Reviewing games before the end: Asssassins Creed 2I really must stop doing this. I get excited about something I'm enjoying, and review it before its finished. Just as with Arkham Aslyum, the ending feels a little sloppy.
Its still very good, but a disappointing amount of the game is spent in Venice. The game will occasionally cut off parts of a city until you reach a certain point in the plot, which is mostly fine, but they do it with Venice 3-4 times, which is just insane. Rather than crafting a new city, they merely slightly expand Venice, which is just disappointing. In addition there are some really bad missions in Venice, some involving suddenly forcing you to acquire new skills, and some that just weren't thought through (capture the flag indeed!). Its interesting to complain about a game being too long, but the game does seem to drag in Venice, in terms of plot too, with more and more npcs introduced.
Now for some plot spoilers.
There are some irritating hanging threads in the Venice plot. There seems to be a building up that Ezio has become so obsessed with revenge he will kill anyone, which is never adaquetly resolved, and a potential romance with Rosa is just utterly ignored. The ending was.. well silly, and I expected it to be, but I was a little surprised when Ezio was surprised that he was an assassin. Mario told him so bloody ages ago, if anything I was rather surprised that the game inexplicably got rid of Mario, only to have him turn up (oh, and every npc you have met so far is also an assassin). The final section of the game was surprisingly fun- infiltrating rome was fun, if a tad too easy, but the final fight was stupid, as boss fights usually are. Take the sword fight, where apparently Ezio has created the magical ability to make 5 of himself. huh? This, relatively tricky, fight, then turns into a fist fight, which you'll just win, because no-one is good at fist fights.
I also have to complain about the structure of the final fight. You dive down and assasinate Borgia. But he survives thanks to wuju magic. So you fight, and kill him, but then he survives due to wuju magic, and stabs you, and leaves. You then get up, surviving due to wuju magic, go into the room, and declare that it is over. Apparently it is, as Borgia has discared all his weapons for some, inexplicable reason, and then you have the fist fight.
Then you discover the sun is going to explode. Sigh....
The very last section, going back into the real world for the credits was absolutely fantastic, a brilliant idea that was well executed.