All praise the mercenaries that dot the Greek lands in Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey, seriously, they’re something brilliant. Brilliant might be a strong word of course, but I do enjoy their presence, much more than their Phylakes compatriots from Origins.
I really didn’t like the Pylakes in Origins, they never seemed to appear in a logical fashion, and were quite often, a seriously a high-level enemy that would hunt you down on site. At least, that’s how it felt to me, and in all, the Phylakes were a key part of why I found myself avoiding the big cities in Origins, which can be a nuisance when you’re trying to make progress in the game.
On the other hand, the mercenaries in Odyssey are a wonderful feature. You know why they are hunting you (for killing Athenians of course), and can even choose to pay off or kill their sponsor to rid yourself of their presence. Fortunately, if they haven’t been set on a contract to take you down, you can pass them in peace while exploring Greece, no animosity at all. Best of all, only mercenaries that are near your current level will be assisgned a contract against you. No more running in fear at a level 35 bad guy killing you with one blow.
There is one feature which is most due for praise – the fact that a mercenary might get involved in one of your fights, and swing it in your favour. That happened to me today, while taking on the Kalydonian Boar, a bastard of a side-mission in the early game. Having fallen to the boar several times at different stages of my journey, I took him on once again…and suddenly a mercenary was there as well!
It was a perfect moment, as the mercenary kept the big beast busy while I dealt with the small boars that spawn during the fight, while they both knocked chunks of health off each other. A few arrows once they had beaten each other to near death, and I had successfully killed two birds with one stone.
All praise the mercenaries!