Why I believe ACIII should NOT be mainly modern in time setting.

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Posted by MooseyMcMan (11393 posts) -

First, let me state that I have not yet played Brotherhood, so I have no clue what happens there storywise. 
 
There are a lot of people out there that want ACIII to be entirely Desmond outside of the Animus, or possibly papa-Desmond. I think that any time period new than the 1860s would break the Assassin's Creed gameplay.  
 
Why? Well, so far the AC games have been set in time periods where projectile weaponry wasn't much more advanced than bows/arrows and single shot guns. In modern times, guns can hold lots of bullets, and really the only way to fight back against guys with automatic weapons is to also use automatic weapons, which would essentially turn AC into a third person shooter, and I know that's not where I want the series to go. 
 
But I have a feeling that the developers didn't think of that. Why? Remember when you fought against Abstergo guards in ACII? I do, and I specifically remember that instead of being armed with something normal (guns), they had plastic rods. Really? They really had to include Desmond combat so badly that they equipped guards that work for an evil corporation (and/or Templars) with plastic rods? That's just dumb.  
 
Also, part of the reason why the traversal is fun is because of how olde-ass cities were back then. Lots of low lying buildings close to each other. Modern cities aren't like that.  
 
I'd also like to point out that ever since the first game, I haven't liked the story stuff outside of the Animus. It just seems like a way to explain the switch of main character from one game to the next, and how to explain things like dying and coming back to life. And I don't really see it getting much better in future games.  
 
So Ubisoft, please, don't make most of ACIII be outside Animus. I don't really care when the in-Animus takes place, just please set it in a time period where guns aren't the primary weapon. 

#1 Posted by MooseyMcMan (11393 posts) -

First, let me state that I have not yet played Brotherhood, so I have no clue what happens there storywise. 
 
There are a lot of people out there that want ACIII to be entirely Desmond outside of the Animus, or possibly papa-Desmond. I think that any time period new than the 1860s would break the Assassin's Creed gameplay.  
 
Why? Well, so far the AC games have been set in time periods where projectile weaponry wasn't much more advanced than bows/arrows and single shot guns. In modern times, guns can hold lots of bullets, and really the only way to fight back against guys with automatic weapons is to also use automatic weapons, which would essentially turn AC into a third person shooter, and I know that's not where I want the series to go. 
 
But I have a feeling that the developers didn't think of that. Why? Remember when you fought against Abstergo guards in ACII? I do, and I specifically remember that instead of being armed with something normal (guns), they had plastic rods. Really? They really had to include Desmond combat so badly that they equipped guards that work for an evil corporation (and/or Templars) with plastic rods? That's just dumb.  
 
Also, part of the reason why the traversal is fun is because of how olde-ass cities were back then. Lots of low lying buildings close to each other. Modern cities aren't like that.  
 
I'd also like to point out that ever since the first game, I haven't liked the story stuff outside of the Animus. It just seems like a way to explain the switch of main character from one game to the next, and how to explain things like dying and coming back to life. And I don't really see it getting much better in future games.  
 
So Ubisoft, please, don't make most of ACIII be outside Animus. I don't really care when the in-Animus takes place, just please set it in a time period where guns aren't the primary weapon. 

#2 Posted by Bloodgraiv3 (2690 posts) -

I think even if it was in the present day, Desmond wouldn't use guns as his main arsenal, plus I just dont think the gameplay would work well with guns, but I see where your coming from. 
Also, if the third one does take place in the animus again, I hope its egypt.
#3 Posted by trophyhunter (5800 posts) -

well it's just like Batman AA gurads had guns but Batman didn't use them.

#4 Posted by SethPhotopoulos (5403 posts) -

As an excuse for the rods.  They needed Desmond alive. 
 
They could use ruins and old villages but the open world stuff would be really cut down for that.   
 
And I liked the Desmond stuff.  Especially the ending to AC2. 
 
I would like to see him use a female ancestor.

#5 Edited by hexx462 (506 posts) -
@trophyhunter said:

" well it's just like Batman AA gurads had guns but Batman didn't use them. "

But Batman doesn't kill people, last I checked these games had Assassin in the title.
 
It would be contrived not to use guns in a modern setting, I'm hoping the game will tie up the modern stuff but give us a great new setting within the Animus.
#6 Posted by HandsomeDead (11863 posts) -

I don't see how they could really do a game set in modern times because the Animus is so crucial to the experience that the removal of that would be too much of a game changer.

