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REMAKING Assassin's Creed 1 into the ultimate AC game

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Vesferatu's picture
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So I was replaying ACB for the kazillionth time when I suddenly realized something: none of the guards react hostile whenever you pull out a weapon in front of them. I think in ACII, whenever you pull out a sword who's guarding a treasure room, you'll automatically enter in conflict. Makes sense. However, whenever you go near a Borgia Tower, you don't enter in conflict. Why?

People back then usually unsheathed their blades if they meant serious business.

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Strange. But civilians DO react to this, right? They're all like: "Damn son, watch it, shit's about to go down!" or "Oh crap, here comes trouble!"
But with an Italian accent, of course.

I find unsheating the sword a fun way to scare off beggars.
> Give me money, a few coins, just--
< Don't make me...
> OK I got it I'm sorry I'm sorryyyy!

In the first place this reminded me of GTA, where the police don't give a crap if you walk past them with your weapons out in the open.

"...and if I had no self-awareness, I think I'd know."

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So I think the way it works in every game from AC2 onwards is that unsheathing doesn't matter unless you're being detected. The guards are more passive when you're just running around not actually hurting anyone or anything. However, as soon as you actually aim your bow or gun at them, or begin placing a mine, or throw a smoke bomb out of range, guards detect you, and either give you a talking-to, or attack, based on the context.

It has ALWAYS bugged me that there is specific civilian dialogue for when you have an unsheathed weapon just as it has that civilians always say they're going to call the guards. It would be better to avoid making them say those things if there were no system for it, and as far as I know, AC1 is the only game where guards detect you when you have unsheathed weapons, are not notorious, and are in a non-restricted area. I could be wrong. But even then, there is dialogue mentioning that guards are being called when they really aren't in every single AC game.

EDIT: though the drummers in AC3 do fulfill that function of calling reinforcements if you don't kill them. I suppose it would be somewhat tedious having to manage what civilians are calling guards on you, but they could at least give you a minute-long timer or something before a patrol investigates a disturbance.

EDIT2: And I think patrols spawned almost instantly near dead bodies in AC1, but the immediacy of it all makes it seem rather shallow and gamey.

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Calvar The Blade wrote:

EDIT: though the drummers in AC3 do fulfill that function of calling reinforcements if you don't kill them. I suppose it would be somewhat tedious having to manage what civilians are calling guards on you, but they could at least give you a minute-long timer or something before a patrol investigates a disturbance.

I do know that civilians run away once they say they're calling the guards... I've never followed one to see if they reach guards or not... Maybe they do and the guards just don't believe them, haha.

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

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The guard's whole purpose is to investigate the complaints of and protect civilians. It seems weird that in the AC games they're treated like they're totally separate from and unable to interact with civilians. It would be great if they arrested civilians, say for example ones who are wearing a hood, after they investigate.

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Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
I do know that civilians run away once they say they're calling the guards... I've never followed one to see if they reach guards or not... Maybe they do and the guards just don't believe them, haha.

I've tried following some in almost every game. They just run around aimlessly without any end.

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Yeah, it's always been really transparent that they just have basic flee pathing, but it just bugs me that the dialogue sometimes implies that they have a goal in said flight.

I remember an AC dev once said that they were excited for the day where games could have each individual NPC actually go about its day to a level of detail that would hold up if you simply followed them.

It would be so cool if one day we could follow guards and see the point where they get off their shift, change out of their uniform, and head to the barracks or go on leave!

I bet that's something that we'll start to move closer to as graphical fidelity gets more and more squared away.

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What really bothers me is how the guards react to a dead corpse. After inspecting it, they wonder of for a bit, then return to their normal posts. In a restricted zone, the entire zone would have been placed on red-alert, will nearly every guard shifting to new positions, more reinforcements would come, and more guards turning into seekers.

I wanted the games to placed more emphasis on blending/ghosting your way towards levels. If you're gonna kill a guard, make sure you hide the body, so that neither guard of civilian can locate it (wagons, piles of leaves, water).

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Definitely.

The social simulation aspect in general has never been pushed as far as it should.

But the weapons things bothers me more because it's far simpler than adaptive guard AI.

I think the way they handle that sort of concept now is with the notoriety levels, which are a far more general and by that token less complex system. In AC3 the different levels of notoriety represent the guards getting smarter, and the third one spawns new guard types everywhere. Noticable changes in behavior and increases in guard population could be implemented for each level, and would basically mimick the system you talked about.

Of course it wouldn't be a true simulation, but that's kind of unheard of and unfeasible at the moment. With time, perhaps we'll see a true adaptive guard AI.

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Also, if I were a guard and I would spot 3 or 4 swords on the ground, I would get suspicious and not ignore that. Or am I pushing reality too far now?

"...and if I had no self-awareness, I think I'd know."

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If there was a simple way to hide weapons, then nah, that would be fine.

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It's quite common knowledge that ACB had one of the worst assassinations. That's because they were so linear that there was no player experimentation. The only strong one was where Ezio assassinated Juan Borgia in the party. That was it. So here are my ideas of fixing the assassinations WITHOUT deviating too much from the original mission:

- Octavio: Bart. is tied up alone. Bart. decides to humiliate him and drag his ass around. At the same time, he decides to show of a weapons demo in the country side. He's on a horse, surrounded with guards everywhere. As he makes prepares to show of his army's superior might (while at the same time bragging that the French are better than those Italian dogs ><), a couple of his guards split apart to look for the Assassin. AT THIS POINT, your job is to assassinate Bart. guards and hide the bodies, thereby replacing his guards with Bart.'s own guards. Get caught, and you get DESYNCHRONIZED. At this point, Bart. gets so arrogant that he allows the town's civilians inside his camp. At this point, he hasn't noticed the fact that his guards have switched ethnicity yet. This gives you your 100% synch: assassinating Bart. under 5 minutes WITHOUT being detected. Since he's invited the town's people, Ezio can blend into them and assassinate Bart. If you get detected by one of the guards, the entire place goes on hot alert, and you'll have to kill Bart. in open conflict.

- Micheleto: The entire Collesuem is filled with civilians. Your job is to assassinate key figures (10), all stationed within different areas of the colleseum. Freely kill any guards along the way. Once you get them alone, interrogate them. One of them will tell you which one is Lucrezia's lover. After that, go down to the play. Assassinate Micheleto. You can kill him by projectile weapon, running up to him and shanking him, or (my favorite) climbing up the colleseum and parachuting all the way down to kill him. This entire mission has to be done undetected for 100% synchronization. If you've killed the guards at the lower section of the colluseum, you won't have to fight them.

- Cesare: There should have been a small fort inside the Viena Castle. Inflitrate that to kill Cesare. For 100% synch: same as the game