In the last episode, Connor learned the power of the Wolf Cloak, which allows you to turn invisible as you move between cover. In this episode the power he unlocks is much more dramatic: the power of flight.
It's the eagle whose magical powers Connor - sorry, Ratonhnhaké:ton - has harnessed this time, and it works in much the same way as Batman's grapnel in the Arkham games. Aim the camera at pretty much any surface until an icon appears, then hit the power button to transform into a shimmering eagle and fly towards it. Like the Wolf Cloak, earning Eagle Flight involves navigating a series of platforming challenges in a dreamlike spirit world.
One set-piece in particular makes brilliant use of this new ability. Connor is stripped of his weapons and has to escape a prison filled with Washington's guards. Using Eagle Flight he can leap down from the rafters, choke one of them out, then soar back to his hiding spot in an instant before anyone notices. It's absurd, but enjoyable, and the most fun we've had in an Assassin's Creed game since using Ezio's bombs to toy with guards in Revelations.
Eagle Flight also makes traversing Boston, the setting for this episode, an absolute breeze. You can chain your bursts of flight and travel across the whole city, flying from chimney to chimey, uninterrupted. It also makes chase missions laugably easy. You can catch up with your target in seconds. It almost makes you wonder if the series is stifled by its dedication to historical accuracy. They're obviously having fun experimenting in this DLC, and it's infectious.
Mission design is more forgiving. Assassin's Creed 3, and the first DLC, are full of infuriating instant fails, punishing you for not playing the game exactly as the developers want you to. In comparison, this episode has more secondary objectives. Being spotted in stealth sections, in most cases, won't instantly end the mission; but you won't get full synchronisation.
This is the best of the two DLC episodes so far, and combining the Eagle Flight and Wolf Cloak powers makes for some interesting stealth. The pace of the story also picks up, and we're given more potential clues about how Connor ended up inhabitating this new version of himself.
The silly, but entertaining, Eagle Flight power makes this the best episode of the Assassin's Creed 3 DLC yet.
- The flying mechanic works well
- Some great stealth set-pieces
- Boston barely feels any different from AC3
- Still no decent side missions