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#1 Edited by Deathstriker (275 posts) -

The creative director said he'd like to explore Egypt soon, which could be cool, but hopefully the environment isn't too similar looking to some of the past AC games. Also, I will be bugged if they make them white or ambiguously tan (Vin Diesel). Egypt was black until Greece overran it after its prime, but that's something just about every movie, show, etc purposely ignores. Maybe this would be different since they're French rather than Hollywood, but I doubt it. Other than that issue it's a great setting. I would like to see God of War go there with a new hero interacting with those gods, but the race thing would pop up again. Their gods are really interesting though.

#2 Posted by ryanwhom (290 posts) -

It would probably take place after Greece overran it so they could build around the Antony and Cleopatra (who was Greek) thing.

#3 Posted by Deathstriker (275 posts) -

@ryanwhom said:

It would probably take place after Greece overran it so they could build around the Antony and Cleopatra (who was Greek) thing.

That sounds way less interesting to me. At that point they might as well make a game set in Greece or Rome. The way he said "Ancient Egypt is really interesting" made me think he was talking about the early days with the pyramids being built and stuff. That could also lead back to the game's sci-fi premise, since the plot originates from a "pre-history" advanced society warning us today.

#4 Edited by joshwent (1775 posts) -

If they're talking about Ancient Egypt, isn't a bigger problem the general lack of ways to climb up a super smooth mud brick building?

#5 Posted by gokaired (425 posts) -

I'd expect them to go to Japan by now and cover the secret christians or the Japanese war of the 1880s or somthing during or after the Meiji era.

Cleopatra has both greek and black ancestry but history says people in general where a lot darker and shorter back then, so they should just have her be bronze.

#6 Posted by BBAlpert (1254 posts) -
@joshwent said:

If they're talking about Ancient Egypt, isn't a bigger problem the general lack of ways to climb up a super smooth mud brick building?

Mummy bandage grappling hooks, duh.

#7 Posted by hanktherapper (364 posts) -

I would play an Assassin's Creed game based in Egypt. It's about time Pharaoh had a sequel.

#8 Posted by Patman99 (1543 posts) -

To be honest, the debate over the skin colour of ancient Egyptians is still current. No one knows for sure so there's no point in getting worked up over it. As an archaeologist, I find those sorts of debates borderline useless. It has absolutely no bearing on the achievements of the ancient Egyptians. I believe they should be represented accurately but given the region they are in, the high likelihood of contact with the multitude of other cultures in the area, and the fact that your colour of your skin is heavily dependent on many factors (such as UV exposure and diet), it seems most likely that they weren't a single 'shade'. So arguing over the specifics if they were 'black' or 'kinda but not really black' or 'not black but not white' is just silly. Ancient Egypt is cool, they did some cool things, let's leave it at that.

On topic, I think the game would be better, at least from a story perspective, if it was set in a time period around the death of Alexander. Lots of war type stuff in addition to the start of the Ptolemaic dynasty. Also, I am not sure how 'built-up' the ancient Egyptians were in their early days. I still think a Victorian era or Samurai era AC game would be great and fairly different from what they did before.

#9 Edited by Atlas (2400 posts) -

Whoa, let's not get ahead of ourselves. The matter of Ancient Egyptian race and ethnicity is controversial, without a clear consensus. Herodotus described them as black, but you have to take anything he said with a massive grain of salt. They intermingled with darker people from Nubia and Sub-Saharan Africa, but they also intermingled with people from the Levant and the Mediterranean, such as the Phoenicians, and Egypt had been conquered by non-native cultures of non-African origin hundreds of years before Alexander the Great - before the Hellenistic period, Egypt was controlled by Persia.

If we want to go much farther back than the well-known Ptolemaic kingdom and its last pharoah, Cleopatra, then we have to accept the limitations, both to understanding of Egyptian history in popular culture (people don't know the name of the pharoah who commissioned the Great Pyramid at Giza (Khufu), but everyone knows the name of a pharoah who ruled under a regent and died age 18 probably of an infected broken leg (Tutankhamun), and the limitations of the lack of sources and historical information. When we're talking about Old and Middle Kingdom Egypt, we get into a lot of conjecture and speculation, or pieces that were fit together with the best information available, mostly archaeology and historical traditions as opposed to written sources. It's a potentially flimsy basis on which to base something like a video game, but then it would also allow for the most creative license. It's an interesting idea, but rather impracticable.

Personally, I would love an AC game based during the height of the Achaemenid Empire. 300 led to a lot of false assumptions about Persian history and the Achaemenid tradition; the religious tolerance of the Achaemenids was unprecedented, and the state religion Zoroastrianism forbids slavery. You can explore Babylon, Thebes, Pasargadae, Persepolis, and maybe go undercover in Athens.

