When Ubisoft Montreal launched the first Assassin’s Creed game in 2007, they provided players all around the world an experience that is still unique and unrivalled today. Desmond Miles, a New York bartender, is abducted and placed inside an Animus machine by a nefarious company revealed to represent the contemporary, corporate face of the Knights Templar. This high-tech device is capable of accessing Desmond’s ancestors’ memories via his DNA and displaying them in the form of a computer program; imagine The Matrix and you’ll be close.
These settings aid in the telling of an epic narrative centred on two opposing factions: the Assassins, who battle for free will, and the Templars, who strive to maintain order through mind control. Although the places and time periods are genuine, the storylines are made up. The series presents these stories across several timelines owing to the Animus, a technology that allows players to relive the memories of their ancestors and therefore become protagonists in the long-running Assassin-Templar conflict.
Aspects of the story were inspired by Vladimir Bartol’s 1930s novel Alamut, which included the Assassin Order’s stated creed: “nothing is true, everything is permitted.”
“The Assassin’s Creed franchise is one of those series that takes a simple concept – roaming a city, being all stealth-like and assassinating things – and runs with it, whilst throwing in elements of history, such as significant events (III’s War for Independence, and Unity’s French Revolution) and inclusion of famed figures (II’s inclusion of Leonardo da Vinci, for instance), and results in a pretty enjoyable series of games.” Says Daniel Learmouth, a Japanese retro game reviewer on YouTube.
The game’s verticality was added to this by the main character’s ability to parkour and scale buildings throughout the towns of Jerusalem, Acre, and Damascus to hunt down his target. It wasn’t simply like Spider-Man adhering to the walls; the figure grasped and exploited nooks and edges of the buildings to accurately travel the walls. Scaling buildings to obtain a better perspective of the city, then executing a death-defying leap of faith into a haystack, was a big element of the game.
Few antagonists are as intimidating or cruel as the Templar Knights from the first Assassin’s Creed. They patrol the towns of Jerusalem, Damascus, and Acre on the lookout for assassins, standing over six feet tall, dressed in heavy armour, and brandishing a range of weaponry including two handed claymore swords. The antagonists are just as interesting as the heroes.
The game offers a unique take on events like as the Crusades, the American War of Independence, and even John F. Kennedy’s assassination to tie them into the larger plot and make them a part of the franchise’s universe. Because the games’ narrative focus upon historical events, their effects provide a level of immersion that other titles just cannot equal.
“You play as a hero from the shadows in each game, and have the added bonus of being in an immersive history lesson. You play in Crusade Jerusalem, in Renaissance Italy, in Victorian London, in Civil War America, in Ancient Greece and Ancient Egypt…just to name a few. The newest one coming out, Valhalla, centres on the Vikings.” Says Tiff Dawson.
The breathtaking vistas, fast-paced action, and historical backdrops have already been mentioned, but there is also plenty of humour throughout the series that makes it enjoyable for players; phrases used by city guards, remarks made by the main characters, Ezio’s unfortunate and long-suffering rival Duccio, and minstrel performances all provide comic relief in spades without being gratuitous.
Thieves, mercenaries, and courtesans are all tools that the protagonists might employ to distract or defeat their adversaries. Some may consider them redundant, especially in games that also feature Assassin recruits, but the courtesans and thieves, in particular, offer a different approach to the order’s newest members’ hack and slash tactics, allowing for a greater degree of variation in how objectives can be accomplished.
Leonardo Da Vinci, one of the most fascinating characters in this generation of gaming, meets Ezio while they are both in their teens / early twenties. He then assists the assassin on his journeys by offering a variety of handy devices and weaponry, such as metal gauntlets for climbing, dual concealed swords for stealth killings, and the usage of his experimental flying vehicle and wooden tank for specific tasks.
“From my point of view, best part of Assassin’s Creed is good graphics combined to true historical buildings and events. It in an incredible feeling to climb in Haga Sofia, Colosseum and other legendary building I know otherwise I will never climb and may be not ever even see in nature. Non-violent explorations in Assassins Creed are also the one I recommend to my kids, it is a great way to learn history, art history and other subjects.” Says Jaakko Joutsi.
Assassin’s Creed is a phenomenon now. It has evolved into a brand that extends beyond gaming, including films, novels, comic books, anime, and even an impending Netflix series!
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