#7 Posted by canucks23 (1087 posts) -

Yea i'm really not sure what they'd do for modern day assassins creed. I just have a feeling that i'd be extremely disappointed with what it turned out to be because i don't want a shooter, and i dont want a guy using melee combat in a modern game when that makes no sense because of technology today. I'd rather the next one was some other old time period but changed up a bit like the transformation from ac1 to ac2.

#8 Posted by trophyhunter (5800 posts) -
@hexx462 said:
" @trophyhunter said:
" well it's just like Batman AA gurads had guns but Batman didn't use them. "
But Batman doesn't kill people, last I check these games had Assassin in the title. It would be contrived not to use guns in a modern setting, I'm hoping the game will tie up the modern stuff but give us a great new setting within the Animus. "
 Trust me Batman kills people in that game. They just don't admit it.
He pulls guys off ledges and have them drop like 30  feet onto their heads, or blows up explosives right under them or next them, He savagely beats people to at least near death.  Also since the templar company runs the world already, they could say "We took guns of the market so no one could raise up against us"
 

#9 Posted by MooseyMcMan (11393 posts) -
@SethPhotopoulos said:
" As an excuse for the rods.  They needed Desmond alive.  They could use ruins and old villages but the open world stuff would be really cut down for that.    And I liked the Desmond stuff.  Especially the ending to AC2.  I would like to see him use a female ancestor. "
Wouldn't a better strategy be to hold him at gun point, or shoot him in the leg or something? 
#10 Posted by MikkaQ (10344 posts) -

Yeah, but how would you even finish the narrative without it, anyway? 
 
Plus it could be some weird gunless future world they're in who knows haha.

#11 Edited by SethPhotopoulos (5403 posts) -
@trophyhunter said:

" @hexx462 said:

" @trophyhunter said:
" well it's just like Batman AA gurads had guns but Batman didn't use them. "
But Batman doesn't kill people, last I check these games had Assassin in the title. It would be contrived not to use guns in a modern setting, I'm hoping the game will tie up the modern stuff but give us a great new setting within the Animus. "
 Trust me Batman kills people in that game. They just don't admit it. He pulls guys off ledges and have them drop like 30  feet onto their heads, or blows up explosives right under them or next them, He savagely beats people to at least near death.  Also since the templar company runs the world already, they could say "We took guns of the market so no one could raise up against us"  "
Or they are the only ones with access to advanced weaponry so Desmond has to find ways to disarm them.  However the first AC game had the assassins attack abstergo and you straight up hear the gunshots, but I guess they can say that "terrorist event" was the reason guns are hard to attain.
#13 Posted by foggel (2764 posts) -

"... or as Desmond's father"
 
Or have we been playing as Desmonds father all along? Going into an Animus in the Animus? So that in the third game we wake up from our sleep, only to reveal it was all a past, even Desmond?
 
whoaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

#14 Posted by SethPhotopoulos (5403 posts) -
@MooseyMcMan said:
" @SethPhotopoulos said:
" As an excuse for the rods.  They needed Desmond alive.  They could use ruins and old villages but the open world stuff would be really cut down for that.    And I liked the Desmond stuff.  Especially the ending to AC2.  I would like to see him use a female ancestor. "
Wouldn't a better strategy be to hold him at gun point, or shoot him in the leg or something?  "
Yes it would but at the same time they could've made the mistake that he isn't capable of anything, a dumb as Hell mistake, but a mistake. 
#15 Posted by hexx462 (506 posts) -
@trophyhunter said:
" @hexx462 said:
" @trophyhunter said:
" well it's just like Batman AA gurads had guns but Batman didn't use them. "
But Batman doesn't kill people, last I check these games had Assassin in the title. It would be contrived not to use guns in a modern setting, I'm hoping the game will tie up the modern stuff but give us a great new setting within the Animus. "
 Trust me Batman kills people in that game. They just don't admit it. He pulls guys off ledges and have them drop like 30  feet onto their heads, or blows up explosives right under them or next them, He savagely beats people to at least near death.  Also since the templar company runs the world already, they could say "We took guns of the market so no one could raise up against us"  "
Well yeah people would die or at least suffer horrible long term damage from the savagery Batman displays in that game, but it's a comic book understanding of violence and physics bathed in a comic book code of ethics. It's totally okay for Batman to absolutely pummel someone because "he doesn't kill anyone" that has no bearing on the reality of what would actually happen to someone in those circumstances. 
 
