Is Assassin’s Creed Syndicate worth playing in 2023?

Is Assassin’s Creed Syndicate worth playing in 2023? Many veteran fans consider this game the last “real” Assassin’s Creed game. Did that opinion age well? How does Syndicate compare against the previous game, Unity, which was exceptional (but not at launch)?

First of all, let’s look at why you should play Assassin’s Creed Syndicate in 2023. Then we’ll look at reasons why you might decide to skip it.

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Why you should play Assassin’s Creed Syndicate in 2023

If you are a fan of Assassin’s Creed since the era of the second game and Black Flag, you might be craving more stealth vigilante-like action. But the RPG mechanics of the newer AC games make them feel something quite different from the original Assassin’s Creed formula. Syndicate‘s world, stealth, and combat are Assassin’s Creed at its peak.

Now let’s discuss the best features of Syndicate, briefly.

The Setting

Is Assassin's Creed Syndicate worth playing in 2023?

Assassin’s Creed Syndicate is set in London during the Industrial Revolution. The huge city of London is bustling with activity and the messy and dirty streets and canals and buildings add to the turmoil the people are going through in the game. Everywhere you look, there are a lot of characters which look different and unique. Assassin’s Creed Syndicate is truly lived in. Not a lot of game worlds feel this much alive.

The Side Content

Is Assassin’s Creed Syndicate worth playing in 2023?
A DLC introduced Jack the Ripper.

There is a lot of side content in this game and each quest grants new rewards. I previously touched on the subject of repetition of this game, and that point still stands, of course. Some of these quests can feel like chores at certain points. Let’s talk about some of the best side content of the game: the detective missions. In these missions, you hunt criminals and murderers in the alleys and streets of London. If you’re a fan of Sherlock Holmes, this is your dream come true. Because of those iconic novels, the detective missions really suit Assassin’s Creed Syndicate. There are some quests like this which can be really fun, and they’re more welcome than the repetitive activities the game throws at you at certain points.

The Combat and Stealth

With a variety of weapons including the iconic hidden blades, you can engage in brutal combat that’s arguably the best in the series before Assassin’s Creed Origins. While the selection of weapons is very unique and different from that of the previous games, it works very well. For example, instead of bows, you wield revolvers in Syndicate. Technological advancements are seen in combat as well. In this game, a dagger and a pistol are more practical than a huge sword and a longbow. With each stylish and brutal hit you land on your enemies, your combo counter fills up, and it makes for a thrilling combat experience.

As for stealth, the social stealth mechanics works exceptionally in Syndicate. Because of the sheer number of people in the game, you can easily blend in with them and go invisible after assassinating your target. You have a variety of tools at your disposal which allows you to swiftly take down or escape from foes. The Stealth of Syndicate is probably only second to that of Unity. Also, there are multiple paths you can eliminate your target in this game, similar to Unity.

The Customisation

This is one of the strongest parts of Assassin’s Creed Syndicate. Heavily customizable characters were introduced in Assassin’s Creed Unity, and that tradition continues in Syndicate. But the equipment in Syndicate is very different from those of Unity or any other games in the series. The outfits and weapons are more modern and technologically advanced. Clothing is stylish and resembles the gangsters of movies like Gangs of New York. The addition of revolvers and guns works exceptionally well in ranged combat situations. Believe me when I say that the customization of the game is nearly perfect in many regards.

The Protagonist Characters

Is Assassin’s Creed Syndicate worth playing in 2023?

In this game, you can play as two characters who are twins. Evie Frye is a smart, calculating, and quiet girl who plans every move and thinks ahead. And Jacob Frye is her brother who’s cocky, blunt, and forward. These two colorful characters suit different missions, and you can choose who to play as. The interactions between the siblings are funny and wholesome, most of the time. While they aren’t as complex as Ezio or ambitious as Edward Kenway, they’re great in their own way. Including two characters was a great way to keep the game more dynamic and interesting.

The Gangs

Is Assassin’s Creed Syndicate worth playing in 2023?

As the name “Syndicate” implies, there’s an organized crime element in the game. You can be the leader of a huge gang and you have to eliminate other gangs in order to gain more property. You’ll feel like Tommy Shelby and his gang of Peaky Blinders in Assassin’s Creed Syndicate.

In short, Assassin’s Creed Syndicate is still worth playing for long-time series fans. Plus, it’s relatively cheap new on Amazon and around $10 used at GameStop. If you prefer playing on PC, Humble Store often has the game on sale.

Things that make Assassin’s Creed Syndicate less than enjoyable

Okay, so now that we have touched on why the game is still worth playing, let’s change gears a little bit. This section is to educate you on the potential lackluster mechanics of the game.

Lack of Immersion

Is Assassin’s Creed Syndicate worth playing in 2023?

This is a problem with many Assassin’s Creed games. They’re inspired by historical incidents and there are a lot of things that are historically accurate in the games. Realism is not a part of Assassin’s Creed, by any means. But immersion is very important in a game. So why is Assassin’s Creed Syndicate not very immersive?

The accessibility of the game is superb. It’s very easy for you to traverse the beautiful environment with the help of the minimap and the objective markers. Yet this is exactly one of the features that make the game not very immersive. The display is cluttered with markers, letters, quest names, location information and more. If the UI was minimal, you would be more immersed in the game.

Admittedly, this is not that big of a deal and it certainly doesn’t make the game substantially worse. Some of you might prefer these accessibility features, however.

The Repetitive Nature

There are a lot of interesting locations and quests in the game. However, all of these give you a list of objectives that’s more similar to a To-do list than something you as a player should think and act upon. It’s basically “Go here”, “Kill this guy”, “Collect that” etcetera. The game kind of babysits the player with all these instructions. In each location you can discover, there are a set of pre-determined objectives you have to complete. These are more often than not, looting treasures or assassinating someone. There’s very, very little environmental storytelling and details that reward the player’s attention.

This second part is what would be off-putting to many players. Even if you like it at first, you may get bored halfway through.

Assassin’s Creed Syndicate’s similarities to Unity

Is Assassin’s Creed Syndicate worth playing in 2023?

I’ve made an article previously describing why Assassin’s Creed Unity remains one of the best games in the series. I recommend reading it as well. Anyway, Syndicate has many similarities to Unity, and that’s a good thing.

The parkour of Syndicate is quite similar to that of Unity. But Unity’s parkour was more stylish than that of Syndicate. However, Syndicate’s parkour is just as fluid and it’s one of the best things in the game to freerun through the bustling city, aimless and free. In this, Syndicate is similar to Unity and sadly, this is the last time we saw exceptional parkour from an Assassin’s Creed game before they moved on to the RPG formula.

Assassin’s Creed Syndicate visually looks just as great, if not better, than Unity. And Unity’s visuals are breathtaking, even today. The busy streets of the city and the number of characters on the screen at any given time make the game feel very alive, just as Unity did.

What do you think? Is Assassin’s Creed Syndicate worth playing in 2023? Let us know!