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Assassin’s Creed is Very Hard to Quit!

By Shamus
on Tuesday Jun 24, 2008
Filed under:


I’m probably going to pick it up, just because a-list games without a bunch of reprehensible online activation crap are getting scarce, although this kind of thing drives me nuts.


Comments (44)

  1. qrter says:

    HEY, the kids these days want total immersion, ALRIGHT!? ;)

    I don’t know, I’ve never really bought the idea of hiding HUDs, hiding savegames, all that kind of thing. Immersion for me isn’t about not being reminded I’m playing a game because I have to use a menu somewhere.

  2. Blurr says:

    Yep. I just started using the task manager eventually.

  3. Solka says:

    They should *really* consider putting a “leaving the game” option at EVERY SINGLE LEVEL OF THE GAME. (So, down when you are Altair, then when you go up to being his descendant. Then when you are in the welcome menu).

    I hate games that when I want to “exit”, they pop me back to the start menu. WHAT’S THE DEAL?!

  4. Jason says:

    I know you’re a PC gamer (I’ve got my share of those, too), but, you only need to press one button on the PS3. Yay console!

  5. Jeremiah says:

    I was really disappointed by Assassin’s Creed. It got really repetitive really quick. The plot seemed really transparent to me. By the end of the first real mission, I had an inkling of what might be going on, and by the end of the second mission I knew it for sure.

  6. JFargo says:

    Wow. That’s pretty annoying. I think it’d be a deal-breaker for me, because every time I started it up I’d know going into it that I’d have to go through all that just to stop playing. Quitting a game shouldn’t be a hassle.

  7. Stephen says:

    Looks like they forgot that on the PC you can’t just power off the console as soon as you hit a save point and are ready to stop for the night.

  8. folo4 says:

    enjoy playing WITHOUT subtitles!

    seriously, if you want to make a game with copious amounts of voice acting, you’d think that subtitles won’t be much of a hassle to add.

    BUT NOOOOO, you have to frustrate your family as you crank up the volume JUST TO HEAR THE LAST WORDS of your assassination target.

    also, combat consists of mostly countering the living daylights out of EVERY SINGLE ENEMY in the game.

    And to make things worse, they have Mook Chivalry; they will only attack you one at a time, making counters all the more sweeter.

    At least you can’t counter archer shots. That could ramp up the difficulty somewhat.

  9. Factoid says:

    Jeremiah: I’ve heard it said by some that the game feels repetitive, but that wasn’t my experience. It only got repetitive if you kept doing the SAME mission types over and over again. If you play the game a little more scattershot it’s a lot more fun, at least to me. I would run around, kill a guy or two, then hunt for some flags, then maybe look for some high perches…do a couple side-quests, etc…

    I could see if you just focused on the assassination planning and then did missions it might get kind of annoying after a while.

    As for the plot transparency…you must have better plot radar than I do…because I had no idea what was coming until about 1 mission before the big reveal.

    I’m curious how well this game will translate to PC. At first glance it has a very “Hitman” style interface, which works just fine on PC and console alike. Playing it a while, though, and it starts to feel much more like a platformer/brawler, and both of those types of games generally work better on a gamepad.

    Not to say you can’t just hook a gamepad up to the PC and play it that way, because I’m sure you can.

  10. Alter-Ear says:

    After getting tired of quitting like that all the time, I started simply using Alt-F4. It works a lot better than you might think. I’m so used to games not alt-tabbing gracefully (to use your phrase) so I was afraid to do this – but it’s smooth and it quits fast. Just make sure you saw the little “Saving…” bit first :)

  11. Daemian Lucifer says:

    You have to load your profile to exit the game?!

    And heres the real total immersion:

  12. JT says:

    Definitely not a console fanboy just yet (Creed is only the third game I’ve played on my 7-months-old 360), but yeah, the XBox button / Y button sequence is all you need to get from anywhere in-game back to the 360 Dashboard. It’s nice.

