Assassin’s Creed 2 EP21:
Actually Pimpin’ is Indeed Quite Easy

By Shamus
on Nov 16, 2011
Filed under:
Spoiler Warning


Link (YouTube)

Can’t comment on episode. Need to Skyrim. Hope you like this one. Let me know how it turns out.

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  1. HeroOfHyla says:

    I wish that fullscreen didn’t display this as a letterbox inside a pillarbox.

    Also first apparently.

  2. JPH says:

    Can’t watch. Too busy Skyriming.

    • Eruanno says:

      Too busy to reply to posts as well. Skyrim. Also, Saint’s Row: The Third. ‘Splosions! Wee!

      • SolkaTruesilver says:

        I am so busy Skyrim, I can’t even Skyrim..

        edit: in case you wonder how that works, I lost about 2 hours yesterday hauling Dwarven scrap metal from Nchuand-Zel, smelting it and bringing the ingots to my house. I don’t even have ennough iron or steel to use it, I just want the darn metal. So… I can’t play the game, because I have to work the game. Damn it.

        • Nidokoenig says:

          ‘Scuse me while I rim the sky.

          Sorry, I don’t even have anything that can run Skyrim, I just wanted to inflict that one on you. Maybe I’ll just play some Morrowind.

        • Sumanai says:

          Goddamn crafters. Stop making Skyrim appear appealing and start slaying spiders.

        • Irridium says:

          Wait, hold on, so the way you make dwarven ingots is by smelting all that crap lying around the ruins?

          Hot damn! I knew I needed all that crap for something! Though I kind of thought it was to build my own Centurion… but whatever, this is nice too, I guess.

          • SolkaTruesilver says:

            Yhea. I think I must have smelted 130 Dwarven Metal Ingots in these 3 runs. Please know that the 2 last runs, I had left home ALL the gear I could afford to leave at home.

            The optimal way is first picking the 2-pound weight things. These yield 2-3-4 (small/large plates, bent scrap metal, etc…). Then, on your next runs, after you emptied your backpack, you go pick up the 25-pound solid dwarven metal (5 ingots) and the struts, 15-20 pounds, worth 3-4 ingots.

            Melting the 2-pound things will increase your total carried weight (if that makes sense, a 2-pound scrap metal turns into 4x 1-pound ingots), while the heavy stuff will decrease your total carried weight.

            Note that you still need 1 Iron and 1 Steel ingot for every dwarvencraft you will make. DO IMPROVE ALL THE STUFF YOU MAKE AND SELL, it’s gonna give you a lot more money, and will double your smithing skill increase.

            Edit: However, you will feel like a dirty metal scrapper. All this mighty and beautiful technology, and the only thing you can think of doing with it is melting it for its raw material.

            • Irridium says:

              Eh, whatever. They’re all dead, they don’t need their scrap metal anymore. And it feels nice to steal it all while their old defenses chase me around, Benny Hill style, in my underpants. Left all my stuff except for many stamina potions at home. I took EVERYTHING from that ruin.

              • SolkaTruesilver says:

                It’s not as much “respect for the dead”, it’s “Respect for the technology”.

                I don’t care if I steal anything I can from their deserted metal caves. I do care about destroying science and other important artifacts just to get the metal.

                what if, in the distant future, our (now primitive) descendants find a hangar with retire airplanes? What if, instead of studying them and maybe helping them progress toward modern science, they decided to smelt them to make knifes and shields?

                • General Ghoul says:

                  Have you seen Outlander? Spaceman melts metal from his crashed spaceship to forge better swords to fight “dragons”.

                • Daemian Lucifer says:

                  You dont even have to wander what if.There were plenty of mummies burned and buildings destroyed so that our ancestors could have a cozy fire and a roof over their heads when timber and proper masonry were too expensive/time consuming to come by.

                • RichVR says:

                  That would be exactly what they should do. They are primitive, right? So they can neither understand nor repair the planes. But they can surely use knives. Although they would be better off cutting and sharpening what is there. Aluminum melts at 1220 degrees Fahrenheit.

