* AlternateCharacterInterpretation:
** Connor, both in-universe and by players. While those closest to him consider him a kind, soft spoken man, the Templars and his mentor call him out on his naivety and short fuse. Likewise, players are divided on opinions about the guy: either he's the nicest and most badass protagonist yet (being something of a mix between Franchise/{{Batman}} and [[Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger movieverse Cap]]) or an immature haughty youth who thinks he's right about everything and has a bad attitude towards those who disagree with him. There's also those who argue that he's [[AmbiguousInnocence simply innocent]], for all it implies.
** A number of his fans argue that Connor is a flawed and human character and is being held to a DoubleStandard when critics say that the character is bland and then cite many character flaws which indicate complexity. There's also the UnfortunateImplications of a non-white PlayerCharacter being attacked by mostly white gaming critics, especially when the game itself was the highest selling in the franchise industry.
** Haytham gets this a lot too. Everyone agrees he's [[BadAss awesome]] but there's a divide between those who think he's more of a hero than Connor is and his views are [[StrawmanHasAPoint much more sensible]], and those who think he's just another self-serving Templar making a power grab, even if he is [[EvilIsCool good at it.]]
* AntiClimaxBoss:
** Daniel Cross, despite being billed as "the assassin", never provides Desmond with anything resembling a challenge.
** [[spoiler:Warren Vidic]] has it worse, being killed by just pressing Square/X/LMB in a cutscene.
** [[spoiler:Haytham Kenway]] is a relatively easy PuzzleBoss who you just need to counter three times while standing next to an object. Even the "puzzle" part is ruined by [[ViewersAreMorons the game telling you how to defeat him as soon as the fight begins]]. He'll most likely be taken down before he can finish his truly epic speech on his organization's ideals.
* AuthorsSavingThrow: Following some lackluster novelisations of AC2, Brotherhood, Revelations and the first game, ''Assassin's Creed: Forsaken'' is a novel that blows expectations out of the water.
* AuthorTract: Shaun just ''will not shut up'' about American historical revisionism. All right, SomeAnvilsNeedToBeDropped, but it seems like a disproportionate amount of his dialogue and database entries touch on the subject. Some would say it goes so far as to be parody.
* BaseBreaker:
** Connor (see AlternativeCharacterInterpretation for elaboration). It doesn't help that some are unhappy that he supplanted [[EnsembleDarkhorse Haytham]] as the playable character, or that he's such a dramatic change in personality from the previous Ancestor.
** Paul Revere. {{Adorkable}} despite his WelcomeToCorneria tendencies, or just a loud, obnoxious git?
** The setting has also split the fans between those who love it, those who think there were more interesting conflicts going on (the idea of setting it in the Napoleonic Wars crops up a lot from them), and those who think that the American setting is great but would have preferred it to be later down the line (such as in the Civil War era) so that there would be more buildings to run around on, ala ''AC2''.
* BestLevelEver: Consensus seems to be that the 2 missions involving the Battle of Bunker Hill are some of the most exciting in the game.
** The naval missions on the whole, small wonder that it eventually became its own game with ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedIVBlackFlag''. The Battle of Chesapeake Bay is especially awesome.
* BrokenBase:
** With the nature of the setting's timeframe, set during the Revolutionary War, the British and American sides of the community are ''divided'' - this was largely the fault of marketing, which was rather jingoistic, than the actual game itself. Similarly, [=AC3=] had the third biggest launch of any game in the UK (behind FIFA13 and the inevitable VideoGame/CallOfDuty release) - so VocalMinority is in play here.
-->'''Kotaku Australia''': "The marketing always suggested that ACIIIís igniting of the Revolution would be a game of interactive jingoism; its developers always said it was not. The developers were the ones being accurate."
** In a less nationalistic example, some fans are annoyed that ''III'' will be abandoning the series' classic "Puppeteer" control scheme.