    That said, I had loads of fun working my way through the whole game, enjoying doing the prep work for each mission rather than becoming bored by them…. only to encounter supreme frustration when the game doesn’t LET you assassinate target #9 (Robert de Sable)! You have no choice but to sit there and fight all of his goons at once, no matter how much prep you did or whether you know where his guards are ahead of time or anything else. For a game that’s about finding the best/most efficient way to get your target, to switch that whole dynamic up at the very end is very wrong IMO.

    I’m obviously just not good enough with the “recognize attack / decide appropriate response / press appropriate button” sequence with the kind of accuracy & timing that’s demanded of you when you’re fighting 8 Templars all at once.

    Any advice from those who’ve finished the game, other than, “have better timing on your counters” or “push the right buttons at the right time”? I think I’m going to try leading them to a group of vigilantes, try to hidden-blade-kill one of the Templar guards while he’s being held, then run to the next group of vigilantes, rinse & repeat.

    As an aside, if this kind of difficulty curve is what I should expect on most console games (Mass Effect wasn’t like this, but AC & Puzzle Quest seem to be), then I’m really really really going to miss the PC game ability (generally speaking) to enter God mode with a cheat code in order to beat the final level & actually finish the game I paid for (I’m very story-driven) if I’m just not good enough (think HL2:Ep2 strider battle with the car & the gravity gun electro-balls).

  13. IronCastKnight says:

    Assassin’s Creed is a good bit of fun, particularly if one felt that the leaping, running, grabbing, and climbing was the funnest part of the recent Prince of Persia games.

    On the other hand, the exceedingly laborious game quitting procedure is damn irritating, assassination targets are annoyingly verbose for people who just got stabbed in the neck, and the game itself runs pretty damn slow on a computer which can run Mass Effect with no real problems. Still, the sheer experience of climbing up a massive cathedral spire, diving off the cross at its pinnacle, which overlooks an entire city, and then stabbing a beggar in the kidney is a wonderful experience.

  14. Justin says:

    Another case of dumbing down for the console, I fear. On the Gatesbox, naturally, you can quit any time with the power button, eject button, or shortcut to the console. So they didn’t put much thought into the exiting of the game when they ported it to PC, either.

    Creed is worthwhile, fun, and sort of pretty. But, as mentioned above, sometimes it railroads you into far-less-than-optimal methods of assassination, which can be frustrating.

  15. DPhantom says:

    JT: When I did that assasination, the first thing I looked for was taking out those archers/getting out of range. Those guys will be the most deadly enemies for the fight, and it only gets worse as you take out the crowd of enemies and lose cover. Past that, if you’re really having trouble with the templars, run up the side of a building and nail them as they climb up. They can’t defend themselves for the couple seconds when they come over the top.
    One note though-you’ll really want to practice counters quick.
    *Future Gameplay Spoilers*
    You’ve got a forced thirty templar goon fight coming up. And yes, it sucks as much as it sounds.

  16. Oleyo says:

    Whaaaaaat?! I would so ctrl-alt-del that mofo.

  17. Derek K says:

    @Justin: “Another case of dumbing down for the console, I fear.”

    Not really – it was a console game that had an interface that worked, and then wasn’t examined on the PC.

    It’s a case of sloppy porting to the PC. To suggest that the fact that it’s a console game is somehow responsible for the way they implemented it on the PC isn’t much of a connection, imho.

    Deus Ex 2’s unified ammo was dumbing down. This is just sloppy design, and people not looking at the differences between the systems.

  18. JT says:

    Thanks DPhantom – I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that this fight isn’t the last one. The ladder idea sounds promising. If I can find a spot where they can’t come from all sides, maybe I can hidden-blade-kill them right when they reach the top.

