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It seems from AC2 onwards, we are getting more ranged weapons, weapons that require less thinking to use on our part.
I miss AC2's poison blade basically. I just did a contract where I had to kill the target without being seen, however he also has guards following him. To get to him I actually USED social stealth. I blended in with a crowd that took me right by him, gave him a dose of poison as for people to still not see and then carried on with the crowd. He died and everyone was left confused.
Now lets take that scenario and apply it to other games where ranged weapons are in the poison blade isn't:
1. Poison Darts (ACB, ACR, AC4) 2. Crossbow (ACB, ACR) 3. Bow and Arrow (AC3)
Having these ranged weapons changes the ballgame and your approach. Take all the above 3 you don't even have to be on the same level as your target, you can be on a building and shoot them without being seen.
In my opinion this takes away so much thought from your approach. As apposed to having to analyse guard routes, when the target turns around, directions blend groups are going etc. You can just stand far away and be done with it.
Now here come the people that say "don't like it, don't use it". That wouldn't be a problem if I had the OPTION to use the poison blade. Since AC2 there has been no poison blade, only darts. I would much prefer it if the poison blade came back.as getting close to a target to kill them actually requires the use of social stealth.