Assassin’s Creed III
Available for Xbox 360, Playstation 3, and PC on Tuesday
One of my favorite game franchises of all time releases its third “full-sized” installment this week (after several smaller games, including Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood and Assassin’s Creed: Revelations.) In addition to giving us an exquisitely detailed Revolution-era America to Parkour across, AC III will also wrap up the “near future” story of Desmond Miles and the race to stop the potentially world-endangering schemes of the Templars. Naturally, this will involve Desmond once again plugged into an Animus and reliving an ancestor’s memories in search of answers. After several games spent playing Italian assassin Ezio Auditore de Firenze, this time we’ll get to experience the world through the eyes of Connor Kenway (or Ratonhnhaké:ton in his native Mohawk tongue), a half-British, half-Native American assassin who plays a major role behind the scenes of the American Revolution.
For the new game Ubisoft has added tons of cool new features, such as the ability to free-run across trees, not just city architecture, as well as a bit of naval warfare. That could be either really neat or incredibly annoying, depending on how well it’s implemented and how often you’re required to do it. I don’t want a repeat of the “Assassin Den defense” sequences from Revelations. I’m intrigued to see how the Ubisoft writers finally wrap up all the storylines and mysteries they’ve been introducing through all the previous games, and here’s hoping the ending doesn’t pull a Mass Effect and piss off a large chunk of its fanbase. And with the Desmond story wrapping up, I wonder where the series will go from here…
Revolution (NBC, 10:01/9:01c) — “Sex and Drugs”
This show is definitely growing on me, and since creator Erik Kripke has said that they may reveal the truth about the blackout by season’s end, I’m definitely sticking with it at least that long. Meanwhile, here’s what’s going down tonight: “Miles leads the group to an acquaintance who can help the injured Nora, but the journey takes them into unfriendly territory; Aaron recalls his life prior to and after the blackout; Neville delivers Danny to Monroe.”
This new miniseries of Robin Cook’s bestseller is just so-so, but it does have a great cast, including Lauren Ambrose (Six Feet Under), Ellen Burstyn, Richard Dreyfuss, and James Woods. Coma tells the story of a young medical student who stumbles onto nefarious goings-on inside her hospital involving healthy patients lapsing into comas for no apparent reasons.
Face Off (Syfy, 9/8c) — “Immortal Enemies”
It’s down to the final three contestants, and this week they’re challenged to create Halloween-themed characters, which also have to be sturdy enough to perform in a choreographed stunt show without the makeup disintegrating.
“Halo: Primordium” by Greg Bear
Acclaimed science fiction writer Greg Bear serves up the second book in the “Forerunner trilogy,” which examines the ancient backstory of the Halo universe.
A long time ago, I was a living, breathing human being. I went mad. I served my enemies. They became my only friends.
Since then, I’ve traveled back and forth across this galaxy, and out to the spaces between galaxies — a greater reach than any human before me.
You have asked me to tell you about that time. Since you are the last true Reclaimer, I must obey. Are you recording? Good. Because my memory is failing rapidly. I doubt I’ll be able to finish the story.
Once, on my birth-world, a world I knew as Erde-Tyrene, and which now is called Earth, my name was Chakas…
In the wake of apparent self-destruction of the Forerunner empire, two humans — Chakas and Riser — are like flotsam washed up on very strange shores indeed.
Captured by the Master Builder, misplaced during a furious battle in space, they now find themselves on an inverted world where horizons rise into the sky, and where humans of all kinds are trapped in a perilous cycle of horror and neglect. For they have become both research animals and strategic pawns in a cosmic game whose madness knows no end–a game of ancient vengeance between the powers who seeded the galaxy with life, and the Forerunners who expect to inherit their sacred Mantle of duty to all living things.
In the company of a young girl and an old man, Chakas begins an epic journey across a lost and damaged Halo in search of a way home, an explanation for the warrior spirits rising up within, and for the Librarian’s tampering with human destiny.
This journey will take them into the Palace of Pain, the domain of a powerful and monstrous intelligence who claims to be the Last Precursor, and who now has control of both this Halo and the fate of Forerunners and Humans alike.
Called the Captive by Forerunners, and the Primordial by ancient human warriors, this intelligence has taken charge of, and retasked, the Master Builder’s cruel researches into the Flood–which it may have itself unleashed on the galaxy more than ten thousand years before.
Safety Not Guaranteed (Blu-ray & DVD)
This flick is based on an infamous fake classified ad that claimed to be seeking assistants for an expedition back in time, and which closed with the line that gives this movie its title: “Safety not guaranteed.” The film has several Seattle magazine interns sent to investigate the story behind the mysterious classified ad (and assumes it wasn’t an outright joke, as it was in real life).
Face Off: Live Finale (Syfy, 10/9c)
For the first time, Face Off is taking a page from American Idol and allowing the viewers to vote on which of the three contestants should win. Because laypeople are totally qualified to evaluate the skill and techniques of makeup design and application… At any rate, the results will be revealed here, the very next night.
The Neighbors (ABC, 8:30/7:30c) — “Larry Bird and the Iron Throne”
The Bird-Kersees learn more about humans when Jackie helps Debbie plan a birthday party for her daughter Abby, and Larry sees first-hand what Marty does at work. Meanwhile, Reggie Jackson searches for a gift for Amber.
Person of Interest (CBS, 9:01/8:01c) — “Bury the Lede”
Reese has to try and save a newspaper reporter, but without her noticing and trying to investigate who the hell her guardian angel is.
Fringe (Syfy, 9/8c) — “An Origin Story”
“A member of the Fringe team makes a surprising move as they respond to catastrophic occurrences.” And presumably everybody spends some time still reeling from last episode’s shocking events.
Tron: Uprising (Disney XD, 7:30/6:30c) — “Scars, Part 2”
“Beck fights to make Tron realize derezzing is not the answer to getting even with his mortal enemy and Clu’s top officer Dyson. More of Tron’s history before the occupation is revealed including how he got his scars and managed to survive from Dyson’s clutches.”
Star Wars: The Clone Wars (Cartoon Network, 9:30 AM/8:30 AM) — “An Old Friend”
“A friend asks Padmé to help weed out banking corruption.” Yes, that’s what makes a good Star Wars story: banking corruption. (Or trade disputes.)
MythBusters (Discovery, 8/7c) — “Mini Myth Medley”
The ‘busters are once again taking on a slew of quick-and-easy myths. Or perhaps myths about short people.
The Walking Dead (AMC, 9/8c) — “Killer Within”
“Lives are endangered when the group gets separated, while in Woodbury, Merle makes an appeal to the Governor.” Is it Carl’s fault? It’s Carl’s fault, isn’t it? Stupid Carl.