Fair play to Ubisoft for righting the ship with their most lucrative franchise; AC: Syndicate is as good as an Assassin's Creed game could be... but that's still woefully lacking in every respect, especially when you look at the confidence exuding from every pore of Metal Gear Solid V. Controls are refined to toggle between open-world exploration and stealth, but the A.I. on display will still spend most of its time staring at the walls or patrolling in pre-scripted sequences. The framerate bogs down considerably whenever you take to the skies, which considering one of the best parts of AC is exploring things from a bird's eye view, kills a major part of the appeal. Combat has been sped up in an attempt to introduce a more visceral element to every encounter, but it just looks and feels bad. Enemies go into the same floundering "I'm hit!" animations, whilst twin characters Jacob and Evie hurry through their own attacks, rarely connecting with the appropriate sound effects. More often than not a fight will end with the thwacks and slams still sounding out. Syndicate was a step back in the right direction, but at this point the overall franchise is so lost amongst its own plot contrivances and the general public perception as a broken product, it's best to leave it be in 2016.