PDA

View Full Version : Is Ezio sort of a sociopath?



Defalt221
04-09-2015, 06:27 PM
The reason I said this is because Ezio seems not to even care when his targets or other people died (Well except for Vierri and Uberto bcos they killed ihs family and ruined his life). He just says "resquiecat e pace" and "I'm sorry" or "You were in my list" (and also "where is Jacopo?" X 3 which was even more frequent than "Where is Charles Lee?!") without showing any sort of feelings for them or opinion over that like as if it's some dumb recitation he's supposed to utter like a perpetual robot. For example when Caterina's children were captured by the brothers Caterina angrily screamed "Take them away. I don't need them! (or sth like that)" and Ezio was like "No. No Caterina you should not sacrifice your children" in a rather dreary monotonous tone like as if it didn't really matter to him or sth. Later when the Doge in Venice was poisoned and was dying Ezio was like "Sorry. Me tried to save you." and then moves on chasing the Templar instead of trying to treat the guy or at least doing something not to mention he wasted hours and hours to make a flying machine to get into Pallazo Ducale so that he can save the Doge and kill Carlo (Taking a life meant more than saving one?). Or even in Revelations when he murdered Tarik and relizes that Tarik was the ally of te assassin order all along and Ezio was like "OOOps! Sorry. So... I guesss that's it then. Let me just fulfil your last mission. Bye then!'
Altair showed feelings of hate towards evil when he angrily stabbed (the second time) Majd Addin after the latter expressed his bloodthirsty and murderous nature. He also showed care that these Templars deserved guidance (esp referring to Garnier and Montferrat) and that he didn't like killing them at all (though he had to). We clearly see that Altair cares for people despite killing so many and that his conscience and morality is still intact.
Connor seemed to care genuinely for his targets especially Hickey (despite Hickey framing him badly and being his most annoying target in his life) when General Putnam kicks his corpse and Connor shouts at Putnam to show some respect because Hickjey was a human nevertheless.
But Ezio just killed them adn when he loses to their idealism conversation debate he just throws "Resquiecat e pace" and moves along happily stabbing more guys.
Maybe because the Templars in Ezio's time were pure evil unlike the morally grey ones in other games?

LieutenantRex
04-09-2015, 06:31 PM
Ezio suffers from the Napoleon complex, being a man under six feet in height. Many who fall victim to this ailment often exhibit sociopathic behaviours or mannerisms.

D.I.D.
04-09-2015, 07:04 PM
Yes, but they all are. Only Aveline and Adwal escape this because they're more like private soldiers under their own command, if you see what I mean - they've got personal objectives, and their personalities don't clash with their actions. All the other assassins we've seen are pretty warped if you look at them objectively.

I'd really like to see at least one assassin who's written like that, by design and not by accident. There are a few ways you can take the story of a person whose actions would look heroic on a plaque but horrifying in person.

Altair1789
04-09-2015, 07:16 PM
I'm pretty sure Connor said "Where is Charles Lee" more than 3 times. You were saying that Ezio said "Where is Jacopo" 3 times, right?

I think Ezio kinda liked killing people (even though they were his targets and not innocent), I think I'm going to with with sorta

D.I.D.
04-09-2015, 07:21 PM
Oy mayke moy own jacopo

GunnerGalactico
04-09-2015, 08:13 PM
To be fair, Ezio did show Savonarola mercy by putting him out of his misery, so that he wouldn't die in agony by being burned at the stake.

Sushiglutton
04-09-2015, 09:38 PM
It's a lighthearted adventure tale, the rules are different. If the hero cared it would kill the mood. Same as in many classic books and movies.

LoyalACFan
04-09-2015, 09:50 PM
TBH none of his targets were really worth caring about, but it seemed like he was truly remorseful for having killed Tarik ("you have done well, please forgive me"). And I dunno why he should be freaking out about the Doge dying, he legitimately did everything he could to save him.

If we're going to talk about sociopathic tendencies, we should be talking about blowing up Cappadocia :rolleyes:

SixKeys
04-09-2015, 10:02 PM
Ezio's story is motivated by personal revenge. That's why a lot of the stuff he does seems quite cold. All he really cares about is killing the men who threaten his family, everything else is secondary. Also what D.I.D. said.

wvstolzing
04-09-2015, 10:14 PM
Ezio suffers from the Napoleon complex, being a man under six feet in height. Many who fall victim to this ailment often exhibit sociopathic behaviours or mannerisms.

Indeed, I was diagnosed with that exact same thing.

I don't think there's any need for argument here: Those gruesome kill animations in ACR are proof enough.

Just stab the guy in the face, and leave it at that -- you don't have to drive your sword halfway through his skull, slap the sword's hilt so the poor guy's neck twists around, then give it a yank to make sure his pineal gland splits in half ... you get the idea.

VestigialLlama4
04-10-2015, 04:44 AM
Try and understand that "psychopath" (nowadays used as a catch-all term for "Cool Bad Guy") is a clinical term and simply bandying that around is not going to help us understand the characters or what the word originally means.

In any case, Ezio is not a psychopath or sociopath. Among characters in the series you can call Cesare Borgia and maybe Haytham Kenway "psychopaths"/"sociopaths" in the clinical sense. Other characters like Majd Addin are more like the cliche comic-book supervillain psychopaths but he's a war criminal rather than a psychopath.

Clinically, a sociopath/psychopath (not really the same actually but here I am grouping for convenience) are identified by a lack of empathy, incapacity to comprehend nuances and ambiguities, constant serial lying and inability to tell the basic truth and a superficial attempt at mimicking normal behaviour which is accompanied by a false sense of charisma. Ezio doesn't fit that at all. Since he has empathy and affection for his family and loved ones, he does understand nuances and ambiguities and he's not afraid to be himself, reacting in anger, letting off steam and the like. Of course there's the fact that he kills people but killing people doesn't make you a psycho, otherwise every murderer would be found insane. There's nothing especially abnormal, psychologically speaking, about taking another man's life. It is a fact however, that killing people can cause mental problems and that Ezio and other Assassins should realistically be suffering from post-traumatic stress and the like. But then that applies to all games really.


Ezio's story is motivated by personal revenge. That's why a lot of the stuff he does seems quite cold. All he really cares about is killing the men who threaten his family, everything else is secondary.

That is only true of AC2-Ezio and its not true at the end. He spares Rodrigo Borgia. For him, the First Civ message and Assassin Brotherhood take precedence. In Brotherhood, he tells people that he's fought his battles. In Brotherhood, Cesare Borgia attacks him again and does make it personal, but Ezio delays attacking Cesare because he wants to clear out corruption in Rome first, in other words he's sublimating his goal for revenge for a broader social purpose. In the end he only goes after Cesare after seeing an Apple of Eden. In Revelation, his beef with Ahmet isn't personal or revenge at all and he even holds his bargain to Suleiman to not kill him.

So it's not true that Ezio only cares about killing the men who threaten his family.


I'd really like to see at least one assassin who's written like that, by design and not by accident. There are a few ways you can take the story of a person whose actions would look heroic on a plaque but horrifying in person.

There's that thing in games called "ludonarrative dissonance" right. Where the player's actions must mirror the character he's playing. Personally I think that's a very simplistic idea and its actually creating a lot of weak games lately where you have cliched speeches where the villain tries to guilt-trip the hero. Is Gordon Freeman a psycho, he's a resistance fighter attacking evil aliens who will kill him on sight? Among contemporary gaming icons, Nathan Drake in UNCHARTED, clinically fits the definition -- he's a constant liar, alters his past, goes to distant lands and steals artifacts, does not work with museums, and is incapable of doing anything without killing people, and he also has that superficial charm/charisma thing going for him.

