User login

[DAZ] My Perfect Assassin's Creed [Combat System]

1 reply [Last post]
Leo K's picture
Leo K
Toronto, Canada
Joined: 12/30/2009

Unity has gotten me thinking. I will post more after this, but for now, this is a start. This topic is designed to explain my ideal combat system, the combat system that would make me personally, extremely satisfied and happy. This will not please everybody - but I would be willing to give most anything, and do anything, to see Assassin's Creed adopt this system. I crave it, I ache for it deep in my heart. I am not joking, nor exaggerating. I am tired of my favorite series of all time not being what I want it to be. I never thought this day would come, but it appears I was one of the last to "break."

The most satisfying combat was in Brotherhood despite it being very easy - at least with Hidden Blades equipped (I would have liked H.Blades to be the only weapon available). However, it was too easy.

It was wonderful because it provided fluidity and speed to the combat system of Assassin's Creeds before it. It replaced it with a buttery slick, smooth, fluid, borderline sexy system of a beautifully graceful Death-Dance.

I loved it.

In my perfect AC game combat would have much the same feel with increased penalty for getting hit and more difficulty avoiding hits.

Brotherhood Kill-Streak System BUT;
- No Block button
- Parry button has extremely tight timing
- Enemies may attack at any time
- Emphasis on Kill-Streaking the correct enemies to stay alive
- One hit drains 1/3 or 1/4 of Max HP
- Preferred Enemy Quantity per Fight: 3 (Easy), 4 (Normal), 5 or 6 (Insane), Above (Impossible - Flee or Die)

Not being able to block at all may, at first-glance, seem to be a pretty heavy handed way of limiting defense.

I accept that way of limiting defense wholeheartedly, utterly and completely. Assassin's Creed does not need a Block. A Parry with the Timing Window of a Short-Blade counter in AC2 or AC1 is more than good enough when every Attack Button-press causes an instant kill if used with the correct flow.

Clear, easily readable Icons should appear on top of attacking enemies' heads that are sufficiently helpful enough to make the player feel a significant shift in difficulty if they were not there.

On Normal Mode, icons are on.
On Hard Mode, icons are always off - this is the only change. All damage, detection, resources, stay the same.

Note that a "parry" is a technical term I use to describe the game's mechanic. A "parry" in terms of animations may consist of a dodge/whiff into a counter, or it may consist of an actual physical clash of blades.

An Assassin, not a Warrior. Killing enemies buttery fast is your specialty and you should feel overpowered in terms of killing power but severely disadvantaged in terms of longevity or survivability. Assassinating groups of hostiles impressively fast should be your specialty, staying alive against inordinate numbers should not. The Tension this would create in the player's mind would make fighting three or four enemies satisfying and quick - but with an inability to Turtle or Defend effectively against clusters of more than four enemies. You are not supposed to be in Combat in a Stealth Game. But if you are, I have allowed enough Player Agency in the design for it to be satisfying while still encouraging you to Flee and Vanish if you are outnumbered.

A friend suggested I look to Dark Souls for inspiration on how to design my ideal Assassin's Creed fight system.

Dark Souls combat is expertly designed (it is, in essence, the whole game so it has to be) and highly rewarding for its players, especially the more dedicated they are.

However, I would like to distance Assassin's Creed from the Combat System of Dark Souls as far as possible because Dark Souls' combat system is slow, methodical and unfitting for my ideal AC game. I adore Dark Souls combat, but I would say it holds few places in Assassin's Creed. It's simply a matter of refusing to transplant the soul of one game into the soul of another. They are good as they are, separate.

Footwork or movement in combat, that should have a separate button dedicated to it that's simple but deep. I'll think about that later but am open to accepting suggestions specifically for this mechanic and function.

In my perfect AC game, Hidden Blades would be the only Weapon the player has available, aside from a Ranged Secondary like a Pistol + 3 Bullets or 1 Smoke Bomb (one). A Smoke Bomb should both Stun enemies within its Radius, as well as making enemies outside of it Blind to the Assassin as long as they are shrouded within it. You can not upgrade your maximum carried Smoke Bombs. You get one. Choose when to use it. You may also not upgrade the number of bullets you may carry. These Secondary Items are not the primary method you exact agency on the world. They are there as temporary assistance only.

This is the most important part. I know this next part is not about combat, but it is at the heart of Assassin's Creed.

The Hidden Blade.

The Hidden Blade is the most important part of Assassin's Creed.

This is why no other weapon is selectable. This is why Secondary Items are in scarce supply.

The Hidden Blade should be a powerful, important symbol. The Hidden Blade makes you feel safe, powerful in your killing ability while simultaneously making you wonder about how many of these guards you're killing.

I may get flak for this next part, but I would like to make Guard kills a little emotionally distressing. At least a little. I would like Guard kills to feel more distressing than Main Target kills (weird, I know, but listen) because Main Targets must be killed. Punishing the player's emotion too much for completing Primary Objectives is poor design.

But those Guards? You can avoid them all if you'd like.

Asaic's picture
Joined: 11/11/2009

I definitely have a lot to say about this one (great ideas all around) but I haven't had the time lately to sit down and make a good response yet. Smash Bros coming out didn't help either. Tongue