Assassin’s Creed Origins Tips, Tricks, Easter eggs, and more
A few Assassin’s Creed Origins tips and tricks to help get the most out of Ubisoft’s massive new take at the series.
After taking a year off to allow the once-annually released franchise a chance to rest and make some much-needed changes, Ubisoft Assassin’s Creed series is back with the 10th full console release, Assassin’s Creed Origins. And if you are a fan of the franchise, the wait was absolutely worth it.
Assassin’s Creed Origins is not a reinvention of the series. If you’ve played some of the previous titles, you’ll probably feel right at home, but it is a significant advancement for the decade-old franchise that was showing its age. Unlike previous iterations, Origins is not a reskin of another game or games in the series. It is also a true open world game, and it is the biggest Assassin’s Creed game by far. There are countless things to do and see, and the more you play, the more things you’ll find.
Don’t be surprised if you hear from people that spent 75-100 hours playing Origins, although if you stick to the main missions you can complete it much faster than that. For those looking for shortcuts and those looking to really explore alike, we have several Assassin’s Creed Origins tips and tricks to help you get your bearings in Ancient Egypt.
Given the size and depth of this game, we will update this post several times in the future with new Easter eggs, tips, and more.
Abilities and Leveling
The ability upgrades in Assassin’s Creed Origins are fairly straightforward. You have three paths, and you earn an ability point each time you reach a new level. You can then spend the points on these abilities, and the more powerful the ability, the more points it costs, with the most expensive abilities costing three points.
It’s straightforward enough, and ultimately you should focus on how you personally like to play. You’ll also earn enough points to unlock most abilities, so eventually, you’ll pick abilities that help with specific needs. In the early going, however, there are a few things to keep in mind.
As you look through the skill tree, you’ll notice a handful of skills that will earn you additional XP for completing certain moves. It won’t give you a massive boost, but they are worth unlocking as so as you can. You should also focus on unlocking some equipment, especially sleep darts. These are especially useful if you are out hunting – animals can be put to sleep.
While the abilities you choose are important, the level you are at is more significant in how you experience Origin’s Egypt. Enemies and animals will all have a level of their own, and if you are more than two levels lower than they are, you will have a very, very tough time. Your attacks do very little damage and their strikes can kill you easily.
You’ll also find missions have recommended levels attached to them, and again, if you are underpowered you’ll want to level up first.
- If you come across an area with a loot chest and enemies that are more powerful than you are, you can stealth your way through and loot, then run away.
- A good way to level up relatively quickly, at least in the early going, is simply to explore.
- Main and side quests are the best source of XP by far, but you can also earn experience by doing basic actions like defeating random enemies you’ll find wandering around.
- Unlock the ability to equip two melee weapons and two bows as soon as possible. Having the option to switch makes a huge difference in combat.
Buying, Selling, and Crafting
Assassin’s Creed Origins puts an emphasis on earning and getting rid of weapons and objects. That means you’ll be seeking out merchants often to unload your loot and see if there is anything new worth buying.
The gear you find and buy comes in three colors: blue, purple, and gold, with the colors indicating rarity (blue is common, purple rare, and gold is legendary – it’s basically the same color code as Destiny 2). Each piece of gear has two numbers of note – the damage/defense and the quality. Of these two numbers, focus on the damage/defense. You’ll earn so many pieces of gear so often that it is rare that you’ll run into issues with the quality until much later.
It’s always good to have a few weapons to switch between, but for the most part you should sell off extra gear, especially at first. Once you have a little gold saved up, you can begin to purchase components off of merchants (once you unlock that ability). Do that every chance you get, as these materials are the key to upgrading your power levels. Once you have enough gold that you aren’t worried about running out anytime soon, start breaking down gear for the components. Bronze is one of the most useful components, as it will help you upgrade multiple categories, and taking it from weapons is one of the easiest ways to earn it.
- Hunt animals every chance you get to earn components from them.
- While legendary and rare gear have additional bonuses, the boosts are generally very minor. Don’t hesitate to sell anything you aren’t using.