#10 Edited by Jesna (66 posts) -

The Egyptians inhabiting the northern part of Egypt that we consider the Egyptian empire typically described themselves as being that tan color you mentioned, distinct from the darker skinned Nubians to the South (who, admittedly, would become part of the Egyptian empire as well). Don't get me wrong, I'm sure an Assassin's Creed game set in that era would be horribly inaccurate, but I don't think skin color will be an issue.

#11 Posted by TruthTellah (7627 posts) -

I doubt skin color will be the biggest issue of potential inaccuracy facing an AC game set in Egypt.

#12 Posted by joshwent (1775 posts) -

@atlas said:

When we're talking about Old and Middle Kingdom Egypt, we get into a lot of conjecture and speculation, or pieces that were fit together with the best information available, mostly archaeology and historical traditions as opposed to written sources. It's a potentially flimsy basis on which to base something like a video game, but then it would also allow for the most creative license.

I like where you're going with this...

#13 Posted by phrosen (140 posts) -

What if we get Egypt but under the rule of the Ottomans or the British? That would be cool. And you could play an American archeologist/adventurer looking for the Ark of the Covenant. And he could wear a hat. And have a whip. And there could be Nazis maybe too. What I'm saying is, I'd be down, if Ubisoft made an open world Indiana Jones game. I really want that. Oh man.

#14 Posted by Deathstriker (275 posts) -

@patman99 said:

To be honest, the debate over the skin colour of ancient Egyptians is still current. No one knows for sure so there's no point in getting worked up over it. As an archaeologist, I find those sorts of debates borderline useless. It has absolutely no bearing on the achievements of the ancient Egyptians. I believe they should be represented accurately but given the region they are in, the high likelihood of contact with the multitude of other cultures in the area, and the fact that your colour of your skin is heavily dependent on many factors (such as UV exposure and diet), it seems most likely that they weren't a single 'shade'. So arguing over the specifics if they were 'black' or 'kinda but not really black' or 'not black but not white' is just silly. Ancient Egypt is cool, they did some cool things, let's leave it at that.

On topic, I think the game would be better, at least from a story perspective, if it was set in a time period around the death of Alexander. Lots of war type stuff in addition to the start of the Ptolemaic dynasty. Also, I am not sure how 'built-up' the ancient Egyptians were in their early days. I still think a Victorian era or Samurai era AC game would be great and fairly different from what they did before.

I don't believe it's as murky of an issue that some people try to claim. The bigger problem is that when there's anything interesting found in Africa the west says white people did it or it gets ignored. That includes structures/civilizations in Zimbabwe Sudan, Ethiopia, South Africa, and others. The problem with turning other culture's history or achievements into white ones, whether it be Egypt or Jesus and Moses somehow being Aryan looking, is that power comes with it. It's basically brainwashing that the world didn't really start until the ice melted in Europe, even though South Americans, Africans, Asians, and Middle Easterners were already advanced at that time... that has social consequences.

#15 Posted by geirr (2374 posts) -

To Norway!

#16 Posted by JZ (2125 posts) -

No

#17 Edited by shinjin977 (701 posts) -

I just don't care where they go at this point, just write better characters please. Aveline from the vita game was great, even though the game itself was very average. Maybe move away from Conner altogether. How about a black guy with an ancestor that help run the underground railroad? or a french lady with an ancestor involve in the french revolution? or a Japanese guy with a hand in the fall of the Tokugawa shogunate? How about a Chinese assassin that resolve the boxer rebellion?

I think AC4 looks great but what a miss opportunity that they didn't go with south American type main character.

#18 Posted by Flacracker (1385 posts) -

Ancient Egypt with their whole ancient aliens thing would be cool.

#19 Edited by Brodehouse (9370 posts) -

At this point I don't mind where they go. I'm a huge Dan Carlin-esque fan of history, and I've got so tired of the gameplay and narrative in AC that now those games are just for me to get high and marvel at the architecture and the recreation of the past. I no longer care about stabbing dudes in the neck, I just want to be a digital tourist in ancient places I will never see with my own eyes, from the safety of my living room.

Arguably the most fun part of GTA has been soaking up the atmosphere.

