Recent excitement about the upcoming Assassin's Creed 3 release revealed a historically-bred Revolutionary War setting, a conflicted Native American/British protagonist, and fresh combat possibilities. But for many fans, online gameplay is a critical component in the gaming experience.

And in this third chapter in the story of Desmond's ancestors, the online multiplayer introduced in the previous game will venture one step further. Assassin's Creed 3 will be featuring an online 3-4 player co-op mode, according to the game's listing on Xbox.com.

No specific details have been confirmed about the multi-player mode, but it is rumored to be similar to the special co-op mode in Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood.

I'd seriously, seriously doubt that the main campaign modes could be played in co-op mode, although I guess you never know, wrote G4TV's Stephen Johnson.

The game's open wilderness areas are sure to prove for an adventurous multi-player mode, with players free to explore early New York settlements, revolutionary Bostonian cities, and free range wooded areas.

This raises the question of how AC3 will compare with other similar open exploration games such as fantasy RPG sensation Skyrim, which, second to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, sold more copies than any other game in 2011.

The widespread success of the third Elder Scrolls game was a landmark moment for role playing-based titles, which are usually pitted against stiff competition from shooter and combat-based platforms.

It gives us motivation to do story-driven games, because there's obviously an audience out there of people who enjoy story as well, Oskari Hakkinen, franchise development head of the game's developer Remedy, told EuroGamer.

With story-based video games gaining a presence in the market, it will be interesting to see how Assassin's Creed 3 is received among gamers.