In any case, AC is set in the past. The fact is across history you have figures who are "heroes" but whose actions are horrifying. I mean all of Ancient Rome are psychopaths and sociopaths if you read the customs and mores but they are considered the fount of Western civilization.

D.I.D.
04-10-2015, 05:00 AM
There's that thing in games called "ludonarrative dissonance" right. Where the player's actions must mirror the character he's playing. Personally I think that's a very simplistic idea and its actually creating a lot of weak games lately where you have cliched speeches where the villain tries to guilt-trip the hero. Is Gordon Freeman a psycho, he's a resistance fighter attacking evil aliens who will kill him on sight? Among contemporary gaming icons, Nathan Drake in UNCHARTED, clinically fits the definition -- he's a constant liar, alters his past, goes to distant lands and steals artifacts, does not work with museums, and is incapable of doing anything without killing people, and he also has that superficial charm/charisma thing going for him.

In any case, AC is set in the past. The fact is across history you have figures who are "heroes" but whose actions are horrifying. I mean all of Ancient Rome are psychopaths and sociopaths if you read the customs and mores but they are considered the fount of Western civilization.

Oh no, I'm definitely not tweaking the 'ludo-narrative dissonance' thing here. There's some merit to that argument, but most of the time it's a bit tiresome and limiting, and it would draw virtually all player-characters towards the same moral centre. However, the only reason that's the case is due to the uniformity of games industry characters.

What I'm talking about is something that extends the range of the protagonists of AC. I'm always coming back to Micheletto in Showtime's version of The Borgias, because that whole show was a bit of a painful illustration of what AC could be but is not. The whole point of a more thoroughly established assassin character is that you're likely to end up with Sean Harris's version of Micheletto at least some of the time, and he was a character who simply could not be guilt-tripped. He was cold but far from emotionless; his strings could certainly be pulled, but the secrets of his strings were buried very deep.

From the concept art upwards, our assassins are model people. They're physically like fashion models, and they're morally upstanding. I'm not asking for Agent 47 here, because I think that's just another dull stereotype which doesn't go anywhere. What I'd like to see are more detailed personalities whose facets create paths to new story elements (or even new script elements - a different way of talking rather than this "hero" voice and the arcane Jedi business would be welcome).

To add: I think the most interesting assassin character bar none was Subject 16, pre-Revelations. He was twitchy and messed up, because he had literally seen too much: too much killing, too much time, too many lives, too many maddening secrets. All of it had torn him. Then we had the incredible prospect of Desmond, a man in search of the answers to a titanic mystery, coming face to face with Clay, a man who knew everything and wished he didn't. The potential for something absolutely gut-wrenching was huge here. What if Clay decided Desmond shouldn't know? What would Desmond be willing to do to make Clay tell him, and what metaphorical knife would you have to twist to injure a man who doesn't exist? Maybe Desmond could have run through the data to discover Clay's secrets and use that knowledge to affect him emotionally, given that even if Clay didn't exist, his emotions certainly did.

Sadly, that wouldn't have been an option because every assassin has to be that model. So Clay wasn't broken or strange when we met him; he was an inexplicably self-assured bro, with no signs of the guy of whom we'd caught glimpses in the previous two games.

pirate1802
04-10-2015, 06:37 AM
I think it needs to be understood, that anyone who can kill people in cold blood, for whatever reason, justified or not, and then comes home and cracks jokes and bangs cool chickas, has to have atleast a baseline sociopathic streak.

So yes, Ezio has that streak, as do 99% videogame protagonists, whether intended or not.

VestigialLlama4
04-10-2015, 07:14 AM
I think it needs to be understood, that anyone who can kill people in cold blood, for whatever reason, justified or not, and then comes home and cracks jokes and bangs cool chickas, has to have atleast a baseline sociopathic streak.

Not really. It's no different from soldiers or cops. In any case, by the time Ezio has become an Assassin he stops being a womanizer. It's only a few casual encounters after that.

If people are going to call someone sociopathic or the like, they need to be specific to some of his actions because otherwise that word loses all value and purpose.

HiddenKiller612
04-10-2015, 07:22 AM
You could say we're all sociopaths by playing these games, unless of course, you care about what happens to your targets?

VestigialLlama4
04-10-2015, 07:24 AM
The whole point of a more thoroughly established assassin character is that you're likely to end up with Sean Harris's version of Micheletto at least some of the time, and he was a character who simply could not be guilt-tripped. He was cold but far from emotionless; his strings could certainly be pulled, but the secrets of his strings were buried very deep.

I have not seen The Borgias, but my understanding is that Micheletto is a hired hand/a personal hitman, a Luca Brasi type. That's not what the Asasiyun/Hashashin/Assassin Brotherhood are. They are quasi-revolutionaries/secret societies in the main. Jade Raymond was very specific when she described the character in the interviews for AC1:


It's fairly unusual to play a character whose occupation is murder. Hitman tempered that with a black sense of humour. How have you made the fact that you're playing a killer enjoyable for those gamers used to playing the good guy?


Jade Raymond: I can see why your thinking of the Hitman analogy, but our central character is actually quite different. Our goal is to create a positive character who's really more of a hero. He's not killing people because it's his job, and he's not a bitter guy either. He's actually a guy who has very specific thoughts and feelings about killing, and this makes him always respectful of his victims. Additionally, the way we've set it up is that the people you kill are all evil characters. There's almost a Robin Hood-style comparison to be made. Well, he's more of a badass than Robin Hood, but you see where we're coming from. All of the guys you take out are causing the general population a lot of hardship and strife.

The point is for the Assassins, they aren't killing people for money. That's your average mercenary/private military contractor/hitman for the mob/Murder Inc and the like.




Sadly, that wouldn't have been an option because every assassin has to be that model. So Clay wasn't broken or strange when we met him; he was an inexplicably self-assured bro, with no signs of the guy of whom we'd caught glimpses in the previous two games.

Well I like Clay Kaczmarek a lot too. He's my favorite MD writer (and a better database writer than Shaun Hastings). I see what you mean about Assassins not being really flawed. But the point is we can't have a truly flawed Assassin because it makes the Brotherhood look like incompetents. In the Daniel Cross comics they let a mentally unbalanced dude into the Order and he messed everything up, so I'd imagine that they would be more careful in the future. I mean already in Black Flag you have Ah Tabai being very critical about Edward Kenway not qualifying for being an Assassin and Edward has to jump through some hoops before he signs up.

Overall the Templars seem more like sociopaths to me. And its true that most of the people we think of as sociopaths aren't your boisterous cold killer types but people enmeshed in power.

pirate1802
04-10-2015, 07:31 AM
Not really. It's no different from soldiers or cops..

Soldiers and cops do go through trauma. Something rarely any videogame showcases so yeah... nope.

D.I.D.
04-10-2015, 07:43 AM
I have not seen The Borgias, but my understanding is that Micheletto is a hired hand/a personal hitman, a Luca Brasi type. That's not what the Asasiyun/Hashashin/Assassin Brotherhood are. They are quasi-revolutionaries/secret societies in the main. Jade Raymond was very specific when she described the character in the interviews for AC1:

Yeah, that was true of Altair. He was born in the original Order, in its home, where the assassins were integrated with a local society. Increasingly, that's not where the series has gone. People are drafted who have no idea of what the assassins are, nor an awareness of their connection via ancestry. It's been taken to the "midichlorians" level, and that's where we are with it. From Desmond in AC1's modern era to Ezio and his compatriots in AC2, this is overwhelmingly a story where super-genetics are the be-and-end-all.

