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View Full Version : ACU History - A list of demonstrable lies and inaccuracies **SPOILERS**



VestigialLlama4
11-18-2014, 04:54 PM
Okay, there seems to be the general confusion why Assassin's Creed Unity is offensive and wrong on a historical level, what the French left getting on the case and gamers having the, understandable, knee-jerk defense of "it's a game" and fantasy and so on. Knowing the game's main missions, brotherhood missions and side-missions so I am going to provide a list of demonstrable falsehoods that are in the game and why people will find that offensive and how far the series has fallen from its earlier standards of accuracy.

Now bear in mind, I fully support the fact that Assassin's Creed are games and are not documentaries. I fully support that. When I judge accuracy in the game, I judge the game on "fairness" rather than hundred percent accuracy. I have no problem with moving dates, changing and altering events for narrative reasons(as long as it doesn't get absurd as in one instance written below). As long as they get basic facts and broad accuracy, I have no issue. This isn't about whether certain historical figures are Templars whether they make sense as Templars and the like, they made a choice and I will abide by that so long as it gets facts of that historical figure/person right, my issues however have to do with persistent bias and slander to create sympathy for one faction over another.

EDIT: UPDATED as of 30th November, 2014. As per the request of Derp43, I have added historical sources for fact-checking. Where possible I have cited academic articles online, FAQs and book reviews since these are shorter and easier to read rather than full books. In some cases I give appropriate Google Book Links which obviously I cannot excerpt but which contains the relevant information.

For a quick, concise, accurate summary of it, written for general readers(and with good sources), the TV tropes page is actually pretty detailed:
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/UsefulNotes/TheFrenchRevolution

Single Player Campaign

SEQUENCE 1 - SEQUENCE 8(MEMORY 1) (19 MEMORIES)
I am going to give credit to Ubisoft, these sequences are fair. The Estates-General and the Storming of Bastille happen more or less the same way they do in history. Mirabeau's truce with de la Serre has the spirit of initial unity that fit the Revolution. So far the metaphor is not implausible. The only inaccuracy is that there is no way that Arno will be sent to Bastille for being accused of Murder. Bastille was a prison for debtors, political and moral criminals and general imbeciles. For the crime of murder, especially of an aristocrat at Versailles, Arno would be sent to a tougher prison but I am going to let this pass since its too iconic a moment for Arno to miss out on. Now the producers have stated that they are avoiding the historical element of the series by not making Arno front and center of the Revolution, so until say, the mission where Arno invades the Tuileries and meets Napoleon, I will say that the game is fair and not offensive. Then it eventually goes off the rails.

SEQUENCE 8(MEMORY 2) - THE SEPTEMBER MASSACRES(1 Memory)
Where it goes off the rails is the September Massacres, a mission where your target sadistically sings La Marseillaise in Alex DeLarge fashion by submitting the prison warden to ultra-violence.

The Elephant in the Living Room is something that goes unmentioned in the entire single player campaign, the central event of the French Revolution, is the 1792 Declaration of War.

In history, when the Constitutional Monarchy was on its last ebb, a faction of the Republicans known to history as the Girondins(not their name at the time) decided to declare a pre-emptive war to "Spread the Revolution". This war was supported by the King and Queen because they felt that it would divert and diffuse the revolutionary tensions. The people who opposed this war...those crazy extremists Marat and Robespierre who felt that democracies had no right to go to other nations and impose freedom at the end of a gun. That's right the moderates believed in war to distract people from reforms and break deadlock, the extremists were anti-war because they thought it could lead to military dictatorship and set reforms back even more than the Old Regime. The Queen of France, Saint Marie Antoinette personally gave information of French military preparations to the the Austrians in the hope of sabotaging the French war effort. And sure enough, France after some initial victories started losing. This led to the September Massacres where people of Paris, in panic decided to invade prisons and murder political prisoners and in the end, they killed common criminals, prostitutes and priests along with political prisoners. In the game, this is shown as a Templar tactic of intimidation because, Templars, amirite?

SOURCES: There are several books which cover this, but I am using these two short links, since they are by respected academics and its concise:
http://quod.lib.umich.edu/w/wsfh/0642292.0034.006/--uses-of-power-lafayette-and-brissot-in-1792?rgn=main;view=fulltext
SYLVIA NEELY:
- "Once proclaimed in the spring of 1792, war dominated Europe for almost twenty-five years. The development of the Terror is inconceivable without the background of war and the paranoia that came with it."
- "In the twentieth century, imbued with the pacifist strain of the left wing in France, many historians seemed somewhat embarrassed to find that the heroic people of revolutionary myth had been so bellicose. They focused on Robespierre, who opposed the war because he feared putting too much power in the hands of the aristocrats, and they came to believe that the Mountain joined him in opposing the war, which could then be blamed exclusively on the Girondins. Revolutionaries at the time, however, sided with Brissot, not Robespierre. At the trial of the Girondins in 1793, Brissot was accused of fomenting war against England in 1793 when the country was not sufficiently prepared."
DAVID AVROM BELL - This is a review of a recent book that is anti-Revolutionary but corrects the same facts. Here he describes the September Massacres:
- "Upon the news that the Prussian army had broken through French lines and was marching on Paris, crowds of sans-culottesstormed the prisons and killed at least 1,200 alleged counterrevolutionaries."

SEQUENCE 9(MEMORY 1 and 2)(2 Memories)
This mission tells us that the evil psychopathic Templars artifically created the entire food crisis and famine that drove the popular movement outside and inside Paris. Basically the royal family were unfairly targeted by those evil Jacobin Templars and their merchants and poor widdle Louis XVI was absolutely blameless. The food crisis and its relation to war naturally goes unmentioned.
SOURCE
For this I will cite a wikipedia article since its well sourced in these instances. In any case the idea of a single group creating a faction is such an absurdity that it has never been posed to be outright disproven in detail.
-http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pacte_de_Famine This one talks about how conspiracies about witholding grain were common in pre-Revolution times and how they were usually wrong but used as a political tool.
-Another article mentions another cause - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Fear#Causes_and_course_of_the_revolts
"The rural unrest can be traced back to the spring of 1788, when a drought threatened the prospect of the coming harvest. Harvests had in fact been bad ever since the massive 1783 Laki volcanic eruption on Iceland. Storms and floods also destroyed much of the harvest during the summer, leading to a fall in seigneurial dues and defaults on leases."
- So in other words, no one person could have been responsible for such widescale famine.

SEQUENCE 10 (2 Memories)
The biggest lie is the execution of the King, which they said comes down to one vote 361-360, with a Templar puppet casting the key vote. The King's execution enjoyed a majority of 394 for Death to 321 for imprisonment. Of the 394, 34 wanted Death with Delaying Conditions, 360 wanted immediate summary execution. The King was extraordinarily guilty by any stretch of the definition thanks to another incidient not mentioned in the game, called the Flight to Varennes, when the King and Queen went to Austria where a foreign army was ready for the King to command to invade France. In the game, the Templars kill the King because the Bad Guy had this speech that the writers thought was cool and evil, but is a poorly written Bond Speech instead, missing only the Evil Laugh. In the game, Hero Assassin kills LePeletier. In real-life he was murdered by a royalist fanatic who wanted to uphold feudal monarchy, so make of that what you will.
SOURCES:
DAVID P. JORDAN's Book The King's Trial is there on Full View in Google Books. This Link takes you to the Appendix that deals with the issues of vote-count and whatnot, it uses archive research and discusses earlier attempts to make it a shorter queue. It is usually considered the best book on the Trial in English and written by a respected historian.
http://books.google.co.in/books?id=0sigPXBq4IEC&printsec=frontcover&dq=inauthor:%22David+P.+Jordan%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=l-Z6VNeDJMmGuASysoHwBg&ved=0CCUQuwUwAQ#v=onepage&q&f=false

SEQUENCE 11 - SEQUENCE 12(Memory2) (4 Memories)
I will say, that Robespierre in the Single Player campaign doesn't come off too badly, aside from being a Templar. The Brotherhood missions are a different thing which I will deal with later. But in the single player, Robespierre is this meek pedantic dude who seems a little weird with his Festival of a Supreme Being and while that is not flattering, it isn't unfair either. It's certainly a legitimate area of criticism to put him under. The real falsehood is the Mission "The Fall of Robespierre" where Arno finds out that the Paris Commune freed Robespierre by murdering a bunch of guards and they defend their leader with violence. There was no violence at all that day on Robespierre's part or his faction and Robespierre refused until the end to raise calls for the Paris Commune to attack the National Guard.
SOURCES: This link by Author Marisa Linton(a respected academic at Kingston university, author of CHOOSING TERROR) conveys it well:
http://www.port.ac.uk/special/france1815to2003/chapter1/interviews/filetodownload,20545,en.pdf
"The Terror began to wind down after Thermidor – though not immediately; the greatest days of carnage on the guillotine were the 10 and 11 Thermidor, as supporters of Robespierre, within the Convention, the Revolutionary Tribunal and the Paris Commune,were despatched before enthusiastic crowds. The deputies who had conspired to bring about Thermidor were themselves active Jacobins, including members of the ruling Committees, together with several men such as Fouché and Tallien, who had aroused suspicion from Robespierre for the excessive zeal with which they had employed terrorist methods while they had been on mission."

