Assuming you’ve played an hour or two of Assassin’s Creed Origins every day since its original launch last October, you might now find yourself running out of things to do and see in Ubisoft’s absurdly large ultra-budget adventure through ancient Egypt. Thank god for mandatory DLC, eh?
Today, the second (and final) major component of the Origins season pass rolls out. Dropping sci-fi weirdness in favour of classical Egyptian mythology, Curse Of The Pharaohs has Bayek and friends square up against a cadre of returned undead kings across new locations in the physical world and the afterlife, the latter of which is probably not covered by the historical tour mode.
The previous major piece of DLC – The Hidden Ones – was a respectable chunk of new content. A slab of new land to explore, maybe around three hours of new story quests and a smattering of optional side-stories to work through, but it sounds like Curse Of The Pharaohs may dwarf it in terms of Stuff. The new expansion (set four years after the main game) promises another chunk of Egypt to explore centered around the new city of Thebes and the Valley of The Kings, as well as some rather less charted locations.
In his new, less-historically-accurate quest, Bayek will find himself offing (re-offing?) several Pharaohs returned from the dead, who have brought an assortment of nasty critters with them, including some scorpions the size of small houses. Returning these sleepless kings to bed will require going into each of their private afterlives, accessible via their tombs and expanding out into a miniature open world each, so say Ubisoft. These afterlives will be left open for free exploration after clearing their attached main story quests, too, and can be fast-traveled to from the map.
To facilitate this somewhat fancier subset of assassination, they’ve raised the level cap and added seven more abilities, which will probably come in handy against the Shadows of the Pharaohs, roaming mini-bosses that will pop up around the map, menacing the locals. They’re apparently among the toughest fights in the game, and beating them up will net you warm fuzzy feelings for saving another bunch of villagers, plus the less important reward of shiny new loot.
Be warned that this DLC comes at a hefty cost to bandwidth. Uplay estimates that there’s 13gb of expansion to download here, on top of the several gigabyte patch released to prepare the game for its deployment. Curse Of The Pharaohs is out now for £16/$20 (twice the price of the previous expansion), or as part of the season pass.