If you merged AC's world with The Borgia's treatment, it is entirely likely that a high number of them would be people who had responded to their circumstances like TV's Micheletto. He comes in as a survivor of a violent life, and the nobility reaches down to him to provide him with a purpose. It makes little difference if a society of political killers provides the same service, and it wouldn't cleanse its new adherents.


The point is for the Assassins, they aren't killing people for money. That's your average mercenary/private military contractor/hitman for the mob/Murder Inc and the like.

But we do. We kill people to make money, and we spend the money to make more money. The number of strictly moral killings, where we are certain of the justification, are dwarfed by the number of straight-up impassive killings we take on.


Well I like Clay Kaczmarek a lot too. He's my favorite MD writer (and a better database writer than Shaun Hastings). I see what you mean about Assassins not being really flawed. But the point is we can't have a truly flawed Assassin because it makes the Brotherhood look like incompetents. In the Daniel Cross comics they let a mentally unbalanced dude into the Order and he messed everything up, so I'd imagine that they would be more careful in the future. I mean already in Black Flag you have Ah Tabai being very critical about Edward Kenway not qualifying for being an Assassin and Edward has to jump through some hoops before he signs up.

Overall the Templars seem more like sociopaths to me. And its true that most of the people we think of as sociopaths aren't your boisterous cold killer types but people enmeshed in power.

I'm not sure if "flawed" would be the right word here, and maybe it would be a more persuasive argument to avoid that concept altogether. If I had the opportunity to talk to the Ubisoft writers, I wouldn't necessarily even talk about it in terms of personality features that would make an assassin into a great assassin. Instead, I'd ask them to think about what traits would make life as an assassin possible, and only then to think about whether that person requires extra coping mechanisms and if so what they should be. With that mindset, I doubt we'd be seeing the Ezio/Edward/Arno chuckling swashbuckler* quite so much.

* I'm being a bit crude about those characters there - obviously they do have more to them than this, but I think the reason we're having this conversation is because of the prominent moments of weirdness that players have experienced with these characters.

VestigialLlama4
04-10-2015, 09:01 AM
But we do. We kill people to make money, and we spend the money to make more money. The number of strictly moral killings, where we are certain of the justification, are dwarfed by the number of straight-up impassive killings we take on.
... ...
I'm being a bit crude about those characters there - obviously they do have more to them than this, but I think the reason we're having this conversation is because of the prominent moments of weirdness that players have experienced with these characters.

Well that's what I mentioned about ludonarrative dissonance (a mouthful of a phrase I know), what we can do in the gameplay (kill all non-civilian NPCs) versus how the story presents that character. I always see that as a superficial approach of gaming, because as you say, it makes all characters be "this grizzled badass guilt-ridden PTSD mess" and the truth is that even people who suffer from PTSD aren't sullen and violent all the time.

To me playing a game character is like an actor taking on a role in stage. The role is pre-written by an author (Arthur Miller, Shakespeare) and your dialogues are set in stone but every great actor will find room for interpretation. Whether you play MacBeth as a psychopath or an anti-hero, Brutus as a bad guy or good guy and so on and so forth. But whatever darkness the actor suggests in his interpretation doesn't change the character written down by the author. I think that's the case here, you can go on a kill-spree as Ezio and the like but that doesn't make him a sociopath (nor by the way does it make you one, klling digital people is not the same as real people).

king-hailz
04-10-2015, 09:12 AM
Well he was talented at killing so can you blame him for enjoying it... All the assassins are, they were all talented hunters and they all enjoyed the hunt. Connor more than most because when he had nobody to kill he would hunt animals??? Of course he was a sociopath, he wouldn't have been as good an assassins if he wasn't. Same goes to the others.

Defalt221
04-10-2015, 09:32 AM
It's a lighthearted adventure tale, the rules are different. If the hero cared it would kill the mood. Same as in many classic books and movies.

AC 1 proved that AC games aren't supposed to be light hearted tales. Look at Altair's, Edward's and Connor's tragic stories and their self-questioning when other Templars throw justified reason for their crimes. It's meant to serve that the assassins aren't morally messed up but they're not sure if they're on the good or the dark side (Eg. Pierre Bellec who's an assassin counterpart version of Reginald Birch- They both will do ANY number of evil to serve their order). Ezio was morally messed up half of AC2. He killed Uberto Alberti (while that's reasonable because he just defied justice, killed his family and branded his whole family as criminals) out of sheer hate and vengeance without understanding the fact that Uberto's morality was being screwed up by Rodrigo when Rodrigo captured Uberto's family and blackmailed him. If Ezio was in his footsteps he'd have done that too. It'd have been more sensible if Ezio tried to save Uberto's family after Uberto's death (because Rodrigo most probably won't let the family go as they're a liability and a loose end to prove Rodrigo's guilt) and Ezio was supposed to be just.
Now let's look at Connor's case. He's revenge bound initially but when he meets Charles Lee at Washington's speech he doesn't go nuts like a monster and try to kill Charles (Which Ezio does when he get's his skills and weapons and sees Uberto). Instead he just confronts Charles and tries to remind him of what he did to his family (Which he didn't though) until Samuel interrupted them. We see Connor's care for justice and not sheer vengeance.
But after Uberto's and Vierri's deaths Ezio loses all feelings for care and instead mindlessly kills all Templars (Not out of justice or ideology but rather because.... he wanted to help Mario (initially) and later to..... Okay I really didn't understand why he wanted to kill Templars. He wasn't into the assassin idology back then... then why go after all templars?)


I'm pretty sure Connor said "Where is Charles Lee" more than 3 times. You were saying that Ezio said "Where is Jacopo" 3 times, right?

I think Ezio kinda liked killing people (even though they were his targets and not innocent), I think I'm going to with with sorta

Okay. Yeah I realized that too late after posting (referring to WHERE IS CHARELS LEE?!). But liking to kill others is a different personality. I mean there's people who kill out of necessity however those who kill for fun.... that's dark I tell you. Really dark.

Defalt221
04-10-2015, 09:35 AM
TBH none of his targets were really worth caring about, but it seemed like he was truly remorseful for having killed Tarik ("you have done well, please forgive me"). And I dunno why he should be freaking out about the Doge dying, he legitimately did everything he could to save him.

If we're going to talk about sociopathic tendencies, we should be talking about blowing up Cappadocia :rolleyes:

Okay Cppadocia yes. That's un-thoughtful and uncaring of Ezio (a grand master in his 50s)...Come to think of it Ezio and Achilles are both grand masters who indirectly got so many innocent killed and didn't even care to think about feeling a little sad. Is this a curse on those who get the grandmaster position in Assassin order?

pirate1802
04-10-2015, 10:18 AM
Of course he was a sociopath, he wouldn't have been as good an assassins if he wasn't. Same goes to the others.

This person gets it. Certain professions require certain desirable traits. This being the one for professional murderers.

D.I.D.
04-10-2015, 12:49 PM
Okay Cppadocia yes. That's un-thoughtful and uncaring of Ezio (a grand master in his 50s)...Come to think of it Ezio and Achilles are both grand masters who indirectly got so many innocent killed and didn't even care to think about feeling a little sad. Is this a curse on those who get the grandmaster position in Assassin order?

Ezio's got more freaky moments in Revelations alone, besides Cappadocia, besides napalming an entire harbour and everyone who works there. In "Portrait of a Lady", Ezio decides to retrieve Sofia's portrait for her. For Full Sync, you have to steal it without getting spotted.

So, at best, Ezio robs a small-business owner of the potential profits of a painting by Drer, then hands it to his lady love and accepts her fawning all over him without a flicker of conscience. And joked about it flirtatiously.