- Upgrading is a good way to get a more powerful version of a weapon you really like, but more often than not, you’ll find a similar and more powerful weapon sooner or later just through playing.
- The outfits are cosmetic, switch between them as often as you like.
- If you need a specific component to upgrade your gear, you can pin it, then send out Senu to look for them nearby.
The combat in Assassin’s Creed Origins has been revamped from previous titles, and the more abilities you unlock, the deeper it gets.
The single most important thing to know about the combat system is to not tackle enemies that are too powerful for you (marked by red icons). There is a very slim chance you will win, but it will be a frustratingly long and difficult fight for very little reward. The same is true of using the hidden blade – even sneaking up on more powerful enemies and trying to assassinate them won’t work.
Get in the habit of locking on to an enemy and bringing up your shield. It will help orient you and allow you to roll away quickly, then switch enemies as you need. You should also get in the habit of swapping weapons – you will need a moment to switch, so get a little breathing room first. The choice of weapons is ultimately up to you, but it makes sense to bring two types of weapons that each do something different – maybe one offers range and the other speed, or one is strength and the other a balanced attack.
It’s your choice, but be sure to try multiple weapons. Don’t forget to mix in your bow too, along with your equipment.
- If you are hurt, roll away and try to get some distance until you regenerate your health.
- Once you unlock smoke bombs, add the ability to have them hurt enemies. It won’t do much damage, but it will help slow down multiple enemies.
- Before you begin an assault, use Senu to tag every enemy nearby. It will help prevent enemies from sneaking up on you.
- If you are spotted but don’t want to fight, head for the water and dive under it if you can. Enemy AI can be temperamental – sometimes it gives up right away, sometimes it will chase you around Egypt, but staying underwater helps.
- Unlock the “Poison Bodies” ability and leave fallen enemies somewhere others will find them.
- Once you unlock the “Berserk” ability, you can sneak up and turn enemies against one another. Do this and get to a good place out of sight to watch.
- The “Overpower” ability is vital to success. Power it up through abilities as soon as you can.
- If you see something that can be lit on fire, do so and then hold up a bow near it to light the tip of the arrow on fire. Use it for additional damage.
- Use your mount in combat and deal extra damage while it absorbs some of the damage meant for you.
- If there are any animals in cages near enemies, shoot the cages and let the animals attack your enemies.
DLC – Paid and Free
In news that should surprise none peoples, Assassin’s Creed Origins has plenty of post-launch content, some of it will be available to buy ala carte or through the Season Pass, some of it will be free and introduced frequently.
The first two pieces of paid content available to Season Pass holders (and probably available to purchase alone) are the “Roman Centurian Pack” (containing one outfit, one shield, one mount, and two weapons) and the “Horus Pack” (containing one outfit, one shield one mount, and two bows). Both will be released in November. Early next year will see the release of two expansions, The Hidden Ones and The Curse of the Pharaohs, in February and March, respectively.
The free daily content includes a mission from the “Nomad’s Bizarre,” which rewards you with a random weapon and a new photo of the day. There will also be a “Trial of the Gods” mission that will pit you against a massive Egyptian god, a horde mode set in a gladiator arena, and a “Discovery Tour,” all of which will be introduced soon after launch and be updated frequently.
- The first DLC, The Hidden Ones, will take place years after the conclusion of the game and pit Bayek and friends against the Roman legions.
- The second DLC, The Curse of the Pharoahs, will introduce a new area and see Bayek fight Egyptian mummies and monsters.
Ancient Egypt is a big, big place. You’ll come across multiple landscapes, multiple cities, hidden locations, and much more. You can either explore early on or wait for new regions to unlock as the story progresses, it’s up to you.
If you want to explore a bit, make sure you have a good horse, and once you reach a new area, look for a synchronization point or a city – they both unlock fast travel, which will make your life easier later on, and they reveal some of the things nearby. You earn experience for each new maker uncovered, so it never hurts to wander around a bit.
Once you hit the water, grab a boat and circle as much of the map as you can, steering toward “?” icons and sticking to the shore as much as possible to discover new locations. Don’t forget to stop for the odd fast travel point, but you can unlock a huge portion of the map by simply sticking to the water. Just remember, if you are exploring early on you will face difficult enemies, many of which might be able to kill you with a single, stray arrow you’ll never even see coming.
