Assassin's Creed Origins: Starter Guide
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Assassin’s Creed Origins is the first entry in the series to fully embrace RPG elements. Origins lays the foundations for both Odyssey and Valhalla, whilst acting as a prequel to Altair’s crusade. Origins alters the formula for the series as it ushers in a new player base, whilst trying to retain the magic of the original games.
Origins is a visually magnificent game that will leave you in awe of both its beauty and size. Spanning across the whole of Egypt, you will embark on a journey of revenge to right the wrongs inflicted upon your family.
You begin with one of my favourite cinematics in the series. The game will then throw you straight into the action. Origins is not a slow burner, and you will be fully involved from the start. This can lead to a steep learning curve, but one you will soon master. In this guide I will try to give you the best possible start to your Egyptian adventure.
Bayek of Siwa
Bayek is the protagonist of this story, an Egyptian Medjay, and the first location for you to explore is Siwa. This city is the home of Bayek and his wife Aya, and acts as the introduction to the game. There is much to do in this part of the map and I would recommend exploring it all. The main quests will act as the foundations of what is to come, however the side quests and extra locations will teach you the basics of what to expect throughout the game.
Origins introduces a levelling system that will define what you can do in the game. You will earn XP for completing activities within the world. By earning XP you will be able to level up and slowly become more powerful. Even in Siwa there will be areas that are initially too dangerous for you, which indicated by red skull icons above enemies. In some cases, it is possible to defeat them or just sneak past, but I highly recommend either matching their level or going just above.
To do so you will want to find a balance between story, side quests and undiscovered locations. The main story will provide you with the most XP, however this will not be enough on its own. The game can restrict your progression if you do not deviate from the main story. This isn’t a bad thing as the map is full of interesting things to discover.
If you open the map and check each area of Egypt, you will notice that it has been assigned a power level, and visiting there early can be a frustrating task. My advice would be to follow the organic path set out by the game.
Ability Points and Playstyles
Every time you level up you will be rewarded with an ability point. This can be added to your ability tree in order to gain new skills. It is a relatively common practice in games now, but at the time it took a bit of getting used to.
Your ability tree is split into three playstyles. You can choose to master one, or split your abilities to allow for a more balanced experience. Either way, by the time you reach the conclusion of the game, the chances are that you will have all the skills.
The three styles are:
Hunter: Focuses on ranged abilities
Warrior: The emphasis here is on melee
Seer: This is for gadgets/perks that lend themselves to an Assassin’s playstyle
Weapons and Combat
AC Origins has a lot to offer in this department. There is a real magnitude of weapons available to choose from, and each weapon has a rarity ranking.
The rarer the item, the more you get from it. You can choose to sell these items for Drachma (money) or dismantle them for resources. I would recommend keeping your favourites from each category, and then dismantling any unwanted regular weapons and selling the rare ones.
It is good to know that the rarity often links to stats such as critical hit bonuses. Always compare your gear to see which one offers you the best stats for your playstyle. Keep an eye out for attributes assigned to your weapons. Blacks are standard attributes, but gold will provide you with a nice little boost. The red ones (cursed) are the most interesting as they provide you with high damage but at the cost of reducing your health.
Don’t worry if you find a weapon that you like but feel that it is too low a level. A trip to one of the many blacksmiths will provide you with the opportunity to boost it up to your current level in exchange for some Drachma.
Combat is a lot more difficult in comparison to the blocking and countering of the old games. Now you can go all-out attack if you wish. Be warned though, that you cannot just button bash, and there is still the need to defend and this is where the shields comes in. Bayek’s shield will be your saviour when surrounded. Use it to parry incoming attacks, but also utilise it as cover from enemy archers.
Senu and Loot
Senu is your eagle and companion as you travel across Egypt. You will not start with Senu but if you follow the main quest you will soon be reunited with your companion. Senu is easily accessible by pressing up on the D-Pad (console). From here you will be able to fly Senu around the map, with the option to scout areas in advance. Use Senu to discover and tag enemies, loot, resources and objectives, however if you over use this function the game can become less challenging.
Sync points will give you a stunning view of the surrounding area, but most importantly increase Senu’s perception. In turn, this links to the loot hidden around the map. You will find a lot of chests hidden underwater and the better Senu’s perception, the more likely you are to find them. Just be aware of crocodiles and hippos, as fighting them off in the water can be challenging.
The loot in Origins is critical to so many aspects of the game. Just grab as much as you can, and sell or dismantle it to fill your pockets with Drachma or crafting materials.
Crafting in Origins is all about 6 pieces of gear that you secure very early in the game. From this point on you will need to collect resources to upgrade them. When highlighting the gear you will be shown which resources you need to collect.
Hidden Blade: Who does not like this, the staple for any assassin? You will get this once you arrive in Alexandria. You have 10 upgrade levels, each adding to the damage the blade can do. Essential for anyone wishing to play the way of the assassin.
Quiver: You will only need to upgrade this 5 times, allowing you to carry additional arrows. A big favourite of mine as the introduction of the bow really mixes up the gameplay.
Stabilizer Glove: This compliments the quiver, providing you with increased damage with the bow. Just like the Hidden Blade you will need to level the glove 10 times.
Bracer: These can be upgraded 10 times for additional melee damage.
Breastplate: Upgrade this to further increase your maximum health, there are 10 levels.
Tool Pouch: Only 5 upgrades for this one, and one I did not bother with in the early game. If you follow the Seer abilities focus on this gear piece.
Outfits and Mounts
If you are playing Origins after Valhalla or Odyssey then you may slightly be disappointed with the customisation options. There are many outfits in the game but they do not have interchangeable parts. Bayek’s clothing does come with the same rarity as his weapons but unfortunately they are purely for cosmetic purposes. The same can be said for the mounts, although you can switch out your horse for a camel if you wish. Do not be put off by this though as there are some very nice outfits in the game.
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