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Portabliss: Assassin's Creed Recollection (iPad)


Did you know that you can download handheld games now? That's amazingly convenient! The only inconvenient part of it is finding the right games to buy -- and that's where we come in, with our Portabliss column. In each installment, we'll tell you about a downloadable game on the iPhone, iPad, Android device, DSi, 3DS, PSP, etc. Today: Assassin's Creed Recollection.

The level of synergy achieved by the Assassin's Creed franchise is pretty impressive. If you can think of it, odds are it's out there: books, comics, animated shorts and now, a TCG.

Assassin's Creed Recollection is mostly a real-time trading card game that pits two players against each other as they vie to control territory in various cities and towns across Europe. But what separates Recollection from something like Magic: The Gathering is the real-time clock that's always ticking down.

Gallery: Assassin's Creed: Recollection | 3 Photos

The goal of each match is to score 10 points in a physical region before your opponent does. Early in the game, there's one region to fight over; the campaign progresses and bigger maps have three or more areas to siege and defend. Points are earned by either having Agents campaign in a certain area, or by playing site cards that will earn you points in the region.

But doing anything takes time. Heck, even trying to do things takes time. As the days progress, you earn progressively more and more gold over time. You pay gold to perform any actions -- for example, to send out one of your spies, you must first pay his cost to place him in a ready queue where he has to wait before he can go out into the world where you again wait for him to campaign. There are also Site cards, physical landmarks with influence points that help you to take over a region, and Action cards that can be played as interrupts and instants at any time.

There's a very good sense of balance at play here. Budgeting time and resources on the fly is fun and as the stakes increase, the Tactics card game only gets better. And when the single-player campaign is over, there's online multiplayer and a store full of card packs available to keep things fresh and fun.

In addition to the Tactics game, the Assassin's Creed Embers short film is also included in the iPad app, along with a collection of art from the series.

Assassin's Creed Recollection is available on iTunes for $2.99 on iPad. We're always looking for new distractions. Want to submit your game for Portabliss consideration? You can reach us at portabliss aat joystiq dawt com.

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