#20 Posted by Atlas (2400 posts) -

@deathstriker: To be honest I think you're skewing the facts to fit your political/ideological narrative. The West has done a huge amount to belittle the achievements of non-European civilisations, and non-African civilisations have done a huge amount to belittle the achievements of African civilisations - Muslim scholars thought the cultured and civilised city-states on the Swahili coast of East Africa were founded by Muslim traders, but this was just racism, and the cities had existed long before the rise of Islam - but let's not assume that just because there's a lack of decisive evidence means that one side is attempting to brainwash the other. Maybe it would be better if Western-based developers stayed away from Africa.

Also no historian worth his weight in salt only recognises the achievements of European civilisations (whatever that means) like the Greek and the Romans - none of their achievements would have been possible without the civilisations that came before them, from the ancient Sumerians and Babylonians, to the Neo-Assyrians and the Persians. Also ethnicity is nowhere near as important to ancient history as we often perceive it to be, because our own modern culture sees race in an entirely different light. Take for example the Phoenicians - it didn't really matter where you were born or who your parents were, it was more a pan-ethnic culture than an ethnic group. Same applies to Hellenistic culture which was ascendant after the death of Alexander the Great and prior to the Romans. That said, it's probably the Greeks who are to be blamed for introducing ethnocentrism; Aristotle's theories on the superiority of certain races over others did a ton of harm to human civilisations, as it had a profound effect on the Western and Eastern traditions.

#21 Posted by Patman99 (1543 posts) -

@deathstriker: It is a murky issue, read the literature surrounding the topic. A UNESCO study determined the ancient Egyptians were not black. This study was the result of a bunch of scholars coming together, reviewing the available data and literature, and coming to an agreement. Black Athena Revisited (1996), or Population continuity or population change: Formation of the ancient Egyptian state (2007) attack the perspective that ancient Egyptians were 'black'. On the other hand, there are still some who believe the opposite. I don't know what you consider murky, but this meets my definition (Read the 2007 paper and you'll see why).

In saying that, debating the skin colour of an ancient civilization has VERY little to do with understanding the culture. Besides, detecting the pigment of a long since dead people's skin is extremely difficult, at least in my informed opinion. It's better to show what the ancient Egyptians did and let their actions stand for their own. There does not need to be a 'oh, by the way, they weren't white' attached to that.

Furthermore, there are very few archaeologists and historians that I can think of, if any, that actively support the idea that the world only really started once the ice melted in Europe (that is to say that the European cultures are the be all and end all of human civilization). Moreover, I can't think of any archaeologists that use the idea that certain cultures, be they from Africa, the Americas, Asia, or Europe, are actually 'more advanced' than other cultures. There is no straight line of cultural evolution. So stone buildings do not necessarily mean that the culture is more advanced than another culture who uses turf and timber.

Additionally, if you read any modern (last 30-40 years), peer-reviewed academic scholarship on the subject of South America, Africa, Asia, or the Middle East, you will see that the vast majority focus on the area of study and do not judge those groups with any European culture. While African archaeology is not in the public eye as much as other areas (such as Mediterranean archaeology (which includes northern Africa)), all of the modern literature that I have read on the subject strictly point out the intricacies of those cultures. In other words, modern scholarship does not try to make the 'achievements' of African cultures as white ones.

There will always be racist nut cases but most of them do not hold academic positions. No self-respecting academic will try and turn 'other culture's history or achievements' into white ones. Yes, past scholarship has tried to make certain unfounded connections but that is an approach long since extinct in academia. This is a perspective that many modern anthropologists, archaeologists, and historians are trying to wash off. I suggest reading Eric Wolf's Europe and the People without History (The title is a stab at much older scholarship). In the book, Wolf fully advocates what I have preached here. In short, the world is absolutely interconnected but every culture has been changing as long as every other culture, including those found in Europe. You are right in your core idea but wrong in that you think this is still going on. It may be in the minds of racists, but it is not in the minds of most academics. Saying that the Egyptians were black does not change anything. Don't give them red hair and blue eyes but also don't try to simplify the issue. Skin colour is complex and multi-faceted and requires a lot of time and energy to get accurately. What we do know is that they weren't European, but rather they were North African. Respect the diversity of Africa (which includes lighter and darker skin tones) and you are probably as close as one can get.

#22 Edited by TheManWithNoPlan (4419 posts) -

That sounds fine with me. I'm really just hoping for them to change up the setting enough to distinguish it apart from the past several entries.

#23 Edited by Humanity (7936 posts) -

No I want it to go to the one place a lot of people would love to see Assassins Creed go and thats Japan. Maybe it's cliche, I don't know, all I DO know is that samurai swords and ninjas and feudal Japan all seems like a really cool setting for an AC game.

#24 Posted by gokaired (425 posts) -

@patman99 said:

@deathstriker: No self-respecting academic will try and turn 'other culture's history or achievements' into white ones.