                  • Paul Spooner says:

                    It melts at a lower temperature than iron, but aluminum is still a pain to work with, and doesn’t hold an edge very well. If I were a primitive dude, I’d use the aluminum sheeting to waterproof my shelter. There are plenty of steel parts in a plane though: landing gear, control cables, hydaulics, nuts and bolts. I’d turn that into knives, spear points, arrow tips, axes, all that good stuff.

  3. Strangeite says:

    I know this is off topic and everyone is playing Skyrim but….

    MINECRAFT IS BEING RELEASED FOR IOS TONIGHT AT 11:00 P.M.!!!!!!!

    Let me repeat.

    Minecraft is being released for iOS tonight!!!

  4. Mathias says:

    Can’t watch, would be too busy swimming if I wasn’t playing Skyrim.

  5. Mincecraft says:

    I actually started crying with laughter when that hooker started dry humping that guy.

  6. Gamer says:

    I have to admit, I murdered the mistrals during the eavesdropping mission. The allows you 3 stabs before desynch, so I took advantage of that. Fucking bards.

    Also, I would like to think that Ezio didn’t murder them because he wanted to understand their motivation and their plans before going stabby, stabby, stab. Still, that doesn’t explain why he didn’t kill them right after they decided to kill the Doje.

    • Jakale says:

      Cause it’s tough carrying on a group conversation when 5 out of 6 guys have bleeding mortal wounds and you can’t expect Ezio to do something like not chat up his victims.

    • zob says:

      Main bad of this game is an actual person and he didn’t kick the bucket for a long time. So, no shortcuts.

      • Gamer says:

        Then they shouldn’t have given Ezio several different missed opportunities to swoop in and kill him. Just because they want to be historically accurate does not mean they need to have their protagonist not behave rationally.

        If he didn’t think to kill them then, or had a good reason not to. Just flat out say it.

        • Pete says:

          I THINK the idea is that Ezio wants to root out the entire conspiracy and save the head of it for the very last? Only its not very well (or at all) explained?

          • Daemian Lucifer says:

            Yup.He wants to find out who the conspirators are,not knowing that they are all here.Boy was his face red when he finally realized he had a shot at them all and just missed it.

            • Atarlost says:

              Okay. I can accept Obi-Wan not grenading the trade federation. He’s a jedi and all jedi between the exile and Kyle Katarn are idiots who persistently insist on bringing knives to gunfights and wouldn’t know a grenade if it blew up in their face.

              Etzio isn’t a jedi. He’s an assassin. He brings knives to *knife* fights. He has an established proficiency with DFA attacks. He has smoke bombs even if grenades aren’t readily available in Venice yet. He just picked up enough throwing knives to wipe out this little conspiracy. His targets are fat and/or old. None of them are cyborgs. The targets don’t have guards. The guards that are around lack projectile weapons and are lousy at parkour.

              Oh, and the targets already know he’s hunting them even if they don’t know he’s on a nearby rooftop so any who get away will, what, take the same precautions against the assassin they know is in Venice as they should already have been taking against the assassin they already knew was in Venice?

  7. Eärlindor says:

    To answer Rut’s silly question seriously: as the doctor assassin in AC:B you kill your targets with an exceptionally large syringe. *Shudders*

    Also, we get to go to Constantinople in AC: Revelations! :D (or Istanbul, as it is called at that particular point in history.) And daaaaaaaaaaaang, I think this is the first game I’ve seen where the protagonist looks like a grandpa…

    Anywho… sooo many games on my plate, and so much work to do. /sigh

    PS: the first few seconds of the recording went over my head. I humbly ask for elucidation.

  8. Annikai says:

    Did anyone else have a popup add at the beginning of the episode?

    • Raygereio says:

      No, I had just the standard google add at the bottom which you can close. You didn’t mis the X in the corner with your mouse and clicked on the add itself? That should pause the video and go to a pop up.

      • Annikai says:

        Sorry I mistyped a bit. That’s what I meant was the google ad thing. That doesn’t show up in any of their other videos except when that one fake company flagged them.

        • Coyote says:

          I think the Spoiler Warning crew properly disputes the fake troll company that trolls, actually.

