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View Full Version : Assassin's Creed should learn from Hitman



pacmanate
05-20-2016, 11:11 PM
For a game called Assassin's Creed, I really don't feel like an Assassin. I feel like a guy that just follows 3 and just stabs the bad guys.

Hitman though, in Hitman I feel like an Assassin.

The new Hitman game is absolutely fantastic when it comes to being an Assassin, not to mention it does stealth perfectly. For those unfamiliar with the new Hitman game:

1. There is a new big sandbox every month
2. As well as main missions, you get different contracts in these sandboxes to kill
3. Disguises
4. Manipulate AI
5. Stealth

See where im going with this? Im not saying Assassin's Creed should be a new Sandbox every month because byebye parkour. But I really think that Assassin's Creed needs some sort of contracts mode. Hitmans contract mode lets the community make missions where you have to kill a target in a sandbox which ultimately ends to this game lasting however long you want it to last.

Not to mention, Hitman has disguises play a huge part, bring that into a main entry, it was in AC Liberations to an extent and would be great for stealth to get into certain areas. Also, distractions. In Hitman you can manipulate the guards with radios, why not implement this into AC where you slap a horses bum and it goes crazy or something?

Indirect kills - Poisoning drinks for example

I feel like these things could really make AC feel fresh and new again without taking away from anything it already is.

TL/DR

1. Community Contracts Mode - New targets to kill in certain ways (for small bonuses, like 100% sync. But not tied to achievements cause its a Community Creation)
2. Disguises - Further stealth and a new way to get close to your target other than squeezing inbetween people
3. Guard Manipulation - Firecrackers, Coins, Whistle (Give us all of them)
4. Indirect kills - Poisoning drinks

dxsxhxcx
05-20-2016, 11:45 PM
I haven't played the new one yet but some of these things were always part of the Hitman games, so I know what you mean.

Take some tips from Hitman could also do wonders for the MD as well (gameplay-wise)

VestigialLlama4
05-21-2016, 03:48 AM
If I see one more thread about "Assassin's Creed should be more like <INSERT TRASHY TITLE HERE>'' I will reach for my gun.

All kidding aside...

1) Assassin's Creed and Hitman aren't really the same kind of games. In AC, you are playing a guy who kills for higher purpose and greater good, in Hitman you kill to get paid. As Jade Raymond said:

It's fairly unusual to play a character whose occupation is murder. Hitman tempered that with a black sense of humour. How have you made the fact that you're playing a killer enjoyable for those gamers used to playing the good guy?


Jade Raymond: I can see why your thinking of the Hitman analogy, but our central character is actually quite different. Our goal is to create a positive character who's really more of a hero. He's not killing people because it's his job, and he's not a bitter guy either. He's actually a guy who has very specific thoughts and feelings about killing, and this makes him always respectful of his victims. Additionally, the way we've set it up is that the people you kill are all evil characters. There's almost a Robin Hood-style comparison to be made. Well, he's more of a badass than Robin Hood, but you see where we're coming from. All of the guys you take out are causing the general population a lot of hardship and strife.

2) In terms of gameplay, AC is a little more robust. AC has Parkour/climbing/escape, while Hitman is about walking at a steady pace. AC is more hit-and-run kind of stealth. So in Hitman it's mostly interiors while in AC it's mostly exteriors.

Helforsite
05-21-2016, 08:24 AM
I do not know how it is in the new game, but in Hitman: Absolution you onlf ever really had one way to kill the target. What I mean is that often there was one specific way that was really complicated and did not subtract any points, because you did not kill anyone but the target.
How is that freedom? If I want to silently kill everybody, hide their bodies and then kill the target with all obstacles out of the way then let me and do not subtract thousands of points, because that is Assassin's Creed optional objectives turned up to 10.

SixKeys
05-21-2016, 11:31 AM
If I see one more thread about "Assassin's Creed should be more like <INSERT TRASHY TITLE HERE>'' I will reach for my gun.

All kidding aside...

1) Assassin's Creed and Hitman aren't really the same kind of games. In AC, you are playing a guy who kills for higher purpose and greater good, in Hitman you kill to get paid. As Jade Raymond said:

It's fairly unusual to play a character whose occupation is murder. Hitman tempered that with a black sense of humour. How have you made the fact that you're playing a killer enjoyable for those gamers used to playing the good guy?