SEQUENCE 12 - THE TEMPLE(1 Memory)
Evil Boring Templar gives this speech about how the Revolution was masterminded by him to destroy the old order, who they framed, backstabbed and executed. The Revolution's violence did not come out of circumstances and difficult moral conundrums but out of an evil plot to show people that Revolutions will always be violent. Basically, the Assassins are on the side of the Constitutional Monarchy that came out of the Tennis Court Oath, that is "a peaceful" revolution, while the Templars represent the Violent Revolution of Bastille, Tuileries and the Terror. In other words, the Templars are shown to side with the people and the people are made to look like idiots(By the way almost every adult Parisian Male across class lines was literate at the time of the French Revolution). Poor King Louis was killed because he was framed not because he conspired with foreign powers to invade France. Basically it says that the people really didn't hate the King or have a reason to hate the good king Louis and his wife but were made to do so by a pack of evil middle-class people and envious scumbags that comprise the Templars. All I will say that this latter interpretation derives from a real-life book called ''Histoire des Jacobins'' by Abbe Barruel which was the first book that stated that conspiracy theories inspired the French Revolution.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memoirs_Illustrating_the_History_of_Jacobinism#Con tribution_and_legacy

The French Revolution was a complex event several years in the making, the idea that it was done by a few people in a dark room because one guy believed he was the reincarnation of Jacques de Molay and wanted revenge is...well...let's just say I miss Rodrigo and his Staff of Eden, that was way more subtle and believable.

I don't want to add any sources for this, but I will quote David A. Bell, author of The First Total War in the same Book Review I excerpted above:
"But history does not have the neatness, or the moral clarity, of conspiracy fiction. There was no Great Copt plotting out the events of the French Revolution and driving it forward."



Brotherhood Missions

The game's brotherhood co-op missions are supposed to represent real events which the developers couldn't work in the single player so they made it for co-op. So let's run through them.

Among these Missions, there are five that I would call Fair. By fair I mean even if there is artistic license and inaccuracies, I don't think its something worth getting worked up over, since the spirit and content is broadly correct.


1) Women's March - It overemphasizes Theorigne de Mericourt's role but since she is a historical badass and is obscure, I am going to pardon it and the mission as such is harmless.

2) The Food Chain - Another Theroigne One. Not historical, more fictional, again the usual Templar conspiracy motif, so I am going to pardon this.

3) The Austrian Conspiracy - Now this mission sort of touches on the war. So I will give it credit, the fact that the war is dialed down and reduced to the side is itself a grotesque simplification but I am not going to get into that. It does get into some of the paranoid atmosphere that happened at the time, where people were worried about royalist conspirators everywhere. Now whether Danton could actually wield a sword and fight, anyway I'll let it pass. One major mis-step. This mission takes place in September 1792 at the same time the September Massacres happen in history and the main game. Danton was Ministry of Justice at this time and pretty much looked the other way when the Massacres happened and convinced everyone to agreee with it. The point is this mission is lacking in proper context and Danton is presented as a simplistic good guy.

4) The Tournament - A nice fun harmless mission dedicated to the coolness of Thomas-Alexandre Dumas. Not really about history, since it revolves around a fictional General Marcourt who looks and sounds like Errol Flynn.

5) Infernal Machine - Another harmless mission about bodyguarding Napoleon. Nothing controversial or especially wrong. Except Napoleon should have a hair cut, and be wearing a Red Coat since he was First Consul/Dictator of France.



The remaining Six missions though are a pack of lies.

6) Political Persecution - Now the Lying Begins. The Girondins are brought down because they disagreed with the Evil Robespierre and Danton is shown as a bleeding heart liberal who doesn't want Robespierre to launch Terror. In actual fact, it was Danton who justified the Terror, "Let us be terrible so that the people who don't have to be", he was the one who put in place the Revolutionary Tribunals and he sat on the Committee of Public Safety for two full months before Robespierre got elected. Danton fully supported the fall of the Girondins and didn't go out of his way to save any of them.The man who did continually argue that 75 deputies be spared and not be persecuted, who did it time and again right through the Terror, that guy was Robespierre. As for the Girondins, those guys it has to be said, plunged Europe into a 20 Year War for shady reasons of furthering their business interests and political cache. They also proved incompetent at winning the war and France was close to being invaded by the time the People rose against them and brought the Jacobins to power.
SOURCES:
http://socialistreview.org.uk/339/danton
"Before his fall from political grace Danton cleared the way for the reign of terror that reached its height in the summer of 1794. It was Danton who made the Committee of Public Safety the executive body of government in the summer of 1793. It was Danton who created the infamous revolutionary tribunal ("Let us be terrible to prevent the people from being terrible!")."[/url]

7) Danton's Sacrifice - This famous incident, the source of Danton's good name gets even more biased to make Danton look good and Robespierre as a sadist but aside from that it has the right details. Danton was executed for political reasons at a show trial and it was a catastrophic moment for the Revolution. He is still sympathetic even if he was, as is widely proven, corrupt, deeply involved in bribes and stock market fraud. There's no need to make him a saint or martyr. What he was is a victim, of the very Terror and Tribunals that he had himself installed.
SOURCES:

Book Review - by Miguel Faria of David Lawday's ''DANTON: Giant of the French Revolution"
http://www.haciendapub.com/articles/georges-danton-%E2%80%94-fallen-titan-french-revolution
"But returning to the book at hand, in Lawday makes a fairly good case for absolving Danton of having connived in the Duke of Brunswick bribe affair just prior to the Battle of Valmy (1792); but does not do as well in exculpating him from involvement in the horrible September Massacres."
"Lawday also exculpates Danton for his incitation to violence and repeated calls for death to the "enemies of the Revolution" as flowery language. How were the people, the fickle Parisian mobs and the violent sans culottes, always thirsting for savage revenge, to know that Danton's incitations were "parliamentary theater" and only "figures of speech"?
This is from a Film Review, a rather long article:
http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:Xpamx6RNTr4J:digitalhistory.concord ia.ca/courses/hist306f07/files/darnton.pdf+new+york+darnton+double-entendre&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&client=safari
" Most French historians today probably would concede that Danton's finances do not stand up to close scrutiny. In 1789 he was a not especially successful lawyer loaded down with at least 43,000 livres in debts. In 1791 he paid off his creditors andbought an estate worth 80,000 livres without an ostensible improvement in his practiceor the acquisition of another legitimate source of income. He probably took moneyfrom the court. But a politician may fatten his purse without betraying his country, andDanton certainly led the resistance to the invading armies after the overthrow of themonarchy on August 10, 1792."


8) Heads Will Roll - This mission is fictional but again we have a demonical, evil, Robespierre who sells out his own spy when the guy digs up dirt that Robespierre was a Templar. This needless to say never happened since Templars don't exist. The only purpose it serves is to make Robespierre be a scumbag hypocrite.

9) Les Enrages - Now the Enrages were a bunch of extremists yes. They did advocate for seizure of private property, radical redistribution and were proto-anarchists. What they weren't are psychopaths, Jacques Roux didn't run around plucking heads off necks with his bare hands. He didn't strangulate people with chains either. So another ghoul show and falsification that serves to demonize the popular movement.


10) Moving Mirabeau - Another bit of falsehood. The evil Robespierre now removes the Saintly Mirabeau's remains from the Pantheon. This happened months after Robespierre died. Robespierre didn't order it. Now on learning fo Mirabeau's corruption, which the Girondins had revealed not him, Robespierre did call for him to be removed from the Pantheon and ordered statues of him broken in the Jacobin Club. But he never bothered about Mirabeau after that, simply because work on a War Cabinet was far more important than settling petty scores.

11) The Jacobin Raid - Crypto-Nazi Jacobins are tunneling to Argentina/Corsica but the people are led by Theroigne to bring them down. The Jacobins are shown to torture Theroigne by whipping her in a montage. In actual fact, Theroigne was attacked and beaten by Revolutionary women and the person who saved her was none other than crazy psycho Marat. The Jacobins are all shown as Robespierre lackeys when many of them joined in attacking him on the day of his fall. By the way, this action takes place the day after Robespierre's execution. In actual history, the day after Robespierre's execution, 77 of his supporters were executed without trial, the largest mass guillotine of the entire Terror.
SOURCES:
For Marat rescuing Theroigne
http://books.google.co.in/books?id=SLfHu0A6v1oC&pg=PA95&dq=Theroigne+de+mericourt+Marat&hl=en&sa=X&ei=A-t6VPCFCJPjuQS1ioGQDg&ved=0CDAQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=Theroigne%20de%20mericourt%20Marat&f=false
Another link, behind a pay wall, but its written by author Hilary Mantel:
http://www.lrb.co.uk/v14/n10/hilary-mantel/rescued-by-marat



PARIS SIDE STORIES
Now my main problem with the SIDE MISSIONS is just that a lot of the time, its very shoddy work. I mean there are basic errors in facts, the kind of errors that undergraduate students would be embarassed about. So some of these missions are offensive only for its incompetence.