    Yeah, I guess I do need practice. In my head it’s very clear (respond to fast attack with Counter; respond to strong attack with Counter, but wait for it; respond to grab with Counter-grab; respond to block-break with Dodge; respond to feint with Nothing), but my eyes don’t seem to be able to recognize fast enough which one is happening. As a result I tend to Counter too quickly and get sliced up by those three-hit combos. That or I Counter a feint and get sliced on by his buddy. Or I Counter a block-break (which never works) and can’t Dodge (or can you press X initially and still Dodge when he breaks your defense but before he slices you?).

  19. Martin says:

    It’s even harder to start. It’s one of the worst console conversions I’ve ever seen. The interface is garbage, the movement controls stink, and I hate 3rd person view with a passion.

  20. DPhantom says:

    I was able to get away with countering their attacks, and taking a little practice to get good with attack combo timing. You really don’t need to worry about their grabs. you’ll never get attacked when your down, and when they throw you it moves you out of the circle. This is a much easier position to defend from as all of your defending only has to be done on one side. As for dodge, I don’t know. I could never get that one to work right.

  21. sineWAVE says:

    Alt+F4, or failing that, Ctrl+Alt+Del. Much faster.

  22. Dys says:

    Alt-f4 is your friend. Seriously. After quitting that way a few times it became habit to just kill the game instead. Kinda satisfying too.

    As for it being the consoles’ fault, of course it is. If the game had been designed for a PC, it wouldn’t have that interface (I hope). But the number of developers working on console foremost is rising, not falling. Be glad they bothered to put it on PC at all. I wouldn’t mind so much if the console development hadn’t crippled some of my favourite games. At least AC has reasonable sized areas between loading screens.

    As for it being repetetive… sure it is, if you do the same thing over and over again. In a game like this, it’s not what you’re doing that counts so much as how you do it. Try killing an entire group of soldiers with only your wrist blade, or eliminating all the templars without a fight. The engine is a triumph, though it could be better used I think. It’s crying out for a thief mod :)

  23. ccesarano says:

    Yeah, this is something I will fully admit is due to it being designed first as a console game with little regard to the PC port. Of course, I honestly can’t imagine playing the game on PC given how the actions are all mapped to the controller, but maybe that’s just because it seems more intuitive to think of each button as a part of the body than two mouse buttons and then two random keyboard buttons.

    Still, while some claim it repetitive, I find it to be a very fun repetitive. While guards do get incredibly sensitive as the game continues (no surprise as they’d recognize your face after a while), and the drunks and beggars suck, I find that you don’t encounter these people when you stick to climbing the buildings and up on rooftops. In other words, when you play the game as you were meant to play it. I mean, I don’t even know why you’d be in the streets when you could be up on the rooftops. My system was: climb the rooftops to a mission, drop down, save peasant or do what was required, climb back onto rooftop. The game ended up annoying me little.

    One of my top games of the previous year, in all honesty.

  24. Sornas says:

    JT: Like DPhantom said, probably your best bet is to take out the archers, find a good defensive position (Like a ladder or rooftop, don’t forget, most non-Templars can be tossed of rooftops), and practice counters and/or Combo kills.

    I never could use dodge effectively either, I just alternated between counters and combo kills.

    Edit- Dys, by that reasoning, if a pair of pants were too long for you, and you brought them to a seamstress to be fixed, and they did a poor job, it would be tall peoples’ fault.

    They should have fixed the interface, but they didn’t, that’s not the fault of the original game or whatever system it was on, that’s the fault of the people who ported the game.

  25. JungianYoung says:

    19: “The interface is garbage, the movement controls stink, and ***I hate 3rd person view with a passion.***”

    Why in the world are you playing it then?? Go play Call of Duty and leave this to those of us who like 3rd person games.

    In this case, the control interface IS part of the game design. Playing AC (or Prince or Persia, etc.) without a gamepad is like playing Flight Simulator w/o joystick or DDR without a dance pad. Sure, you COULD do it, but you lose half of the gameplay experience.