Jade Raymond: I can see why your thinking of the Hitman analogy, but our central character is actually quite different. Our goal is to create a positive character who's really more of a hero. He's not killing people because it's his job, and he's not a bitter guy either. He's actually a guy who has very specific thoughts and feelings about killing, and this makes him always respectful of his victims. Additionally, the way we've set it up is that the people you kill are all evil characters. There's almost a Robin Hood-style comparison to be made. Well, he's more of a badass than Robin Hood, but you see where we're coming from. All of the guys you take out are causing the general population a lot of hardship and strife.

2) In terms of gameplay, AC is a little more robust. AC has Parkour/climbing/escape, while Hitman is about walking at a steady pace. AC is more hit-and-run kind of stealth. So in Hitman it's mostly interiors while in AC it's mostly exteriors.

That's not reallty the point. AC doesn't have to change its story or characters to be more like Hitman, they just need to take a look at how much more advanced and diverse the stealth system is.

I've wanted disguises in these games forever, Liberation was the first one to do it, but it was on a handheld. Unity did it, but the execution was laughable, literally morphing Arno into a different person.
Manipulating AI should be one of the cornerstones of social stealth. AC's system is still very barebones. Too much concentration on traditional stealth, i.e. crouching and cover, and too little on what made AC stand out originally, i.e. social stealth.

Community contracts would be amazing. There were some really fun player-created multiplayer modes in AC4's Game Lab. Too bad the MP was dying at that point.

dxsxhxcx
05-21-2016, 03:31 PM
I do not know how it is in the new game, but in Hitman: Absolution you onlf ever really had one way to kill the target. What I mean is that often there was one specific way that was really complicated and did not subtract any points, because you did not kill anyone but the target.
How is that freedom? If I want to silently kill everybody, hide their bodies and then kill the target with all obstacles out of the way then let me and do not subtract thousands of points, because that is Assassin's Creed optional objectives turned up to 10.

It makes sense for them to subtract a thousand of points if you left a pile of bodies for them (the enemy) to find, you're supposed to be a professional assassin and not a stealthy version of the Postal Dude (you still have the freedom to do as you please though, but with a price), (IMO) in a game like Hitman, optional objectives and restrictions makes much more sense than in AC, because I can totally see a person who hires an Assassin imposing rules to the mission like "steal something", "gather information", "don't kill anyone but the target", "make it look like an accident", every one of these situations (IMO) are part of being a proffesional assassin, so they also add to the atmosphere, if you choose not to do them, that's fine, because sometimes things don't go the way they are expected, so even failing at them adds to the atmosphere.

AC's optional objectives on the other hand have little to offer on this aspect, what's the point in doing something the way the ancestor did? Will it give me more info about a weakness I could explore to kill my target, a cool information about something or unlock something worth of my time? No, all it does is inflate my ego and add the illusion of challenge (what is pointless since the games are easy). The system makes sense story-wise, but the way it's implemented now is artificial as hell, what makes it really annoying.


A way optional objectives could work in AC:

Instead of simply make them appear on screen once we begin a mission, why not make us discover them during the mission?

Example: We begin a mission and at some point we (RANDOMLY) find someone that looks like an Assassin (it doesn't always need to be this way of course), once we get closer to him/her, a button prompt appears and by pressing the button, a little cutscene begins where they start a conversation, you explain what you're doing there and the Assassin says that the place you're going is heavily fortified, but he knows a guard stationed at the south entrance that can be "convinced" (read: bribed) to let you in without much fuss, after that a optional objective appears "use the south entrance". I would be much more willing to give away a little of my freedom in order to achieve this objective if it was introduced this way rather than "use the south entrance just because we told you to" (the current way), completing it would feel much more rewarding as well because we were able to explore something we found and not something that was given to us from the get go.

Megas_Doux
05-21-2016, 03:31 PM
It's not that don't agree with everytime you said. In fact, I share a similar view of it. AI NEEDS to be revamped and the manipulation options expanded. But the thing with AC in general is that we are talking about a franchise that has some bits of open world greatness, action, adventure and stealth but it doesn´t truly focus in either of them, resulting in all of those being underdeveloped.

Which is sad for it shows how much potential the concept of this franchise really has.

Farlander1991
05-21-2016, 08:26 PM
While I do agree with most of your points, I suppose I'll be the odd guy again, saying here that AC doesn't need a disguise system.