However, I hated Revelations. I was bored stupid while playing that woeful, absurdly easy game. I just wanted to get it over with by the quickest means possible. So, out of curiosity and callousness, I threw a bomb into that bazaar while hiding around the corner. The businessman was killed outright, a warning flashed up on screen separately about Ezio not killing civilians, and shoppers ran in terror out of the exits. I walked into the chillingly silent bazaar, took the painting, and went to meet Sofia.

So, Ezio committed a terrorist atrocity at a shopping mall, stepped over the corpses of a civilian and the small-business owner he murdered in order to get a painting he was unwilling to pay for, and then handed the portrait to his lady love without a flicker of conscience. And then joked about it. And then murdered some more people, married his lover, had her bear his children, and died peacefully in the sunlight on a pleasant afternoon.

It's about ethics in game determinism.

Later, Sofia wants some white tulips. Ezio locates a florist, who is suffering from some kind of advanced scoliosis. Despite his evident mobility problems, the florist offers to go and fetch more tulips. The florist tells Ezio to wait there, presumably with the expectation that Ezio would do that and that his stall would not be vulnerable to thieves. Ezio agrees and sends him on his way, then abandons the stall and follows him to where the tulips grow. Rather than come clean and at least pay the florist for his efforts and to make up for the lost sales while he was away from his stall, Ezio does none of that. He goes and has a picnic with Sofia, who giggles at him while he does Sauve Disney Romance Face.

The man is a menace.


Well that's what I mentioned about ludonarrative dissonance (a mouthful of a phrase I know), what we can do in the gameplay (kill all non-civilian NPCs) versus how the story presents that character. I always see that as a superficial approach of gaming, because as you say, it makes all characters be "this grizzled badass guilt-ridden PTSD mess" and the truth is that even people who suffer from PTSD aren't sullen and violent all the time.

To me playing a game character is like an actor taking on a role in stage. The role is pre-written by an author (Arthur Miller, Shakespeare) and your dialogues are set in stone but every great actor will find room for interpretation. Whether you play MacBeth as a psychopath or an anti-hero, Brutus as a bad guy or good guy and so on and so forth. But whatever darkness the actor suggests in his interpretation doesn't change the character written down by the author. I think that's the case here, you can go on a kill-spree as Ezio and the like but that doesn't make him a sociopath (nor by the way does it make you one, klling digital people is not the same as real people).

It doesn't have to be a guilt-fest, though. I think that's the first thing people imagine when faced with the prospect of a game character who more properly reflects his/her experiences because we're having to make the jump from Hollywood superheroes to something else, and the most familiar switch is the hero who retains hero status by being a bit tortured. If we don't begin with a superhero then none of that is necessary, but we keep getting Batman and Batgirl at square one.

Prakoso in The Raid 2 is a fantastic example of a great assassin character. He's only a minor character, but in a few scenes the director establishes a lot of audience empathy for this unbelievably vicious guy, even though your introduction to him is watching him commit mass-murder in exchange for a brick of cash. You see him exhibit that evil, and yet you also see some scenes of rather beautiful concern for others - even his boss's son, who he can see is going off the rails - and it all makes sense together. Also, in a key late scene, he reveals how dedicated he is to a shared disciplinary code and a certain kind of ethical system, so he's not outside of the AC organised assassin concept. Prakoso gets, I would guess, about 10-15 minutes of screen time, and I have more belief in him than I do in every AC assassin put together.

king-hailz
04-10-2015, 12:57 PM
This person gets it. Certain professions require certain desirable traits. This being the one for professional murderers.

Thank you.

pirate1802
04-10-2015, 07:21 PM
I personally think you are being highly simplistic and childish but whatever.

My knowledge of criminal psychology might night exactly be freudian but I do know this that a good indicator of psychopathic tendencies (though not the only one, admittedly) is a person's inability to feel guilt or remorse. Killing a person is a big, big deal. We sometimes lose sight of that but it really is, even if that person is responsible for killing your family. I don't know about you or anyone else, but suppose someone killed my family, I could not just walk up to him and slink my blade into his chest. For that I'd need additional mental conditioning and probably days of telling myself I need to go through with it. My hands would tremble while I am doing it, and I will most definitely have nightmares afterwards. Ezio does none of it. Infact almost none of videogame protagonists do. You can either take that as a symbol of ludoblablablapissonance or that these characters are incapable of feeling what a normal human being would feel. Your pick.

I don't know where I exactly heard this, maybe a movie or a game, but there was a quote that when you fire a bullet you kill two people; your target and your own soul. Bloody right that is. And someone who can kill a person, any person, and then go home and and doesn't show any signs of that affecting him whasoever, I personally would like to stay far, far away from such a person in real life. Doesn't matter it he is an assassin or templar or whoever.

Mr.Black24
04-10-2015, 07:32 PM
My knowledge of criminal psychology might night exactly be freudian but I do know this that a good indicator of psychopathic tendencies (though not the only one, admittedly) is a person's inability to feel guilt or remorse. Killing a person is a big, big deal. We sometimes lose sight of that but it really is, even if that person is responsible for killing your family. I don't know about you or anyone else, but suppose someone killed my family, I could not just walk up to him and slink my blade into his chest. For that I'd need additional mental conditioning and probably days of telling myself I need to go through with it. My hands would tremble while I am doing it, and I will most definitely have nightmares afterwards. Ezio does none of it. Infact almost none of videogame protagonists do. You can either take that as a symbol of ludoblablablapissonance or that these characters are incapable of feeling what a normal human being would feel. Your pick.

I don't know where I exactly heard this, maybe a movie or a game, but there was a quote that when you fire a bullet you kill two people; your target and your own soul. Bloody right that is. And someone who can kill a person, any person, and then go home and and doesn't show any signs of that affecting him whasoever, I personally would like to stay far, far away from such a person in real life. Doesn't matter it he is an assassin or templar or whoever. Going with this, perhaps in his early days, Ezio would have mentally prepared himself to kill each of his target before actually doing the deed. Like off screen, since it isn't that important for the game, although it would have been some great character development, seeing him evolve from a shaky avenger, to a focused Master Assassin. Then again, like Connor, after seeing such a traumatic experience, it changed him as a person, however unlike Connor for he hunted down the Templars for the defense of the colonies and his village, rage over took him, and decided that none of his targets deserve mercy after seeing his own family getting none too.

Thinking now, maybe thats why he remained a charismatic person with a light sense of humor, as a mental defense mechanism to fight off the memories of what he had seen and done. After all I know plenty of people who laugh at their past as a way to avoid a break down, but man how they do it is unbelieveable.

Sociopath? I'm not so sure. I mean each person has a different strength mentality, some are more stronger than others. I mean, lesser people would have crumbled if they were in the shoes of both Altair, Ezio, and Connor. Hell thats the reason why Desmond ran off, he not only didn't believe his parents, but also couldn't handle the lifestyle back home. Only after seeing the memories of his ancestors and witnessing that the Assassin/Templar war still continued, did he finally strengthen his resolve to carry out his ancestor's work.

pirate1802
04-10-2015, 07:52 PM
Sociopath? I'm not so sure. I mean each person has a different strength mentality, some are more stronger than others.

Sure, definitely. But the people who show exactly no reaction to killing people, are either the ones who are doing it for years in and years out and so it doesn't matter to them any more than crushing an ant, or they are the ones who have their brains wired a bit differently. (psycho/sociopaths.) And you are right, game should have shown us all that you have suggested. But we live in an era where an inexperienced kid's crying after he killed some people (Jason in Farcry 3) is frowned upon and seen as a sign of wussiness, no wonder we are constantly served psychopathic dudebros.