No they'll just try to underplay or erase it, but that was then, now it's a whole different story i'd say.

#25 Posted by MideonNViscera (2257 posts) -

I'm really just waiting for them to add dogs.

#26 Posted by ShaggE (5972 posts) -

Eh. I still really want a Victorian England AC before anything else.

#27 Posted by MariachiMacabre (6936 posts) -

@shagge said:

Eh. I still really want a Victorian England AC before anything else.

JACK THE RIPPER WAS A TEMPLAR!

#28 Edited by gokaired (425 posts) -

And Jack the Ripper really a Knights Templar :P

EDIT: DAMN MariachiMacabre, you ninja'd me XD

#29 Edited by Brodehouse (9370 posts) -

@deathstriker said:

I don't believe it's as murky of an issue that some people try to claim. The bigger problem is that when there's anything interesting found in Africa the west says white people did it or it gets ignored. That includes structures/civilizations in Zimbabwe Sudan, Ethiopia, South Africa, and others. The problem with turning other culture's history or achievements into white ones, whether it be Egypt or Jesus and Moses somehow being Aryan looking, is that power comes with it. It's basically brainwashing that the world didn't really start until the ice melted in Europe, even though South Americans, Africans, Asians, and Middle Easterners were already advanced at that time... that has social consequences.

... No. The problem is that those cultures, pretty much all ancient cultures that aren't Rome or China, had a problem either a) writing things down, or b) having those writings survive the span of history. There's been no 'whitewashing' of Chinese history, because the Chinese were the first to figure out the importance of record keeping. I understand you don't like white people, but give historians a little more credit. To say all historians are colluding to benefit the white race is absolute nonsense, and it precludes the reality of non-white historians.

While on the topic of Jesus being the only white brunette ever born in Nazareth, look around. You'll find that every culture's deities look like the people who believe in them. There aren't a lot of Shinto kami who look like Frenchmen, Ra didn't look like a Russian and I doubt any of the physical incarnations of the Great Spirit look like Kazakhs. If you have a problem with whites stealing the deities of brown people, you should take it up with the Emperor Constantine or Clovis of the Franks (or his wife who spurred his conversion).

Guess what, there's not a lot of good historical material regarding ancient Germanic tribal cultures that weren't written by Romans. Because those ancient Germanics either weren't big into writing, or for whatever reason didn't preserve their writing to the same degree the Romans did. Does this constitute a Romanizing of history, or is merely that Rome and archaeology are the only windows we have into those cultures?

@patman99: I like you.

#30 Posted by Veektarius (4130 posts) -

Assassin's Creed has enough trouble portraying the time periods it takes place in without applying historically revisionist mores to its storyline, and it hasn't gone back further than 1200 AD (or something like that). Black, white, or green, I can't imagine their version of ancient anywhere being the slightest bit fair to the people of that time.

#32 Posted by Patman99 (1543 posts) -

@gokaired: There is a long tradition of attempts at 'scientific racism' in the past of anthropology and archaeology. I'd like to think that we have weathered the worst of it and have been uniformly fighting against it the past few decades. Regardless, the truly revolutionary academics were always those that took a relativistic point of view. The best interpretations of data will always rise to the top eventually, it just takes time in some cases.

#33 Posted by Brodehouse (9370 posts) -

@gokaired said:

@brodehouse said:

Not entirely, it's a mix of things. Many African civilisations kept records but after many collapsed or moved the ancient documents where destroyed or pillaged. But it's not so much the researchers that control that flow of information to the public it's who they work for.

That's B in my example. Having those writings survive the span of history, as in ... maybe they were written, but they're not extant.

#34 Posted by Kaiserreich (644 posts) -

@gokaired: the illuminati? They work for the illuminati don't they? Always trying to keep the black man down.

#35 Posted by Clonedzero (3716 posts) -

There should be a statute of limitations on how old racial issues people can get pissed over. I vote for 100 years in the past.

#36 Posted by WinterSnowblind (7612 posts) -

Egypt was black until Greece overran it after its prime, but that's something just about every movie, show, etc purposely ignores. Maybe this would be different since they're French rather than Hollywood, but I doubt it. Other than that issue it's a great setting. I would like to see God of War go there with a new hero interacting with those gods, but the race thing would pop up again. Their gods are really interesting though.

Looking at the way they handled the American Civil War, which was clearly altered at some point during development because they were afraid of angering the US fanbase, I highly doubt they'd do anything like that.

#37 Posted by Atlas (2400 posts) -

@brodehouse said:

... No. The problem is that those cultures, pretty much all ancient cultures that aren't Rome or China, had a problem either a) writing things down, or b) having those writings survive the span of history. There's been no 'whitewashing' of Chinese history, because the Chinese were the first to figure out the importance of record keeping.

