Assassin's Creed Origins presents a bristling skill tree. Which abilities are best?
In Assassin's Creed Origins, you earn an ability point every time you level up, as well as for completing certain side quests and tasks.
The abilities are divided into Hunter, Seer and Warrior categories, but you're not locked down to any particular path. As long as you have the prerequisites, you can go anywhere.
If you play to tick off every quest in Assassin's Creed Origins you'll easily end up with enough points to collect every ability, but at the start the choice can be overwhelming. There are definitely some abilities that are better than others, and we've collected some of our favourites for you as part of our Assassin's Creed Origins guide.
This absolutely vital skill finally makes sense of the fact that there are four different categories of bow – you can carry one type for stealth, and one type for all hell breaking loose. Even if you always play one way or the other, equipping two different categories of bow means you have two pools of ammo to draw on. We call that a good deal.
There’s an equivalent melee skill in the Warrior tree, which is handy if you want to carry, say, a heavy weapon for duelling slower foes and something fast for crowd control. It’s less essential, though.
Need a new weapon to drop in that second slot? We suggest tracking down the papyrus puzzles, which offer some of Assassin's Creed Origins best loot.
A fantastic Hunter skill for those who enjoy using a bow but struggle to land headshots quickly.
It works like this: you shoot an enemy in the head and kill them. Time slows to a crawl, allowing you to get off another shot against the enemy standing right next to the first one, taking him out too. Which in turn slows time to a crawl, so you can – you see where we’re going with this.
Best used with a predator bow, since those are slowest to aim and do the most stealth and headshot damage.
Experience boosting skills
There are several skills you should grab to help you level up faster in Assassin's Creed Origins, which in turn will help you earn other skills.
One of the best skills anyone can pick up is Stealth Kill Streak. This low level Hunter passive awards you free XP for successive kills outside open conflict. If you play a stealth character it will bring in stacks of extra experience, but even if you play chaotically you’ll regularly earn bonuses when guards nowhere near you fall off cliffs or set themselves on fire. Thanks, lads!
Consider also grabbing Headshot XP and Assassination XP in the Hunter tree, Tool Kill XP in the Seer tree, and finally Overpower XP and Melee Kill XP in the Warrior tree. These bonuses really add up over the course of the game.
If you have even the slightest interest in playing Assassin's Creed Origins in a stealthy fashion, grab this skill. Mash the takedown button as soon as you go into the animation for an assassination, and when he’s finished, Bayek will throw a knife at the closest enemy.
This works even if said enemy spots you, but sadly, only works once – so do be careful using it on groups.
This skill is especially useful for taking down guard convoys when you’re chasing materials to upgrade your gear. Run up behind one of the escorts and ping him, then get either the chariot driver or second escort as well. That leaves just one to deal with, and you can grab the goods.
In the Seer tree you’ll find a stack of tools that open up the stealth and combat sandboxes nicely.
Sleep Darts knock out unaware enemies for a brief period – long enough to deal with a pair you would otherwise struggle to take out, for example.
Flesh Decay creates a long lasting poison cloud on a corpse that infects anyone who touches it. Poison Dart is the upgrade to this skill, allowing you to use it at range.
Firebombs and Smoke Cloud are fantastic both for chaotic types and to give stealth players an advantage when things go wrong.
“Anything that eliminates a button press is a win,” according to our inherently lazy editor, and indeed, this Hunter skill makes moving through crowds of baddies and filling your pockets quick and easy.
Although we can’t confirm it, it feels like this skill also results in more loot overall; we rarely get the chance to collect loot from corpses, but every assassination seems to result in the jingle of coins in our pockets.
Perhaps it’s just that stealth kills drop more loot. In any case, save wear and tear on the “loot” key.
Charge Heavy Attack
In our opinion the most essential Warrior skill, this ability allows you to hold down the heavy attack button for an even more devastating blow.
Although it can be hard to land one of these powerful strikes, doing so will break an enemy’s guard even if they have a tower shield, and either stagger or knock down even big tough foes. This is one of the easiest ways to force an opening in a tough duel, or to quickly end a fight with a boss enemy.
Try it out with various weapon types; some of them charge very quickly and you can run around the whole time, which makes it easy to charge up, and once you knock an enemy down you can quickly switch to another melee weapon to follow up. This ability pairs with the instant charge legendary weapon trait, obviously!
If you follow the recommendations in our Assassins Creed Origins weapons and upgrade guide, you won't need any vendor skills. But perhaps you're here later in the week and have already widdled away your drachmae and crafting materials?
Okay, so: the Seer tree includes a couple of great skills you should check out. A 25% bonus on Trinkets and Animal Goods means you can make money faster, and more money means more upgrades at the blacksmith for your sweet legendary weapons and shields.
If you have plenty of money but no crafting materials because you've been selling all your blues and purples, then opening up vendor inventory to include crafting materials will save your bacon. Nice of Ubisoft to ensure everyone can get what they need, one way or another.
Adrenaline and Overpower skills
In open conflict, you earn adrenaline when you land attacks successfully. Depending on your weapon and skills, after some time you can unleash a special attack and go into a kind of rage mode called overpower.
If you’re doing a lot of fighting, investigate Overpower Chain Throw and Overpower Combo. The first allows for a quick follow up kill when you take an enemy down during overpower, while the second allows you to quickly follow up on initial overpower attacks with a rapid flurry of light attacks.
The two Adrenaline skills help you get there faster, by starting you with half or a full adrenaline bar in every fight. Used in combination with the Overpower skills, it means you can clear half the field within seconds of being spotted.
Combat in Assassin's Creed Origins works like this: you block or dodge while waiting for an opening. You take the opening and combo attack the enemy. After a few blows, the enemy guards or dodges, and if you're still hitting the attack button instead of getting ready to rinse and repeat, you either stagger or swing past, leaving yourself open for a counter-attack.
Well, with this skill you get one more hit before you have to strategically withdraw or button mash your way to pain. I think we can all agree that's a good thing; not only does it give button mashers a little longer to remember to stop hitting the attack key, it also means fewer rounds of defend-attack-defend to loop through, because you do more damage each time.
Note that you're still open to attack from a second enemy while this is going on; longer combos mean longer exposure to flanking, especially with the slower weapons like axes.