I remember I argued for a long time that AC doesn't need a 'crouch' button, that contextual crouch in restricted zones with just enemies is enough (like in Watch_Dogs, for example). And, you know, we got a crouch button and people seem happy, but they're using it only in restricted zones with just enemies so what's the point of it being anywhere? That's just a distraction from what AC really needs to focus on.

Just like a disguise system would be a distraction from what AC really needs to focus on. Behavioral social stealth system. Social stealth in AC for the most part is pretty basic - it's reactionary, based on your illegal actions. In Hitman series it's pretty much the same, but the disguise system gives it depth by switching the access to different restricted zones. And that's perfectly fine for Hitman, but it's not what AC needs. What AC needs is to really focus on the systemic social stealth and crowd interaction.

AC1 introduced the social stealth concept as saying that whenever you act as part of the system (i.e. the crowds), you're unnoticed. The way it was implemented was mostly just the basics, but it was there. After AC1 this concept pretty much didn't advance at all. Heck, I would say that in some case it has degraded even, with the crowds being used mostly as 'bushes' in mission design. With the exception of the part that they can move, replace crowds with bushes and nothing would change in any of the city stealth missions in AC2, ACB, ACR, and so on.

Social stealth is purely thematic in the AC series. There's very little progression there, with the biggest and one of the few improvements being stuff like throwing money at the floor so the crowds would start picking them up, therefore we broke the system and the guard attention is drawn to that break rather than to us. We need more advancement in that sort of situation. We need advancements in that area. In us being unnoticed as long as we look like we're part of the system, in us being able to manipulate the system itself to draw attention to it, and in there being external forces not controlled by us that disrupt the system as well so we'd adapt.

Crouching, disguises, all that is nice and dandy of course, but it's a distraction from what AC as a series needs to really focus on.

VestigialLlama4
05-22-2016, 10:57 AM
That's not reallty the point. AC doesn't have to change its story or characters to be more like Hitman, they just need to take a look at how much more advanced and diverse the stealth system is.

And naturally the purported diversity of a stealth system has nothing to do with what the story and setting allows and coheres with. :confused:

Hitman is essentially about mindless killing of a target. We are not supposed to build relationships or understand these targets, we are just supposed to kill them and get away. In AC everything revolves on the opposite, the crowds the open world exists because our actions have meaning, they are meant to protect the people among whom we hide. That is not there in Hitman at all.


I've wanted disguises in these games forever, Liberation was the first one to do it, but it was on a handheld. Unity did it, but the execution was laughable, literally morphing Arno into a different person.

Disguises can work if it has a certain realism. Like different districts based on class and kind of people living there would have different colours, costumes and motifs, so long as it works to improve the blending feature (vanished since AC1) that would be great. But in Hitman the disguises are clumsy keycards. They are there to get you through certain doors and places and that's it. It has no additional function, and bringing disguise for using the same keycard function (as in Unity) is not a good idea at all.


Community contracts would be amazing. There were some really fun player-created multiplayer modes in AC4's Game Lab. Too bad the MP was dying at that point.

Well to be honest, the idea of community contracts is mindless killing of targets which is not what AC is involved. It works in multiplayer yes, but then I am not a multiplayer guy, nor do I think multiplayer fits Assassin's Creed.

SixKeys
05-22-2016, 01:58 PM
And naturally the purported diversity of a stealth system has nothing to do with what the story and setting allows and coheres with. :confused:

You're essentially saying that AC shouldn't implement game mechanics that would advance its core pillar of (social) stealth because Hitman has mindless killing in it. Where's the logic in that? If Hitman had been the one to introduce crowd-blending, you would be against AC adopting that too, even if it works for the story AC is trying to tell?



Well to be honest, the idea of community contracts is mindless killing of targets which is not what AC is involved.

Why do you assume it would be mindless killing? At least, any more than the dozens of mini-contracts we have in each game where you're given a brief excuse why you need to go kill this guy and that's it. Imagine users not only being able to design their own missions but come up with a story around those missions, too.

VestigialLlama4
05-22-2016, 02:51 PM
You're essentially saying that AC shouldn't implement game mechanics that would advance its core pillar of (social) stealth because Hitman has mindless killing in it. Where's the logic in that?

So far no one has really talked about what these mechanics will bring in terms of story/setting and so on. It's easy to readily provide player freedom and asking for a huge black box by ignoring all the elements that hinder that. The same with MGSV which was the other game everyone suggested. Yes a game set in Afghanistan without Afghanis is the perfect one to take as a reference point for what AC should be like. Most stealth games are interior-set whereas AC (Unity and Syndicate excepted) are largely exterior-set for stealth missions.