Probably the biggest white-washing of Chinese history has been done by China itself. Also, the Chinese got much better at record-keeping once they stopped burning books. But that's a subject for an entirely different day.

#38 Posted by gokaired (425 posts) -

@gokaired: the illuminati? They work for the illuminati don't they? Always trying to keep the black man down.

Yeah, those chinese never let up!

;)

#39 Edited by oldenglishC (858 posts) -

@gokaired: the illuminati? They work for the illuminati don't they? Always trying to keep the black man down.

Wait a minute, I thought Jay Z ran the Illuminati. Secret societies need to be more upfront with their management policies.

#40 Edited by AndrewBeardsley (372 posts) -

personally i would love a Russian Revolution themed Assassins Creed. Or a French revolution.

#41 Edited by gokaired (425 posts) -

@brodehouse said:

@gokaired said:

@brodehouse said:

Not entirely, it's a mix of things. Many African civilisations kept records but after many collapsed or moved the ancient documents where destroyed or pillaged. But it's not so much the researchers that control that flow of information to the public it's who they work for.

That's B in my example. Having those writings survive the span of history, as in ... maybe they were written, but they're not extant.

Yeah, you're right. But you know they're always finding stuff on that continent, I wouldn't be surprised if they found ray guns :¬)

(actually, wasn't that the Carthaginians who attacked Roman War ships with mirrors :¬D )

#42 Posted by Deathstriker (275 posts) -

@patman99 said:

@deathstriker: It is a murky issue, read the literature surrounding the topic. A UNESCO study determined the ancient Egyptians were not black. This study was the result of a bunch of scholars coming together, reviewing the available data and literature, and coming to an agreement. Black Athena Revisited (1996), or Population continuity or population change: Formation of the ancient Egyptian state (2007) attack the perspective that ancient Egyptians were 'black'. On the other hand, there are still some who believe the opposite. I don't know what you consider murky, but this meets my definition (Read the 2007 paper and you'll see why).

In saying that, debating the skin colour of an ancient civilization has VERY little to do with understanding the culture. Besides, detecting the pigment of a long since dead people's skin is extremely difficult, at least in my informed opinion. It's better to show what the ancient Egyptians did and let their actions stand for their own. There does not need to be a 'oh, by the way, they weren't white' attached to that.

Furthermore, there are very few archaeologists and historians that I can think of, if any, that actively support the idea that the world only really started once the ice melted in Europe (that is to say that the European cultures are the be all and end all of human civilization). Moreover, I can't think of any archaeologists that use the idea that certain cultures, be they from Africa, the Americas, Asia, or Europe, are actually 'more advanced' than other cultures. There is no straight line of cultural evolution. So stone buildings do not necessarily mean that the culture is more advanced than another culture who uses turf and timber.

Additionally, if you read any modern (last 30-40 years), peer-reviewed academic scholarship on the subject of South America, Africa, Asia, or the Middle East, you will see that the vast majority focus on the area of study and do not judge those groups with any European culture. While African archaeology is not in the public eye as much as other areas (such as Mediterranean archaeology (which includes northern Africa)), all of the modern literature that I have read on the subject strictly point out the intricacies of those cultures. In other words, modern scholarship does not try to make the 'achievements' of African cultures as white ones.

There will always be racist nut cases but most of them do not hold academic positions. No self-respecting academic will try and turn 'other culture's history or achievements' into white ones. Yes, past scholarship has tried to make certain unfounded connections but that is an approach long since extinct in academia. This is a perspective that many modern anthropologists, archaeologists, and historians are trying to wash off. I suggest reading Eric Wolf's Europe and the People without History (The title is a stab at much older scholarship). In the book, Wolf fully advocates what I have preached here. In short, the world is absolutely interconnected but every culture has been changing as long as every other culture, including those found in Europe. You are right in your core idea but wrong in that you think this is still going on. It may be in the minds of racists, but it is not in the minds of most academics. Saying that the Egyptians were black does not change anything. Don't give them red hair and blue eyes but also don't try to simplify the issue. Skin colour is complex and multi-faceted and requires a lot of time and energy to get accurately. What we do know is that they weren't European, but rather they were North African. Respect the diversity of Africa (which includes lighter and darker skin tones) and you are probably as close as one can get.

