Assassin Shao Jun really wants a box. Apparently, the box holds a precious artifact left from the time of the First Civilization, but it is simply the ultimate in MacGuffins; it's the Maltese Falcon, the briefcase from Pulp Fiction, and the Ark of the Covenant. What it does is irrelevant and never elaborated upon, at least not in this story, for its purpose is to kick an adventure into action--in this case, a beautiful and ultimately boring trek that cribs from Mark of the Ninja but can't capture the earlier game's cleverness or excitement. It's tempting to praise Assassin's Creed Chronicles: China for squeezing the series' signature elements into two-and-a-half dimensions, and for making stealth gameplay more vital than it has been in an Assassin's Creed game for years. But Chronicles rests on being pretty, adding new mechanics over time but flattening the pace and allowing exploits and glitches to suck out the rising tension.