** The ending. No spoilers, but Ubisoft did say in interviews that this would be the last game with Desmond as the main character. Thus, fans are starting to pick sides as to whether it was underwhelming or lived up to the expectations. Players expect crazy out of left field unexplained (until the sequel) endings from this series by now and it's more a question of if it ended with a bang or a whimper.
* ContestedSequel: For many players, the game is a divisive entry into the series. While praise was given for ending Desmond's arc and many enjoyed things like the Naval Missions, Homestead missions, war setpieces and multiplayer, criticism was thrown at Connor (Some think he's the blandest main character outside of Desmond, while others really like him), at how the game had numerous graphical glitches at launch due to the new engine, and others found the Revolutionary setting of America to be "very boring", especially in comparison to the eras corresponding to Ezio (the protagonist of ''II'').
* CriticalDissonance:
** The game did well on Metacritic (averaging scores of 81%, 84% and 86% on the Wii U, 360 and PS3 versions respectively), but series fan reactions were more mixed, ranging from SoCoolItsAwesome to SoOkayItsAverage. Some users, especially on IGN and Gamespot, ''felt that the game was bad because their hype was too high''. You can see how easily this could affect ''Black Flag'''s reception. Averted with the ''Tyranny of King Washington'' DLC, which is well-regarded by fans and critics alike.
** The game is the franchise's best selling title, outselling the Ezio games and it won awards and is popular among new fans of the series but generally dismissed or maligned by people who didn't like the ContrastingSequelMainCharacter or the fact that the game was far more DarkerAndEdgier with a real DownerEnding for the hero, whereas Altair and Ezio had clear victories.
* DisappointingLastLevel: While not the worst example in the medium, the CosmicDeadline of the game's impending release date (which had to be in 2012 for plot reasons) did result in the final levels being noticeably less polished than the early ones. The transition between those levels is more abrupt than in the earlier game, and the gameplay is not as well playtested and iterated as in the early levels.
* EnsembleDarkhorse: Some people argue that Haytham should have stayed the main character throughout, both because he's a fascinating character in his own right and for viewing him as more likeable than Connor.
** Also, BenjaminFranklin, to the point that many were upset he didn't have more of a presence in the game beyond 2 cameos, and [[CrowningMomentofFunny one of the funniest conversations in the game]]. UbiSoft seems to have noticed since he has a much bigger role in the Tyranny of King George DLC.
** Israel Putnam is pretty badass too.
** As is Achilles whose mix of humor and pessimism have made him a hit to the point that fans were hoping for him to show up in the DLC or a younger version in the follow-up ''Black Flag''. Alas...
* EvilIsCool: Haytham and his Templar crew have this appeal, with even a JerkAss like Thomas Hickey being oddly endearing for his AtLeastIAdmitIt stance.
** King Washington in the DLC is a lot of fun to watch, though nobody would ever want to live in the shadow of his [[SupervillainLair Pyramid]].
* GameBreaker: Rope darts can turn into this if you know how to use them. They can silently kill mooks that are ten feet away, hang soldiers from trees, and instantly trip any opponent (even the [[EliteMook higher ranking ones]]) allowing for a quick kill. They're also cheap and attained early in the game. This is most likely why they are introduced very late in ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedIVBlackFlag''.
** A real gamebreaker is a specially modified gun you can collect in the General Store called the Duck Footed Pistol which is an ugly flintlock with three-barrels strapped side by side, that fires three shots at once, working essentially as a 18th Century sawed-off shotgun. This is deadly in short range, killing multiple enemies in a OneHitKill. When mixed with the crafted multiple holsters, you can carry upto four pistols and murder say eight in a single round. That final chase mission with Charles Lee on full synchronization is easy if you run and fire to incoming guards, with nothing left to stand in your way.