 I fail to see how Desmond could be an effective assassin in the modern era without using firearms, he'd literally have to become Batman and decide not to kill anyone. The game should not  focus on shooting since that engine does what it does really well (melee combat) and it's not what those games are fundamentally about.
#16 Posted by HandsomeDead (11863 posts) -
@foggel said:
" "... or as Desmond's father"  Or have we been playing as Desmonds father all along? Going into an Animus in the Animus? So that in the third game we wake up from our sleep, only to reveal it was all a past, even Desmond?  whoaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa "
   
'Death to the demoness, Lucy Stillman!'
#17 Posted by MooseyMcMan (11393 posts) -
@SethPhotopoulos said:
" @MooseyMcMan said:
" @SethPhotopoulos said:
" As an excuse for the rods.  They needed Desmond alive.  They could use ruins and old villages but the open world stuff would be really cut down for that.    And I liked the Desmond stuff.  Especially the ending to AC2.  I would like to see him use a female ancestor. "
Wouldn't a better strategy be to hold him at gun point, or shoot him in the leg or something?  "
Yes it would but at the same time they could've made the mistake that he isn't capable of anything, a dumb as Hell mistake, but a mistake.  "
Dude, Templars are not that dumb. I mean, I expect a certain level of stupidity from guards, but not from the higher ups. 
#18 Posted by MooseyMcMan (11393 posts) -
@hexx462 said:
" @trophyhunter said:
" @hexx462 said:
" @trophyhunter said:
" well it's just like Batman AA gurads had guns but Batman didn't use them. "
But Batman doesn't kill people, last I check these games had Assassin in the title. It would be contrived not to use guns in a modern setting, I'm hoping the game will tie up the modern stuff but give us a great new setting within the Animus. "
 Trust me Batman kills people in that game. They just don't admit it. He pulls guys off ledges and have them drop like 30  feet onto their heads, or blows up explosives right under them or next them, He savagely beats people to at least near death.  Also since the templar company runs the world already, they could say "We took guns of the market so no one could raise up against us"  "
Well yeah people would die or at least suffer horrible long term damage from the savagery Batman displays in that game, but it's a comic book understanding of violence and physics bathed in a comic book code of ethics. It's totally okay for Batman to absolutely pummel someone because "he doesn't kill anyone" that has no bearing on the reality of what would actually happen to someone in those circumstances.    I fail to see how Desmond could be an effective assassin in the modern era without using firearms, he'd literally have to become Batman and decide not to kill anyone. The game should not  focus on shooting since that engine does what it does really well (melee combat) and it's not what those games are fundamentally about. "
I like how this has turned into an argument about Batman. 
#19 Posted by SlightConfuse (3963 posts) -

i could see it taking place in modern times with desmond having to go into the animus at somepoint. 
 
if its not in present day then i would like revolutionary america 

#20 Edited by SethPhotopoulos (5403 posts) -
@MooseyMcMan said:

" @SethPhotopoulos said:

" @MooseyMcMan said:
" @SethPhotopoulos said:
" As an excuse for the rods.  They needed Desmond alive.  They could use ruins and old villages but the open world stuff would be really cut down for that.    And I liked the Desmond stuff.  Especially the ending to AC2.  I would like to see him use a female ancestor. "
Wouldn't a better strategy be to hold him at gun point, or shoot him in the leg or something?  "
Yes it would but at the same time they could've made the mistake that he isn't capable of anything, a dumb as Hell mistake, but a mistake.  "
Dude, Templars are not that dumb. I mean, I expect a certain level of stupidity from guards, but not from the higher ups.  "
I'm not saying the story is Shakespeare or without big holes.
#21 Edited by MadeinFinland (839 posts) -

I'm guessing that the third game will be back in the Animus, and I'm guessing it'll be the French Revolution. 
 