    No amount of tweaking will have the mouse and keyboard interface be as good as the gamepad for this game, so why bother? They should just put “gamepad HIGHLY recommended” on the box. You doubleclick the game icon, put down the mouse, pick up the gamepad, and don’t bother with the keyboard.

    Rather than the developers wasting time on fixing menus and optimizing keyboard shortcuts, I’d rather have them fix bugs and compatibility issues.

  26. JT says:

    Thanks for your continued suggestions DPhantom & Sornas (sry if I’m hijacking).

    I did eventually get the timing down for Combos, but it usually takes me three or four hits to get the rhythm and kill a guy on the next hit, and in a battle as big as this one, by that time I’m usually getting hit from the side by another guy while I’m swinging at the first guy. So I think I’m down to trying the Vigilantes, the ladder-chokepoint, or practice practice practice on Counters.

    I was of the impression that Dodge was the only way to avoid taking damage from a “defense-break” move. I’ve never once been able to Counter that attack. Did you guys just take those lumps when they came and hope they don’t come too often? Or is there a “correct” timing on a Counter when they try that move that makes the Counter successful (maybe between the clash & the slice, but only if you didn’t already press X earlier in the move)?

  27. Shamus says:

    I have a UBS Dual Shock doppleganger. I wouldn’t dream of attempting this game without it.

    FPS need a mouse. Platforming is pure pain with a mouse & keyboard.

  28. DaveMc says:

    Shamus: FPS need a mouse. Platforming is pure pain with a mouse & keyboard.

    Wow, a non-fanatical position on the mouse-and-keyboard vs. analog controller issue. I knew they had to exist, somewhere, but they’ve been hunted nearly to extinction . . .

  29. Sornas says:

    I was of the impression that Dodge was the only way to avoid taking damage from a “defense-break” move. I've never once been able to Counter that attack.

    I usually ended up taking the hit (When a defense break got through, I am pretty sure you can counter them, but it’s been a while), but if you do get defense broken, keep holding down block, I had a couple cases where they took so much time to follow up, that I was able to guard again.

    Vigilantes can be great, especially when you are trying for the “Never get hurt during an assassination” Achievement on the 360.

    Also a tip that seems obvious, but not a lot of people notice: If you know where a flag is, grabbing it will restore you to full health, so they are good for emergencies.

  30. Ysabel says:

    My biggest problem with Assassin’s Creed is that if you’re a completionist, it gets very, very repetitive. If you cherry-pick the side missions, then I suspect it wouldn’t be nearly as irritating. But if you’re someone who likes to see the ‘all quests complete’ sorts of messages and get the rewards from them, you’ve played nearly the entire game several times over by the time you’re halfway through. There’s really only a couple of side missions, repeated over and over and over again.

    I have a game about 3/4 of the way through and I just lost interest in playing. And I didn’t even try to collect flags seriously.

  31. Factoid says:

    My tactics for making Assassin’s Creed as awesome as it can be:

    1) Treat each encounter like you’re directing a movie. Go out of your way to make dramatic entrances and exits, even if it puts you slightly more in harm’s way.

    2) Don’t just run through the city doing one particular thing. Pick up a few flags, then find a high perch or two, do a couple side-quest missions, etc… this will by-and-large eliminate the monotony and repetition

    3) There’s usually an “easy” path and an “awesome” path to most targets. The easy path is usually something like “Sneak in amongst the crowd, stab target in back”. The awesome path is usually more like “Jump across 15 rooftops, land on target’s head and stab in neck. Escape by knocking over large numbers of pedestrians, and crash through as many merchant carts as possible.

    4) Don’t just use the “counter” button in combat. This goes back to the easy-vs-awesome topic. It’s definitely easy to use the Counter maneuver to take out huge numbers of foes, but if you spend some time mastering the 6-button combat with blocking, parrying, alternate weapons, etc…the combat sequences look amazing.