          When we see google ads for Spoiler Warning, I think the money goes to the gentleman that does the music… (or at least a management company representing him.)

          Disclaimer: I could be completely off-base.

  9. Raygereio says:

    Ugh. Tailing people is the probably the worst aspect of gameplay in the AC2 games. It’s utterly boring. I think the intent was for the player to be awesomely sneaky and stuff, but that fails horribly as the stealth system in the AC games just isn’t good.

    You’re pretty much forced to make your own fun by either doing what Josh did, or doing random-rooftop-platforming just to pass the time. You can’t even just walk normally behind your target and start daydreaming until the game let’s you do something again as they just love to spawn murders of minstrels (another one of those “What the hell were the devs thinking?”-gameplay elements) in this type of mission to make your life miserable.

    • zob says:

      No the intent is plot/history dump.

      • Raygereio says:

        If the intent was exposition it would have been easier on everyone – devs and players – for that to be done in some form of cutscene.

        Besides, the exposition is just in this particular follow-the-target-mission. I don’t recall anything of the sort in any of the others.

        • zob says:

          This way gives more freedom to players. Almost all follow missions dumps plot/character/background info. Either you missed them or didn’t care about those particular bits.

          • Daemian Lucifer says:

            I prefer it this way.Cutscenes are never a good alternative when you can do it with gameplay.

            • Alex says:

              I beg to differ. Some things work better when it’s told to you, instead of being hidden away in a corner you’ll never see because there’s a million distractions. Being needlessly vague is not the solution to beating me over the head. And I don’t think cutscenes break the illusion any more than jumping around on the furniture, while a disembodied voice is talking about something I can’t see, while there are still enemies nearby.

              Not that game developers should use them as a crutch. I just think every great story has equal parts Show and Tell. I mean, they’re called VIDEO Games, after all.

              • Daemian Lucifer says:

                “Some things work better when it’s told to you, instead of being hidden away in a corner you’ll never see because there’s a million distractions.”

                But the thing is,you can still have something shown to you without obstructions,without taking the control away from you.Just look at the half life series,and how it does cutscenes without any cutscenes.

                What we see in asscreed 2 is the worst of both worlds:You get some exposition during the game where you have to watch out for million different shits,and some during a cutscene that may or may not be interrupted by a needles qte.

                • Alex says:

                  I dunno, I admire the Half-Life games somewhat for sticking to those guns, but I don’t know if it’s the best endorsement of cutscene-less gameplay. More than one environmental puzzle made me wish they HAD thrown a cutscene my way. Or something. Anything, really.

                  Half-Life 2’s pacing had a lot of sudden, inexplicable stops. I just got stuck for days and weeks at a time, because I couldn’t find that last cinderblock, or figure out where I was supposed to go in the part with the Striders. Too often I was scratching my head, trying to figure out what Valve could have possibly wanted me to do. In trying not to give too much information, it felt like it gave too little. The tradeoff for a game that doesn’t hold your hand is a game that is deaf to your cries for help.

                  If a cutscene would have made things like that clearer, it would be a small price to pay. Call me crazy, but I think the fewer times I have to stop playing and reference GameFAQS, the better.

                  Although I think we can all agree that QTE cutscenes need to die in a fire.

          • Raygereio says:

            “Almost all follow missions dumps plot/character/background info.”
            Wait? Pray tell, what info did the player recieve while following Jacopo? All that happens plotwise during that misison is Ezio going: “Gee, I wonder what he’s up to?”
            What info did the player recieve while following the target during any of the side-missions during which there isn’t said anything.

            And even if every single one of them had exposition – which they don’t – then it still wouldn’t invalidate my criticism of it. I was criticising gameplay, not narrative technique.

            • Daemian Lucifer says:

              Gameplay shouldnt be blamed though.The problem is the design of those sections.Gameplay is fine,because you have plethora of options to pick from:Going for the roofs,keeping distance,hiring people,jumping from cover to cover,etc.However,your targets are always slowly walking to their goal,using a way,way too long route,and there simply is no danger from something unexpected.You are just getting on a leisurely stroll through the city with nothing interesting going on.

