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View Full Version : Constaninople is a masterpiece



luckyto
02-15-2012, 08:35 PM
I believe free roam or "sandbox" type games should be measured, for the most part, on three criteria:
1) control and gameplay mechanics (how fun and intuitive it is to control)
2) combat or action element
3) maps or environment (size and visual appeal)

and possibly story... but a fun sandbox can survive without a good story. *cough* Just Cause 2 *cough*

A lot of criticism (much of it well-deserved) has been leveled against Assassin's Creed Revelations, but I have to say that Constantinople is a brilliant map. I would have liked another city of respectable size, but by itself, Constantinople is easily the most complex, diverse and beautiful map of any city in all the AC franchise.

One of my major major complaints was that Rome got boring very fast. Personally, I have always had a fondness for that place. But the city was homogenous, even in separate districts or the more rural areas of the map. The best solution for this - I found - was to leave some districts under Templar Control; as free districts and templar districts had slightly different looks. Still, it is quite boring after some time --- even littered with some of the world's most famous landmarks. In AC2 and AC1, the maps were very different in look from each other; but within themselves, they were quite homogenous as well.

Constantinople is diverse. It's landmarks are unique, different buildings are topped with a variety of spires and domes; and districts visibly change as you move from one to the next. Traversing from one end to the other in Constantinople is a joy. A real joy. It is full of overpasses and walkways and little corners hidden away that you might never see if you aren't looking for them.

And to top it off, Revelations renders graphics better than any of its predecessors (well, maybe not AC1). Needless to say, it looks phenomenal. Anways - here's to Ubi for Constantinople. I love my map. Please feel free to share your own thoughts on the city -

LoveTwisted
02-15-2012, 09:38 PM
Constantinople is my favorite setting in the AC franchise thus far. It's diverse, colorful, and just fun to run around in (especially with the Hookblade, I love that addition to the game so much and I hope it returns in AC3). Playing through the game, I loved how you instantly felt when you entered a new district. My only complaint is that I wish it was larger, or there was another city to go to (excluding Cappadocia and Masyaf).

SixKeys
02-15-2012, 10:14 PM
I definitely like Constantinople as a setting better than Rome in ACB. It is more diverse and colorful, if noticeably smaller since there are no large open spaces. OTOH, I must say the only place in Constantinople that has a markedly different look to the rest* is the poor area where all the houses are made of wood and are creaky and worn-down. That's my favorite area of the city, sometimes I go hang out there even if there's no mission objective. Imperial doesn't stand out as strongly in comparison with Galata or the other richer areas. I also disagree about the landmarks. There are only a couple that instantly jump to mind as memorable locations, the rest are just too similar-looking and many of them you don't get to explore from the inside. I did really like the market streets (not the Grand Bazaar) that you would sometimes walk through that were covered with an overhanging roof, with the sunlight filtering through the cracks. Those looked really nice and I wish there would have been more areas like that where they played with the lights and shadows.


* I guess you could say the Arsenal does too, but there's practically nothing to do there so it's not an area you visit often apart from the two story missions.

ChaosxNetwork
02-15-2012, 10:23 PM
Constantinople is my favourite of all the cities so far. Looks fantastic, great atmosphere and awesome navigation. If they could do 3 cities in one game (like AC: I + II) as good as Constantinople in AC: III then I will be a happy man.

luckyto
02-15-2012, 10:28 PM
You know, SixKeys, I felt the exact same about the landmarks myself.

But I have now clocked a ridiculous amount of time just mucking about in Constantinople... doing nothing. My "foreigner" eyes (where I assimilate everything as a means of coping with the unfamiliar) have worn off --- and now I'm noticing a lot of differences. A few of the mosques are, by design, the exact same - as they are in real life. But there's really a lot of diversity in them.