SixKeys
04-10-2015, 07:59 PM
Sure, definitely. But the people who show exactly no reaction to killing people, are either the ones who are doing it for years in and years out and so it doesn't matter to them any more than crushing an ant, or they are the ones who have their brains wired a bit differently. (psycho/sociopaths.) And you are right, game should have shown us all that you have suggested. But we live in an era where an inexperienced kid's crying after he killed some people (Jason in Farcry 3) is frowned upon and seen as a sign of wussiness, no wonder we are constantly served psychopathic dudebros.

Not to mention Ezio clearly shows glee in killing some of his targets. Many of his kill animations are downright unnecessarily brutal, not just in AC2 when he was young and immature but especially in ACR as someone mentioned earlier. He's supposed to be wise at that age, but he's actually more ruthless than ever.

pirate1802
04-10-2015, 08:08 PM
^Which can be seen as him slipping 'deeper into it', so to say. And indeed that would have been a great storyline; a young assassin slipping more and more into the lust of killing, finally losing it. But modern videogame storytelling conventions dictate, unfortunately, that while technically being sociopaths, our hero always have to be the good guy. :p :(

SixKeys
04-10-2015, 08:47 PM
^Which can be seen as him slipping 'deeper into it', so to say. And indeed that would have been a great storyline; a young assassin slipping more and more into the lust of killing, finally losing it. But modern videogame storytelling conventions dictate, unfortunately, that while technically being sociopaths, our hero always have to be the good guy. :p :(

Interestingly, Haytham almost fits into that archetype. He is quite ruthless already when we first meet him, but he's also an idealist. He seems opposed to things like torture, which is why we think he's a good guy when he saves Benjamin Church. When we meet him again years later, he seems to have become much more jaded and cynical, torturing and killing hostages without a second thought. It's like somewhere along the line he started to lose himself. It would have been interesting to follow that journey and how he got to that point before he met Connor. In some way it seems Connor represents a side of his father that Haytham no longer wishes to recognize - a side concerned with true justice and the sanctity of life - which is why he tries so hard to snap Connor out of what he calls naivete. I wish they'd have made a game out of Haytham's missing years rather than Rogue.

pirate1802
04-10-2015, 09:33 PM
Haytham in Damascus. Man did they lose an awesome opportunity there... recurring protagonist and a recurring city, both at different stages of their lives. :/

VestigialLlama4
04-10-2015, 10:10 PM
My knowledge of criminal psychology might night exactly be freudian but I do know this that a good indicator of psychopathic tendencies (though not the only one, admittedly) is a person's inability to feel guilt or remorse Killing a person is a big, big deal.

You are right but some people can continue to kill even after feeling guilt or remorse about it.


For that I'd need additional mental conditioning and probably days of telling myself I need to go through with it. My hands would tremble while I am doing it, and I will most definitely have nightmares afterwards.

Yes, but you are a civilized 21st Century citizen for whom killing and murder is a fantasy. Psychologists aren't sure whether these responses are universal or dependant on social conditioning and environmental values. In ancient times, people killed in the name of Gods and then went back to doing their normal lives and became upstanding citizens and died as "Good <Insert Here>" were they sociopaths? did they need mental conditioning (well they were told God told them to do it, which is a form of it I suppose). Like were most of the Mongols who followed Genghis Khan sociopaths, I don't think they were, they were people in a hard landscape with little means whose values and way of living is something we can only dimly appreciate.



But we live in an era where an inexperienced kid's crying after he killed some people (Jason in Farcry 3) is frowned upon and seen as a sign of wussiness, no wonder we are constantly served psychopathic dudebros.

Well Jason in Far Cry 3 is both a wuss and a psychopathic dudebro, not a good combination.


Not to mention Ezio clearly shows glee in killing some of his targets.

Which ones? I am curious to know which of the main targets in AC2-Revelations Ezio shows "glee" in killing. He's happy to beat up Duccio but that's as far as it goes.

D.I.D.
04-10-2015, 10:36 PM
Sure, definitely. But the people who show exactly no reaction to killing people, are either the ones who are doing it for years in and years out and so it doesn't matter to them any more than crushing an ant, or they are the ones who have their brains wired a bit differently. (psycho/sociopaths.) And you are right, game should have shown us all that you have suggested. But we live in an era where an inexperienced kid's crying after he killed some people (Jason in Farcry 3) is frowned upon and seen as a sign of wussiness, no wonder we are constantly served psychopathic dudebros.

At the same time, murder is and always will be over-represented in games by comparison with other story media, and a game that contains killing will, by necessity, feature far more instances of killing than a book, film or play of a similar slant. It's such a fundamental form of skill-based gameplay. Sure, we can have murder games in which only one killing provides the basis for an entire game's worth of events, and there can (and have been) games dripping in death in which "you" are the quarry and cannot kill anyone, but these are exceptions.

We must compromise a little. We can't have every killer protag puking on his/her shoes. I found the criticism of the Tomb Raider reboot rather irritating, and perhaps you did too. Many people felt she flipped from scared girl to Rambo in the blink of an eye, and complained that this was poor writing. Some took it further and complained that she then had regrets about killing an animal, as though this was unforgivably inconsistent. I thought that was wrong on two points: one, that in fact there is quite a lot of emotional adjustment over her first kills but it's sensibly scattered over a sequence of moments in the following time, and two, we cannot give a game character the time she would need to believably recover from taking a life. We can't see it in real time, and we can't have every game stop and return us to the action six months later. While games about killing can certainly bear more comments on psychology, they do not all need to be studies of trauma. It's enough to know that Lara kills to prevent her own death, and continues killing to save her friends. There was acknowledgement of the issues, and in exchange for that level of maturity we have to take a certain amount of adjustment as read.

I think AC has opportunities to play with its past now. If they ever produce another Ezio, I'd want him to be like Pierce Brosnan in "The Matador" - a wonderfully funny commentary on Bond-style hitman heroes. "In Bruges" made its killers fascinating by creating a chasm of gravity between the worst of sins and the most banal of human habits, and somehow managed to amplify their pedestrian foibles into unfathomably cute quirks. Professional murder had become a magnifying glass for the insignificant moments of human interaction. AC could pull off these kinds of tricks, quite easily.

We could have an AC in which our protag's aptness for the role could affect his social dynamics even within the Order. Imagine an intro mission in which a whole regiment of green assassins goes out together to mount a coordinated attack on a dozen targets at once. Afterwards, the NPC assassins could be shaken by the experience: some nauseated, some talking about how this life is going to take some getting used to... and then the camera wheels round to your character, who is clearly ecstatic about what just happened.You, as the player, might also be taken aback by your own player-character's enthusiasm. You might be caught between sharing your protag's buzz for the gameplay, while also sympathising with the discomfort of the character's friends. I think that would be an interesting position to be in. The mentors might love this character at first, but who knows how that progresses? Would they eventually start to fear the consequences of this assassin becoming a master? Might they give you absurdly dangerous missions in the secret hope that you'd fail? Could they even try to execute you?

pirate1802
04-10-2015, 10:48 PM
You are right but some people can continue to kill even after feeling guilt or remorse about it.
They do but the effect persists, even if the person fights with them goes on with his job of killing people. This inner side is almost never shown in videogames.


Yes, but you are a civilized 21st Century citizen for whom killing and murder is a fantasy. Psychologists aren't sure whether these responses are universal or dependant on social conditioning and environmental values. In ancient times, people killed in the name of Gods and then went back to doing their normal lives and became upstanding citizens and died as "Good <Insert Here>"
This is a very good point. I hadn't considered it.