              Now imagine if any of those missions was covered by a witty dialogue from your target,or if the guards decided to pester you for something unrelated,or if the target spotted you at some point and ran into hiding,or anything really.

              • Raygereio says:

                “Gameplay shouldnt be blamed though.”
                Yes, it should. I have a problem with the basic premise of this type of mission: it’s following a target that walks very slowly and you can’t be noticed. That’s it. The game throws nothing else at you for this mission.
                That’s the gameplay right there, you’re slowly following a target. Anything else that happens – rooftop antics for instance – happens because the player actively seeks it out. Things like that are not part of the gameplay of the mission, it falls under the gameplay of city-freeroaming.

                A good example of a game that did this better would be Splinter Cell. That series has multiple instances where you followed a person with nothing else happening. Just following a slow moving target with the objective of not being noticed. It worked for me in Splinter Cell because the stealth system in those games worked. I felt like I was being a sneaky badass and there were tense moments where I was almost spotted, etc. There isn’t anything like that with the stealth system in the AC games.
                And if you decide to skip the stealth in favor of rooftop-antics the mission becomes even more stupid as then the objective of not being noticed has become obsolete.

                As it is, this type of mission feels and plays like time filler with no return.

  10. 4th Dimension says:

    Supposedly in one mission in AC:Revelations, you do dress up as a minstrel in order to infiltrate a party. And sing a song about how you wacked Cezare.

  11. scowdich says:

    So, in the mission in the first half of this episode, my playthrough went pretty much as intended. I wound up stabbing the target right by the door that led out into the water, and when people started getting arrow’d around me, I assumed nasty shit was going down and leapt into the water. Cue five minutes of treading water, listening to Ezio converse normally with someone fifty yards away.

  12. klasbo says:

    11:40: Ruts: “The reason he never eats is because he photosynthesises. […] Rather than chlorophyll he just uses human blood… somehow.”

    This is because EZIO INVENTED PHOTOSYNTHESIS.
    I KNEW IT.

  13. Lalaland says:

    Skyrim, or How Not to Make a PC Game:
    http://www.gamasutra.com/blogs/EricSchwarz/20111111/8866/Skyrim_or_How_Not_to_Make_a_PC_Game.php

    User Interface Analysis: Skyrim
    http://www.gamasutra.com/blogs/EricSchwarz/20111114/8890/User_Interface_Analysis_Skyrim.php

    I love the game but the interface makes me want to eat my mouse in rage. These articles put it more cogently than I can but goddamn do their UI people need to understand that it’s not just design it’s interface design

    • acronix says:

      Indeed, the UI in Skyrim is capable of hurting the player. Literally. Whomever was put in charge of the UI needs to be fired. Literally.

    • Raygereio says:

      A couple of points on those articles:
      – Skyrim is badly optimized? I’ve only played a “demo” for an hour to see if my system could even run Skyrim and I was really shocked to see that my aging rig could run Skyrim on medium/high settings, with the game looking more visually impressive then vanilla Oblivion and running smoother then Oblivion with optimization mods.
      How is other people experience with this?

      – Cheaters don’t get achievements. I don’t get that. Mind you, I don’t get achievement in general. But are achievements really that much of dick measuring contest to the point where people are going to throw a hissy-fit over someone cheating themselves an achievement?

      – The GUI in Skyrim is indeed bad. My biggest problem with it was that I found the controls for it to be very akward and not intuitive at all.
      The design team clearly prioritized style over function. At least Skyrim’s GUI is pretty to look at. That’s some progress, I suppose: while previous Bethesda games’ GUIs were better to use they weren’t exactly visually appealing.

      • SolkaTruesilver says:

        For a console, I’d think the GUI would be pretty easy to use. It’s just us silly PC users who get shafted.

        I have to say, using the keyboard intensively when I navigate my UI makes the whole thing easier. HOWEVER, there is a SINGLE thing I absolutely have:

        When I want to craft/improve/enchant something, I need to MANUALLY click on the “yes” confirmation. So I cannot use ONLY my keyboard, I need to keep a hand on the mouse. I hate that. Hate hate hate hate hate hate!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        Make a quick-confirmation key, PLEASE!!!