@trophyhunter said:

" @hexx462 said:
" @trophyhunter said:
" well it's just like Batman AA gurads had guns but Batman didn't use them. "
But Batman doesn't kill people, last I check these games had Assassin in the title. It would be contrived not to use guns in a modern setting, I'm hoping the game will tie up the modern stuff but give us a great new setting within the Animus. "
 Trust me Batman kills people in that game. They just don't admit it. He pulls guys off ledges and have them drop like 30  feet onto their heads, or blows up explosives right under them or next them, He savagely beats people to at least near death.                                          "
Don't they actually show the heart-rate of the enemies in the game when you're in detective mode? I'm sure I saw some bodies without heart beats.
#22 Posted by MooseyMcMan (11393 posts) -
@slightconfuse said:
" i could see it taking place in modern times with desmond having to go into the animus at somepoint.  if its not in present day then i would like revolutionary america  "
There were rumors a while ago about it being in revolutionary France, which is around the same time (few years later), so it's not outside the realm of possibility.  
 
And I could see Ben Franklin being a good replacement for Leonardo. 
#23 Posted by trophyhunter (5800 posts) -
@foggel said:
" "... or as Desmond's father"  Or have we been playing as Desmonds father all along? Going into an Animus in the Animus? So that in the third game we wake up from our sleep, only to reveal it was all a past, even Desmond?  whoaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa "
Desmond's father would not have Desmonds memories.
The Animus only goes back wards not forward. If you wanted that it'd would have to be Desmond's son.
#24 Posted by foggel (2764 posts) -
@trophyhunter said:
" @foggel said:
" "... or as Desmond's father"  Or have we been playing as Desmonds father all along? Going into an Animus in the Animus? So that in the third game we wake up from our sleep, only to reveal it was all a past, even Desmond?  whoaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa "
Desmond's father would not have Desmonds memories. The Animus only goes back wards not forward. If you wanted that it'd would have to be Desmond's son. "
Sometimes the plots I create are so batshit insane, I even confuse myself. I meant to say Desmond's son.
#25 Posted by haggis (1677 posts) -

Brotherhood keeps the modern outside-the-animus stuff to a minimum. I could certainly see some of this in AC2, but not a major portion. I suppose they could find some way of limiting the use of long-range projectile weapons, but it would almost certainly seem contrived. On the other hand, walking around Monteriggioni with modern vehicles, lights and even garbage cans was oddly ... intriguing. And I'd like to see at least one or two decent modern missions in AC3. So long as its not long stretches of game, I don't think guns would be an issue.

#26 Posted by OneAndOnlyBigE (447 posts) -
@Bloodgraiv3 said:
" I think even if it was in the present day, Desmond wouldn't use guns as his main arsenal, plus I just dont think the gameplay would work well with guns, but I see where your coming from. Also, if the third one does take place in the animus again, I hope its egypt. "
Egypt (aside from a pyramid here and there) doesn't have the verticality that the other cities do...now London on the other hand...
#27 Posted by Gaff (1883 posts) -
@MooseyMcMan Without turning into THAT guy, I think the reason the guards had batons was getting Desmond back alive? For getting the clues for the Pieces of Eden? He's kinda valuable because everyone else who went into the Animus had killed themselves?

Also, I don't think setting the AC up for an Activision-worthy milking is something we should encourage.
#28 Posted by DonutFever (3537 posts) -

They could do automatic weapons like they did the pistol in ACII. Remember that it wasn't "Yo when you pull the Left Trigger you aim, and when you press the Right Trigger you shoot, GO!".

#29 Posted by SethPhotopoulos (5403 posts) -
@DonutFever said:
" They could do automatic weapons like they did the pistol in ACII. Remember that it wasn't "Yo when you pull the Left Trigger you aim, and when you press the Right Trigger you shoot, GO!". "
Also as an assassin he should be traveling light in order to get in and get out.
#30 Posted by DonutFever (3537 posts) -
@SethPhotopoulos said:
" @DonutFever said:
" They could do automatic weapons like they did the pistol in ACII. Remember that it wasn't "Yo when you pull the Left Trigger you aim, and when you press the Right Trigger you shoot, GO!". "
Also as an assassin he should be traveling light in order to get in and get out. "
And guns are loud and Assassins should try not to be.
#31 Posted by MooseyMcMan (11393 posts) -
@DonutFever said:
" @SethPhotopoulos said:
" @DonutFever said:
" They could do automatic weapons like they did the pistol in ACII. Remember that it wasn't "Yo when you pull the Left Trigger you aim, and when you press the Right Trigger you shoot, GO!". "
Also as an assassin he should be traveling light in order to get in and get out. "
And guns are loud and Assassins should try not to be. "
Well, there is such a thing as suppressors, but now we're getting into Metal Gear Solid territory if we're talking about stealth and automatic weapons, and there's already enough MGS in Brotherhood. 
#32 Posted by Vinny_Says (5721 posts) -

And you claim to know how modern day assassin's creed world is based on what? Maybe the cities in that world are still low-lying buildings and close together....like in a favela....

