassinate after the "drop and roll" move has been done (I assume this is what would happen if you lept of the horse at high speed) Great video, stab.

This has been done before. Except without the roll.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=Di9tORLFbwU#t=74s
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=VSP2m7mP9S4#t=15s

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Ah ok, thanks for this Aurelcooljay.

يمثل الحشاشون أشياء عدة ولكن فوق كل ذلك هو العدالة
(The Hashashin stand for many things, but above all it's justice)

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Wow. This video is rather popular in assassinscreed.wikia and on YouTube, and we only have 2 comments here?

Nothing is true and everything is permitted, I guess.

Oh, and thanks for this video. The control scheme was a bit different when I played ACI for the first time, so this tutorial was really helpful.

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I will be getting AC1 sometime, so these basic tutorials are of immense help. I will study them hard, thanks very much.

يمثل الحشاشون أشياء عدة ولكن فوق كل ذلك هو العدالة
(The Hashashin stand for many things, but above all it's justice)