      • Sleeping Dragon says:

        -Achievements-I don’t care, I managed to get stuck in the level geometry twice co far and tcl has been a great help there, I imagine if I wanted the achievements I would just reload the previous savefile. Still, I don’t see why the “console=cheater” thing is considered bad? I mean, if I was into achievements I would prefer it this way so that my bragging rights wouldn’t be damaged by accusations of cheating. As for “introduce some sort of counter-measure to prevent cheating, without forcing players to avoid the console entirely” and how is the game supposed to know if the player is using tcl because they got stuck or because they just bypass the wall to get straight from the entrypoint to the prize? Or better yet, if they’re using the quest toggling command because it bugged out or simply because they want the quest done? Sure, it probably is possible to add some checks, like “it is not possible to go between stage A and stage B in less than 15 minutes” or “if the player hasn’t passed through this trigger they have tcl’ed through the wall” but doing so for all the stuff related to achievements in the game (like, all daedric quests) would just introduce a thousands more triggers and variables to cause bugs.

        -Optimization-I mentioned it earlier, I’m getting some (probably RAM related) pauses in the game but tbh I was pretty amazed that it works at all considering how old this machine is. Still, this being a PC scene I am not really going to throw this accusation out the window just because “it works for me.” There have always been issues with “software X” being incompatible with “chipset A” or something so it’s more than likely that I lucked out on this one and there may be configurations that should handle the game smoothly according to specifications but for some reason don’t because the compatibility with that specific brand was overlooked.

        UI-Is horrible, I am only now getting the feel for it, if it takes an experienced gamer many hours of gameplay to get the proper reflexes for the UI you’re either doing something extremely revolutionary or, more likely, you’re doing something wrong. Considering that Bethesda has been working with this type of games for years it is unforgivable. I wonder where the testing was on this one, I mean, the interface is not some obscure bit that might have been added in the last minute and there was simply no time to get opinions on it…

      • Bubble181 says:

        My laptop can play Oblivion at high/very high settings, but falls under the official minimum requirements for Skyrim. Won’t even download the trial…

      • Josh says:

        I still get achievements despite opening the console every time I play the game to up the FOV to 85, so I don’t know what that article is going on about there.

        • Robert Maguire says:

          Same here, and it doesn’t seem to block them off based on the type of command used either. I used god mode when my thief fought two dragons at once (ran into a named dragon event while battling a blood dragon, no healing potions and twenty-something arrows left, last save twenty minutes prior) and it still gave me achievements later in the story.

      • Lalaland says:

        I believe the optimisation comment is in relation to the fact it only runs in two threads and that the shadow system is pure CPU with no DX acceleration. It doesn’t scale up very well and seems very rooted in the Oblivion.

        I don’t get the ‘cheevos’ thing either to be honest, I find them a bit too mood breaking in a game like this.

        I hate not being able to sort the lists, for a loot game like this it’s ridiculous

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      Except the ui isnt bad just on the pc,its as bad on consoles as well.Look at mass effects quick actions wheel.Its way better than the quick action list of skyrim.Why didnt they do that here?And how is that list in the inventory any good on consoles?

      No,the games ui wasnt made horrible because of the consoles,it was made horrible for any platform.

  14. Mailbox says:

    Love the comment for the episode. Even now I’m trying to decide. Should I watch this or should I just be playing Skyrim right now? Decisions, decisions.

    I guess I’ll use this episode to comment on Skyrim real quick. I’m sure you’ll have a review up and I can’t wait to hear your thoughts in detail. I have nothing but good things to say except for one sore point so far. My experience hasn’t been bogged down by any bugs. And is my vote for GOTY thus far.

    Now back to Assassin’s Creed: Summer of Love. Oh wait. I only wish you were playing that game. Now back to Assassin’s Creed 2. “Aww, do we have to?”

  15. ps238principal says:

    So let me get this straight. The Spoiler Warning crew wants to make fun of minstrels, Rutz goes so far as even singing poorly, and yet not one of these Skyrim-addicts thinks of singing the Cliff Racer Song?

