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m4r-k7
12-27-2015, 01:55 PM
Hey guys, I just wanted to make this thread centered around the side mission structure in Syndicate.

I don't know if people agree with me but I honestly believe that Syndicates side mission structure is one of the best we have seen in the series thus far. The fact that they are integrated with the open world, and offer a variety of gameplay opportunities, whilst fitting in with the overall story arch (building a gang) is superbly done. I am talking about the gang strongholds, templar hunts etc. I just love the way they are seamless (Amancio, you should be proud) and that each one is located in a big enough area (most of the time) to actually get in and out without being spotted (unlike Unity where AI detection was way too overpowered). Then there are income activities which are also a blast to play when you have free time.

Also, no longer do we have the pointless "go there, do this for me" side missions from random people with no context, but instead these are replaced by associate activities which are proper missions in themselves. I know these may not technically count as side missions as they are actual memories, but man Syndicate's side missions have been the most fun they have been in a long time. The only one I personally don't like are bounty hunts as these can be screwed up by your own gang members.

Please continue this structure in future games. I know it may be more difficult seeing as future games may not be about liberating a city, but the way missions are integrated with the open world and contribute to the overall goal of the game just seems so right.

ImaginaryRuins
12-27-2015, 03:16 PM
I agree. Those side activities are closely tied to each other, and they are kind of "meaningful" to do as they contribute to borough liberation.

SixKeys
12-28-2015, 02:13 AM
I both agree and disagree.

I love the general idea behind Syndicate's side missions, which is that all of it plays into the overall theme of the game (liberating London). That's what ACB got right, and AC4 to some extent. However, there is still a bunch of stuff in ACS that feels like it's just....there. Without a good reason. Namely the races, cargo deliveries and cargo hijackings. Those feel like they were simply plopped into the game because they wanted to sell the carriage mechanic. I know that technically those missions exist because you're trying to win Ned's loyalty, but after you (finally) win his full loyalty, why don't those missions disappear from the map? The fight clubs, as much fun as they are, are totally pointless too. And there are still too many pointless collectibles. Chests at least play into the economy and Animus fragments give you MD intel (which is a brilliant idea, BTW) but beer bottles, music boxes and flowers?

As for the associate missions (Darwin, D!ckens and Marx), they're some of the worst missions in the entire game. The Marx missions are somewhat tolerable since many of them involve stealth - but in that case, they could have simply replaced them with more gang hideouts. These missions fall into the "go here, do this for me" category and it's just annoying. It doesn't feel like these characters exist because they're actually meaningful to the story. They have a very minor part to play, if any (what did meeting Marx have to do with anything in the end?) and we don't spend enough time with them to get attached to them as characters. They're literally just there to tell you "I can't go get this thing myself for some arbitrary reason, so you have to get it for me". Charles ****ens could have been a really fun character with his ghost obsession, but he was simply relegated to the background.

Tl;dr It's a step in the right direction, but there's still a lot of fat to be trimmed.

Sesheenku
12-28-2015, 06:57 AM
You don't mean the missions you have to do to conquer the various districts do you? Cause those were as repetitive as AC1 days.

You've played on child liberation you've played them all and same with the other 2 archetypes.

No I much prefer the free flow intrigue of Unities side missions. They lead off into their own thing that actually manages to be intriguing.

LoyalACFan
12-28-2015, 12:49 PM
Conceptually, I liked the approach they took (themed arcs instead of random little one-off "I'm historical-figure-XYZ please help me" missions from Unity) but honestly, they did such a horrendous job implementing the "gang" theme into the narrative and experience of play that it was ultimately just a missed opportunity. It also would have been nice if the contacts from the "loyalty" missions (Clara, Ned, etc) would have shown up more than once or twice to actually make it feel like their allegiance mattered. Because yeah, I'm a big fan of side content that actually matters and feels like a natural extension of the characters' mission from the main game (ACB and AC4 were good on this front as well).

m4r-k7
12-28-2015, 03:14 PM
I both agree and disagree.

I love the general idea behind Syndicate's side missions, which is that all of it plays into the overall theme of the game (liberating London). That's what ACB got right, and AC4 to some extent. However, there is still a bunch of stuff in ACS that feels like it's just....there. Without a good reason. Namely the races, cargo deliveries and cargo hijackings. Those feel like they were simply plopped into the game because they wanted to sell the carriage mechanic. I know that technically those missions exist because you're trying to win Ned's loyalty, but after you (finally) win his full loyalty, why don't those missions disappear from the map? The fight clubs, as much fun as they are, are totally pointless too. And there are still too many pointless collectibles. Chests at least play into the economy and Animus fragments give you MD intel (which is a brilliant idea, BTW) but beer bottles, music boxes and flowers?
.

I actually really enjoy the income activities as they are kind of like an extension of random / crowd events, whilst giving you money needed for upgrading everything in the game. I actually think the cargo hijackings are fitting with the gang theme, and of course races were put in for the carriage mechanic - think about Read Dead / The Witcher 3 with horse races etc. Its good that they don't dissapear from the map once loyalty has been met as it offers more replay value if you like those events. Fight clubs are just like any other mini game in an open world game - whilst it doesn't necessarily add anything to the story, it adds to the era they are trying to replicate and offers a wave type game mode which some may enjoy.
Completely agree with the collectables - still a big issue. Although thank god chests don't contribute to the platinum trophy - they went way overboard with them this time (although they do give you resources which is handy).