1) American Prisoner (DLC MISSION) - Now this one isn't inaccurate or malicious, but it is INCOMPETENT.The gist is that Thomas Paine is under house arrest in this prison and the warden has his book ''The Rights of Man'' which he was working on. A single look at wikipedia can tell you that the reason Thomas Paine was ''invited'' to France was because of THE RIGHTS OF MAN, a book which defended the French Revolution against English conservative Edmund Burke. The book Paine was working on while imprisoned during the Terror is THE AGE OF REASON, a book that is critical of Christianity(albeit froma Deist/Theist perspective). Why this basic fact is neglected I don't know. And by the way the guy who conspired to get Paine imprisoned was the American Ambassador in France at the time, Gouvernor Morris.

2) A Romantic Stroll - Arno being an Assassin and oblivious lackey/b-tch of Napoleon that he is, serves as secret service on Napoleon's romantic date with Josephine. This is a kind of cute mission overall. Except for one thing. Josephine calls herself a divorcee. This is ridiculous for many reasons, namely the fact that Josephine's husband was guillotined during the Terror(while Josephine herself was imprisoned). The man who signed that execution order was none other than Jacques-Louis David, great painter, future friend and collaborator of Napoleon(who quite obviously was grateful for the assist). I don't know why they said divorcee when she could have said, "My husband's dead" and "I don't want to talk about it" or they could simply not mention it at all since it is a side story. Why go out of the way to lie?
SOURCES
http://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/napoleon/art-and-design/jacques-louis-david

3) Chemical Revolution (DLC Mission) - Jean-Paul Marat is not just a journalist but some kind of mob-boss who sent thugs to attack the great Lavoisier because he's jealous of him. This incident never happened. Marat was dead in early 1793 and played no role at all in the persecution and death of Lavoisier, but invoking his name kind of attaches him to slander. Marat played a major role in the ousting of the Girondins (who lavoisier was close to) but that clash was non-violent and the Girondin leaders were sent to the guillotine while Robespierre rescued 75 deputies from joining their ranks against the wishes of more bloodthirsty advocates.

4)) Coat-Of-Arms - My favorite piece of bilge unearthed in UNITY yet. One of the actual honest-to-God badasses in the French Revolution is Louis Antoine de Saint-Just. This guy was gorgeous. He was also a Robespierre loyalist and made his mentor look cuddly by comparison. He was also brilliant, he co-wrote the 1793 Constitution, super-competent and a great military organizer. And he was 26 years old when he did that. What he wasn't is a psychopath. This story is based on an "anecdote" published in a work of fiction issued in 1820 that Saint-Just once tried to seduce a woman and when she turned him down, Saint-Just had her killed and then skinned her and made her human hide into breeches for him to wear. Because everyone likes Game of Thrones and why not make Saint-Just into Ramsay Bolton, even if the only source is a lie that even right-wing historians never take seriously.

5) Up-In-Arms - Another piece of vile slander. Apparently the Commitee of Public Safety under Robespierre and Saint-Just are working to sabotage Napoleon's career by spiking his cannons so that it will blow up. This one is absurd. The Commitee of Public Safety gave Napoleon his first big promotion via Robespierre's little brother who served as their representative in Toulon. Napoleon wasn't in Paris during the Terror and the only time he came to their notice was in Robespierre's last days when his brother gave him a letter formulating a military plan of his to him. Napoleon was a lifelong defender of the Terror, apologist for Robespierre right unto Saint Helena and in private told anyone and everyone that the Committee of Public Safety was the only real government of the Revoluton. In the game, Napoleon is this cool guy who complains about the bloodshed of the Revolution.
SOURCES
http://books.google.co.in/books?id=SkWIK1nyPR4C&pg=PA202&lpg=PA202&dq=Napoleon+Montholon+%22Robespierre+hated+bloodsh ed%22&source=bl&ots=C_1VpmmwVR&sig=3oJLLdQtgZPrZNaPiGrwKJLJyBY&hl=en&sa=X&ei=wO56VMOhH4iQuATfp4KQBQ&ved=0CB4Q6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=Napoleon%20Montholon%20%22Robespierre%20hated%20 bloodshed%22&f=false
"Do you believe the men who led France in 1793 chose the Terror for pleasure? Absolutely not. Robespierre hated bloodshed as much as I. He was restrained by events and, I repeat, by conviction. He did it out of humanity, to stop the massacres, to control the resentments of the people. He created the revolutionary tribunals as a surgeon saves lives by amputating limbs."
-- NAPOLEON


6) Flying Boy - The famous physicist Laplace is in Paris during 1793-1794. He was actually in the countryside but here he's there to stop the bad science of the Revolutionaries. It again serves no other purpose other than to slander the Revolution by bringing up all the scientists and artists they persecuted (the artists and scientists who supported the Revolution are obviously ignored).

MURDER MYSTERIES

1) The Assassination of Marat
Now why this mission is a "Murder Mystery" I have no idea. If ever there was a murder lacking in mystery. But the whole point of the mission is to explore what a pathetic waste of a human being Marat was. We see Jacques-Louis David painting Marat at his crime scene, an embellishment that is poetic and so I will forgive. Then we meet Marat's wife, dressed to resemble her actress in Marat/Sade and she and Marat's sister Albertine, complains about how Marat leeched them dry with his lifestyle. In real-life, these women loved Marat and preserved his writings and memory for several years. You have a Girondin dude complain about how Marat persecuted him for suspicions of treason and he wanted to die a martyr, completely whitewashing the Girondins involvement in warmongering and political corruption. Then we meet Charlotte Corday who isn't looked at too much but is basically seen as a woman who is cool and did the world a favor. I like Marat and I like Charlotte too, so I'd like ambiguity but all the same, pathetic.

2) A Body in a Brothel (see also DE SADE's REPRIEVE in PARIS SIDE STORY)
Now generally, the game kind of whitewashes Marquis de Sade. I don't have problems in so far as Sade is otherwise quite misunderstood. The real guy was an ambiguous, scary figure who wrote about power and how the strong will always oppress the weak, a philosophy that the game reduces to "freedom" and kinky sex with sex workers(to whom Sade is a generous pimp apparently). The real guy's ideas are better conveyed in MARAT/SADE. The real Sade during the Revolution was an out of work playwright who had relationships with actresses. He became a member of the radical ward of Piques but he was too independent minded. During the Terror, he served on a tribune and generally got people off, criminals, political prisoners, even a couple of aristocratic enemies who in the old days sent him to jail. De Sade got accused of "moderatism" and was sent to Prison and then transfered to a mental asylum in Picpus (where outside the window he'd see beheaded bodies being buried). The game presents this as Sade being persecuted for being a degenerate with the Evil Psychopath Saint-Just paying a butler to murder a prositute to arrest him. Again this kind of fiction serves no other purpose than to slander the Revolution. The real reasons why Sade was sent to jail cast them in a bad enough light already and shows Sade in a very good light indeed. There's no need to make them super-psychopaths or reduce Sade to being persecuted solely for his sexual schenanigans rather than his political activity.

There's also the fact of incompetence. One of the pieces of evidence that Arno finds is the book 120 Days of Sodom in a student's garret. That book was written in the Bastille by Sade and after its fall, the Marquis cried to everyone that it was gone for good. The book wouldn't be discovered until the 20th Century. Now they might have created something revolving around it, some mystery or some hint, but to casually drop it as a piece of evidence like this in a side mission is absurd and stupid


Cafe-Theatre/Social Club Missions

1) Retribution for a Rabble Rouser
This mission has you assassinating a Jacobin demagogue who is criticizing the Girondins. When you approach the guy, he talks about how the Girondins unleashed war. I am amazed that this fact gets thrown in here of all places and that we get to attack an anti-war critic. The Assassin Council tells you that the Girondins are the "moderate" faction, but the guy you are attacking shouts at people, "What's moderate about starting a war?" and then you have to ask, since the game doesn't, what's heroic about killing a guy who asks this basic truth.

2) An Engaging Egyptologist - Another one for INCOMPETENCE. Now the famous Egyptologist Champollion was the Frenchman who decoded the Rosetta Stone for the first time. France invaded Egypt in 1799, an imperialist adventure Napoleon's PR team paralyed into an Enlightenment Science Project but anyway. Now the game is set between 1790-1794 broadly but the last brotherhood mission takes place in 1799 so I will allow references to a period as late as that in this game. But the problem is that Champollion was born in 1790, Arno's older than him by 20 f--king years, why do we see him as an adult interacting with Arno in this mission.

3) Marat's Missive - Another mission where Marat gets slandered, apparently he gave some thugs license to kill and rob graves, because he's evil.

4) Betrayer of the Queen - This mission has you attacking a Templar who prevented Marie Antoinette from escaping and played a role in slandering Mirabeau's reputation. Since Mirabeau was corrupt and accepted bribes from the royal government while trying to curtail reforms in the Assembly, I fail to see what they had to do to slander his reputation.