    As the kids say, “Son, I am dissapoint.”

  16. Spammy says:

    So… why is it that every hooker in Italy wears the exact same dress and has the exact same haircut? Are we dealing with the brand name of prostitutes? The McDonald’s of Hos?

  17. Rayen says:

    you know not everybody has the money to get skyrim, you know maybe i watcvh this show so i can see what new games are doing and like becasue i can’t afford them myself. After the first few minutes of you guys prattling on about skyrim i turned it off in disgust. should i just stop now? is this gonna be lets fawn over skyrim and talk about how awesome it is, over assassin’s creed 2? i know you guys aren’t into it but i don’t like being alienated because i can’t afford a $60 game. i watch this show to get a few laughs. today i’m just pissed. I’m done for the rest of the week.

    • ps238principal says:

      Do a YouTube search for “Skyrim.” You’ll probably find a speedrun and/or playthrough, not to mention hilarious vids of the bugs. In this day and age, video games can be a spectator sport, much like football (of any flavor or flavour).

      If you want a budget version of the experience, I think Steam has Oblivion (with all the DLC) on sale for $6.24 until midday Thursday.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      And how is it any different than fawning over system shock?Should they have not mentioned anything about it because there are viewers too young to have played it back then,and who cant play it on a modern machine now?

      I feel for you,and probably so does the crew,but that still isnt a reason to ask them not to talk about certain games.

    • Josh says:

      That was actually pretty much the only time in the episode we mentioned Skyrim too. What can I say? We like filling boring spots of the episode by talking about current events, and the most current event this week is Skyrim. Sorry if you feel offended by that.

    • Cerapa says:

      I dont buy a lot of stuff. Basically if its more than 5 euros, I dont buy it, and a lot of the time, not even then. This means I dont get to play a lot of the newest AAA titles.

      But I dont give a crap if people talk about games I dont own.

      Theres just so much quality free stuff, that if you think you are missing something with your lack of money, then you are completely mistaken.

    • Rayen says:

      @all replies

      I wanted skyrim, i don’t get to get skyrim, Everything everywhere is all atwitter about skyrim, i was having a bad day and the dissapointed boiled over because i was watching this video to try to get away from skyrom for awhile and the talk of skyrim kinda hammered home that i don’t have skyrim and i’m not going to get it in the foreseeable future.

      • ps238principal says:

        Look at the bright side: You’ll be able to nab the “Game of the Year” or whatever edition later when it’s cheaper, (almost) all of the bugs have been worked out, and it’s bundled with all the DLCs in one go that probably costs less than the game alone does now.

  18. guy says:

    My “Rosa is Vin” theory gathers evidence at an alarming rate. I mean, they can both remotely knock down dudes in heavy steel armor and enjoy standing on rooftops! I had been half-joking before, but seriously, this is either an intentional homage or some seriously creepy coincidence. She’s probably just pretending to need help to make Ezio feel better. Maybe his terrible fashion sense reminds her of her husband.

    It is kind of sad that this makes infinitely more sense than the official storyline.

  19. Thomas says:

    Oh my gosh Josh, you are wonderful at breaking games, it really is beautiful. From killing the dude in a place where the arrows would make no sense to standing _right_ next to the conspirators even as one looks round with you standing by yourself in front of him as he says “he could be anywhere even here”

  20. TJ says:

    When Rutskarn yelled out, “Dumbledore!” I snorted really load and got a bunch of odd looks from the office. Good job.

  21. TheArtfulNudger says:

    Note to Rutskarn: Mold is a species of fungi. Fungi can’t photosynthesise like plants, so Ezio’s seeming living off no food goes unexplained (I personally think he started the quack practice of breatharianism).

    Also, to anyone reading this, I can be quite insufferable to be around.

    Another also, am I the only person who watches Josh kill everyone he can for money that goes unused who thinks of The Money Song by Monty Python? It makes a good (if short) soundtrack to Josh’s Ezio.

  22. swenson says:

    “Mobile whore cloak, activate!”

    Because a guy randomly walking down the street, surrounded by prostitutes, will surely attract less attention than a guy randomly walking down the street by himself.

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