Well Jason in Far Cry 3 is both a wuss and a psychopathic dudebro, not a good combination.
I thought it was more a wuss who becomes a psychopathic dudebro. Kind of neat, I thought the attempt was.


At the same time, murder is and always will be over-represented in games by comparison with other story media, and a game that contains killing will, by necessity, feature far more instances of killing than a book, film or play of a similar slant. It's such a fundamental form of skill-based gameplay. Sure, we can have murder games in which only one killing provides the basis for an entire game's worth of events, and there can (and have been) games dripping in death in which "you" are the quarry and cannot kill anyone, but these are exceptions.
Agreed. Which is another reason why, as another thread said, we need to find ways of creating interesting non-combat related gameplay mechanics.


We must compromise a little. We can't have every killer protag puking on his/her shoes.
No but a little acknowledgement would be good, like you yourself provide an example of, later in this post.


I found the criticism of the Tomb Raider reboot rather irritating, and perhaps you did too. Many people felt she flipped from scared girl to Rambo in the blink of an eye, and complained that this was poor writing. Some took it further and complained that she then had regrets about killing an animal, as though this was unforgivably inconsistent. I thought that was wrong on two points: one, that in fact there is quite a lot of emotional adjustment over her first kills but it's sensibly scattered over a sequence of moments in the following time, and two, we cannot give a game character the time she would need to believably recover from taking a life. We can't see it in real time, and we can't have every game stop and return us to the action six months later.
Yes. I thought the situation was, though not ideal, was good enough when you consider the fact that this is working out in a videogame with its own sets of limitations and constraints. I too found the one-kill-switch complaint stupid because clearly she keeps talking/pleading to her would-be killers/victims for quite a few kills afterwards. 'Please, you don't have to do this/stay away from me/why are you doing this?' I thought I was the only one who noticed those lines.


We could have an AC in which our protag's aptness for the role could affect his social dynamics even within the Order. Imagine an intro mission in which a whole regiment of green assassins goes out together to mount a coordinated attack on a dozen targets at once. Afterwards, the NPC assassins could be shaken by the experience: some nauseated, some talking about how this life is going to take some getting used to... and then the camera wheels round to your character, who is clearly ecstatic about what just happened.You, as the player, might also be taken aback by your own player-character's enthusiasm. You might be caught between sharing your protag's buzz for the gameplay, while also sympathising with the discomfort of the character's friends. I think that would be an interesting position to be in. The mentors might love this character at first, but who knows how that progresses? Would they eventually start to fear the consequences of this assassin becoming a master? Might they give you absurdly dangerous missions in the secret hope that you'd fail? Could they even try to execute you?
It is funny that I was thinking of an exactly same situation. That maybe it would be a cool twist to have a person, who is a cold psychopath, be initially recruited into the Order because he is so damn efficient at killing, and afterwards, the discomfort spreads through the ranks and people start to see that this maybe was not the best thing to have been done.

SixKeys
04-10-2015, 11:38 PM
Which ones? I am curious to know which of the main targets in AC2-Revelations Ezio shows "glee" in killing. He's happy to beat up Duccio but that's as far as it goes.

Why did you assume I was talking about main targets? I mentioned kill animations, which should tell you I was talking about regular guards.

But since you asked, Ezio was clearly happy about killing Uberto Alberti (loudly and proudly proclaiming to the world he did it, and immediately going back to Paola to crack jokes and flirt with some girls). He also showed no remorse for Leandros in ACR, sarcastically quipping "requiescat in pace, bastardo" while forcefully dropping his corpse on the floor.

Mr.Black24
04-11-2015, 05:09 AM
Why did you assume I was talking about main targets? I mentioned kill animations, which should tell you I was talking about regular guards.

But since you asked, Ezio was clearly happy about killing Uberto Alberti (loudly and proudly proclaiming to the world he did it, and immediately going back to Paola to crack jokes and flirt with some girls). He also showed no remorse for Leandros in ACR, sarcastically quipping "requiescat in pace, bastardo" while forcefully dropping his corpse on the floor. For Uberto Alberti, of course he got mad and never regretted that, technically speaking he was the one responsible for his father's and brother's death by hand, as the Borgia gave the orders to do so. For this, of course he didn't feel remorse. The thing is though, Uberto did it by the orders by the Borgia for securing financial stability for his own family,so it is a grey area here, especially since Ezio came across his letter explaining his guilt to his wife over the betrayal of Giovanni, so perhaps Ezio did feel guilt afterwards, but off screen though.

As for Leandros...well....after years of people trying to kill ya, you can lose your grip on stability from time to time, and this was one point in time, especially since the guy tried to hang him.

VestigialLlama4
04-11-2015, 06:08 AM
I mentioned kill animations, which should tell you I was talking about regular guards.

You said targets.
Quote Originally Posted by SixKeys View Post
Not to mention Ezio clearly shows glee in killing some of his targets.

And you know "kill animations" and guards are hard to assess in terms of character in these games.


But since you asked, Ezio was clearly happy about killing Uberto Alberti (loudly and proudly proclaiming to the world he did it, and immediately going back to Paola to crack jokes and flirt with some girls).

Again you confuse events. Uberto Alberti was Ezio's first target before he even knew what or who the Assassins are and that guy betrayed his family. He's not really "happy" but more like burning with fury. And as for returning back and flirting with Paola's *****s, not true at all. Ezio's mother and sister were staying there and after killing Alberti all he cared about was taking them to a safe place and escorting them out of Florence. Ezio initially didn't care for revenge, he wanted to keep his mother and sister safe and he was fantasizing about it, but it was Paola (and the Assassins) who told him that there's a way to do it. When he goes to meet Uncle Mario, initially he told him that he wanted to take his family to Spain and forget it but slowly he's convinced to stay. It's only when Ezio sees the Templars and finds out about Rodrigo Borgia that he decides that he's in for the lonf haul.

The only time where Ezio celebrated killing someone was the killing of Marco Barbarigo at the Carnevale where he, Antonio and other "Assassins" presumably have an orgy with Sister Teodora's girls. Though Ezio strikes out of having sex with "the ****** nun" (a really GTA-worthy character that has no place in AC2 but whatever). In his defense, that Marco Barbarigo thing was pretty cool to pull off.


He also showed no remorse for Leandros in ACR, sarcastically quipping "requiescat in pace, bastardo" while forcefully dropping his corpse on the floor.

He's not sarcastic, just bitter and angry. That Leandros was a panicky basket-case who Ezio chased all around Masyaf in a single night, killed his own henchmen to distract him and finally told him in essence "I'm sorry Ezio, but Altair's Library is in another castle".

SixKeys
04-11-2015, 12:07 PM
You said targets.

If the assassin kills someone with intent (instead of accidentally), then they are by definition a target. The games have a "targeting" system for a reason. You're being pedantic.


And you know "kill animations" and guards are hard to assess in terms of character in these games.

I disagree. The developers of AC3 even said that part of Connor's inner conflict comes out via his kill animations. When he interacts with people, he's usually withheld and stoic, but in a fight he lets out all his anger and frustration.

If Ezio wasn't flirting with Paola's girls, then what was the line "I have so many aches and pains, sister, I may need a great deal of comfort" (while stroking the girl's cleavage) all about?

With regard to your other points, I'll just say we obviously have different interpretations of his character during those moments and there's not much point arguing about perception.

VestigialLlama4
04-11-2015, 12:24 PM
If the assassin kills someone with intent (instead of accidentally), then they are by definition a target. The games have a "targeting" system for a reason. You're being pedantic.

Technically you are being pedantic in that you apply a universal definition of targets and invoke the phrase "targeting system", which is silly. What people mean when they say targets are "Dudes you talk to after you whack them in that nice white room".

