Last Wednesday saw the digital and comic book store release of the first issue of the highly anticipated Assassin’s Creed: Origins comic book series. The brand-new series is brought to us fans by Ubisoft and Titan Comics. The series represents a direct tie-in to the bestselling Assassin’s Creed: Origins video game which has been available for sale since last October. This series is being written by Anthony Del Col and published by Titan Comics. This is our comic book review of Assassin’s Creed: Origins #1.
Video Game Spoiler Warning
In an attempt to set the stage for the start of this issue some minor spoilers to the video game’s ending will be revealed! You’ve been warned!
This issue opens with a few lead-in paragraphs to set the stage as to where we are while providing some direction as to where this series is going. The first page sets the stage as we’re starting from a point after Bayek and his wife, Aya, have avenged their son’s death. Their quest for revenge uncovered the Order Of The Ancients and its plans to control all of Egypt. Bayek and Aya have parted ways to focus on building a brotherhood to stand up to the Order.
This series focuses on Aya and what happened to her after she left Egypt. Aya’s current base of operations is Rome where she’s enlisted the help of several like-minded individuals. Their new target is the increasingly powerful dictator, Julius Caesar! The issue opens up with a cut scene in Egypt at the time of 30 B.C. and features, the previously revealed, Cleopatra. Aya’s story is quickly revealed as what would seem to be a flashback, i.e. fourteen years before Cleopatra’s cameo.
Aya is aided by historical figures such as Brutus and Cassius while encountering such prominent figures such as Mark Antony. The pinnacle of the story is also set to happen on March 15th, historically referred to as “The Ides Of March”. The only thing about the story that I couldn’t wrap my finger around as to why Caesar was such a valuable target. Sure there could be the reason that he’s a power-hungry madman but it wasn’t evident to me how he was important, if at all, to the Order, perhaps the next issue will tell. The other mystery to be clarified is what was the opening Cleopatra scene all about.
(Preview Art. Click on a image above to see a larger sample)
Many of us are probably already familiar with the highlights of Julius Caesar and the “Ides Of March” time frame, so it can be a daunting task to write something based on a story your audience already knows “the ending” to. Regardless, Del Col does a wonderful job of interweaving Aya into what we believe is history. Even though we might already know how the story should end Del Col makes it exciting enough to see how it pans out and leaves us hanging on what the fallout or consequences might become.
PJ Kaiowa’s artwork is detailed, graphic when needed and pleasing to the eye. The color palettes used fit well with the era and Rome surroundings. The paper of the physical edition is semi-gloss, thick paper which makes for lasting value for the $3.99 USD price tag. There are no ads throughout the story pages and writer Anthony Del Col leaves us with a nice “thank you” letter.
All in all this is a great start to another comic book mini-series for such this popular franchise, I personally can’t wait until next month for issue #2! Take it from this guy, who is barely familiar with the Assassin’s Creed lore, this new comic book series has started me down the road wanting to soak up all the Assassin’s Creed lore that I can, and there’s plenty out there.
Also, as a special bonus if you buy the physical edition, you might want to buy two, you get a download code for a cool looking Shamshir Blade, good for use in the Assassin’s Creed: Origin game!
ASSASSIN’S CREED: ORIGINS #1
Writer: Anthony Del Col
Artist: PJ Kaiowa
Publisher: Titan Comics
32pp, $3.99 USD
On Sale: March 7, 2018
- Story woven nicely into a historical event
- Setting is true to the video game
- Leaves you wanting more
Note: Our review copy was a self-purchased physical magazine copy.