I'd say that the more time that I spend roaming about the city, the more diverse it becomes. I notice more and more with each visit. Whereas Rome just got more and more boring, Florence did as well. Venice was truly interesting, and I think the Carnivale section helps it. And Acre has improved with time as well. A map I once thought "blah" but the more time I spend there the more I love it.

zStrictStyle
02-15-2012, 11:16 PM
Yes.It`s the best city to date.They didn`t make it just to wander around aimlessly.They wanted you to explore the world they created.The most remarkable thing I saw was the books missions.The view from each top was truly amazing.

luckyto
02-15-2012, 11:19 PM
Ah... but in a sandbox, you should be able to wander around aimlessly and still enjoy yourself.

zStrictStyle
02-16-2012, 01:30 PM
Ah... but in a sandbox, you should be able to wander around aimlessly and still enjoy yourself.


Sorry.I meant they wanted you to explore it and see what they did with the world they created.

The13Doctors
02-16-2012, 01:42 PM
I loved it. I just wish they had incorporated First person again somehow, I know Eagle Vision took the control but maybe holding the Camera Forward ****on (Right Joystick Click) or using the D-Pad would have been great to be ablee to see things in First Person.

Thanks to ACR I became aware of the city, I'm actually planning a trip there, finding out hotels, flight prices, transportation (sadly no hook blade), and such for the itinerary.

I plan to visit Galata Tower and the Hagia Sophia as well as visit the Topkapi Palace, it's cool because the Sultan's Private Quarters, where Ezio spies on Ahmet, is available to the public so I will be able to go in it. I can't wait to visit the Former Crossroads Of The World

twenty_glyphs
02-17-2012, 01:21 AM
I think Constantinople is one of the best maps in the series. When you view the in-game map, it seems very blocky and artificial, but when you're actually moving through it the city feels great. The maze-like feeling you get in the city, as well as the various overlapping layers of structures was great. I like how there are tall towers to climb everywhere to get good views. And the different parts of town have excellent diversity, with the Constantin district being the most obvious one.

I do have some complaints though. At times it seems like the city feels too exotic -- like they went a little overboard with the amount of haze and smoke wafting about, as well as the sheer amounts of colors on different clothes and pillows. Realism is one thing, but at times these things can feel overwhelming for me. I also agree that the major landmarks feel too similar to each other. Sure, on closer inspection they're not, but they still feel like visiting the same place over and over at times.

Another thing is that the different elevations were nice, but I never got much sense of this in the game. I think the sheer amount of buildings built on the various slopes and hills sort of masks a lot of the change in elevation. It's sort of a nitpick, and I don't know what the solution should be when you're shooting for geographical accuracy. I just sort of liked the more dramatic change in elevation in parts of Rome over the more gradual slopes of Constantinople. And the fact that there are hardly any open areas in the city makes it feel extremely claustrophobic. I wish it had a little more room to breathe sometimes, like the southwest corner of the map. I don't like how far apart the Galata district and the rest of the city are. I know it's accurate, but it makes the city feel smaller at times and also makes me forget to visit Galata when I am just roaming around a lot. Maybe there could have been a more interesting way to get between the two parts of the city.

One complaint I still have with the maps in the series is the desynch wall locations. I hate that you can't climb on some of the walls on the eastern side of the Constantinople map because of the desynch walls, or when you can climb on top of the city wall, your view of the surrounding landscape becomes obstructed by the desynch wall. The northern city walls in the Galata district are the same way. Rome had this problem too on the northern walls of the Castel Sant'Angelo. I don't understand why these are issues, especially considering the end map of AC2 when you could run on top of the Pasetto di Borgo without seeing desynch walls at the edge of the wall. If you jumped off, you simply desynched then without the need for the ugly walls. Why did this change in Brotherhood? Maybe it's because one is a linear map and the other is the open world map, but I still wish I could climb on top of the city wall and look around without having my view obstructed by a desynch wall right on top of me.

Overall, the Constantinople map is great and shows that they have nearly perfected how to build excellent city environments to explore for the AC engine. I think I preferred the feel of Rome for some reason even though its actual city was much less interesting. I also think that if Rome and Constantinople had been in the same game, almost all of my nitpicks about either map would disappear because there would be more variety in the same game. But since these two games only had one open world map, all the focus was on that one city.