As for guards, I don't see Ezio doing any triumphal gestures after attacking guards. Yeah he's an amazing swordsman and very swishy, brutal and efficient but that's kind of what sword fighting is about. In terms of gameplay you can of course pile a mountain of corpses and the like, but that is the player and not Ezio, just like an actor playing a psychopathic version of Sherlock Holmes is still psycho!Holmes rather than actual Holmes. So I don't think Ezio is especially gleeful as a combatant. He's gleeful with people he likes and whose company he enjoys.


If Ezio wasn't flirting with Paola's girls, then what was the line "I have so many aches and pains, sister, I may need a great deal of comfort" (while stroking the girl's cleavage) all about?

That is Sister Teodora (Venetian Courtesan), whereas Paola is the Florentine Courtesan. Again don't take my word for it. Here are the mission transcripts:

Paola and Ezio (Sequence 2)
http://assassinscreed.wikia.com/wiki/Judge,_Jury,_Executioner
http://assassinscreed.wikia.com/wiki/Laying_Low
http://assassinscreed.wikia.com/wiki/Arrivederci

Sister Teodora (Sequence 9)
http://assassinscreed.wikia.com/wiki/Having_a_Blast



With regard to your other points, I'll just say we obviously have different interpretations of his character during those moments and there's not much point arguing about perception.

You are right. I will suggest that if you find time, replay AC2 and see Ezio in those moments. Most people retain their first impression of Ezio, the one they see at Sequence 1 before his family dies. But there are many sides to that character already in AC2. He's actually fairly serious and restrained for most of the first section in the game, its only when he comes to Venice that he rediscovers his lighter side again, since he's made friends with Leonardo, Rosa, Antonio and others.

Defalt221
04-11-2015, 12:26 PM
If the assassin kills someone with intent (instead of accidentally), then they are by definition a target. The games have a "targeting" system for a reason. You're being pedantic.



I disagree. The developers of AC3 even said that part of Connor's inner conflict comes out via his kill animations. When he interacts with people, he's usually withheld and stoic, but in a fight he lets out all his anger and frustration.

If Ezio wasn't flirting with Paola's girls, then what was the line "I have so many aches and pains, sister, I may need a great deal of comfort" (while stroking the girl's cleavage) all about?

With regard to your other points, I'll just say we obviously have different interpretations of his character during those moments and there's not much point arguing about perception.

What does Exio's kill animation getting more and more gruesome with every new game mean? (Revelations>Brotherhood>2)

VestigialLlama4
04-11-2015, 12:28 PM
What does Exio's kill animation getting more and more gruesome with every new game mean? (Revelations>Brotherhood>2)

He's getting old and leaving less to chance.

Shahkulu101
04-11-2015, 12:36 PM
He's getting old and leaving less to chance.

I disagree with that, in Revelations the animations seem drawn out to cause the victim as much pain as possible and look badass in the process - not just him making sure they're dead...

If he was trying to be efficient the animations would be swift and deadly, which I think all combat animations should be like. The animations are so long and flashy in every game it looks ridiculous, I'm like "just kill the damn guy!". Not to mention kill animations take so long they can actually be interrupted by other enemies thus stopping the kill altogether. Not saying make it boring and remove style altogether but combat needs to look more practical and realistic to some extent.

Defalt221
04-11-2015, 12:40 PM
He's getting old and leaving less to chance.

In AC2 he kills with a finishing stab or slice.
In Brotherhood he stabs, breaks arm and kick to the floor.
In Revelations, he breaks+twists enemy arm, stabs his sword through the enemy throat, then twists it at least twice (to rip the spine,skull,epiglottis,alimentary canal and the throat) , pulls the blade off and lands a massive kick on the already corpse. (Because there's no kill like overkill) That shows his brutal murderous nature. Then after bathing in this blood shower, he happily meets Sofia like it's Valentine's day and presents her a stolen painting. In Brotherhood he supported thieves when the latter stoly and robbed innocent poor and rich people. And when a thief steals from Sofia the painting, Ezio goes mad with rage, chases him all the way to the bazaar and beats him up after some mind boggling angry slangs and takes back the painting (that never belonged to him in the first place). And when he meets Yusuf, he's like "Humanity's our only hope. We mustn't rob or harm innocents. They deserve justice. Templars steal .SO they die!" Does tht make any sense to him? I tell you, it's sociopath characters!
If you watched Breaking Bad (season 5) you'd see a similar character (a confirmed sociopath) who goes by the name Todd. He (like Ezio) falls in love with Lydia. Talks about logic and stuffs. And when things cross paths with him (Hank and Steve), he non-hesitatingly kills and later shows a smile. When Walt's brother in law Hank dies, Walt breaks into tears and goes literally insane. Then Todd slowly walks up to him and says,"I'm sorry for your loss" (LOL) although he was pulling the trigger when Hank and the nazis clashed. Ezio is just like that.
When Selim orders Ezio to leave, Ezio tries to kill him knowing full well that he literally ruined Suleman's life (By Tarik's and Ahmet's deaths already) and killing Selim will destroy Suleman's half destroyed happy and peaceful family.


I disagree with that, in Revelations the animations seem drawn out to cause the victim as much pain as possible and look badass in the process - not just him making sure they're dead...

If he was trying to be efficient the animations would be swift and deadly, which I think all combat animations should be like. The animations are so long and flashy in every game it looks ridiculous, I'm like "just kill the damn guy!". Not to mention kill animations take so long they can actually be interrupted by other enemies thus stopping the kill altogether. Not saying make it boring and remove style altogether but combat needs to look more practical and realistic to some extent.

Haytham's kill animations are swift and clean.

VestigialLlama4
04-11-2015, 12:44 PM
I disagree with that, in Revelations the animations seem drawn out to cause the victim as much pain as possible and look badass in the process - not just him making sure they're dead...

Now that you mention it, I remember one where he stabs a guy and slowly removes the sword out. I guess SixKeys is right in that regard. Course that could be the adrenaline taking over, wanting to show these punks that this old timer is still the worst MF in the Mediterranean.

In any case, I am personally skeptical of inferring any of this as characteristic, since AC isn't a minimalist game where the mechanics are the story.


If he was trying to be efficient the animations would be swift and deadly, which I think all combat animations should be like.

AC3 and Black Flag were less aesthetic in that sense.


That shows his brutal murderous nature. Then after bathing in this blood shower, he happily meets Sofia like it's Valentine's day and presents her a stolen painting.

Not a stolen painting. It is Sofia's painting. It belonged to her but thieves took it from her and Ezio is returning it back. And you can do that mission without being detected or killing anyone anyway.


In Brotherhood he supported thieves when the latter stoly and robbed innocent poor and rich people.

In Brotherhood, Ezio supports a gang of friendly thieves versus the Cento Occhi (a pack of rapists, murderers and brutes who are used as goon squads by the Borgia). Ezio supports thieves in REVELATIONS as well. He supports "good thieves" versus "bad thieves".


And when a thief steals from Sofia the painting, Ezio goes mad with rage, chases him all the way to the bazaar and beats him up after some mind boggling angry slangs and takes back the painting (that never belonged to him in the first place).

It is SOFIA's painting which he is bringing back to her.


When Selim orders Ezio to leave, Ezio tries to kill him knowing full well that he literally ruined Suleman's life (By Tarik's and Ahmet's deaths already) and killing Selim will destroy Suleman's half destroyed happy and peaceful family.

He doesn't try to do anything, he just walks threateningly to him in a brief moment but Sofia holds him back and the Sultan laughs it off. Don't mistake anger, irritation for sociopathic behaviour. It is the absence of that which should scare you off.


