Cut loose with Assassin’s Creed Origins’ Control Panel

Assassin's Creed Origins

Jumping off buildings and stabbing Romans is all well and good, but wouldn’t it be nice to command a phalanx of turbo-charged hippos? While its official season pass may have ended recently with a nice chunky expansion, Assassin’s Creed Origins is still growing. Its next update is putting the power of the Animus control panel in your hands, allowing you to tweak and mutate the experience to your own whims, no matter how silly they may be.

Due for release at some point this month, the Control Panel is a new feature exclusive to the PC version of the game. It’s a big panel of 75 variables, toggles and sliders that you can use to alter the game on a variety of levels. Feel like changing your playable character and their abilities? That’s just the most basic feature here..

Via a new panel in the Uplay launcher, you can create new custom modes while outside of the game, share them with others, and activate them once you’re playing. It’s a big old-school cheat panel, in essence, although perfectly in keeping with the ‘go anywhere, do whatever’ approach that the historical tour mode introduced, albeit without the combat elements. Now you can wander around a fully murder-equipped world (with nude statues), should you see fit.

Assassin's Creed Origins

Ubisoft promise more information on the Control Panel feature soon, and the mode will be rolling out sometime this month, but the announcement page does give us at least a partial look at its powers and limitations. One screenshot of the panel shows us about a third of the options presented, allowing you to make tweaks to the hero model, base variables and your combat capabilities, as well as tune NPC senses, speed, fighting skill and so on. It looks like most of the sliders go up to a rather silly 500%, including the Maximum Tamed Animals slider.

I, for one, want to command a legion of animals against a never ending horde of hyper-fast, hyper-twitchy weaklings that can see me from a mile away. It’ll be cathartic. Along with the announcement of the Control Panel mode, Ubisoft have announced that for the foreseeable future, the Trials of the Gods (the big boss battles against Animus glitches represented as Egyptian deities) will cycle on a weekly basis, with this week featuring Sobek on Normal mode, and Anubis on Hard.

13 Comments

  1. Michael Johnson says:

    I didn’t really find Origins engaging at all beyond ‘Oh wow they built a great big beautiful world packed with incidental detail’ (maybe we’re spoiled for such things in modern games), but I do like the fact they seem to have finally realised that just putting a fairly typical AC game inside these spaces is a bit of a waste and are just experimenting with fun, even useful ideas in the case of the tourism/edutainment patch.

    Also, the fall from grace of the word edutainment may be an even greater travesty than letting these massive intricate worlds disappear after a rote base game and a dollop of tepid DLC.

    • durrbluh says:

      Origins *was* impressively unengaging. I made it as far as the second set of animal-themed guys I needed to stab before I completely lost interest and uninstalled. I mean, beautiful world, top notch, don’t give a shit about anyone in it, marvelous water effects, bravo, etc.

      • Kamestos says:

        Thank you. AC:O dropped from my hands at level 20 or something and I wondered if there was something wrong with me, with the general consensus being it’s the best AC to date.

  2. Someoldguy says:

    What we all want to know is, who stole the Oranges?

  3. Premium User Badge

    Ninja Dodo says:

    Interesting. I’ve always wondered what the stealth in this series would be like with more lenient/oblivious guards, because most of the time they are aggressive and omni-observant in a way that seems implausible and is kind of annoying (sometimes you’re just trying to climb on a thing, not trying to start a fight)… guess this would be a way to try that out.

    That said I’ve very much enjoyed this game as it is.

    • DuncUK says:

      I would honestly disagree completely and say the AIs lack of observance is the most implausible thing about Origins and all AssCreed games. You can creep up on soldiers who are supposedly ON GUARD from the side and stab them to death, while their nearby compatriot barely a few meters away and facing the other away is totally oblivious. The stealth in this game is a joke. I’m not saying it’s not fun but it’s utterly implausible.

      Then there’s the fact that you can stealth assassinate an entire castle of 30+ soldiers and even when you’re down to the last few, none of them at any point stops to ask “where the hell is everyone?”.

      It’s things like this that make AssCreed games utterly unengaging. They go to such effort to build beautiful and detailed worlds which should be ideal for immersive open world gameplay, but then fill them with the worst ‘video gamey’ immersion breaking cookie cutter drivel.

      • Premium User Badge

        Ninja Dodo says:

        Detection may be lacking in some areas while it is overactive in others, though I can’t say I’ve had many instances where I felt I should have been seen but was not.

        My observation stems from guards instantly detecting you when you so much as put ONE foot in their cone of vision for half a second even across a fair distance, or with obstacles in the way that should have obscured at least some of their vision… and yet they see you *perfectly*, recognize you are a threat and run over to bash your face in with no hesitation… all this before you were even aware that there was a guard over there and really you were just minding your own business climbing on some stuff or hadn’t yet even realized that this was a restricted area (the transition between “hey you’re not really supposed to be here” and murderous rage is non-existent). There is NO sense of imperfect vision or varying levels of attention, or a gradual progression from suspicion to attack. There IS a suspicious state but it seems to be tuned in such a way that it is skipped over in most cases (except when alerted by sound), giving the player few opportunities to slip past undetected unless they rely completely on UI warnings for enemy awareness.

        For one example, in real life people don’t look up very much yet I’ve had several instances of guards instantly seeing me high up on a roof or tower as soon as I was potentially within their field of vision, should they look up (which they do 100% of the time apparently).

        Also guards and other enemies will randomly attack you on sight in neutral spaces, when you have not engaged them in any way, and there’s no reason to believe they would know your face or even if they did it would take longer to recognize you. If they’re supposed to be reacting to your Medjay badge it is small enough that you would have to be pretty close to see it! And though disguises are not supported mechanically, given that the player can constantly be changing their costume it does not make much sense that NPCs would be able recognize you at any distance.

        • Premium User Badge

          Ninja Dodo says:

          This entirely aside from bugs where archers will sometimes actually detect you even in hiding spaces (despite never having seen you enter them), or this weird bug where alert archers on horseback will keep shooting you with great accuracy from faaaaar away… as they are riding in the opposite direction.

      • Premium User Badge

        Ninja Dodo says:

        The one thing I will agree with is it would be good if there was some kind of systemic reaction to missing guards and other suspicious happenings, increasing alertness and eventually panic, a la the Batman Arkham games.

        If combined with plausibly imperfect awareness on the part of guards and tuning that relies less on UI indicators and more on in-world feedback (which exists but is completely overshadowed by the UI), plus (bonus) if they added actual disguises as a mechanic, it would really improve the stealth in these games.

  4. Daymare says:

    At first glance at that title screenshot, I thought the player character was dual-wielding tiny weaponized hippos.

  5. Captain Iglo says:

    Why hasn’t anyone made a witty joke about Windows’ control panel yet?