When you first begin the game, you’ll be limited to Siwa and the immediate surroundings. You won’t be able to explore freely until after you complete the main Siwa stories, so complete those, and then you can go anywhere you want.
- Use Senu to scout new areas. If you see a white indicator, look around until your bird identifies something worth exploring or collecting.
- Pay attention to the names of areas. You’ll often hear or read hints about something (usually loot) and they will be referenced by locations.
- Camels are fine, but get a horse as soon as possible,
- If you want to explore the easy (but slow) way, place a marker somewhere far away and set your horse to automatically travel there, then set down your controller and go do something else IRL. There’s a decent chance you will get killed by something on the way, but you’ll unfog several objects and areas. You can also stick to the roads and set autopilot.
- When you are on the water, send Senu out often. He’ll find sunken treasure for you, which is easy loot.
- The ability to hold your breath for longer seems useful, but you will rarely be in situations when where you run out of air.
The Modern World
This is getting a bit into spoiler territory. There won’t be any major reveals, but if you want to stay totally unspoiled, even with minor things, skip this section.
As with all of the other Assassin’s Creed games, there is a modern world component and a specific person that is reliving Bayek’s adventures. You’ll be introduced to this character through the story, but once that happens you can switch back to them at any time through the menu. There isn’t much to do between the set story pieces though.
When you first enter the modern world, you’ll be able to check the new character’s computer. Do so, but be prepared to read a lot of files, most of which don’t add much to the story unless you are a BIG Assassin’s Creed fan and have gone beyond the games. If you don’t care, you can skip these and not miss much.
Later in the game you’ll have the chance to explore the modern location a bit, including areas you can climb to. There isn’t much to do at first. Explore everything you can once and then you can forget about it.
- To really appreciate all of the additional material you can read in the modern world, you’ll need to read the book, Assassin’s Creed: Hersey and seen the 2016 movie, Assassin’s Creed.
At some point in the game (no spoilers), you’ll have a contract put out on you, which send a group of bounty hunters known as “phylakes” after you. Phylakes are very powerful, and they will be at a significantly higher level than you are (unless you really grind before getting into the story missions). Take these enemies seriously, and don’t bother fighting them until you are evenly matched, or ideally at a higher level.
When you do come across a phylake, you can fight or you can run. You can find them on your map, or you’ll know they are near when you hear a horn and receive a warning. If you fight and win, you’ll unlock the “Defy Authority” side quest, which challenges you to defeat all of the phylakes. If you accept this challenge you’ll need to be around level 40 to beat them all.
Phylakes have more tricks than most guards. They will dodge, roll, wait to counterattack, and use their shields strategically. They’ll also happily wait behind other guards and then move in on you when you’re distracted, and if you run they will chase you. Even if they are at a lower level the fights can be tough, but if you beat them, you’ll earn great rewards and XP.
- Phylakes can block most attacks, but they are slightly vulnerable to some of your equipment.
- You can usually find phylakes on their own. If you happen upon one and they are surrounded by guards, run and wait for a better opportunity.
Side quests are a major part of Assassin’s Creed Origins. Not only will you need to complete several of them to level up enough to successfully complete the story missions, they will help to fill out the story and breathe life into the setting. There is some repetition in these side quests, but nothing like in previous AC games. In fact, some of the side quests are incredibly varied.
Most side quests are available on a map that has been unfogged in an area where you have synchronized. Just look for the “!” and go interact with the quest giver. Check the map first, however, as the side quests also have levels attached to them. You’ll also come across blue icons, which mean that they are limited time events, and frequently have some connection to the real world – a common blue even may be to “avenge” another player who died at one point in the game.
You’ll also come across several side quests that are not on the map and are only revealed if you speak to a particular person or explore somewhere – especially somewhere hidden. If you see a hidden area in a major are – a temple, for example – be sure to explore it. You’ll certainly earn some loot, and you may unlock an interesting quest.