Acrimonious_Nin
02-17-2012, 03:02 AM
truly this game is at its thus far best in the art of in-game scenery :D (within the assassins creed universe that is)

rileypoole1234
02-17-2012, 03:07 AM
I still think Florence in AC2 left more of an impact on me than Constantinople, but the city is amazing nonetheless.

pirate1802
02-17-2012, 06:52 AM
I think Venice from AC2 and Constantinopoli from ACR would definitely be the best settings in the AC universe. venice mostly for nostalgic reasons. In Constantinopoli i would just wander around, even though i have nothing to do there anymore, listening to the townspeople, hearing them laugh and talk,which are more noticeable since the background score is more subdued this time around. Watching people carry stuff on their head, and watching them wring their hands in despair after you knock their stuff down, watching the people as they sit down and smoke their hookah, Watching the janisseries move about, matching the day melt away into night and the crescent moon light the sky, standing on a windy day upon a plain surface and watching the dust blown away... all these are made even more striking by the graphical improvements of ACR. My favourite location would be the Grand Bazaar and the poor district.:D

zStrictStyle
02-17-2012, 08:30 AM
Yes.Another thing.The secret locations were the best on the series.Like Galata Rower mission.It really amazed me and the river chase mission.They were awesome among the others.Especially with the zipplines now.

zStrictStyle
02-17-2012, 08:31 AM
And please Ubi.You really impressed me.Please add some secret locations like you did with AC2.

Noble6
02-17-2012, 08:32 AM
Allthough Constantinople is great I still prefer Florence and Venice. I just love the mood of those cities but I admit that Constantinople may have best design. For example sounds of the Constantinople are great and there are lot of different sounds like cats fighting or birds singing.

imonthenet
02-17-2012, 09:29 AM
Constantinople was definitely a great setting as you've all said for simply roaming, I really enjoy simply wandering. Although I've collected all the collectables and completed all the missions it almost feels like the game hasn't "gone to sleep" as such. Every time I play I'll discover something new, whether it be something funny a civilian says, or an interesting Parkour route I so far haven't run oot of fun things to do. Personally though, nothing will match the awe I felt looking down upon Dasmascus that first time, after the hours (literally) that I spent getting there it was a sight of beauty. At the time though I was only 12 and as my first PS3 game it could do no evil, so although there may be better cities nothing will ever match the feeling of that first one.

Thanks for letting me share guys :)

dxsxhxcx
02-17-2012, 01:42 PM
Constantinople is cool, specially at night, but nothing beats the atmosphere of the cities in AC1... my opinion of course.. :)

The13Doctors
02-17-2012, 02:22 PM
Yes.Another thing.The secret locations were the best on the series.Like Galata Rower mission.It really amazed me and the river chase mission.They were awesome among the others.Especially with the zipplines now.

Ah yes, Forum Of The Ox was my favorite mission in the whole game, I can't wait to get there in the PC version with maxed out graphics. Got to get new headphones until then.
I wonder what landmarks are still there in real life.

I can't wait to visit the Hagia Sophia and Topkapi Palace when I go.

What thread should I use for posting the pictures?

kalo.yanis
02-17-2012, 03:38 PM
Constantinople is definitely my favourite city so far. It just has such diversity that completely eluded Rome. The merchant stalls in the streets, the strongly varying architectural styles and the sounds of the bustling city all make it feel so alive. Even the port areas feel distinct, even though they're part of districts.

My favourite district would be Beyazid. The houses there aren't as grand as in Imperial, but the narrow streets going up and down and the many merchant stalls and colourful houses make it very enjoyable to roam through. It also reminds me of back home, since many of the Revival houses there have a very similar architectural style. Speaking of which, since Istanbul is just a 4 hour trip from where I live, I'm thinking of visiting it this summer. :D

The13Doctors
02-17-2012, 03:50 PM
`
Constantinople is definitely my favourite city so far. It just has such diversity that completely eluded Rome. The merchant stalls in the streets, the strongly varying architectural styles and the sounds of the bustling city all make it feel so alive. Even the port areas feel distinct, even though they're part of districts.