Charles_Phipps
11-18-2014, 05:23 PM
I have a shorter summation.

This is worse history than the majority of governments being controlled with a magical apple.

Dev_Anj
11-18-2014, 05:43 PM
So, how does the Reign of Terror end in this game? I hope it doesn't involve Napoleon and a Piece of Eden.

Also thanks VestigaILlama4 for the history lesson.

ShadoeKat
11-18-2014, 05:45 PM
FYI the games were not made to be EXACTLY like history, Ubisoft is trying to fit in a fictional storyline and still try and remain close to the history. No you should teach a history class with AC. the game is much like a book written the same way... artistic interpretation, creative license is the thing to understand. It's a game... not a history lesson and should never be seen as anything but a game. So have fun with it... which most of us do.

MnemonicSyntax
11-18-2014, 05:49 PM
Especially with Abstergo Entertainment.. In Black Flag, there are many historical inaccuracies blatantly pointed out in the Database and Oliver (sp?) wanting it in the "game" anyway because it was awesome, like the Queen's Staircase in Nassau is a great example of this.

DumbGamerTag94
11-18-2014, 06:31 PM
They do explain in the database that not everyone wanted him dead immediately. And if my math is correct if 34 out of 394(for death is a lumping of a category of votes rather than separating it the way a government would vote on it). There were 3 prepositions 1 immediate death. 2 Indefinite stay of execution. 3 acquittal.
So that means the vote would have been...
360 death
34 stay of execution/abstaining
360 acquittal
That's a tie. And no legislative government ever passes a tie. Nor do they lump in the next closest thing as being part of the majority vote. These numbers are very clearly an initial vote count. Meaning there would be a recount. And if the votes are recounted and once again tie.....the president of the assembly breaks the tie with 1 vote.
And who was president of the assembly at that point? I'm pretty sure it was our target according to my memory and the database. So the 34 votes are irrelevant and a tie was broken between 360 and 360. Giving a final vote of 361 to 360. So I don't see what's wrong with that at all.

And the war with Austria is mentioned tons of times in the game. Random conversations in the crowds. Brief mentions in Cutscenes. And if you read the newspapers it's in there too. I know there definitely was one in the papers when the war was declared.

And that war was inevitable anyway. There's no Girondin conspiracy to evilly consolidate power by distracting the people(which is oddly your accusation in the very post where you say that the game makes Parisians looks like mindless puppets and they aren't....yet you accuse the Girondin of manipulating them?). Anyway. The King and Queen of Austria were Marie Antoinette's immediate family. And they didn't take kindly to Louis and Marie being locked up in the Touleries at bayonet point(they were essentially on house arrest during the"constitutional monarchy"). The Austrians sent letters and envoys to the National Assembly telling them that if anything happened to the King and Queen there would be war. They even began massing troops near the boarders of France. As did the Prussians. The Revolution was not popular with the rest of Europe. Britain Austria and Prussia wanted it smashed as soon as possible. The enemy was quite literally at the gates when the assembly decided to declare war......it was fight now....or fight later when we are poorer, bloodier, and out of revolutionary fervor(finances were a wreck at the time as was the ongoing revolutionary madness taking it's toll on morale). If they would have waited to long France would be out of money out of guns and out of will to fight.

Ironically the war rekindled revolutionary fervor giving strength to the more radical Jacobin and other factions.

As for Robespierre, Danton, Marat and others who wanted to avoid war......that's because at that point in time they were a bunch of bleeding heart liberals who opposed war for any reason, the death penalty, convictions without proper trial, and such other things that radical liberals like to "SAY"(important to note the word say). But then of course once their party gained control of the government they did a complete 180 and began. Conducting a Civil War against the very people of France(most notably in Vendee), executed the King,Queen,thousands of citizens, their Girondin Rivals, later the Dantonist rivals, and pretty much anybody deemed a threat to "France" aka Jacobin control of government. So yeah there's quite a big difference between what a person or group SAYS when they are not in power. And what they DO once power is given to them(or in this case taken in a coup/purge of Girondins). Actions speak much louder than words. Don't forget these men were politicians. A profession not especially well known for honesty.

The last bit I wrote exactly points to some of the themes of Unity that they stated they were trying to convey. Namely the dangers of radicalism. And yesterday's radicals becoming today's moderates(Girondin were considered radical for there actions before they lost power. But then were the moderates in comparison to what followed).

The French Revolution is a touchy subject and everyone has different takes on just about everything about it. But overall I think ACU did a fairly good job. There was inaccuracies here and there and stretched half truths here n there as well. But these are in every AC. they had to fit their story in somehow. This is a GAME after all not a history textbook or documentary.

I think they may have marginalized the history a little too much though. It causes confusion. Missed details and not enough contextualization to be completely fair to some characters. The CO-OP missions should have been unlocked as you go and playable at that skill level in the campaign. So then they overall story would fit together better. Since the coop is canon/interconnected/a continuation of the main story line. The history just got marginalized in this game so much that it just expects you to know what's going on or pick up a brief reference in dialogue to fully understand everything. And when Arno does encounter historic events he is quite literally Forrest Gumping(in that when he does see something major he literally just walks in unintentionally with little or no context as to what or why something is going on). So I don't want to hear about Connor's "Gumping" anymore because he at least understood what was going on and why and often had an impact/reason to be at those events(aside from the continental congress that was BS). If any character thus far fits the bill of literally "Gumping" through history then it's definately Arno by far. I mean half the time he has no idea what's going on....cases in point the Estates General and Bastille.

Charles_Phipps
11-18-2014, 07:05 PM
FYI the games were not made to be EXACTLY like history, Ubisoft is trying to fit in a fictional storyline and still try and remain close to the history. No you should teach a history class with AC. the game is much like a book written the same way... artistic interpretation, creative license is the thing to understand. It's a game... not a history lesson and should never be seen as anything but a game. So have fun with it... which most of us do.

I'm an academic and the Assassin's Creeds game great edutainment.

There's a difference between portraying a secret society of Assassins vs. Templas occurring versus ignoring real-life causes of war to lionize unpleasant people and villify real-life ones.

VestigialLlama4
11-18-2014, 07:26 PM
They do explain in the database that not everyone wanted him dead immediately. And if my math is correct if 34 out of 394(for death is a lumping of a category of votes rather than separating it the way a government would vote on it). There were 3 prepositions 1 immediate death. 2 Indefinite stay of execution. 3 acquittal.
...
That's a tie. And no legislative government ever passes a tie.


I based my reasoning on a fine book by David P. Jordan called The King's Trial, generally regarded as the best book on the topic. It is only a tie if you think that Death By Delay jumbles with Acquittal/Clemency, rather than 1) A separate category altogether 2) Jumbled with Execution, with minority disagreeing on date of sentence. Now if its 1) A Separate category, its still 360>321>34. If its the other than 360+34>321. Now your reasoning is 3) Jumbling Delay with Clemency so that is still 360>321+34 which is 360>355, close but no tie.

Bear in mind, that some of the people who voted for the King's execution tried to cover it up later so there is disagreements about the estimate, that is to say how big the majority was, not denying the majority. It was a royalist fantasy that the votes were passed by one vote since it better preserved the illusion that the people didn't want the King dead and a minority did backroom politics to kill the King. You don't have take my word for it, follow this link:http://books.google.co.in/books?id=0sigPXBq4IEC&printsec=frontcover&dq=David+P.+Jordan+The+King%27s+Trial&hl=en&sa=X&ei=EIprVIWbE5GxuATzxIK4DA&ved=0CBsQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=387&f=false


And the war with Austria is mentioned tons of times in the game. Random conversations in the crowds. Brief mentions in Cutscenes. And if you read the newspapers it's in there too. I know there definitely was one in the papers when the war was declared.

That is part of the point. It isn't mentioned in the context of the events. The September Massacres came out of defeats on the front. Here's it's a Templar Plot. The Terror was Emergency that came out of it. It's there as just info. None of the cutscenes in the single player mentioned it. It's only the sidemissions that tacke it.


And that war was inevitable anyway. There's no Girondin conspiracy to evilly consolidate power by distracting the people(which is oddly your accusation in the very post where you say that the game makes Parisians looks like mindless puppets and they aren't....yet you accuse the Girondin of manipulating them?). Anyway. The King and Queen of Austria were Marie Antoinette's immediate family.

Actually, the Austrians were sabre rattling and only concerned but weren't ready to turn on France. Neither was England. Robert Roswell Palmer in his Age of Democractic Revolutions and The Twelve Who Ruled as well as Sylvia Neely in this article[http://quod.lib.umich.edu/w/wsfh/0642292.0034.006/--uses-of-power-lafayette-and-brissot-in-1792?rgn=main;view=fulltext] note that the external threat was considerably exaggerated and the Austrians wanted to avoid war and that the Girondins, led by Brissot(absent but we can collect his head for Tussaud) who agitated for it, for all sorts of shady reasons. And by the way the Austrians valued Marie Antoinette's life so much that despite Robespierre delaying her execution and Danton making several overtures to ransom her, they left her to die. Robespierre ultimately washed his hands off it when he and Danton couldn't stall for more time.