** In the ''Tyranny of King Washington'', Wolf Cloak lets Connor turn invisible for a short stretch, at the cost that it drains his life and prevents him from sprinting or free-running. But his life regenerates quickly in cover, and he can pull off stealth assassinations while under cloak. Gets a little more balanced when guard dogs are introduced.
* GoddamnBats:
** Wouldn't be Assassin's Creed without some group of annoying citizens to swarm and impede you and this time, it's a group of children. Unlike the beggars and bards, you can't kill them.
*** Even worse is the way they ''laugh''. It will make you ''hate the sound of orphans laughing.''
** Wolves can cross over into this territory at times. They aren't especially hard to kill, but they attack in packs of up to four, and can easily take off 3/4 of your health if they manage to pounce you.
*** Especially the wolves that attack you during the final Captain Kidd mission, which for unexplained reasons require much faster button reflexes than normal wolves to counter-kill. You could [[WhyDontYouJustShootHim just shoot them]], but the optional objectives for 100% synch include a ban on ranged weapons, as well a limit to how many times you can fail the counter-kill inputs. Have fun with that.
* HarsherInHindsight: The in-game representation of the Great New York Fire's aftermath feels all the more awkward given how Hurricane Sandy, right around the game's release, caused electrical fires that destroyed over eighty homes in Queens.
** It would have been harsher in WhatCouldHaveBeen the original idea discussed by game director Alex Hutchinson which was to have Connor be there and try and save people during the fire itself.
* HesJustHiding: [[spoiler: Despite the end of the game, there were some who assumed that maybe Desmond wasn't ''really'' dead after his HeroicSacrifice. The [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedIVBlackFlag next game]] confirms that, yes, he is indeed dead. And Abstergo has possession of his corpse]].
* HilariousInHindsight:
** Consider that this game came out one week before 2012 election, some of Shaun's [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=59hPjLfIajM#! comments]] with US history and politics might be either this or HarsherInHindsight.
** One way to interpret the game's GainaxEnding is that [[spoiler: while saving the world from disaster, Desmond chooses to unleash a larger evil upon the world in the hopes that humanity will stop their squabbling and unite against a common foe.]] [[{{Film/Watchmen}} Sound familiar?]][[note]]and yes, that's the FILM. †The comparison fits much better with the Dr. Manhattan ending than the giant squid.[[/note]]
** Alternatively, [[spoiler: [[VideoGame/GodOfWar A deceased Greco-Roman god manipulates the central conflict of the story to her own advantage so she can seize power and rule the humans "for their own good" after a calamitous disaster befalls the world.]]]] Although in the case of ACIII, the role of [[spoiler: Minerva/Athena]] is reversed, as [[spoiler: she is trying to stop someone ''else'' from doing this.]]
** Connor being told that his English name's "a fine name for a Welshman" becomes hilarious when it's revealed in Black Flag that his grandfather Edward had a Welsh mother and identifies himself as Welsh.
* ItWasHisSled: [[DecoyProtagonist Haytham]] is a [[KnightTemplar Templar]].
* MagnificentBastard: [[spoiler: Haytham Kenway]] full stop. His successor [[spoiler: Charles Lee]] tries to be this, but his bouts of anger and LeeroyJenkins tendencies put him into more SmugSnake territory most of the time.
* MemeticMutation: Where is Charles Lee!?
* MemeticSexGod: [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedII Ezio]] may be gone, but now we've got BenjaminFranklin.
* MoralEventHorizon: [[spoiler: Charles Lee going from a good person to a racist who hates the native people he helped save during the French and Indian War, even threatening a child Connor with death.]]
** Haytham's MoralEventHorizon is [[spoiler: attacking and trying to murder his own son out of loyalty to Charles Lee who is politically incompetent and has no skills to take the cause, in other words pure Templar fanaticism. Connor kills him in Self Defense and in the WhiteVoidRoom, he offers an unrepentant speech where he states that while he's proud of Connor in a WorthyOpponent sort of way, he should have [[JerkWithAHeartOfJerk killed him]] long ago.]]
