Review: Assassin’s Creedit DESMOND, AQUILUS, and ACCIPTIER [All in One]

Shout out to the guys at TITAN BOOKS for sending me Assassin’s Creed DESMOND, AQUILUS, and ACCIPITER for review!

 

Assassin’s Creed 1: DESMOND

The first in a three-volume series, Desmond essentially provides some back story to the game’s protagonist prior to the very first Assassin’s Creed game. It introduces as new ancestor as well, a third century B.C. assassin in the Roman Empire, named Aquilus. As far as I could tell, he is the precursor to Altair, and the first attempted memory extraction from Desmond by the villains at Abstergo. Readers are also treated to some memorable scenes from the first game, as well as a more in-depth look at the notorious, psychotic Subject 16, and his role as it ties into the Assassin’s Creed mythos.

The initial entry in the trilogy is scripted by acclaimed French writer Corbeyran and masterfully rendered by the artist Djillali Defali. Writer Corbeyran really excels at giving crucial back story and characterization to many of the memorable denizens of the Assassin’s Creed universe, especially when it comes to the relationship between Desmond and Lucy Stillman. The examination of Abstergo, and their goals/motivations for seeking out the codex Pieces of Eden from the first game is something special readers can look forward to. I, for one, was incredibly pleased at the introduction of the new ancestor, Aquilus, as well. (More of his journey and story will be examined in the second volume.)

I devoured this while still on the bus, and it was great. Not quite as good as what Karl Kerschl and Cameron Stewart are doing with Assassin’s Creed: The Fall, but it’s a retelling of the events of the first game in comic book form, with some really pretty art and some additional content.

The ending differs quite a bit from what happens in the game, so that is a bit confusing, but here are some great bits that happen in this book: we meet the mysterious Subject 16 and his successor, Desmond, we learn just how Desmond ended up at Abstergo, we meet Aquilus, who, as it seems, was the first Assassin ancestor, and there are some scenes with Altair and Malik. And on the very last page, we get a glance at Ezio.

A very enjoyable book, definitely recommended for fans of the game. The art is very nice to look at, and I did mention that we get to see Altair? And Malik? I’m looking forward to the sequel, which is due in April, it seems.

 

Buy it here

 

Assassin’s Creed 2: AQUILUS

The Second Volume of the series, entitled Aquilus, prominently examines some of the life and times of this third century A.D. assassin, living during the time of the Roman Empire. In the present day, Desmond and Lucy, as well as their team, have escaped Abstergo for now. The current predicament seems to take place during the event chronicled in the Assassin’s Creed II game, although they have not reached Monteriggioni yet. Most of the Animus action takes place in the back of a container truck, where Lucy hopes to learn more from Aquilus, Desmond’s ancestor. What follows is a mirroring story of betrayal for both Desmond and Aquilus and the link between past and present become inextricably important for both the safety and success of the Assassin mission as a whole.

Writer Eric Corbeyran and Artist Djillali Defali procure some cool new elements and inject them into the mythology of a well researched and finely tuned universe. This volume is more of a mystery, and a story of betrayal that kick off with a warning to a young Desmond from his father. The message of that warning carries through to the end, and captures some iconic Assassin’s Creed imagery with it. Aquilus is definitely the stand out in this volume, especially his period specific outfit design, and his relationship with his cousin Accipter, who is the title character of volume III.

 

First of all,I’m gonna state that I’m biased. I’ve loved the Assassin’s Creed series since I rented AC Revelations. Have loved it ever since. This book begins the story of two completely new assassins, Aquilus, for which this book is titled, and Accipiter. I won’t spoil anything for perspective buyers,so I’ll leave you with this. Whether you’re a true-blooded Assassin’s Creed fan, or just want something to read, this is a great read. Yes its short, but the characters, artwork, and story are all really good. For all the hardcore fans, the writers took some creative liberties with the story-line in reference to the games. These books fill in a lot of gaps and they are defiantly a must have!

 

Buy it here

 

Assassin’s Creed 3: ACCIPITER

Accipiter is the third book in the Assassin’s Creed mini-series and Desmond continues to search through the memories of his Roman ancestor, Aquilus. Desmond assimilates more of his genetic memory and is able to use his Assassin abilities outside of the animus.  We meet more of the modern Assassins, and learn a little of their mission.

From the beginning, Desmond’s mission was to explore the memories of his ancestors in order to find the mysterious Ankh, a mystical object crafted by a distant civilization with advance technologies. After losing his father Lucius, Aquilus finally gets his hands on the Ankh through assassinating Vultur, Roman senator and secret member of the Templar Order.

Unlike previous books, Accipiter’s main focus is on the ancestral timeline rather than the modern era. Pages of the book focusing on the modern era felt like Aquilus with Desmond performing over-the-top kills on Abstergo agents attempting to flush out the Assassins. In those moments, I felt like the story wasn’t making much sense. Abstergo clearly knew that the Assassins were hiding out in the Monteriggioni villa, but they only sent half a dozen guys. All of which were easily disposed of by Desmond and Lucy. Since this is there second attempt at capturing the Assassins, one would think that one of the largest and most powerful worldwide corporations send in enough men to successfully carry out their mission.

Like the Desmond and Aquilus, Accipiter closed with an interesting twist that will have fans anticipating the next book, Hawk. Initially, I felt uneasy with the changes made in the comic book compared to the video games, but Eric Corbeyran’s storytelling has made me overlook it completely and wonder which status-quo change they will bring forward in the next book.

Faces are still a disappointment to me but speech bubbles are better well places and action sequences are quite entertaining. Over the course of three books, the Assassin’s Creed comic series has went from mediocre to a real edge-of-your-seat story. A high recommendation for every Assassin’s Creed fan.

 

All in all, this trilogy is intriguing and enjoyable.  Fans and players of the game franchise will definitely enjoy these glimpses of their favorite characters, and meeting new ones, but even readers who are new to the Assassin’s Creed world can enjoy these books.

I would suggest a PG-13 rating for gore and sexual situations.  These books are based on a M-rated video game series, and while the content may not be as visceral as the games, it is certainly not for younger readers.

 

Buy it here

 

 

 

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