By troll93 4 Comments
So here we are, with the newest Assassins Creed is going to be set in the American Civil war and now I am going to bullshit about it for a while.
So, I'm going to put aside all the gameplay issues, and the franchise fatigue for a second and just talk about the story.
Assassins Creed at it's very core is about the debate weather men, left to their own rule, will inherently veer to good. The assassins fight for the belief that beneath everything, man is inherently good, while the templars subscribe to a more Ayn Randian belief that men will only act for there own self interest. This is the core of the story, the bare essentials, which from here-on-in will be called the debate. On top of that there is some crazy bullshit about golden apples, the sun is out to get us and other French bullshit, all inconsequential to the debate.
Now, in everything that I have seen so far from Assassins Creed 3 indicates that for the most part, you will be fighting to get the British out of America. The trailers are full of dead redcoats, Conner killing British dudes and George Washington giving an inspirational speech, clear marking him as a 'good guy'. (I know that the game informer story says that you are also going to kill revolutionaries, but the current evidences indicates that by far you will be killing more British).
Now, I feel that this is drifting a bit to far away from the original base of the story. Assassins creed is not about 'good guys' vs 'bad guys', it is about the debate between inherent goodness and inherent selfishness.
For example, in the first Assassins Creed, you play in the crusades. This would have been a extremely easy game to portray one side as a 'good guy' and one side as the 'bad guy'. The Crusaders were attempting to force to local inhabitance either out of the region, or just straight up kill them, because there 'God' told them to. Salidin on the other had is fighting to reclaim land that was stolen from it inhabitants, families butchered, hard core shit, in my opinion a hell of a lot more justified than taxation without representation.
However, that is not what Assassins Creed is about. It is not about the warning of nations, it is not about who controls what land. You don't care who you were killing in the traditional good/bad paragram,. You did not kill because they were 'bad' people, nor did you spare them because they were 'good' people. The issue was the 'debate' between the two beliefs. You have to kill in equal amounts crusaders and Muslims to get to your targets. You are not killing them because what nation they belong to, for the most part, they are just in your way.
In it's own way, this also challenges the good/bad idea. Yes, the people that you are killing are flawed people, but as part of doing that, you have to kill hundreds of relatively innocent people, town guardsmen that for the most part have a good reason to try and kill you, they just say you stab a dude in the face. They are just trying to keep the peace, but you kill them because they are in your way.
This was something that I enjoyed in the first game, especially the long death scenes. Yes, they were doing horrendous things, but they arguably were making the world a better place. Yes the slave trader was selling people, but they probably would have lived a short painful life on the street. Which is better, to die cold, hungry and in pain, or live, with food and relative safety as a slave? These were the kinds of questions asked by the game.
This is something that has been steadily disappearing over the past three games. In 2, you don't get to much of a view into the idea's behind the actions of the Borgas, and in brotherhood, they are cartoon villains. At least in brotherhood you aren't doing missions for the rulers of what is clearly set up as the 'good' faction, you are continuing the debate. The diminishing of the churches power is irrelevant to the debate, you should only want to get to the templars.
In revelations, you are straight up interfering in the natural course of the Turkish state. You are actively trying to crush the Byzantines. This is not how it should be in accordance to the actions of the ancestralassassins, you should be attempting to remove the Templars from the equation, and let it sort itself naturally.
So, if you are cruisingaround the revolution, supporting it, killing the British simply because they are British, you are not following the principles laid out in the original game, hell at the point you are no longer an assassin. George Washington, unless he is a templar or an assassin should in inconsequential to the story, the fate of the revolution should be inconsequential to the revolution, the only thing that should matter in the debate. If America remains a British colony and you manage to remove the templars, that should be construed as a success by the logic presented in the first game. Same if it went the other way, the fate of America is not the point of the story.
Now, this raises the potential that the writers are going for something big with this story, you see the gradual transformation of the Assassins into another form of templars, controlling the events, controlling people. This is seen in revelations where you prevent the Byzantines from taking over the Turks. In the crusade era assassins, they would have just removed the Templars and let the Byzantines and Turks fight it out. So this could be them attempting to make a point similar to the Batman quote, " you either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain". This was explored in the first game so I have hope yet.There is more evidence that could indicate that this is what they are going for.
In the comic book, the fall, it suggess that the Assassins have been working with Lenin, to the point that they would appear more or less willing to kill the royal family for the 'glory of Russia'. There is no indication that they royals are Templars, in fact, it read to me that there were very few Templars left in Russia at the stage. This indicates a critical point in the assassins timeline, the point at which they became willing to alter the course of history so that it better suits their vision of the world. This is further shown when in presentish day, they are talking about how they are going to rig the elections of what can be assumed to be America to ensure that "history goes the right way". I don't know about you, but that sounds a hell of a lot like the rhetoric that they Templars would spout.
This would tie in nicely with Desmond seeing the history of the Assassins, so there is the possibility that at the end of this thing, he will take control of the Assassins and return them to a state closer to the original way of operation after seeing that they have become what they used to fight.
Now if they are going for this, I tip my hat to ubisoft. This would be one of the best long term story arcs that I can think of in the gaming world. On the other hand, they might just be doing it to simplify to story to some bullshit about space and crap.