I was referring to the average person, not modern historians. Thinking Africa and the Middle East are and always were hell holes is a fairly common belief. When the truth is that they were made that way largely because they're the richest places on Earth, so other countries control/fight there, not because they're savages. Having things like the Mummy and other mainstream crap ignore black people only reinforces and spreads the idea that the only African society that most of the world thinks is smart was white, Arab, or so mixed we might as well call them white. It's social programming. You're talking about scholars, I'm talking about the average American, European, etc and even Africans. For example, some Africans don't believe they built the walls of Zimbabwe since they've been told so many times a magical lost white tribe did it, SMH.

#43 Edited by Deathstriker (275 posts) -

@brodehouse said:

@deathstriker said:

I don't believe it's as murky of an issue that some people try to claim. The bigger problem is that when there's anything interesting found in Africa the west says white people did it or it gets ignored. That includes structures/civilizations in Zimbabwe Sudan, Ethiopia, South Africa, and others. The problem with turning other culture's history or achievements into white ones, whether it be Egypt or Jesus and Moses somehow being Aryan looking, is that power comes with it. It's basically brainwashing that the world didn't really start until the ice melted in Europe, even though South Americans, Africans, Asians, and Middle Easterners were already advanced at that time... that has social consequences.

... No. The problem is that those cultures, pretty much all ancient cultures that aren't Rome or China, had a problem either a) writing things down, or b) having those writings survive the span of history. There's been no 'whitewashing' of Chinese history, because the Chinese were the first to figure out the importance of record keeping. I understand you don't like white people, but give historians a little more credit. To say all historians are colluding to benefit the white race is absolute nonsense, and it precludes the reality of non-white historians.

While on the topic of Jesus being the only white brunette ever born in Nazareth, look around. You'll find that every culture's deities look like the people who believe in them. There aren't a lot of Shinto kami who look like Frenchmen, Ra didn't look like a Russian and I doubt any of the physical incarnations of the Great Spirit look like Kazakhs. If you have a problem with whites stealing the deities of brown people, you should take it up with the Emperor Constantine or Clovis of the Franks (or his wife who spurred his conversion).

Guess what, there's not a lot of good historical material regarding ancient Germanic tribal cultures that weren't written by Romans. Because those ancient Germanics either weren't big into writing, or for whatever reason didn't preserve their writing to the same degree the Romans did. Does this constitute a Romanizing of history, or is merely that Rome and archaeology are the only windows we have into those cultures?

When did I say I disliked white people? Just because I'm criticizing the taking of other people's history doesn't mean I dislike hundreds of millions of people due to their skin color... that's a very dumb thing to say. I would defend anyone who's be wronged or ignored regardless of race. If AC went to Japan and they did the typical "half-breed" white guy who gets the girl and saves the day I'd be annoyed too. Why not just have a Japanese guy... so to me it's not a black thing. I never said all historians were doing anything, I said movies and TV ignore all African civilizations besides Egypt then they make them white.

The problem with your second paragraph is that Christianity isn't a white/European religion. Nearly all of it was formed in the Middle East and Africa. Europe got it last (besides the Americas) and they were the ones (Romans) who hunted/killed him. Romans later switch to the religion for political reasons. Jesus looks Italian because an Italian guy drew him, so I agree with you there. That also explains why the Egyptian gods were usually drawn black.

#44 Posted by Patman99 (1543 posts) -

@deathstriker: First, you are generalizing how the hoi polloi view Africa. I would imagine that there are a lot of people who are totally indifferent on who the 'smart' African cultures were. It's probably better to simply advocate for a wider worldview not just knowing who the 'smart' African cultures were. Second, I don't understand how trying to prove that Egyptians were black fixes the problem you stated. If anything it just pushes forward another agenda based on the colour of a people's skin. In so doing, it attempts to homogenize an entire continent. Africa, as I am sure you know, is as diverse as any other continent. So how does showing the world that the ancient Egyptians might have had a darker skin tone help bring attention to people in Zimbabwe? You are better off educating the public about Zimbabwe's history rather than trying to proxy it through Ancient Egypt.

Last, the conflict that is present in any given area, regardless of size, has numerous factors rather than simply its abundance or concentration of natural resources. In fact, there are a few ethnographic studies of San groups (aka Bushmen) that attempt to understand territoriality (i.e. how aggressively a group will defend its territory). The results of those studies are generally mixed. Some groups in small areas with dense patches of resources are less territorial than those in larger areas of more spread out resources. So in fact, the groups living in the areas with fewer resources per hectare were slightly more territorial. Why? Because life is not 1s and 0s. Also, people who know their history would know that the Middle East was not always a hell hole. You are augmenting the opinion of probably a select group of (ignorant) people to the universal.

