Did you know that Assassin’s Creed II (from Ubisoft) lands on store shelves on Nov 17th?  With the sequel just around the corner, where is all the hype?   Holiday season is the best time to be a gamer with multiple big games coming out in just about every genre.  Marketing teams across the world are all competing for ad space on television and the Internet.   So, why have we not heard and seen more of this highly anticipated sequel?

An easy answer to that question would be the economy.  Ubisoft could be betting on word of mouth and riding the success of the first game. The sequel promises to be bigger in every way than the original and Ubisoft has no problems throwing money into promotions.  Earlier this year, GameIndustry.Biz reported that in an investor’s conference call Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot said, “Assassin’s Creed 2 will cost 20% more than the original.”  Also, it should be noted that in a separate call it was mentioned the pre-orders were up 80% over the original.  I guess when you already have that kind of guarantee then you can lay back and focus more on the product.

The first Assassin’s Creed was a game that did a few things right and a few things wrong.  I loved the way you controlled Altair and the combat was simple yet fun. It was a beautiful game that depicted the Holy Land exactly how I would imagine it in my mind.  Some frustrating points were that the story was ludicrous, the missions were highly repetitive and it took me about a month to successfully pickpocket the first time. It was like the folks up in Montreal spent most of there time creating crowd physics and the world and then decided to give you goals at the end.  A better way of putting it would be that they created a sandbox and forgot the sand.  Of course, the folks working on the sequel promise more variety, more weapons and let us not forget that Ezio is BFF with Leonardo Da Vinci.