In a world where big-budget games often try to be everything to everyone, Assassin’s Creed Mirage takes a bold step back, aiming to recapture the essence of what made the series iconic. While it doesn’t quite hit the bullseye, it’s a commendable effort that reminds us of the series’ roots. Intended as an expansion for Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla, Mirage stands on its own, albeit with a few wobbles. It’s not the grand return to form we were all hoping for, but it’s a step in the right direction
Assassin’s Creed Mirage takes a bold step back into the series’ stealth-centric roots, and at times, it truly shines. The Hitman-esque assassination missions are a testament to this, offering players intricate puzzles to solve in expansive areas.
These missions are where Mirage feels most alive, allowing players to truly embody the role of an assassin. However, the game’s combat system is a significant letdown. Caught in a limbo between the fluidity of newer AC titles and the simplicity of the older ones, it feels clunky and unrefined.
Battles often devolve into waiting games, with players anticipating enemy overextensions to land a blow. It’s a system that feels out of touch with the series’ evolution and detracts from the overall experience.
Parkour, a hallmark of the AC series, also sees a return to its original form. But instead of the smooth, controlled movements players might expect, Mirage offers a system that’s often frustrating. Unintended leaps off buildings and awkward wall interactions are frequent, making city traversal more of a chore than a joy.
While the game does offer moments of brilliance in its stealth mechanics, the dated combat and parkour systems weigh it down, preventing it from reaching the heights of its predecessors.
Assassin’s Creed Mirage transports players to the historically rich city of Baghdad, a setting that offers a visual spectacle with its grand architecture and vibrant markets. The decision to focus on a singular city, as opposed to the vast landscapes of recent titles, is a refreshing change of pace.
This concentrated approach allows for a more intimate exploration experience, reminiscent of earlier entries in the series. While the city is undeniably beautiful, there are moments where it could benefit from added depth. Some areas feel less dynamic compared to the bustling streets of Paris in Unity or the lively Thames in Syndicate.
Step In The Right Direction
However, it’s worth noting that the game does capture the essence of a bygone era, with citizens engaging in conversations and markets alive with activity. In Mirage, Ubisoft presents a world that, while not without its flaws, offers a nostalgic trip down memory lane. The city of Baghdad, with its historical charm, serves as a testament to the series’ ability to recreate and immerse players in different eras.
Assassin’s Creed Mirage is a title that evokes a myriad of emotions. For long-time fans of the series, it’s a nostalgic journey back to the franchise’s stealth-centric days, offering a gameplay experience that’s both challenging and rewarding.
The decision to return to a single city setting, reminiscent of the earlier titles, is a commendable one, allowing players to deeply immerse themselves in the rich tapestry of 9th Century Baghdad.
The game’s duration, clocking in at around 20-25 hours, provides a focused and concise adventure. This ensures that the narrative remains tight, with little room for filler content. The side missions, as previously mentioned, are a standout feature, offering depth and variety that keep players engaged.
However, like any title, Mirage is not without its flaws. The combat system, while functional, lacks the polish and fluidity seen in other entries. Similarly, the parkour mechanics, though reminiscent of the series’ golden days, could benefit from modern refinements.