It needs new solutions and fresh concepts whereas all Hitman and other games will offer are more refinements of basic interior stealth.


Imagine users not only being able to design their own missions but come up with a story around those missions, too.

In most cases the stories users come up with are not good ones or interesting ones. And you know I pay money for a product to enjoy it, not to expect that I should use the tools it gives to do its job for myself.

pacmanate
05-25-2016, 03:41 PM
A contracts mode could work fine.

We already have those assassination contracts in past games, it could just be like that, except this time the community makes the targets.

You could even argue to make it so they aren't really memories, but simulated target test programs. That would eliminate the need to explain why there are so many Templars now running around. Treat it as a test program.

It would be a great way to add longetivity and replayablity to Assassin's Creed as you would have constant training targets. You don't need cutscenes, just details on your target and drop us into a sandbox.

shobhit7777777
05-25-2016, 05:33 PM
AC certainly could pick up some elements from Hitman...and vice versa. Cross pollination between the two would be a great idea.

That said, Farlander makes an excellent point about AC's hidden/untapped strength- robust social stealth gameplay thats more about manipulating and exploiting the crowd as opposed to crouching behind tables or nicking people's clothes.

There is a lot AC could borrow from Hitman...but all of it pertains to creating a living breathing ecosystem that the player can manipulate. NPCs and AI "talk" to each other, targets have a varied routine, AI can be manipulated in multiple ways and the game world itself is poised to distract,divert and in some instances, kill.

Hitman (2016) is an excellent game that provides a wonderfully robust and deep sandbox and in doing so provides a far superior "Assassin" experience. It is DESIGNED completely around the assassin fantasy - patient stalking, observation, deduction, preparation, planning and ultimately execution. Assassin's Creed on the other hand has a broader target to hit and is essentially a third person action-adventure game.
Where tailing and eavesdropping in AC send me into a groan induced coma....in Hitman I'm excited and thrilled to do the same (albeit in a much more organic manner).

My point is that while the two games are about Assassins...they go about it in very different ways. In one you play a cold, detached saboteur...who methodically plans out a kill....and in the other you're a swashbuckler saving the world from domination/impending evil etc. Two very different fantasies.

Therefore, the elements that AC can pick up from Hitman - and there are many - need to be things that complement the game's premise and tone.

Disguises? Nope IMO
Target routines and manipulation? Yep
Crouching? Nope
NPC-AI communication? Yep

But before all that, AC devs really need to rethink their mission design - all of it conducive to traditional sneaking and hiding and none of it related to urban crowd manipulation or diversion. Its the single biggest flaw that they've consistently managed to preserve in the franchise.



Hitman is essentially about mindless killing of a target. We are not supposed to build relationships or understand these targets, we are just supposed to kill them and get away. In AC everything revolves on the opposite, the crowds the open world exists because our actions have meaning, they are meant to protect the people among whom we hide. That is not there in Hitman at all.




But in Hitman the disguises are clumsy keycards. They are there to get you through certain doors and places and that's it. It has no additional function, and bringing disguise for using the same keycard function (as in Unity) is not a good idea at all.

Thats^^ idiotically reductive and dismissive.

In the Hitman games, I stalk, study and observe my target. My intel dossier and observations outline his/her likes/dislikes, bad habits, past sins and mortal weaknesses...in a way I'm FAR more intimate with my targets in Hitman than I am in any of the AC games.

Re: Disguises
Clumsy? Not really no. Keycards? Largely, yes...as in real life...the right clothing IS a passport, and Hitman simulates it rather well. Some NPCs can see through your disguise and certain disguises allow you the benefit of having conversations with some people. The "passport" aspect of disguise adds a tremendous amount of depth to the act of exploration and planning your hit. Disguises in Hitman are IMO really well done

P.S

Play the new Hitman...its ****ing awesome.

dxsxhxcx
05-25-2016, 05:41 PM
A contracts mode could work fine.

We already have those assassination contracts in past games, it could just be like that, except this time the community makes the targets.

You could even argue to make it so they aren't really memories, but simulated target test programs. That would eliminate the need to explain why there are so many Templars now running around. Treat it as a test program.

It would be a great way to add longetivity and replayablity to Assassin's Creed as you would have constant training targets. You don't need cutscenes, just details on your target and drop us into a sandbox.

They could use the VR training room for that, as a way to train the (modern) Assassin to handle different situations for example.