But then of course once their party gained control of the government they did a complete 180 and began. Conducting a Civil War against the very people of France(most notably in Vendee)

The Vendee rose against the Republic, they massacred 200 men, women and children at Machecoul, were fully taking support of guns and supplies from England to rebel against the Republic. During the American Civil War, the North committed war crimes against the South too, the Republicans did so in Vendee as well. The Vendeeans were anti-semitic, royalist and wanted to return to feudalism and they brutally attacked Republican Vendeeans who fully supported and welcomed the Revolution and fought with fervor against them. They weren't innocent, they committed several atrocities such as boiling people in oil alive.


The French Revolution is a touchy subject and everyone has different takes on just about everything about it. But overall I think ACU did a fairly good job. There was inaccuracies here and there and stretched half truths here n there as well. But these are in every AC. they had to fit their story in somehow. This is a GAME after all not a history textbook or documentary.

Despite that you should try and be fair, you cannot be so hopelessly one-sided as this game is and simply white-wash one side and blacken the other.

In any case, Assassin's Creed is regarded as a slightly better than average sandbox game and stealth/action game because the history in the past games are unusually good. By the standards of Assassin's Creed, Unity is rotten history, leave alone academic history.

ze_topazio
11-18-2014, 07:57 PM
In the Assassin's Creed world that's how it happened, and the history books are wrong.

All the previous games were full of inaccuracies and several historical events turned in to Templar and Assassin plots.

I understand the French Revolution is personal to you or something but, you know, deal with it

Charles_Phipps
11-18-2014, 08:15 PM
In the Assassin's Creed world that's how it happened, and the history books are wrong.

All the previous games were full of inaccuracies and several historical events turned in to Templar and Assassin plots.

I understand the French Revolution is personal to you or something but, you know, deal with it

He is, by complaining it's crappy storytelling.

Dev_Anj
11-19-2014, 01:51 AM
In the Assassin's Creed world that's how it happened, and the history books are wrong.

But that doesn't mean that someone can't complain about it not being interesting. Simplifying very important events and situations to be the work of one shady group or the other is just dumb, especially when it contradicts actual history. It can work, but it needs more plausible and interesting explanations besides, "Well, one side had a powerful artefact and they used it to control governments and other powerful groups somehow."

D.I.D.
11-19-2014, 02:03 AM
The story would have needed to be much bigger to encompass it, but I was hoping this story would show rottenness on both sides. The palace at Versailles is known to have been absolutely disgusting when the monarchy lived there - suffice it to say that it's fortunate it was all built out of shiny marble and gold, since it really needed to be wipe-clean - and I hoped the game was going to use that slide into filth as a metaphor for the way the ruling class was essentially imploding all by itself. We certainly shouldn't have been expected to shed any tears for the aristocracy.

It also drives me a bit nuts that we've had an American Revolution game and a French Revolution game, and there's no mention of Thomas Paine in either one which is an absolute travesty. However, I'm on the wrong end of this argument, I think. It's pretty clear at the point that Ubisoft doesn't really have any attention of slavish attention to political detail. They want the research to make their world feel good, and it does. For every complaint we can make about one thing being wrong, we can point to a handful of other smaller things that are surprisingly well observed, and that's probably the best balance for the whole audience. The story might make a hamfisted job of the major players in some respects, but at least everyone's clear on who are meant to be the good guys and who are the bad guys. Meanwhile, the history buffs get plenty of little gifts that the wider audience might not even notice. Perhaps that's enough.

Megas_Doux
11-19-2014, 02:20 AM
Game of fiction BASED on historical events, based.....

Conniving_Eagle
11-19-2014, 04:26 AM
But OP, you're wrong. The sources you're using are just distorted interpretations of the truth written by the Templars. That's just what they WANTED you to think.

In all seriousness though, that was very informative; thank you. I am not a historian by any means, though I did catch some of the inaccuracies. But at the same time you have to appreciate the great amount of historical accuracy and immersion put into such a great game (I'm talking about the series in general).

A-p-o-l-l-y-o-n
11-19-2014, 05:42 AM
I was initially upset (back when AC1 came out) that they just twisted the story of the Knights Templar and made them out to be Illuminati essentially (ironic since in their story, it's Abstergo who is twisting history), but I'm over that. Still not quite over all the blatant anti-Christian stuff (like Arno's ending speech which has nothing to do with the story and only serves as a plug for the writer's atheism). But the only thing I'm really upset about with Unity is the fact that the main story writers and the coop/side-mission writers didn't sit down and go over the story. In the main story, the Assassins are clearly anti-Revolution where as the Templars are pro-Revolution, as it's their undertaking. In the coop missions, it's literally the opposite. That is quite annoying. That said, the coop angle (Assassins being pro-Revolution) makes for a better story, and makes more sense.

The Revolution should have been an Assassin undertaking that went south, Robespierre should've been a radical Assassin, with his Montagnard (The "Mountain") being an allusion to Masyaf (and, by extension, Al Mualim who was known historically as "The Old Man of the Mountain"). Robespierre should've been the ending villain, with his Montagnard being the main Assassins, the Brotherhood of Paris being lesser Assassins, and this existence of two Brotherhoods representing a split within the French Assassins. Bellec should've been really a part of Robespierre's order, and they should've called their Brotherhood an "Order" and their mentor, Robespierre, "Grandmaster"( both like they were called in AC1) to signify their radical fanaticism. They would've been like Bellec, fundamentally anti-Templar and should've started and used the Revolution to get rid of Templars and their influence in France.

They would've killed de la Serre, because he was the Templar Grandmaster. They would've had Bellec kill Mirabeau because he was too soft and had amiable dealings/truce with the Templars. To the Montagnard, Mirabeau would've been a traitor. The Brotherhood, along with Arno and Elise, would've suspected that the Templars were behind it.

Elise would still be hunted by the Templars, who would've started being more radical in their response to the death of de la Serre. The end of the game would've dealt with dealing with Robespierre. With the radical Assassins put down, the Brotherhood of Paris would become the leading Brotherhood of the French Assassins, in Paris and elsewhere (Assassins in Paris would be the leading Assassins for the other French Brotherhoods to follow). The game would end with the Brotherhood of Paris would then start to address the now radicalized French Templars, who would've reached out to the British and American Templars (the French Templars would've been weaker than the French Assassins ever since the death of de Molay. These reinvigorated French Assassins would renew with a focus on economic power and not political/military power, setting up Abstergo). You could even show a meeting of French, British, and American Templar Grandmasters (Shay could be present as the American Grandmaster). The upcoming wars would begin, and the Assassins would have Napoleon as an ally, and they'd be bracing for renewed, intensified conflict with the Templars. This would set up a sequel game, and could even set up an expansion of the coop gameplay to include pvp gameplay in the sequel (assassins vs templars).

While, of course, the story would still be fictional, it would 1) make more sense, 2) end on a positive note for Arno and Elise (a hint for those who don't know the ending), and 3) be an interesting story that sets up future installments. Oh, and no Sage story...

VestigialLlama4
11-19-2014, 09:01 AM
In the Assassin's Creed world that's how it happened, and the history books are wrong.

All the previous games were full of inaccuracies and several historical events turned in to Templar and Assassin plots.

I understand the French Revolution is personal to you or something but, you know, deal with it

If you read what I had written you would notice that I compared the inaccuracy of Unity to other games in the series. The main reason why these games have a wider than usual audience is that the history in the earlier games were fair and reasonably accurate. I don't mean one or two quibbles and facts but general interpretation. I don't get behind the inaccuracies of call of duty or medal of honor ww2 games or prince of persia.

Assassin's creed as a franchise fully acknowledges the fact that research plays a key role. They have an in-house historian and hired two specialists as consultants. And in an interview with TIME magazine this is what Alex Amancio said:

What we actually try to do, and I think this is just a personal belief that we have, is to avoid reducing history. You can’t start taking sides, because that makes it biased, and what we’re really trying to do is expose every slice of history in the most unbiased way possible. It’s obviously incredibly difficult. History is always subjective, because it’s written by people, and no matter how objective you try to be, human nature makes it subjective. We try very hard to portray things as factually as possible.

There is, and I hope people get this nuance, a difference between subjective views and bias. Based on the gamr , the single player, brotherhood missions and side missions, they do not expose every side with an unbiased view at all. This game's factual basis is abominable and the promotion is misleading to the highest.

johnsmith145
11-22-2014, 12:15 PM
Great read, thanks for taking the time OP. The general idea of this game seems bo be the demonising of jacobins. And the completely godlike portrayal of Napoléon. That mission when Arno freaking guards him on a romantic walk… It just made me cringe.

Pr0metheus 1962
11-22-2014, 04:23 PM
Great read, thanks for taking the time OP. The general idea of this game seems bo be the demonising of jacobins. And the completely godlike portrayal of Napoléon. That mission when Arno freaking guards him on a romantic walk… It just made me cringe.