It does not help your case of trying to prove diversity in Africa if you continue to shoehorn the whole continent into a similar category. The whole continent did not have the same skin colour and the people did not all act the same. You know this, you are advocating that the African cultures be put on equal footing with the rest of the world. So you are defeating your own cause by making generalizations about the continent when that is exactly what you are trying to fight. This folds back to making generalizations about the "world's perspective" on African culture.

Again, I get where you are coming from. I just don't think that pushing the idea that ancient Egyptians might have been black helps, in any way, communicate that Africa is not a bunch of savage tribes that are in a never ending cycle of war. Especially when there is plenty of literature out there that argues against the Egyptian population being black. That in itself is social programming.

#45 Posted by Deathstriker (275 posts) -

@patman99 said:

@deathstriker: First, you are generalizing how the hoi polloi view Africa. I would imagine that there are a lot of people who are totally indifferent on who the 'smart' African cultures were. It's probably better to simply advocate for a wider worldview not just knowing who the 'smart' African cultures were. Second, I don't understand how trying to prove that Egyptians were black fixes the problem you stated. If anything it just pushes forward another agenda based on the colour of a people's skin. In so doing, it attempts to homogenize an entire continent. Africa, as I am sure you know, is as diverse as any other continent. So how does showing the world that the ancient Egyptians might have had a darker skin tone help bring attention to people in Zimbabwe? You are better off educating the public about Zimbabwe's history rather than trying to proxy it through Ancient Egypt.

Last, the conflict that is present in any given area, regardless of size, has numerous factors rather than simply its abundance or concentration of natural resources. In fact, there are a few ethnographic studies of San groups (aka Bushmen) that attempt to understand territoriality (i.e. how aggressively a group will defend its territory). The results of those studies are generally mixed. Some groups in small areas with dense patches of resources are less territorial than those in larger areas of more spread out resources. So in fact, the groups living in the areas with fewer resources per hectare were slightly more territorial. Why? Because life is not 1s and 0s. Also, people who know their history would know that the Middle East was not always a hell hole. You are augmenting the opinion of probably a select group of (ignorant) people to the universal.

It does not help your case of trying to prove diversity in Africa if you continue to shoehorn the whole continent into a similar category. The whole continent did not have the same skin colour and the people did not all act the same. You know this, you are advocating that the African cultures be put on equal footing with the rest of the world. So you are defeating your own cause by making generalizations about the continent when that is exactly what you are trying to fight. This folds back to making generalizations about the "world's perspective" on African culture.

Again, I get where you are coming from. I just don't think that pushing the idea that ancient Egyptians might have been black helps, in any way, communicate that Africa is not a bunch of savage tribes that are in a never ending cycle of war. Especially when there is plenty of literature out there that argues against the Egyptian population being black. That in itself is social programming.

Yeah, I don't think Egypt being portrayed accurately would magically fix the problem, but that agenda not being pushed would be helpful and definitely wouldn't hurt things. Of course, I am saying Africa as a shorthand since it would take forever to name all the different groups. Zimbabwe was simply an example of the occupiers changing history to suit their needs. Africans can look drastically different due to their environment, but they would still all fall under modern day "black". Just like Irish and Swedes can look very different, but still fall under white. There's literature for and against everything, so that doesn't really mean much. In general, I don't like any culture being rewritten or ignored... including Incas, Aztecs, Ottomans, and others, so it's not just an African thing.

#46 Posted by RedRoach (1158 posts) -

Well this came out a few months ago from Ubisoft. It says POP so its probably a build of a new Prince of Persia game, if it hasn't already been scrapped which I remember hearing. Maybe its secretly a new AC, if not i doubt they'd have 2 egypt games.

#47 Posted by Brodehouse (9370 posts) -

@deathstriker:

When did I say I disliked white people? Just because I'm criticizing the taking of other people's history doesn't mean I dislike hundreds of millions of people due to their skin color... that's a very dumb thing to say. I would defend anyone who's be wronged or ignored regardless of race.

You're right and I apologize. I took issue with the brusque demeanor with which it was said and had a negative emotional reaction, which coming from me is a riot.

If AC went to Japan and they did the typical "half-breed" white guy who gets the girl and saves the day I'd be annoyed too. Why not just have a Japanese guy...

I would argue for the same reason that a Japanese produced film set in America (but still released for Japanese audiences) would have an oddly Japanese protagonist, or some inclusion of identifiable Japanese quirks. Solid Snake is half-Japanese, almost nonsensically, and I think the primary reason is to allow some degree of identity or relatability for the intended audience while telling a story that ostensibly has nothing to do with Japan. I absolutely understand the odd tendency for Mighty Whitey to join some other society and immediately become better than any of them, it's certainly a trope we recognize, but I'm not as ready to immediately pin it on cultural imperialism. At some point you do have to pander to an audience's expectations, I would've preferred if all the characters in Assassin's Creed spoke in their real languages with subtitles (and I'm a nerd enough to want them to be period accurate dialects) but I understand most English-speaking people would prefer Ezio speak Italian-accented English rather than just Italian.

