Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag - reviews of pirate blockbuster
Black Flag conjures an amazing world of Caribbean islands, treasure hunts and secrets
What you need to know
The latest instalment of Ubisoft's historical adventure video game blockbuster Assassin's Creed has received a thumbs up from reviewers who have called it "amazing" and "a triumph". Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, just released in the UK, takes the series into the 18th century Golden Age of Piracy.
As with previous games, Black Flag moves between the present and its historical story, as series protagonist Desmond revisits the lives of his ancestors. In Black Flag Desmond remembers Edward Kenway, a pirate and privateer operating in the in the Caribbean and southern Florida.
Players take on the role of Kenway, captain of the Jackdaw, as he embarks on a series of sea explorations, naval battles and treasure hunts.
What the critics like
"The new Assassin's Creed is a smart, sprawling sequel that wisely places an emphasis on freedom and fun," says Marty Sliva on IGN. The amazing world of Black Flag is brimming with gorgeous places to go, secrets to discover, and nefarious pirates to stab.
"As it should be, the crux of the game is all violent historical mayhem and sneaking around in odd quasi-period costumes," says Sam Gill in The Independent. At that, Assassin's Creed IV is perhaps more effective than ever.
The pirates are a wonderful meld of the Ubisoft team's obsession with historical accuracy and the basic requirements to make things interesting and fun, says Dave Their in Forbes. "It's a triumph" - an expertly choreographed piece of interactive cinema, as engaging as a Douglas Fairbanks movie.
What they don't like
It's fun but it would've been better if it was a fraction the size and a lot more focused, says David Jenkins in Metro. What you've got is a game with a meandering plot and uninteresting characters, that's "as wide as the seven seas, but as deep as a paddling pool". ·