Oh, there are so many side quests that are cringeworthy in this game, but that was one of the worst.

Pr0metheus 1962
11-22-2014, 04:24 PM
I have to say that Unity achieves a new low in terms of getting the history wrong and poor choice of their bad guys.

Robespierre may have had his flaws, but if anything, he tried to use his position to moderate the evils of the Terror. Far from going after Danton, he delayed his execution as long as he felt he could.

The most annoying thing about it is that the French Revolution offers so much opportunity for the AC franchise to do what it does best: i.e. get into the founding idea of the series - that Templars are not just stereotypical bad guys.

Instead, the game just paints Robespierre as an evil guy and Saint-Just as a human-skin-waistcoat-wearing baby-eater. The level of childishness in terms of the characterizations is ludicrous.

The real Saint-Just was little more than a kid - he was 21 when the Revolution began and he had barely reached the age of majority when he entered the government. He was only 26 when he was guillotined. He wrote the constitution of 1793, guaranteeing the right to vote, the right to petition, and equal eligibility for employment, and he virtually single-handedly turned defeat into victory in the war against the Allied powers. Sure, he was a zealot for the revolution - he was in his early twenties and revolution was the 18th Century equivalent of the 1970s Punk movement - what kid wouldn't find that exciting? I find it so sad and disappointing that the writer (Travis Stout) chose to turn him into a ridiculous psychotic nutcase.

The people the game chooses to malign are revered in Haiti to this day for their abolishing of slavery. In my view, these were men who had the public good at heart, but who were too weak to prevent their revolution from falling apart. As a result, they made some foolish choices. In short, these were guys that should have been tailor-made for a well-rounded complex Templar (or even, as AntoineFlemming suggests, Assassin) portrayal. Instead, they are made into the most silly stereotypical bad guys.

And on the other hand, they show the Assassins helping out the royal family at every fricken turn. Does the writer not get that Assassins are supposedly for individual freedom? France at this time was no constitutional monarchy - it was an absolute monarchy. I mean, get a fricken clue!

Please, Ubisoft, don't let Travis Stout write any more AC games.

Megas_Doux
11-22-2014, 04:27 PM
I have to say that Unity achieves a new low in terms of getting the history wrong and poor choice of their bad guys Robespierre may have had his flaws, but if anything, he tried to use his position to blah blah blah blah blah.

Again, a Game of fiction BASED on historical events, based....

AC I

1 Conrad of Montferrat was the one killed by the assassins, not William of Montferrat and who by the way, was a rather old man.
2 Garnier de Naplouse was a saint according to the records, yet he is portrayed in a pretty evil manner. Oh! in Real life he even fought the battle of Arsuf.
3 Pretty much the Saracen cast is either heavily fictionalized or entirely made up.

AC II

You complain about ACU being childish, yet AC II and ACB are way more over the op. Every time Rodrigo appears on screen, he does it with a devilish red glow, pretty Dudley do right stuff in there if you ask me.

ACB:

Aside from the UBER cliche moustached villian, Cesare Borgia who in real life was one the most cunning military masterminds do date, excelling in both strategy and close combat, is portrayed in ACB as an spoiled little brat yealing GUARDS every time he is on screen and looking rather pathetic in the process. Again AC II / ACB cartoonish stuff.....

Aside from historical liberties such as Monteriggioni not being invaded in 1500, Juan Borgia dying in Constantinople, etc etc etc

Thing is, Unity is no different from any other games before, the writers take liberties in both history and architecture. In regards of Robespierre, he is one of the most polarizing figures not only in french history, but also in western civilization. There are A LOT of heated debates around him.

Oh, and nothing more cringe worthy than this:

It´s a me mario!!!!!!!! and Vitoria agli assassini!!!!!

Pr0metheus 1962
11-22-2014, 04:27 PM
Again, a Game of fiction BASED on historical events, based....

Getting history completely wrong is not "based" on history any more than a dog turd served for a dessert is "based" on chocolate pudding. It looks similar - that's all.

Stop defending bad writing!

Megas_Doux
11-22-2014, 04:31 PM
Getting history completely wrong is not "based" on history any more than a dog turd served for a dessert is "based" on chocolate pudding. It looks similar - that's all.

Stop defending bad writing!

The story is "rather 6/10" and In fact I dislike its "ohhh buy the DLC ending", but the historical "liberties" are no different from anything done before. Read what I said about Cesare Borgia for instance....

Pr0metheus 1962
11-22-2014, 05:02 PM
I wouldn't mind if the writer got the history completely wrong if he used the history to tell a compelling story, with complex characters and a meaningful conclusion. The problem is, he doesn't, and in large part that's because it's clear that he doesn't care about the history enough to use it to tell his story in a better way.

wvstolzing
11-22-2014, 05:31 PM
A marvellous thread; thanks to everyone who contributed.

Pr0metheus 1962
11-22-2014, 06:18 PM
This is a GAME after all not a history textbook or documentary.

But why not get it right? After all, there's nothing in the true history that would detract from Unity's story. In fact, getting the facts right could have enhanced the story, as was the case in Black Flag, when Ubisoft generally got the facts of the little-known Pirate Republic on New Providence right.

I find it sad that so many gamers think, not just that a game shouldn't aspire to tell history with some level of accuracy, but that games are so juvenile as an art form, that they are incapable of doing so.

I've been playing games for over 30 years. I thought we'd be further along than this by now. Apparently, it's still just "accepted" that it's okay for games to treat gamers as if we're all particularly stupid pre-schoolers. I mean, I've seen episodes of The Magic School Bus (a show aimed at 3-10 year-olds) that treats its audience with more respect than AC: Unity does. It seems to me that AC: Unity's writer thinks we're not even as smart as a 3 year-old.

And the most annoying thing is, so many players are just fine with getting a level of disrespect from a game writer that they'd be up in arms about if it came from a local government official.

I'm 52 years old. I can handle a little more complexity than a 3 year-old can. I'm not going to demand that games treat me like an adult - I realize that would be a bit of a stretch. But it would be nice to get games to the high school level.

Megas_Doux
11-22-2014, 06:37 PM
AC II and ACB are FAR more cartoonish than Unity, devilish red glow, moustached villians, characters impersonating Mario Bros, Family guy level of accents, VITTORIA AGLI ASSASSINI?????????

Those two games are fan favorites because let´s face it, they lightered the tone from AC I...

Again, AC is NOT a documentary but a game set in a historical fictional universe... But hey, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. You think that AC II has a "engaging love story" despite the fact it is one night stand followed by a persecution, I would expect that from my 13 years old cousin, not a 52 years old man.

MnemonicSyntax
11-23-2014, 01:34 AM
It also drives me a bit nuts that we've had an American Revolution game and a French Revolution game, and there's no mention of Thomas Paine in either one which is an absolute travesty. However, I'm on the wrong end of this argument, I think. It's pretty clear at the point that Ubisoft doesn't really have any attention of slavish attention to political detail. They want the research to make their world feel good, and it does. For every complaint we can make about one thing being wrong, we can point to a handful of other smaller things that are surprisingly well observed, and that's probably the best balance for the whole audience. The story might make a hamfisted job of the major players in some respects, but at least everyone's clear on who are meant to be the good guys and who are the bad guys. Meanwhile, the history buffs get plenty of little gifts that the wider audience might not even notice. Perhaps that's enough.

Thomas Paine is in Unity. He's a Paris Story.

MnemonicSyntax
11-23-2014, 01:38 AM
But why not get it right? After all, there's nothing in the true history that would detract from Unity's story. In fact, getting the facts right could have enhanced the story, as was the case in Black Flag, when Ubisoft generally got the facts of the little-known Pirate Republic on New Providence right.

I find it sad that so many gamers think, not just that a game shouldn't aspire to tell history with some level of accuracy, but that games are so juvenile as an art form, that they are incapable of doing so.

I've been playing games for over 30 years. I thought we'd be further along than this by now. Apparently, it's still just "accepted" that it's okay for games to treat gamers as if we're all particularly stupid pre-schoolers. I mean, I've seen episodes of The Magic School Bus (a show aimed at 3-10 year-olds) that treats its audience with more respect than AC: Unity does. It seems to me that AC: Unity's writer thinks we're not even as smart as a 3 year-old.

And the most annoying thing is, so many players are just fine with getting a level of disrespect from a game writer that they'd be up in arms about if it came from a local government official.

I'm 52 years old. I can handle a little more complexity than a 3 year-old can. I'm not going to demand that games treat me like an adult - I realize that would be a bit of a stretch. But it would be nice to get games to the high school level.

You're 52, and expect some maturity yet you insult anyone who disagrees with you.

Regardless, the entire point is that history as we know it was written by the victors and the actual history is written the way it is in the AC universe.

No one wants to read the history books over again when they play these games. As Megas said, it's a different approach to attempt to be light-hearted and put an Assassiny spin on these games. In AC 1, the nine targets didn't actually all die or disappear in 1191 and it certainly wasn't all done by Assassins either.