Haytham's kill animations are swift and clean.

Which is ironic since he has a more classic sociopathic personality.

Farlander1991
04-11-2015, 01:17 PM
While AC2 reuses a lot of kill animations from AC1, everything that's new is pretty flashy and brutal. Two of the most memorable animations from AC2 for me are:
1) When Ezio kills somebody with a heavy weapon, then puts that heavy weapon on the shoulder and in a '**** yeah I'm awesome' way slightly pushes the enemy so he'd fall down.
2) When Ezio kills somebody with a spear, he raises one of his legs up in a 'wooo I'm awesome' mode.
That is part of his character, and that is far from 'effecient killing'

Just like in movies where it's not just the script that defines character, but the way he looks, acts, what's in his personal room, games utilize all of that too (for a movie example, let's take Jack Sparrow, a character who was imagined to be much, much, much different but brought to life in a very specific and memorable way because of all those other elements, even though the script remained pretty much the same).

Kill animations, mechanics, environmental design, all that defines narrative as a whole and characters in particular as much as the script and voice acting and what not.

One of the examples regarding animations I would like to mention is Spec Ops: The Line, where the three main characters have three different sets of animations each. They all begin with a very professional set of animations (example, an execution of a fallen enemy would be something like a quick shot in the head), but as the game progresses and they all break down, their animations (at their own pace, so it doesn't change for everybody at the same time) begin to become more and more brutal (so an execution of a fallen enemy would transform into something like beating the **** out of the guy with fists while yelling).

One of my biggest gripes with AC3 is how some of the mechanics undermine Connor's character. For example, stealing. Connor would never steal money from a civilian. It's not who he is. Yet not only we can do that, it's required for full synchronization since Connor gets into a Thief Club and all those challenges are something that he has done (so you can't even use the 'oh, it's Animus, a simulation, so what we do as a player doesn't necessarily mean that Connor did it). Similar thing with full synch objectives, where those who designed them in some missions don't realize how much of a hypocrite or an *** they can make Connor look. For example, in a mission where Connor tries to stop Stephane from violence, one of the full synch objectives is to ****ing kill people! The narrative implication of which (given how they say that 'full synch' is what the ancestor has done) is that Connor was killing people himself at the same time as he was pleading Stephane not to. Had the full synch objective been about non-lethal takedowns to prevent violence - that would paint a totally different picture.

The point of all this is, in a game everything can and is used for narrative or thematic purposes, from animations, to mechanics, to environment, etc. And the way to advance games forward as a storytelling medium is to embrace the fact that all those elements form one whole and use them correctly to create something cohesive (regardless of genre or budget).

VestigialLlama4
04-11-2015, 02:04 PM
Kill animations, mechanics, environmental design, all that defines narrative as a whole and characters in particular as much as the script and voice acting and what not.

There is a major difference and those are variables. For instance, you mentioned heavy weapons and spears. Heavy weapons are entirely optional to the player. You can play Ezio the entire game with the basic sword Mario gives him and never upgrade at all (like me I hardly ever upgrade weapons because I save money for renovations, ammo, pouches and costumes). The only way to pick a spear is to collect it from the guard. In other words you can play the game without seeing those brutal animations, much like I did for my first two playthroughs. So is that Ezio less authentic than the player who has Ezio pick up those weapons and fight brutally. Or in another playthrough, where Ezio fights unarmed but disarms opponents and turns their weapons on him. There the guards are the ones attacking an unarmed man and Ezio is fighting for self-defense. Based on your playstyle, you can have Ezio be a cold, efficient killer, a flamboyant bloodthirsty warrior and a trickster who fights with his bare hands against armed soldiers, turns their weapons against them and walks away.

So to me these are stuff the players bring in and its not inherent to Ezio's character. I mean, this sounds like bad philosophy but if the kill-animation is there and the player doesn't trigger it, does it really exist? There isn't full synchronization in AC2 (mercifully). In Brotherhood and Revelations, there's no full synch objectives about Ezio killing people these many ways in these many animations. So I see all that as stuff that's left to the player.


One of my biggest gripes with AC3 is how some of the mechanics undermine Connor's character. For example, stealing. Connor would never steal money from a civilian. It's not who he is. Yet not only we can do that, it's required for full synchronization since Connor gets into a Thief Club and all those challenges are something that he has done (so you can't even use the 'oh, it's Animus, a simulation, so what we do as a player doesn't necessarily mean that Connor did it).

Yeah that part didn't make sense to me either. They should have removed the thief faction completely. I mean in AC1, Altair only stole information and documents. In AC2, Ezio can pickpocket cash (since they introduced currency), which also doesn't make a whole lot of sense either to be honest (he's a rich kid and banker's son, why does he need to steel cash for?).


The point of all this is, in a game everything can and is used for narrative or thematic purposes, from animations, to mechanics, to environment, etc. And the way to advance games forward as a storytelling medium is to embrace the fact that all those elements form one whole and use them correctly to create something cohesive (regardless of genre or budget).

That I agree with at least in terms of minor inconsistencies and poor design choices.

But at the same time in any game there are elements that are wholly that of the game and those that are solely that of the player. If people are going towards accomodating everything a player can do than you are going to get false good ideas that are fairly nonsensical. Like the Karma Meter in Red Dead Redemption. John Marston's story is that of a reformed criminal who has become a honest farmer, giving any in-game acknowledgement of his "bad actions", such as killing people and acting like a psycho or robbing safes in trains, hogtying nuns on train tracks, doesn't make sense in terms of the story it actually tells. They should leave all that to the player and have him project his desires on Marston rather than making Marston's personality inconsistent.

Defalt221
04-12-2015, 10:06 AM
Which is ironic since he has a more classic sociopathic personality.

Yesh. Haytham is more of a sociopath than Ezio.

One of my biggest gripes with AC3 is how some of the mechanics undermine Connor's character. For example, stealing. Connor would never steal money from a civilian. It's not who he is. Yet not only we can do that, it's required for full synchronization since Connor gets into a Thief Club and all those challenges are something that he has done (so you can't even use the 'oh, it's Animus, a simulation, so what we do as a player doesn't necessarily mean that Connor did it). Similar thing with full synch objectives, where those who designed them in some missions don't realize how much of a hypocrite or an *** they can make Connor look. For example, in a mission where Connor tries to stop Stephane from violence, one of the full synch objectives is to ****ing kill people! The narrative implication of which (given how they say that 'full synch' is what the ancestor has done) is that Connor was killing people himself at the same time as he was pleading Stephane not to. Had the full synch objective been about non-lethal takedowns to prevent violence - that would paint a totally different picture.

The point of all this is, in a game everything can and is used for narrative or thematic purposes, from animations, to mechanics, to environment, etc. And the way to advance games forward as a storytelling medium is to embrace the fact that all those elements form one whole and use them correctly to create something cohesive (regardless of genre or budget).

In AC Rogue, this issue is also present where Shay can freely murder innocents without any remorse (even though he's all over "I killed so many innocents ! It's ACHILLE'S FAULT! NO ONE SHOULD KILL INNOCENTS") which also undermines his character.

shickapowow
04-18-2015, 07:33 AM
This series really needs to do something about the cognitive dissonance its gameplay generates.

Hans684
04-18-2015, 09:02 AM
He's an intelligent sociopath/phsycopath, think along the lines of Hannibal.

AzfarXV
04-18-2015, 12:58 PM
Ezio is, yes. He has no sympathy nor any anger for the Templars except Vierri and Uberto, because they killed his family.
He doesn't care about the other Templars as he kills them only to show his loyalty towards the Assassins to Uncle Mario Auditore, as he took the Assassin's help to kill Vierri.