#33 Edited by RandomInternetUser (6789 posts) -
@SethPhotopoulos said:

" As an excuse for the rods.  They needed Desmond alive.  They could use ruins and old villages but the open world stuff would be really cut down for that.    And I liked the Desmond stuff.  Especially the ending to AC2.   "

I agree with this stuff.  Also, another reason (I pointed this out in another thread) could be that guns are kind of loud.  So maybe they didn't want to fire off 20 or 30 rounds in an abandoned warehouse.  That might attract a bit of attention from higher authority people, such as the police, and blow Abstergo's cover.  (Unless Abstergo is the highest authority in the world/country they occupy?  I don't remember them being so, I remember them being some dudes using Abstergo as a genetic research company or something as a front for doing all the animus stuff.)  Also, guns could be HIGHLY regulated to just governmental use.  It is a year - 2 years into the future, and could potentially be an alternate reality where guns never reached anyone's hands outside of government military.
#34 Posted by MooseyMcMan (11393 posts) -
@xobballox said:
" @SethPhotopoulos said:

" As an excuse for the rods.  They needed Desmond alive.  They could use ruins and old villages but the open world stuff would be really cut down for that.    And I liked the Desmond stuff.  Especially the ending to AC2.   "

I agree with this stuff.  Also, another reason (I pointed this out in another thread) could be that guns are kind of loud.  So maybe they didn't want to fire off 20 or 30 rounds in an abandoned warehouse.  That might attract a bit of attention from higher authority people, such as the police, and blow Abstergo's cover. "
I can't help but think that Abstergo would be sound proofed or something like that, and that they would have paid off all the police, or that the police would be Templar agents or something. And again, I'm not saying they would need to shoot the guns, just hold them at gun point. Most people don't move around a lot when a bunch of guards are pointing guns at them. 
#35 Posted by RandomInternetUser (6789 posts) -
@MooseyMcMan: Just edited my post right after you replied with a few more observations.  It is strange that they don't have guns though.  Never-the-less, I'm VERY willing to look past that to get modern gameplay from AC3 and get a story that ends with the destruction of the Templars/Abstergo.
#36 Posted by MooseyMcMan (11393 posts) -

You know what I just realized would be BAT-SHIT-CRAZY in terms of ACIII setting? Well, what if it took place in... 
 
Oh, it's a spoiler for those who haven't beaten ACII.   

#37 Edited by CptBedlam (4457 posts) -

I totally agree with the OP.
 
Also, modern times settings are overdone these days. The biggest part of my fascination for AC's were the historical settings and I want more.
 
French Revolution would be great. They could just up Desmond's share of the game's playtime as he becomes ever more important for the story progression.

#38 Posted by Levio (1786 posts) -

AC3:  Wild wild west.

#39 Posted by MooseyMcMan (11393 posts) -
@Levio said:
" AC3:  Wild wild west. "
Only if there's a giant mechanical spider. And if then make Desmond black. 
#40 Posted by DrPockets000 (2859 posts) -

The big plot twist is that it's all an Illuminati plot.

#41 Posted by Doctorchimp (4055 posts) -

I'm more than inclined to believe that they have it all worked out as to how assassins work in modern day since they started the whole "hey lets train a guy in a machine". There's a lightsaber that can block gun fire somewhere, maybe they live in a 1984 monotone world and guns just aren't around. Would it be terrible if Assassin's Creed III was more in line with Batman's style of stealth? Who cares if Batman doesn't kill people...just make it so Desmond does, I don't follow the logic of people who bring that up....
 

 
Personally I'd find it a tad disappointing if you go through these games with a whole wink and a nod "We're training Desmond! He's the real protagonist! The Last Assassin!".
 