Assassin_M
11-23-2014, 01:49 AM
I'm 52 years old.
..............The ****

D.I.D.
11-23-2014, 02:13 AM
Thomas Paine is in Unity. He's a Paris Story.

I've cleared the entire map of mission icons, and I own the season pass. He's not in my game.

It's not even about meeting him, so much as feeling his presence in the world. AC3 was so tilted at massaging the US audience with anti-British nonsense that it failed to mention Paine's importance to the American Revolution. "Common Sense", the best-selling publication of the period, known by almost every soldier of the revolution, hailed by John Adams as essential to the revolution, but not mentioned at all in AC3, ditto "Age of Reason"; "The Rights of Man", part one selling a million copies alone before part two cemented the importance of the book to the French Revolution and political history beyond it. Granted honours in both countries, before stirring up trouble in both as well, directly challenging Robespierre and Washington. You'd think all of that might warrant a bit more than what I assume is one minor side mission for a collector's edition owned by some tiny slice of the audience, for one of the French/American Revolution games.

MnemonicSyntax
11-23-2014, 02:50 AM
Then your game is glitched or something, because he's not anything special as far as a bonus mission or DLC is concerned. Or you just didn't find it, as not all Paris Stories and Murder Mysteries appear when you synchronize.

Age of Reason and Rights of Man are also included in the story. That being said though, it is short.

D.I.D.
11-23-2014, 02:53 AM
Then your game is glitched or something, because he's not anything special as far as a bonus mission or DLC is concerned. Or you just didn't find it, as not all Paris Stories and Murder Mysteries appear when you synchronize.

Age of Reason and Rights of Man are also included in the story. That being said though, it is short.

Yeah, I think my game must be broken somehow (PC). There's nothing left to do on my map other than replay co-op and heists, but my stats say I'm yet to do four of the Paris Stories, since it's listing 5/9.

I thought I'd been a bit lucky with bugs, but they found a way to bite me on the arse eventually.

MnemonicSyntax
11-23-2014, 03:04 AM
Well, sometimes they also appear when you do other ones, so... who knows really.

But maybe if you find him, you'll like what you see. I'm not familiar with the history myself, but I thought I'd let you know anyway.

D.I.D.
11-23-2014, 03:10 AM
Well, sometimes they also appear when you do other ones, so... who knows really.

But maybe if you find him, you'll like what you see. I'm not familiar with the history myself, but I thought I'd let you know anyway.

Yeah, thanks! Good to know.

I've tried Verify Files and UPlay sees nothing wrong, so I don't know. Maybe I'll try a fresh install after the next patch and/or NVidia's Gameworks, and see if it picks them up properly as well. I'm wondering what else I'm missing now.

E-Zekiel
11-23-2014, 04:21 AM
Keep in mind that this is historical fiction, not a straight up history lesson. Liberties for the story will be taken. Also bear in mind that within the AC universe, the idea is that history as it is given is a skewed version absent a lot of truth due to (as another person said) "history being written by the victors".



In AC 1, the nine targets didn't actually all die or disappear in 1191 and it certainly wasn't all done by Assassins either.

Allow me to disagree here - if I remember correctly, the actual targets that were in history did die in or around 1191 (IE, early 1190's), and assassination by the Assassin Order was definitely a major thing at that time. However, if memory serves, where it took liberties was that only 3-5 of the targets were actual historical figures, and the remainders were fictional characters created for the game, and were basically believable antagonists that could have arisen given the state of things at the time. Feel free to dispute this, though, it's been 2+ years since I've done historical comparisons from the first game. But yeah,

MnemonicSyntax
11-23-2014, 05:16 AM
Keep in mind that this is historical fiction, not a straight up history lesson. Liberties for the story will be taken. Also bear in mind that within the AC universe, the idea is that history as it is given is a skewed version absent a lot of truth due to (as another person said) "history being written by the victors".




Allow me to disagree here - if I remember correctly, the actual targets that were in history did die in or around 1191 (IE, early 1190's), and assassination by the Assassin Order was definitely a major thing at that time. However, if memory serves, where it took liberties was that only 3-5 of the targets were actual historical figures, and the remainders were fictional characters created for the game, and were basically believable antagonists that could have arisen given the state of things at the time. Feel free to dispute this, though, it's been 2+ years since I've done historical comparisons from the first game. But yeah,

Yes, early 1190s. However the game takes place in only 1191. Some of the deaths/disappearances were most likely done by assassination, but there's no real proof or evidence to say that all 9 were.

Which sorta furthers my point in that history is written by the victors, and unless we were there we have no clue as to what really happened.

VestigialLlama4
11-23-2014, 08:18 AM
Regardless, the entire point is that history as we know it was written by the victors and the actual history is written the way it is in the AC universe.

If that was indeed the case, why do the developers, writers and creative artists spend so much time researching the actual historical documents of the Crusades, the Renaissance, the American Revolution and the Golden Age of Piracy. Why does Ubisoft boast of having an in-house historian? Why does this article that came after ''Assassin's Creed III'' state as Alex Hutchinson does, “We try as much as possible to be objective and not bend history." [http://www.theglobeandmail.com/technology/are-video-games-like-assassins-creed-rewriting-history/article9237302/?page=all]

Why did Darby McDevitt go out of his way to include actual lines of dialogue from the period of the Golden Age like that speech Black Bart gave: "For I have dipped my hand in muddy waters".The fact is nobody would bother about the accuracy of Assassin's Creed had they not been unusually accurate in all their previous games, a tradition that obviously the marketing team acknowledged. Alex Amancio said in an interview with TIME magazine, "What we actually try to do, and I think this is just a personal belief that we have, is to avoid reducing history. You can’t start taking sides, because that makes it biased, and what we’re really trying to do is expose every slice of history in the most unbiased way possible." [http://time.com/3471390/assassins-creed-unity/] This statement is obviously not true, the game is biased, the game does reduce history and the game does take sides.


No one wants to read the history books over again when they play these games. As Megas said, it's a different approach to attempt to be light-hearted and put an Assassiny spin on these games. In AC 1, the nine targets didn't actually all die or disappear in 1191 and it certainly wasn't all done by Assassins either.

Assassin's Creed is a game and not a documentary, I never said otherwise. I don't have complaints about changing dates and all that. What I have a problem is a persistent, venomous bias that runs through the single player and side-mission campaigns where essentially, aside from the first sections of the Single Player Campaign, virtually the entire game is one lie, falsification and slander after another. As for the historical inaccuracies earlier, let's cover this game by game.

ASSASSIN'S CREED 1 - This is not really a historical game like the later games, the dates are obviously shifted around and the targets died at different places. But the basic question is fairness. From playing the game, we get a sense that neither the Crusader or Saracen are wholly good or wholly evil We also get a portrayal of Richard the Lionheart who speaks with a French accent since he hardly spoke English for most of his life(and spent all his reign in France) and we see him as a bit of a religious zealot with a dudebro warrior code, which is more fair and honest than Robin Hood Stories. It also shows the historical Assassins as tThe Asasiyun and not The Hashashin which comes from slander about them being a bunch of proto-Jihadis who got high on grass. It is still far more respectful and honest to the story and landscape than Unity is.

ASSASSIN'S CREED 2 and BROTHERHOOD - Now the Borgia are shown as murderous, corrupt and decadent, they were far from an exception and they had many good qualities(Rodrigo Borgia was probably the most religiously tolerant Pope of the Medieval Era) but it is true that they were corrupt and murderous and say what you want about them, they made awesome, memorable, entertaining villains while you can't say that about Unity. Caterina Sforza got a lot of slander in her lifetime for being some kind of witch and child-killer but historians like Antonia Fraser regard that as slander. She was a tough woman, made hard calls and was ruthless and this is there in the game, but it also shows her with greater respect than she otherwise gets. We finally get Leonardo da Vinci as the handsome young man that he was famous for being at the height of his fame(rather than the old guy of popular imagination) and we have him being gay, unlike that crappy TV show Da Vinci's Demons which made him "a bisexual who mostly sleeps with women". We see Machiavelli as this statesman and public servant, not as some evil cackling high priest of murder. For all its minor inaccuracies and occassional biases it is very fair for the most part.

ASSASSIN'S CREED REVELATIONS - Now a lot of people wondered about the positive portrayal of Ottoman Turkey in this game, since most Western depictions sees them as little better than Mongols and mostly root for the Byzantine Greeks at the Fall of Constantinople. But at the time of the Renaissance, Turkey was a multi-cultural Empire with a great deal of religious tolerance, far greater than most European states. They were also innovative in administration, navigation and architecture and the game respects and shows that. It is overly idealized perhaps but compared to the vast quantity of negative depictions, its a welcome respite. It also shows the Fratricidal Brother-Vs-Brother duels to the Throne, it shows Prince Suleiman fairly and it has Piri Reis, the creator of the first detailed map of the Americas. The other thing is that Revelations is not really a historical story, since it's pretty much Ezio on Vacation trying to look up about Altair, but even with a plot not based on history, it is way more fair than UNITY is.