** In Charles Lee's eyes, Connor crossed this when [[spoiler: he committed {{Patricide}}]].
* MostAnnoyingSound:
** '''''"[[ThisIsGonnaSuck ROGUE]] [[BlowYouAway WIIIIIIIND]]!"'''''
** "Man o' War broadside!", followed by the deep bass rumble of a cannon volley from these giant ships, is something that strikes fear in the hearts of all but the bravest captains.
** That incredibly irritating chortle the orphans make. Not helped by the fact that they only exist to get in your way, and, unlike the beggars and minstrels of earlier games, they are both immortal and do not run away when you draw a weapon.
** Who can forget, "Yes Connor! We are going the right way" with Paul Revere.
* MostWonderfulSound: Connor's whistling. Practical for drawing guards away and very pleasant to listen to as well.
* {{Narm}}: The Abstergo guards use the same animation for firing modern semi-auto handguns as the Revolutionary soldiers use for flintlocks; drawing, firing, holstering, melee. By contrast, [[spoiler:Desmond can hand out caps like he just won a lifetime supply from a hat factory.]]
** The Paul Revere Midnight Ride levels feels this way to some, since it made the series GumpFactor ridiculous with Connor and Paul sharing the same horse, which is silly to look at, and moreover as a mission it doesn't gel with the gameplay and feels like an interactive cutscene that's there just for the BeenThereShapedHistory appeal, which was better handled in ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedII''. Also Paul Revere's annoying directions are a bit much to handle.
** Some of Connor's alternative outfits, especially the Captain Kidd Pirate Outfit looks pretty ridiculous and over-the-top.
* ParanoiaFuel: The Erudito Hacks of Abstergo's FeelGood ads, hammering home Abstergo's control over everything and everyone. It doesn't help that Erudito likes to make it even more [[NightmareFuel creepy]] by giving the ads a PhotoshopFilterOfEvil.
* PlayerPunch: More than a few. The biggest ones are the death of Connor's mother, the death of [[spoiler: Conner's friend Kanen, who Connor kills himself in self-defense.]], and the death of [[spoiler: Haytham, despite being the BigBad.]]
* [[RescuedFromTheScrappyHeap Rescued From The]] ScrappyMechanic [[RescuedFromTheScrappyHeap Heap]]: A number of more contentious mechanics from previous games have been overhauled in ''Assassin's Creed III'', mostly for the better:
** The Frontier is a reworked version of [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedI the Kingdom]] (with the Homestead serving as a replacement for the Masyaf fortress), a huge map with exits serving as "warps" to the game's various cities. Thankfully, traversing the Frontier is much less tedious thanks to the new fast travel system (below).
** The fast travel system from [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedII the]] [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedBrotherhood Ezio]] [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedRevelations trilogy]] has been reworked. You can now fast travel from anywhere on the map to any of the Mason tunnels you have unlocked, as well as warping to city entrances on the Frontier provided your next mission is there. On the other hand, fans are split as to whether the replacement for renovating sewer tunnels (instead having to go underground and search for them in a sewer version of TheMaze) is a [[ReplacementScrappy Replacement]] ScrappyMechanic.
** [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedI Eavesdropping]] is back, and has now been worked into the [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedII stalking missions]]. Furthermore, instead of sitting on a bench and watching a cutscene, there are now "mobile" and "static" varieties of eavesdropping missions where you need to stay within a small range of the eavesdroppers so you can hear what they're saying, thus ensuring that plot and gameplay are seamlessly integrated.
** [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedBrotherhood Full]] [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedRevelations Synchro]][[OneHundredPercentCompletion nization]] has been reworked into an "Optional Objectives" system. Completing a mission gives you a certain amount of [[ScoringPoints points]] towards synchronization and each optional objective adds smaller amounts of points. There's also an extra point bonus for accomplishing all the optional objectives in one go, which is required for full synchronization.
