I'm seeing LOTS of complaints about this game, some I agree with, some I don't. Here are some of my opinions after playing maybe 15-20 hours. Do note that this is fairly quickly written down, please forgive me if it's poorly written, lacks thing, etc.There's an island called "Ikke en Øy". That means "Not an island" in Norwegian. What the heck is that about?Torghatten is a famous mountain with a hole through, and it's in the game. It shouldn't be, it nowhere near this region, it's in Northern Norway. In fact, driving from Stavanger, it's 1262 kilometers (roughly 788 miles) away in the real world, according to google maps.
Btw, I'm no expert in English geograpy and history, therefore I will only comment on Norway about such. Yes, I'm a Norwegian 🙂
I run everything except Resolution Scale on max settings. To me, it looks great, mostly. But there are things that looks absolutely terrible. Water effects in open water are probably the worst - imo, it looked better even in Black Flag 7 years ago. See near the cost almost anywhere in Norway to see excellent examples of this. Else, there's a lot of gorgeus eye candy, but it's kinda dull since there are not much variation, especially in England. Lighting effect looks are absolutely stunning on my rig, though.
I have a great PC, just a few months old. Therefore it's no wonder it runs great for me. However, I do see many are affected by memory leaks or something, which makes the game stutter a lot after a while. I understand there are issuees, but I'm not affected by these.
I've fallen partly through the world several times, usually being forced to quicktravel to get out of it. Only happened in Norway, though. Apart from that, I've only seen some minor glitches. In other words, a few annoyanced, but nothing gamebreaking.
Story and general gameplay:
I'm not that far into it, but till now, I like it. I've read some complains about the dialogue - remember, vikings excelled in battle, but the language wasn't that advanced. I'm not picky here, it works for me.
The missions so far are fairly generic, and holds no suprises. However, I really detest all those "follow that npc" parts, both in the main story, and some side missions. That's just annoying, but luckily I haven't had any "follow that npc without getting detected" missions yet, and can only hope they aren't there. Really hated those in Black Flag.
Stealth used to be a very important part of the AC games, and THE way for me to do a lot of things in the last two games, like fortresses, outposts, etc. In this game, stealth takes second chair, it feels, and I don't like that change. I guess it's the brute force viking thingy kicking in here.
Dual wielding almost whatever you want is a good thing. I've always been a fan of getting multiple options, so this is a positive. What I do not like, is the limited gear drops. Having to spend large amount of resources to upgrade gear, instead of finding new ones that suits your level, is a huge negative to me.
Leveling up, powering up, or whatever you call it, to get skill points. This is rubbish. Instead of the usual level system, where each level brings more health, damage, etc. you need to spend skill points to get them. So, what's the difference? Simply that in this game, you need skill points to increase just about everything, which you get automatically with a new level in other games. That is in addition to spending even more points on the actual new passive skills. That's why you need hundreds of points here. It really doesn't equal a lot of levels compared to other games, it's just an overcomplicated version of the same. Not to mention, the skill tree has invisible parts (behind "fog") for some unknown reason, and you can get rid of that by spending points in that direction, then reset them. It's beyond ridiculous!
One of the things I dislike most, is the raids. I have no issues with doing them, they fit in a viking game, but I do not feel they fit in an assassin's creed game. I felt the same with Spartan/Greek battles in Odyssey. AC isn't about open warfare, at least not to me. And since doing raids is the only way to get some of the resources, they feel mandatory, and probably are.
Oh, dear. THE worst part of this game. A boring, sluggish, repetitive hack'n'slash system, with a few braindead finishers that are nothing to write home about. And VERY often, especially when fighting multiple enemies, Eivor isn't at all doing what I'm trying to make him do, which makes it feel even more sluggish. Also, adding quick time event to stealth takedowns to inflict more damage - seriously, Ubi??
Side quests, chests and such:
It's a deliberate move from Ubi to not include side quests in the quest log, and instead present them as "world events" as they call them. Personally, I really, really hate this change. For example, I came upon a place where I was supposed to offer 10 of something which I didn't have. Instead of having it in my quest log, I will have to return there to get a reminder what that something is. Also, when you enter a zone and get that list of wealth, mystics and artifacts, and you see that you need to complete 50-60 in that single zone, that feels extremely overwhelming to me, especially when you know you have 12-15 more zones to go through. Yikes... I do NOT like this way to present it at all.
Side quests / world events are probably mandatory, at least doing most of them. By doing only the main story, you will probably be underleveled very soon. This is a terrible system and I'd say it completely destroys replay value.
Game vs real history:
I do love how Ubi has included quite a few characters from real history and the sagas. But they've taken quite a few liberties here too. For example, some characters mention Ragnar Lothbrok a few times, ie someone wanted him to become king of Norway. He was either Swedish or Danish depending on which source to believe, not Norwegian. Also, Kjøtve, which we kill early on - if he even existed, it's said in one of the sagas he ran away after the battle of Hafrsfjord and was never seen again. That was one year before the Valhalla story.
Geography of Norway vs game:
I do love that my country is in the game. The parts of the game which takes place in Norway, is in the southwestern region of the country, and includes several real places, like Stavanger. But there are also some very, very strange things here. I'll give 2 examples, though there are more:
A good-looking game with its own take on real history. It has a terrible combat system, and a rubbish side quest system. Still somewhat enjoyable, and I will continue to play, at least for a while. However, I do regret buying the ultimate edition - I'm not even sure the base game is worth completing.