    5) Skip any and all sidequests that involve:

    a) “Altair, you’re such a rebel. Maybe if you collect 20 flags in 90 seconds I will reveal crucial information to you”


    b) “Altair! I am also an assassin but I suck at my job and 20 burly men are chasing me, please eliminate them all within 5 minutes across this widely dispersed area. Make sure nobody sees you kill ANY of them though, otherwise I won’t tell you what I know.”

  32. Nathanael says:

    Yeah, those quitting steps are very stupid. I can’t believe you have to actually alt-tab or ctrl-alt-del from a game. :/

    Anyway, I still want to check out this game, even if the premise is somewhat historically incorrect as I’ve heard (sorry, pet peeve of mine).

  33. Annon says:

    I loved this game. Sometimes, its fun to just start a fight and let the corpses pile up. If you do it right, there will be a circle of dead bdies laying around you with all of their feet facing you. Also, you’ll start to notice that more and more enemies start running away like scared girls…

    I’ll vouch that on the PS3, *every* game can be quit by hitting the PS button on the controller and choosing “Quit Game.” I guess they forgot about that on the PC–though I bet it will be patched.

    I will second the notion that it is fun to mix up what weapons and tactics you use for fun. Also, I noticed by the end that different people seem to favor different tactics, even if they were the same enemy-type. Some favored guard-blocks, so you couldn’t counter all the time. Some used counters, so you couldn’t combo kill all the time. It made it interesting…

  34. Justin says:

    I second Factoid’s approach. Once you have the basics of a game nailed, its time to try using all the cool little extraneous moves the developers put in. A prime example of this is the dodge maneuver in Super Smash Bros Melee. I have AC for the 360, and as soon as I realized I could win EVERY fight by holding defense and countering, it was time to try something more difficult. Relentless attacking with breaks only long enough to counter-kill the guy coming up behind you is far cooler. Constant countering is for when you are low on health.

    More on topic: I agree that an actual ‘exit game’ button should be available on every level of the menu tree. I figured out quickly that the optimal method of quitting was to find a flag or waste a templar when I wanted to quit so that it would autosave, then I’d hit the power button or the Dashboard command. For the PC, I’d probably just use the Task Manager like everyone else on this thread. :)

  35. Winter says:

    The other side to this is games where it’s impossible to reverse out of a certain part of the game. For instance, in Test Drive Unlimited there’s no way to get to the main menu once you’re in the real game. You have to quit and restart the game, which takes a while actually because the game is quite heavy.

    So if you’re in hardcore mode (for their best effort at realistic driving–which is actually pretty good and, bizarrely, easier to drive in than normal mode) and you want to do some missions (which are all locked in hardcore mode, so you can’t enter any) you have to quit the game, start it up, go into normal mode, do your missions, quit, start it up, then go back into hardcore mode for some more cruising.

    What this means is i basically gave up on missions when i unlocked hardcore mode. Oh well.

    (Test Drive Unlimited is another game where it’s better to have non-mouse/keyboard controls… i mean, unless you like to drive everywhere with full steering lock and 100% throttle…)

  36. Ian says:

    My biggest grips about Assassin’s Creed for the PC is that it looks like they took an Xbox 360 or PS3 controller and mapped it directly to the keyboard. Most PC games don’t require you to hold down three buttons to run.

    That said, it’s not all that bad to play with keyboard and mouse. I was pretty surprised.

    It’s a decent game, I’d give it a look.

    Also, yes, ALT-F4 that thing. It’ll save you many headaches.

  37. Jeff says:

    I’d hope Alt-F4 works.

    It’s one of the things I love about Dawn of War – Alt-F4 anywhere brings up the “Quit to Windows?” box.

  38. Factoid says:

    Justin is exactly right: it’s asinine, but the best method for quitting the game is to trigger an auto-save and then just force-quit the thing. It looks like the PC GUI wasn’t very well thought out. This was never an issue on the 360, because I quit EVERY game by shutting down my console after a save or by quitting to the dashboard with 2 buttons.