*** Also, if you fail at an objective, you just have to reload to the last checkpoint instead of the whole sequence to redo it. Unless you hit the next checkpoint.
** [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedBrotherhood Assasssin]] [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedRevelations recruits]] no longer suffer a FinalDeath, but are instead knocked out of commission for a decent chunk of time. Additionally, the Assassin's Guild now gets XP each time they are successfully summoned in combat in addition to simply going on missions, encouraging players to call them more often. It doesn't hurt that the first recruit you pick up, [[CanadaEh Stephane Chapheau]], plays a notable role in the story and is a total {{Badass}}.
*** Also, each Assassin you recruit unlocks a unique skill which can come in really handy for getting full sync on some missions, getting guarded treasures, or infiltrating the Templar forts. These include luring guards away from a post, setting up an ambush, sniping them from a distance, or disguising themselves as soldiers and pretending that Connor is a prisoner.
** [[VideoGame/AssassinsCreedII Cutscene prompts]] return, albeit sparingly. Most of these are used as a form of PlayerPunch, such as having to mash B/Circle to [[spoiler: desperately try to move burning logs off of your dying mother so she can escape the DoomedHometown, to no avail]], or having to press X/Square to [[spoiler: MercyKill Kanen'tů:kon after he tries to kill you]], and most importantly it appears that you can't fail them unless Connor's life bar pops up on screen and slowly deteriorates to signify there's a time limit [[spoiler: such as during Connor's execution or having to kill Haytham]].
* RootingForTheEmpire: While the modern-day, Crusade and Renaissance Templars are {{Jerkass}}es at best and Bond villains at worst, the Revolutionary era Templars make a case for their motives and intentions far better than any other time frame. This, combined with Connor being something of a divisive protagonist, results in quite a few players wishing they could have played as the Templars for once (and [[EnsembleDarkhorse Haytham]] in particular).
* SidetrackedByTheGoldSaucer: It's very likely you'll find yourself too busy playing mini-games in the Homestead to actually get anything done. Espescially if you're after ThatOneAchievement.
** This is also a problem for GameplayAndStorySegregation, with a CosmicDeadline looming down and if you do things before the end of the game, then you are essentially playing Fanorona while Desmond and Co need to prevent TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt.
* ThatOneLevel: Occasionally crops up, particularly when one is going for [[HundredPercentCompletion full synchronization]]. For example:
** "The Giant and the Storm", a mission in which the ''Aquila'' must engage and sink the Orpheus (a Man o'War) and its pair of frigate escorts in stormy waters. A respectable challenge on the face of it, certainly not insurmountable. However, full synch requires that each capital ship be destroyed by precision shots into their powder magazines, which requires blowing holes into their fore to expose the powder for the swivel guns to destroy. Unfortunately, getting precisely enough damage done to open this is wall bangingly difficult. [[DoWellButNotPerfect Too little damage at once and the damage will simply accumulate rather than blowing through, too much damage and it will sink outright.]] That this must be done perfectly on ''each'' ship and that the [[LuckBasedMission extremely chaotic winds and waves can throw off targeting at the last moment]] means this becomes something that requires many, ''many'' attempts, and each time you fail, you have to replay the first part of the mission sinking five smaller ships before you can have another shot. There is a trick to doing it [[labelnote:*]]take out their masts with chain shot, then ram them at half sail (frigates)/half sail then no sail, and coast in for the last few meters (frigates with Naval Ram installed)/full sail (Orpheus) from the front[[/labelnote]] which mitigates some of the randomness, but it becomes much more difficult [[GuideDangIt if the player has already purchased and installed the naval ram]] on the ''Aquila''.
*** Thankfully, there is a simpler way to do this: One full barrage of Heat Shot can easily smash open the powder magazines on all three ships.
