Ubisoft’s original story involving the adventures of Edward Kenway has reached its third outing in the manga adaptation mini-series, Assassin’s Creed: Awakening. It’s fair to say that so far I can only describe proceedings as very slow going and lacking in various areas. But I’m not one to give up on the Assassin’s Creed world; maybe hitting the halfway mark of the series can be the much needed turning point?

The previous issue focused almost entirely on young Masato coming to terms with the issues he has regarding his mother, whilst ‘beta testing’ a new pirate game she created – which is actually the Animus allowing the memories of Edward Kenway to be accessed. Everything went rather slow to try and delve deeper into Masato’s life, showing the nature of his rebellious side. Fortunately for my own sanity, Mr Kenway got a bit of action outside the Governor’s house and that’s where this issue begins…

The writers have switched it up once more, by giving Edward the entirety of the limelight, and I think that’s a good call. Especially as the realisation sets in that he’s merely posing as an assassin – with a blade to his throat. What ensues is an exciting, yet short, and slightly difficult to follow, battle in which Edward’s cocky personality shines through, using wit to gain the edge over his seemingly more skilful opponent.

Without spoiling too much, the people at the Governor’s house have a serious agenda and purpose for the man they presume to be a member of the Brotherhood. He’s walked straight into a Templar residence, with much less hassle than one would imagine. I particularly enjoyed the part when their plan is revealed, simply because I can’t see this playing out the way they want it to, and even though a move hasn’t been made yet, Edward will surely put a stop to it somehow. That’s the kind of reason I need to entice me back for more, something which has been a rarity in the series to this point.

What’s been done really well is the depiction of the Templar members, with their plan for humanity ensuring they come across as threatening. I barely know these guys; however, I already hate them.

Whilst Issue #3 is much better in terms of what’s going on, the panels still suffer from a variety of issues. The first of which are the large speech bubbles containing text belonging to whoever is talking; it’s not always clear who that is exactly and I end up guessing. Then there are the extremities in the artwork, where one character is wonderfully drawn to enable the reader to notice a menacing grin, whilst another is barely recognisable and in some cases, lacking parts of their face – they remembered to draw the breasts onto a picture of Adam and Eve though, priorities eh?

Reading a comic shouldn’t be a task, but overall it generally feels that way. Once you overcome the visual drawbacks, the little twists, and most certainly the quirks of Edward Kenway, issue #3 of Assassin’s Creed: Awakening is a pretty decent read. For the first time, I actually have the slight urge to continue with the series, and so even though I’ve been rather negative about previous issues, stick with me, as it may just end up a worthwhile mini-series after all.

Stranger things have happened!


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