- If you see a “!” icon that appears to randomly seems to be moving, it is probably an animal that is attacking other people. If you are at a proper level, be sure to kill the animal for XP and components.
- Some quests are open-ended and will require a lot of time and exploration. Check your quest log, and if there is no distance associated with the quest, prepare for a long hunt.
- Each time you find a new area, you’ll potentially find new quests. You can ignore them completely, accept them and get to it, or accept them and deactivate the quests until you have time.
- If you want to start the game with a little bit of an advantage, make sure you thoroughly explore Siwa and complete all the missions and objectives before you leave. You can come back, but taking the time to do them at once will give you a boost when you reach the next area.
This is getting a bit into spoiler territory. There won’t be any major reveals, but if you want to stay totally unspoiled, even with minor things, skip this section.
One minor complaint many people are bound to have is that the opening of the game is a little confusing in the way it is presented. You are briefly introduced to Bayek, there are some glimpses of an event, and then it jumps to nearly a year later with no explanation of what happened. You’d be forgiven for thinking that you hit a glitch, but that it is deliberate.
When you first take control, you’ll find yourself in Bayek’s home of Siwa after a lengthy absence. You quickly discover that there is trouble afoot. Bayek will be eager to get on the road again, but you have business to conduct.
Consider Siwa to be a tutorial – albeit a long and varied one. You can’t leave the area until you complete the story mission that involves you leaving (you can return at any point), but you should take your time and explore Bayek’s home. You’ll find plenty of weapons, earn good XP, and when you leave you’ll be well situated for when comes next.
As the game unfolds, the story is told through the main quests, but if you want the full experience you’ll need to complete side quests as well. If you stick to the main missions, only doing side quests when you need to level up, you can complete the game in 30-40 hours, probably less if you focus. If you dive into it and really explore, however, you can sink 100 hours in.
- If you’re looking for more fiction and non-fiction set in and around the same era, we have you covered.
- While it helps to know the history of the Assassins Creed series, you can still enjoy Origins if you have never played the game. There are a few things that won’t make sense, but for the most part you can follow along.
- The game is much bigger than it initially appears. Each time you complete what you think is the main goal, you’ll find that you are just getting started.
This section contains Easter eggs you’ll find throughout the game. Because they are hidden and the game is massive, we’ll update this section frequently as more are discovered.
- During the side quest to align the stars, “Bayek’s Promise,” when you activate the stones in southeast corner of the Isolated Destert, Bayek will be asked what is best in life. If you know Conan, you know what comes next.
- When Bayek approaches the Sphinx for the first time, he plays the unimpressed tourist and claims it’s not as big as he thought.
- There’s a spear named “Needle” with the description “Stick ‘em with the pointy end,” ala Game of Thrones.
- If you wait in the sun long enough, especially in the harsh desert, Bayek will begin to hallucinate.
General Assassin’s Creed Origins Tips and Tricks
- Be sure to make use of the ability to switch between day and night – especially if you are approaching an enemy base. You might find enemies asleep.
- Senu acts like a drone. If you are in an area with enemies or loot, use it to scope out the area.
- You can sell all your non-useable items immediately at merchants. Just choose sell and hold down on the D-pad.
- Look for statues of Ptolemy and smash them for XP – but don’t expect the guards to take it lightly.
- You can reload quests through the menu. This is handy if you get lost or run into a glitch.
- Look for the Nomad Bazaar, designated on the map by a blue camel. The merchant, Reda, will give out a daily mission. Accept it and you’ll earn a special piece of gear as a reward.
- You can take pictures by pressing down on both thumbsticks. If your pic is good enough, it might be shared to other gamers. There isn’t much more to it, but it’s a fun distraction.
- You’ll find papyri scrolls throughout Egypt, with hints on where to find powerful gear. Collect the scrolls when you see them, but wait to hunt for the gear until you have a lot of fast travel markers and you are a higher level (the higher you are when you find them, the higher they will be).
- Beware of cursed weapons. They offer double damage but lower your health to 1/3 its maximum.
- If you are in a dark tomb, equip the torch and light any torches or fire pits for additional light.