Featured The Da Vinci Disappearance

Published on March 14th, 2011 | by Ben Gray

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Review: The Da Vinci Disappearance [DLC]

Release Date: March 8th 2011 Genre(s): Third-Person Action Adventure Developer: Ubisoft Publisher: Ubisoft Rating: Mature

[Rating:9/10]

  The sheer magnitude of distractions in the campaign of Brotherhood was one of the many things that rocketed the game to one of my favourite titles of 2010. All those side missions and collectables were going to take months to complete and find, and I’m still not finished. I had two concerns with post-release support for Brotherhood; the quality of content for Assassin’s Creed II was poor, and felt like parts of the original game were deliberately cut to use as an excuse to add content, and secondly, like many games with multiplayer components, I was doubtful that the single player section, arguably my favourite side of the game, was going to be neglected in additional content and the focus would be put on map packs for multiplayer, like many titles out there – too many to name. It seems that Ubisoft have really set out to cater for both single and multiplayer in this first major content for the game (excluding the past two free updates), with the Da Vinci Disappearance adding to both sections of Brotherhood. In an unspecified point in the game’s timeline – but those Assassin’s Creed fans out there will likely take an educated guess – Ezio Auditore returns to Leonardo Da Vinci and discovers that he has found secret catacombs that hold answers relating to Pythagoras. References are made to the Mona Lisa painting throughout, and after Da Vinci goes mysteriously missing, it is up to you to recover missing paintings that will take you to new and familiar locations throughout Roma to discover the location of the catacombs and save the protagonist. The plot of the content seems largely separate from the mainly storyline, but does shed plenty of light on the events that occurred at the end of the main game, so unless certain dialogue changes dependant on where you are at in the game, it’s probably a wise idea to take on this content after completing the main storyline.
The Da Vinci Disappearance

Ezio brings his charms with him in downloadable form.

Ubisoft have delivered missions that use familiar mechanics but feel slightly different from the standard missions encountered in the campaign. From identifying paintings to crossing the streets of Roma without being spotted by thieves, the content offers something fresh from the usual and was definitely fun to play as a fan of the series. Many games stick to their guns and provide the same missions with a different theme, but it’s nice to see some deviation instead of too much of what I’ve already played. The eight new single player missions are enough to keep the average gamer entertained for two hours, dependant on whether you skip your way through the missions or aim for full synchronization. In addition to this, new Templar Lairs have been added to explore and conquer. Missions will take you through familiar locations visited in the game and several new areas such as the Catacombs that will test your parkour and terrain movement. For those that prefer the competitive side of things, this offering also brings two new modes for the online multiplayer; Escort and Assassinate, the former offers faster paced games that don’t leave you searching for the enemy and the latter more preferable to typical deathmatch-type players who want to simply get stuck in and kill opponents. The new map, entitled Alhambra is one of the smaller arenas and is perfectly matched with the Escort mode for fast paced action, and the new characters add flair to the already huge arsenal of assassins in the game at present. The only criticism I have of this content is that perhaps we could have seen a new mechanic implemented in the single player, to add even more challenge to climbing and exploring.

 

The Da Vinci Disappearance

The intense, close quarters environment of Alhambra.

The Da Vinci Disappearance is a fantastic add-on for a fantastic game, and a definite improvement over efforts made in the last game, and is catering for both types of players. I would definitely like to see more games putting as much effort into the single player as they do with multiplayer content. This is a must-have for existing Assassin’s Creed fans.

The Good

  • Additions to both single player and multiplayer
  • Tons of new content to play
  • Adds variety on top of variety

The Bad

  • Single player portion over before you know it
  • No new game mechanics implemented
[Rating:9/10]

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