You remember the time where you played in Italy, going round assassinating political figures and climbing buildings? The time where you went on a roof of a building and a nearby archer with major claustrophobia gets all annoyed that you’re there? Oh yeah, it’s Assassin’s Creed II. Well it’s time to venture back into Renaissance Italy as the first downloadable content pack for Assassin’s Creed II has arrived, Battle of Forli.
This DLC fills in the first of two missing slots in the DNA sequence that were previously unavailable to play as the animus was corrupted. Well conveniently as you start the new DLC, they’ve managed to recover Sequence 12 – who’d have known?
As the title suggests, the game mainly takes place in Forli. The whole six memories in this pack are based around protecting the recovered Piece of Eden. You start the pack consulting with Caterina Sforza. The Orsi Brothers have occupied the city of Forli, and it’s up to you and your two hidden friends (blades) to reclaim the city and protect Caterina and the Apple. It starts with a sprint into the city where you’ll face several packs of enemies trying to halt your progress. This DLC is extremely heavy in combat, so if you like taking up against all odds, this DLC is for you. However, some areas of the story can get overwhelming, as you are tasked with quite challenging missions.
The six memories are much of the same you’ve played in ACII, chasing after bad guys, searching for suspects and fighting hordes of guards. This pack has no new locations added to the game, no new gameplay features and will take you an hour to complete. However, keeping in mind the low price tag, it isn’t all that bad. Some of the missions are quite frustrating, and the end mission doesn’t exactly make the DLC go out with a bang, but does leave room for the story to be continued in the next DLC instalment.
Luckily, with this DLC there is no need to start a new game to get the Flying Machine achievement where you kick guards off of roofs. There is a special memory where they let you ride the flying machine again, so you can try your chances at getting the achievement again. That said, there are no new achievements/trophies in this DLC. They should have at least added one in for completing it, because you don’t feel like you’ve accomplished much at the end.
Running through streets fighting guards does get a bit repetitive at times, but this pack does offer more of a challenge to players. Guarding the Citadel from guards whilst making sure Caterina and Niccolò Machiavelli stay alive is a tough one, took a few tries, but no matter how injured your friends are, they’ll fight as if they hadn’t been scratched. I think this DLC offers more to hardcore Assassin’s Creed players than people who just want to return to the game.
Your return to Assassin’s Creed II will be short lived and be much of the same. Unless you are a serious fan of the franchise, it’s best avoiding this DLC, however it is best to buy if you want to follow the story and see what happened between Sequence 11 and 14. This DLC will be continued by Bonfire of the Vanities, arriving at 400MSP on 25th February. Hopefully, that DLC will have more to offer than this one did. Pleasing to the hardcore, money better spent elsewhere for others.
Reviewer: Ben Gray