*** Assuming your volley hits them entirely or mostly in the front(which causes less damage to the ship as a whole but heavy damage to the front, where the magazines are). If your volley of Heat Shot connects too much with the middle or back of the ship, they'll sink before you can blast the magazines.
** The last chase mission with [[spoiler: Charles Lee]] is also frustrating, especially if you want full sync. The dock you chase him on is cluttered with people and rows of guards who shove you on your ass if you graze past them most likely making you fail your mission. Full synchronization requires you navigate it staying within 50 m of him, not touching anybody, and not being damaged during the second part (inside the ship). Made worse by the fact that he starts out almost 40 m ahead of you automatically making it so if you're still for more than 2 seconds, you'll probably have to repeat the mission. It gets even worse shortly after that, on the burning ship- you have to navigate throughout the decks with absolutely no directions whatsoever. Oh, and if you're after full sync, watch out, everything is on fire.
*** And there's no checkpoint when you enter the ship, so if you get damaged on the burning ship, you have to do it all over again. [[SarcasmMode Fun]].
*** You can just dive jump towards the guards to save time instead of evading them, but the not pushing anybody part and the clunky controls [[note]]going down the stairs on the turn to avoid the guards might make Connor think it's a ledge, making you lose half a second at best[[/note]] make it for a really annoying experience.
** Whilst the mission itself could count for this, achieving full sync when first chasing Thomas Hickey requires you to not shove anybody out of the way. Not only are you chasing him through very narrow streets, but Thomas regularly throws coins behind him to draw a crowd straight into your path. Furthermore, due to all the twists and turns in the street, it doesn't take much for the player to lose him and have to restart.
*** You're supposed to cut him off, since he repeats the pattern. Also, if you're quick enough at the very start of the chase sequence, you can knock him down right after you regain control.
** Achieving full sync when Connor [[spoiler: escapes from his execution]]. It's very hard to kill two enemies and then get to your target in the short amount of time available. The best thing to do is run to the target but not kill him, just knock him over, and more enemies will come to you.
** Achieving full sync on "Conflict Looms". To do so, Connor must light gunpowder stores on the decks of two ships without entering combat with the redcoats. It's very easy to get spotted by the guards here, and the ships are ''extremely'' hard to hide on, so your best bet when the guards notice you is to dive into the water and climb back onto the ship. What makes this mission particularly frustrating is the need for stealth: by this point the player would probably have no trouble taking out the guards in direct combat, and there's no reason given as to why Connor has to remain unseen.
* ThatOneSidequest: The Encyclopedia of the Common Man can get really annoying and tedious. To start with, it's a LuckBasedMission where you have to record the homsteaders as they do various activities. You can't just follow them around waiting for them to do a recordable activity, because there seems to be a proximity sensor that will not let them do it while you're watching. This means you have to leave the area and come back again, hoping they're doing something useful this time. If you've finished every other sidequest and you're looking for HundredPercentCompletion, expect to reload the Homestead area a LOT. The lumberers in particular tend to wander around doing anything but working most of the time.
* TheyWastedAPerfectlyGoodPlot: Some of the critics who liked the setting and character feel this, that it had the best plot of the series and richest characterization but was hankered down by poor mission design, and weak integration of different gameplay mechanics as well as several bugs which came because of its ObviousBeta new AnvilNext engine.
** Critics regretted the fact that very little of Native American culture and life was actually seen, with one village representing the plight of the Mohawk during the entire frontier with very little attention to multiple tribes and subtleties, with Connor spending most of his time in Colonial Society and for some, becoming a SatelliteCharacter to his father's ProtagonistJourneyToVillain, which they feel was a betrayal to his own great potential.
** The same complaints came with the DLC whose first episode was well recieved for its concept but the final two episodes were regarded as being flat and while the conclusion was well recieved, people felt that it ought to have been more epic and diverse than it should have been, with very little information on Connor's post-game life.
* VocalMinority: British people moaning about the setting - the game's UK sales figures suggest that most of the UK doesn't care.