My favourite district would be Beyazid. The houses there aren't as grand as in Imperial, but the narrow streets going up and down and the many merchant stalls and colourful houses make it very enjoyable to roam through. It also reminds me of back home, since many of the Revival houses there have a very similar architectural style. Speaking of which, since Istanbul is just a 4 hour trip from where I live, I'm thinking of visiting it this summer. :D

I shall also be there :D
I wonder what will happen if I try to climb the Hagia Sophia. I'll probably get an achievement.

Get tased from the top of a historic landmark - 20 years to life

luckyto
02-17-2012, 04:18 PM
Constantinople was definitely a great setting as you've all said for simply roaming, I really enjoy simply wandering. Although I've collected all the collectables and completed all the missions it almost feels like the game hasn't "gone to sleep" as such. Every time I play I'll discover something new, whether it be something funny a civilian says, or an interesting Parkour route I so far haven't run oot of fun things to do. Personally though, nothing will match the awe I felt looking down upon Dasmascus that first time, after the hours (literally) that I spent getting there it was a sight of beauty. At the time though I was only 12 and as my first PS3 game it could do no evil, so although there may be better cities nothing will ever match the feeling of that first one.

Thanks for letting me share guys :)


You and me both. Damascus is still magic. So is Jerusalem, with Venice a close fourth.

I'm still finding things in that city and I've traversed it end to end dozens of times. I do like free-roaming in it. The combat isn't as fun (to me) as AC1 or AC2, but bomb crafting is keeping it interesting. Make a tripwire bomb of gold coins ... lay three of them in a busy intersection --- go up and enjoy the show. Or make impact shells of gold coins and throw them into a marketplace from a roof... it's hilarious fun.

Still - if the city itself wasn't so ****ed impressive -- I would have quit a long long time ago.

EscoBlades
02-17-2012, 04:34 PM
Mustapha Mahrach is the Level Design Director who designed both Venice and Constantinople. Raphael Lacoste (who many of you know as Art Director for Revelations) was also the art Director for AC1.

Just something to consider ;)

luckyto
02-19-2012, 11:47 AM
Mustapha Mahrach is the Level Design Director who designed both Venice and Constantinople. Raphael Lacoste (who many of you know as Art Director for Revelations) was also the art Director for AC1.

Just something to consider ;)

That's interesting. Those guys are fantastic --- true artists. AC1, Constantinople, Venice.... those are the best looking maps in the entire franchise, IMO. Real genius. Not only do they look great, but each has lots of nooks and crannies and hidden areas that are a delight to explore. They really do deserve a lot of credit. If you are out there guys, kudos -

LightRey
02-19-2012, 11:57 AM
That's interesting. Those guys are fantastic --- true artists. AC1, Constantinople, Venice.... those are the best looking maps in the entire franchise, IMO. Real genius. Not only do they look great, but each has lots of nooks and crannies and hidden areas that are a delight to explore. They really do deserve a lot of credit. If you are out there guys, kudos -

ah, Venice...
That takes me back and not to the time I actually went to Venice.

The13Doctors
02-19-2012, 01:14 PM
Damascus got the beset effect from me, first time I saw it I was in awe.

I walked the horse to the pinnacle of the hill and I just stopped right there and stared at the city from above, it was amazing. I remember I said this when I saw it; "Oh I'm going to love this! Ooh I have to climb that first! No wait that! I already love this city!" Then I galloped down the hill at top speed down to the city.

kalo.yanis
02-19-2012, 07:07 PM
Damascus was my favourite city from AC1 as well. Probably because it was the sunniest and most colourful. Acre on the other hand...

luckyto
02-19-2012, 07:56 PM
Damascus was my favourite city from AC1 as well. Probably because it was the sunniest and most colourful. Acre on the other hand...

I felt the same way about Acre for the longest time... but over the last year, its moved up to one of my favorites. It's a very complex map, especially for AC1. There is a lot going on in Acre and that makes for good free roam. Acre has MANY areas in the city where you can pick a fight .. not with 4 ... or 8 or 12 guards... but 20 - 30 guards at a time. I can think of a half dozen places on that map right now which are covered in guards and patrols. Acre is a brutal bloody city. It is my kill-everything map.. and it never ceases to challenge. And **** it, I still get lost in it sometimes. I admit, Acre's not "pretty" --- but I do respect it. There is no other like it.