I never said all historians were doing anything, I said movies and TV ignore all African civilizations besides Egypt then they make them white.

Considering the actual amount of scholarship you can expect in mainstream Western culture, it's amazing most of them are aware that Egypt is a thing. I'd wager the reason is that the pyramids are interesting landmarks. Or whatever people pick up from having Exodus read to them. That's going to be the key difference from their limited knowledge of Egypt and their complete obliviousness to the Malinese Empire. And I don't think that's unique to Westerners (or whites), people just learn about what they have cultural touchstones for.

The problem with your second paragraph is that Christianity isn't a white/European religion. Nearly all of it was formed in the Middle East and Africa. Europe got it last (besides the Americas) and they were the ones (Romans) who hunted/killed him. Romans later switch to the religion for political reasons. Jesus looks Italian because an Italian guy drew him, so I agree with you there. That also explains why the Egyptian gods were usually drawn black.

To start, I'm going to have to be a stickler here and merely say that Christianity is no more 'white' than it is 'black', being that it's a religion and not a race, for the same reason Zoroastrian isn't 'a brown religion'. But to be fair, the point you're making is far more de jure than de facto; for the majority of the life of Christianity it's been a religion held by primarily white or European people. It started in the Middle East to be sure, but for a millenia it's neither been a religion primarily held by that region, nor a religion whose adherents are primarily from that region. And that's not even getting into its own schismatic issues. Could you argue that Protestantism is not a European religion?

By the way, if you're reading this as some sort of defense of Christianity, I'm a staunch athiest and have been for years. But hearing that Christianity is not a primarily European religion seems like a miscarriage of history. Before Constantine and Clovis, you would be right, but I think the last 1400 years of Christianity take precedence over the initial 600.

#48 Posted by gokaired (425 posts) -

To start, I'm going to have to be a stickler here and merely say that Christianity is no more 'white' than it is 'black', being that it's a religion and not a race, for the same reason Zoroastrian isn't 'a brown religion'. But to be fair, the point you're making is far more de jure than de facto; for the majority of the life of Christianity it's been a religion held by primarily white or European people. It started in the Middle East to be sure, but for a millenia it's neither been a religion primarily held by that region, nor a religion whose adherents are primarily from that region. And that's not even getting into its own schismatic issues. Could you argue that Protestantism is not a European religion?

By the way, if you're reading this as some sort of defense of Christianity, I'm a staunch athiest and have been for years. But hearing that Christianity is not a primarily European religion seems like a miscarriage of history. Before Constantine and Clovis, you would be right, but I think the last 1400 years of Christianity take precedence over the initial 600.

And that's when you don't talk about Judaism and it's middle eastern or african roots :¬P

#49 Edited by Brodehouse (9370 posts) -

@gokaired said:

@brodehouse said:

To start, I'm going to have to be a stickler here and merely say that Christianity is no more 'white' than it is 'black', being that it's a religion and not a race, for the same reason Zoroastrian isn't 'a brown religion'. But to be fair, the point you're making is far more de jure than de facto; for the majority of the life of Christianity it's been a religion held by primarily white or European people. It started in the Middle East to be sure, but for a millenia it's neither been a religion primarily held by that region, nor a religion whose adherents are primarily from that region. And that's not even getting into its own schismatic issues. Could you argue that Protestantism is not a European religion?

By the way, if you're reading this as some sort of defense of Christianity, I'm a staunch athiest and have been for years. But hearing that Christianity is not a primarily European religion seems like a miscarriage of history. Before Constantine and Clovis, you would be right, but I think the last 1400 years of Christianity take precedence over the initial 600.

And that's when you don't talk about Judaism and it's middle eastern or african roots :¬P

But we're not talking about Abrahamic religions, we're talking about Christianity. The lifespan of Judaism is as relevant to that discussion as the lifespan of Islam.

Or maybe I'm misunderstanding your point?

#50 Posted by Patman99 (1543 posts) -

@deathstriker: On that point we agree. I advocate for cultures being depicted according to the evidence, both textual and archaeological, that we have at hand. I don't think debates about skin colour are that productive in understanding the culture. There are better ways to get the message across. Demonstrating the absolutely amazing archaeological material that comes out of Africa is one way.