The fourth main game of the Assassin’s Creed franchise was released today for PS3, Xbox 360, Wii U, PC, and next-gen consoles. AC IV explores the life of Edward Kenway, grandfather to Assassin’s Creed III’s Connor Kenway. Edward navigates the Caribbean in the 17th century as a pirate torn between his life back in England, his search for wealth, and his growing ties to the Assassins.

The game expands on Assassin’s Creed III’s sailing side quests, offering a vast open world for exploration. Early reviews have praised the sailing and piracy aspects—as a pirate simulator, it shines. The main plot and ties to the Assassin’s Creed lore are more tenuous, but the game is visually and technically sound. Players will enjoy leaving the beaten path to explore uncharted islands and engage in naval battles on the high seas. Fans of the traditional Assassin’s Creed battle between the shadowy Assassins and Templars might be disappointed by the departure from what has previously been the heart of the series. Other fans might find AC IV a breath of fresh, salty air.

Read More Reviews:

Polygon – 7.5

IGN – 8.5

Gamespot – 9

This article was written by

Simone de Rochefort is a game journalist, writer, podcast host, and video producer who does a prolific amount of Stuff. You can find her on Twitter @doomquasar, and hear her weekly on tech podcast Rocket, as well as Pixelkin's Gaming With the Moms podcast. With Pixelkin she produces video content and devotes herself to Skylanders with terrifying abandon.