But Assassin's Creed III he's still going through a simulation. Just my opinion though.  
#42 Posted by TheMaxMeister (78 posts) -

I could definitely see myself enjoying a modern time Assassin's Creed. There are many ways to restrict gun usage in a setting where guns are widely available.

#43 Posted by Landon (4164 posts) -
@MooseyMcMan said:
" @xobballox said:
" @SethPhotopoulos said:

" As an excuse for the rods.  They needed Desmond alive.  They could use ruins and old villages but the open world stuff would be really cut down for that.    And I liked the Desmond stuff.  Especially the ending to AC2.   "

I agree with this stuff.  Also, another reason (I pointed this out in another thread) could be that guns are kind of loud.  So maybe they didn't want to fire off 20 or 30 rounds in an abandoned warehouse.  That might attract a bit of attention from higher authority people, such as the police, and blow Abstergo's cover. "
I can't help but think that Abstergo would be sound proofed or something like that, and that they would have paid off all the police, or that the police would be Templar agents or something. And again, I'm not saying they would need to shoot the guns, just hold them at gun point. Most people don't move around a lot when a bunch of guards are pointing guns at them.  "
Look, out of all the reasons we can make I think the most important one is this: They don't want to damage their effing equipment.
 
How much do you a machine that lets you puppeteer your ancestors memories costs to research and develop? I'm guessing an upwards of an assload. And they have rooms FULL Of those machines. So why would you risk some bullet ricocheting off and destroying valuable equipment, when a baton can hurt just as bad?
#44 Posted by Redbullet685 (6085 posts) -

They could make it like Mirrors Edge where you pick up an enemy's weapon, use the small amount of bullets, then leave it.

#45 Edited by Valkyr (669 posts) -

They could give  Assassin's some kind of crazy MGS-esque suit, that can mimic enemies and blend with the environment, remember that during the fights between the Assassin's  and the Templars of Desmond times you can hear a lot of gunfire, so the plastic rods were just an excuse so they didn't have to create another fighting system.

#46 Posted by mewarmo990 (838 posts) -

I would suggest Japan, but there are already enough ninja games out. 
 
I think Imperial China during any one of the great "golden age" dynasties would work (Han, Tang, Ming, etc), but the setting isn't very familiar to Western audiences. Another option would be ancient Rome, though that would be getting a little too close to AC1 after the huge gameplay expansion that AC2 and Brotherhood added.

#47 Posted by WindFall259 (369 posts) -

I'm inclined to agree. Assassin's Creed is about being up close and personal with the kills. Going with the modern era with guns blazing would take most of the fun out of what the game's built around, which would be face stabbing and such. The ranged weapons are more secondary than the main arsenal. I'm not sure Imperial China or Japan would make sense in the Desmond ancestry, so I would think they would still be around the European continent. Russia is possible, but it would still be a stretch.

#48 Posted by AgentJ (8778 posts) -

Assuming they were suddenly in modern times, I would think they would put a focus on entirely stealthy kills, IE not using tommy guns because it would alert the target and close the window of opportunity. There would almost certainly be the use of guns, but there would likely be a lot of (admittedly contrived) situations where the only way to get the target is to get close to him. I could also imagine having to get into a templar building without setting of a metal detector or something. But that would include wrist blades as well...

#49 Posted by Skald (4370 posts) -

The next ancestor should be an Ostrogoth. That'd be unique.

#50 Posted by owl_of_minerva (1455 posts) -

I just think the possibilities of setting the game in modern times are fascinating from the perspective of narrative, design, and mechanics. Seeing them translated into something like Hitman (with parkour!) could be incredible; there are so many ways to get around the presence of guns (stealth, silenced weapons, etc.) that I don't see that as a major problem. I agree that the city design in the past is infinitely more beautiful and Romantic as a setting, but then again parkour originated in modern cities; it is possible to practice it in them.
It sounds like they've set the bar about as high as it can go with Brotherhood, so I'd rather they have spin-off titles for those that want to linger in past settings, but keep III in the present. I'd find it a huge disappointment if they never deliver on the "Animus bleed effect" thread: also this is a modern conspiracy taking place in roughly our present, so it'd completely mess up the story arc. Moreover, I would find it hard to get excited about another foray into the past: I would prefer it to be no earlier than about 1850-1890 but ideally it would take place in the present day.

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