JumpInTheFire13
02-19-2012, 08:59 PM
I guess I'll have to pop Revelations back in the PS3 and go exploring! My favourite city in the franchise has always been Venice. It's small compared to Rome and Constantinople, but I still find new places every time I play. It has a feeling of wonder and awe to it, I think the music there really helps with that though. I also really liked Rome even though a lot of people don't like it. I can run around that city for hours and not get bored. The ruins, the Colosseum, The Castello, I just never get sick of exploring them. There's so many places in Rome where you can get a view of the entire city, such as the church that is the first viewpoint you go to in the game. And the different cliffs and aqueducts. It's just a massive city and there's so many places to explore.

One thing I really like about Constantinople was the fog. Walking through the cemetery at night felt so creepy. I'm going to play it right now. Peace.

kalo.yanis
02-19-2012, 09:25 PM
I felt the same way about Acre for the longest time... but over the last year, its moved up to one of my favorites. It's a very complex map, especially for AC1. There is a lot going on in Acre and that makes for good free roam. Acre has MANY areas in the city where you can pick a fight .. not with 4 ... or 8 or 12 guards... but 20 - 30 guards at a time. I can think of a half dozen places on that map right now which are covered in guards and patrols. Acre is a brutal bloody city. It is my kill-everything map.. and it never ceases to challenge. And **** it, I still get lost in it sometimes. I admit, Acre's not "pretty" --- but I do respect it. There is no other like it.

Still though... I prefer killing people in sunny weather. :rolleyes:
I guess living in Edinburgh for 2 years has taken its toll.

ShaneO7K
02-19-2012, 10:53 PM
Damascus was great to just look at, it did a great job of giving of a good atmosphere while roaming around its streets.

luckyto
02-20-2012, 12:57 AM
Still though... I prefer killing people in sunny weather. :rolleyes:
I guess living in Edinburgh for 2 years has taken its toll.

Edinburgh must the Seattle of Great Britain. Damascus also has its own atmosphere that is like no other --- I like it too -- Damascus keeps that nice afternoon desert sun while you are on the map the whole time. It's awesome too.

kalo.yanis
02-20-2012, 02:26 AM
Edinburgh must the Seattle of Great Britain.

This reminds me of an Oatmeal comic:

The 4 Seasons of Seattle Weather

http://s3.amazonaws.com/theoatmeal-img/comics/seattle_weather/1.jpg
http://s3.amazonaws.com/theoatmeal-img/comics/seattle_weather/2.jpg
http://s3.amazonaws.com/theoatmeal-img/comics/seattle_weather/3.jpg
http://s3.amazonaws.com/theoatmeal-img/comics/seattle_weather/4.jpg
http://s3.amazonaws.com/theoatmeal-img/comics/seattle_weather/5.jpg

Yes, Edinburgh is the Seattle of the UK. That's saying something considering the UK's weather reputation.

luckyto
02-20-2012, 03:42 AM
LOL..... you have my empathies.

RzaRecta357
02-20-2012, 03:44 AM
I didn't read any of the posts. But I loved it!

Ninjahed
02-22-2012, 04:42 AM
As much diversity Constantinople was, It was one city or "sandbox". I enjoyed the game no question there, with the bombs and all the things the infamous hook can do... but it was one sandbox. Assassin'S Creed 2 was my favorite due to alll the many cities you can visit freely and with the bonfire of the vanities, could fly Da'Vinci's glider anytime you wanted. What I wish Ubisoft will do with thier next title is make a huge, long, and diverse campaign. This is the end to ezio so now there is potential for an entirly new zone or continent. I hate that they focus soo much on multiplayer when it doesn't compare to what It's campaign is known for.

JumpInTheFire13
02-22-2012, 06:44 AM
^^^ Actually it was Battle of Forli that gave you the flying machine. However I agree with everything else you said.