    I’ve seen this video linked 2 or 3 places now, though, so maybe they’ll come up with a patch for it. It seems like a trivial fix.

  39. macrovore says:

    I would usually just use ALT-F4, but my computer is kind of weird (it has Vista, and it’s new). If I have that game open, it rarely goes truly full-screen. There’s almost always the menu bar at the top, and often still the start button at the bottom.

    So, occasionally, when I’m fighting, the game would suddenly pause, and I’d find myself moving the game window instead of Altaiir. Normally, it wasn’t that much of a problem, cause I’d simply click back into the game, and continue playing, but one time, it screwed me up horribly.

    I was on the level where you go to fight Robert (after you meet ‘him’ in Jerusalem), and had just killed the large amount of mooks (the first time I had done that while still having a decent amount of my health), and had just started fighting Robert (a really hard fight; prepare for defense-breaks, and hits that take 2 health), and accidentally clicked the X in the top-right, closing the game.
    That sucked. Does anyone know why that happened (the window being non-full-screen)?

    But, in general, it is a really cool game. I did notice it was somewhat repetitive, but I played it in short bursts. It’s the kind of game where, if you get bored collecting the flags (IMO, the hardest missions. I always miss one or two, or aim the jumps wrong), or pickpocketing people, you can always just go GTA on people. Just knife a guard, and have fun making cool, cinematic fight-or-flight scenes.

    By the way, does anybody know of any mods for the game?

  40. straechav says:

    I know it’s not the most recent topic, but had to post. I have a radical opinion that you might want to read. Skip to the last paragraph if you want it right now. Anyway, I use ALT-F4. I actually consider it a valid approach and not “terminating” the game.

    Consider: It’s a console game. Thus, it has save points. Thus, it is mostly quit on consoles by turning the console off and not by menu. Ergo, the game cannot be “terminated”, that IS the legitimate way to quit it.

    Also, ALT-F4 equals pressing the X on the top right, so it hardly is terminating anything. It gives the program a message “Can you quit, please?” and the program complies if it feels like it. Baldur’s Gate gives you a dialog saying Boo will miss you, Assassin’s Creed will instantly quit.

    I actually rather think Assassin’s Creed is among THE BEST PC games when it comes to quitting. It quits with ALT-F4 at any point in the game, and it will do it instantly. Takes less than 1 second for me to be on the desktop. Give me any other PC game that does that? No sir, no such game. They all spend about two minutes quitting.

    Edit: Oh, and a caveat to that. The game has to quit “nicely”. Without extra crap on the computer or losing any progress or settings.

  41. Mrc says:

    Probably a little late, but whatever.
    Most other commenters here are right, just alt+f4 the stupid thing, I guess that’s you’re only option.

    Factoid: Yes I do those things exactly! I try to leap from a great height onto my target and then stab him in the neck. Also when in fights I try to run first, getting on a rooftop, then engage in combat. I do not only counter, but I block and do combo’s, sometimes grab an enemy and throw him of the roof. I friggin love this game, mainly because of the freerunning combined with cool assasin stuff(duh, that’s what it’s all about), but sometimes, even when playing the game Factoid’s way, it gets repetitive. I’m playing trough second time now and it’s still fun, but I guess that if AC2 won’t come out soon, I’ll find something else.

  42. Rayen says:

    or alternatively press alt+F4. like me.

  43. someguy says:

    (I simply have to disregard the age of this article to say)

    …It just adds another bit of awesomeness to Assassin’s Creed that it just behaves like your average Notepad when it comes to quitting, switching windows or whatever.

    (video made me chuckle, though)

    (edit: you know, I’ve only started playing it as recently as of two days ago, so this, which I had read before, makes me chuckle even more. A pretty accurate description of the fun I’m having so far;)

  44. someone says:

    Instead of these steps just press alt+f4

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