ASSASSIN'S CREED III - The Founders have flaws, the English aren't Evil Bad Guys. You come away from the game feeling yay, 'Murica but also have this sense of compromise and betrayal, that the high American ideals comes with this hypocrisy. So it's flawed but it is fair, and it doesn't demonize or idealize the Founders. There are inaccuracies in the game, but the game is fair and not an insult to the intelligence.

BLACK FLAG - For a period that has very little in way of primary sources, Black Flag is impressively accurate in showing the pirate life. There are minor inaccuracies but in terms of Blackbeard and the Nassau Republic its pretty fair. Again the Pirates aren't Evil but they do make a living of thieving and plunder, that is shown to be the case. They all started as former sailors who never found fair pay or good treatment on the ships of the navies of the Empires. The Empires who persecute these pirates are plundering the New World themselves with colonies built on slave-run sugar plantations(something that most pirate stories fail to mention). Slavery is both legal and more profitable than piracy as we are told often in this game. Slaves like Adewale find greater justice on a Pirate ship (which is still racist) than they do anywhere else.

The point of Assassin's Creed is that it has been about subverting cliches of the historical period. The Ottoman Turks aren't bad guys, the Pirates aren't bad guys.The orignal Asasiyun aren't bad guys. It takes the side of people who have been demonized in the popular imagination. The French Revolution, especially the Jacobins have been demonized badly for the last 200 years mostly be English propaganda of Scarlet Pimpernels. The fact that Assassin's Creed Unity is a game even more biased and false than that is nothing less than a betrayal of its principles.

A-p-o-l-l-y-o-n
11-23-2014, 09:06 AM
I'd say you're mostly spot on, but Revelations was biased against the Byzantines. It wasn't balanced like AC1 or AC3. Neither was ACII/ACB's portrayal of Cesare Borgia. I would say that the games have a slight anti-religious slant, particularly the earlier games (AC1, ACII), and I'm not the only one to note this, but for the most part, they have been rather balanced, although sometimes inconsistent with their characters' affiliations (I think Machiavelli, based on his writings, should've been a Templar, whereas I feel like the Assassins in Unity should've been aligned with the Revolution and not against it). Unity certainly was biased against the Revolution, and I think they did that so that 1) Robespierre would be a Templar without the Assassins being connected to the Reign of Terror, 2) because of how the Revolution got very violent, 3) they could then blame the Revolution's problems on the Templars.

I think the story would've been better if the Assassins, like in the colonies, were instrumental in the Revolution, but if Robespierre and his Montagnard were radical Assassins who drove the Revolution to extreme violence with the same motivation that Pierre Bellec had, to kill Templars, any and every Templar. The Templars should not have been supportive of the Revolution because they'd support order, and the Revolution was the opposite of that. They should've been behind the counterrevolutionaries. They should've had a truce when de la Serre and Mirabeau are alive, but should radicalize in response to the radical Assassins after de la Serre's death. The radical Assassins led by Robespierre should be responsible for what happens to Mirabeau, and Bellec should be a member of this radical brotherhood (the Brotherhood of Paris would be a splinter, moderate group of Assassins) and should be the one to carry it out (now Bellec is not alone in his sentiments, and those sentiments are the motivation behind the Revolution and all pertinent events that happen in the game). Elise and Arno believe the Templars to be responsible and go after the now radicalized Templars who have ostracized all moderates within their ranks (those moderates, like Elise, would've been more beholden to de la Serre's sentiments and his truce with Mirabeau). They would discover over the course of the game that Robespierre leads a group of radical Assassins (Mirabeau and the council would've withheld this information from Arno, and wouldn't know of Bellec's membership with them until the end) and that he and his Assassins are responsible for both Mirabeau and de la Serre's fates. Arno would confront them, and the core message of the game would come home, so to speak, to the Assassins, bringing the story full circle and become a message of internal reflection, not of highlighting the dangers of radicalization in the Templar Order only. It becomes significant for the protagonist and his allies. Then you have a story that is still centered around the dangers of radicalization, yet you now have a story that still, at its core, involves the murder plot that draws in Elise and Arno, yet with a story that is much more closely tied to the Revolution, as well as making Bellec's sentiments that much more important (while relegating his finale to the end of the game, for more significance and emotional weight). This would allow for a story that also ties closer in with history (allowing Robespierre to be painted as a controversial figure instead of just an evil Templar/Templar-affiliate as the game basically portrays him). Germain need not be in the story, but sure, he could be there as the radical Templar who takes charge after de la Serre. The story would not end with him, and his part would rap up by the middle of the game (again, he wouldn't be involved in any Templar coup - although Arno and Elise would think so - or involved in de la Serre's demise, but he would radicalize the Templar Order and aggressively strike back at the Assassins because of de la Serre's demise).

VestigialLlama4
11-23-2014, 09:34 AM
(I think Machiavelli, based on his writings, should've been a Templar, whereas I feel like the Assassins in Unity should've been aligned with the Revolution and not against it).

Well the main problem is that the series Mythology sees Assassins and Templars as these perfectly consistent organizations where they never have schisms or radical and conservative wings. Or you know the ambiguity like there is one Templar who is more Assassin than Assassin and vice versa. You see that all the time in history. Like one of the Democract FDR's closest supporters was the Republican Mayor of New York Fiorello LaGuardia, who was more anti-big business and pro-labor than democrats. Ideally during the Renaissance, they should have had Machiavelli form his own splinter faction of Assassins and Ezio getting in conflict with him and others. In fact, I think there were hints to that with La Volpe but they rushed Brotherhood for annualization, wrapped up the Borgia story.

In Unity, they made the Templars split into two factions but they make that one splinter faction the bad guys who cause all the problems for the good guys and the historical plot. So, you really have the same equation as before, just packaged with a slight twist that allows the hero to fall for this Templar girl. I didn't expect Ubisoft to tell the real story of the Terror which is known to historians, widely chronicled by American writers like R. R. Palmer and David A. Bell that the Terror was not this great thing in the popular imagination, it was part of a series of wartime emergencies no different from what many governments did before and afterwards and that most of France was unaffected by it and that it saved France from invasion and preserved the Revolution. But I expected some acknowledgement of ambiguity and some hints that would make readers see Robespierre as something other than a sociopath.


Unity certainly was biased against the Revolution, and I think they did that so that 1) Robespierre would be a Templar without the Assassins being connected to the Reign of Terror, 2) because of how the Revolution got very violent, 3) they could then blame the Revolution's problems on the Templars.

This is the main problem really. The Jacobins weren't some secret masterminds cackling for power, they were just the most competent, driven and efficient political party at the time of the Revolution and they only held power for a few months before being totally shut down. What was it that Napoleon said, "At that time, every man of feeling was a Jacobin", including himself of course. Ideally the real Unity of the title should have been Assassins and Templars forming the Jacobins together, serving on the Committee of Public Safety together and persecuting Assassins and Templars who disagree with them and sending them to the guillotine. That would have captured the ambiguity of that era and the tragedy of the Revolution.

DaveyNorton
11-23-2014, 11:14 AM
Well the main problem is that the series Mythology sees Assassins and Templars as these perfectly consistent organizations where they never have schisms or radical and conservative wings.
I wouldn't really say that. Borgia's Templars were a whole different beast from Haytham's Colonial rite and they were different themselves from Torres' Carribean faction. Abstergo is, again, completely different from either of them. The only running theme is that they all want to get to power.

Assassins retain more similarities and consistency throughout the history, but even among them you can find differences, most obvious in Achilles' Colonial Brotherhood.

If anything, it's the audience that can't wrap its head around the fact that Assassins and Templars aren't some monolithic entities, that never change throughout the time and aren't made of individual people who all understand their ideologies in different ways and have different goals. This showed recently in reactions to Rogue, when some people couldn't understand why are Templars presented as an actual, genuine good guys in the story and Shay isn't some puppy-eating "villain protagonist".

Unity, in my opinion, manages to retain this theme, perhaps actually putting more emphasis on it than ever. We have the whole moderates vs. extermists thing going on, the truce, Bellec's insurrection, Germain's exile etc. What is the problem is that Unity contextualizes this clash of ideologies with black/white perspective that hasn't been present in the series since Revelations. Moderates are good. Extremists are bad. It's Jedi vs. Sith all over again. There are little to no shades of gray and it's especially painful to see it in a setting as colorful as the French Revolution.

"It's all a matter of perspective. There is no single path through life that's right and fair and does no harm. Do you truly think the Crown has no cause? No right to feel betrayed? You should know better than this, dedicated as you are to fighting Templars, who themselves see their work as just. Think on that the next time you insist your work alone befits the greater good. Your enemy would beg to differ - and would not be without cause." Yeah, I miss this.

Pr0metheus 1962
11-23-2014, 01:15 PM
I'm 52 years old.


..............The ****

Yes, kiddies, believe it or not, your generation didn't invent video gaming. Mine did. Deal with it.


AC3 was so tilted at massaging the US audience with anti-British nonsense...

Oh, don't even get me started. Every single homestead mission starts with "Oh, some British dude murdered/stole from/ raped my entire family, please help me, native American dude who I've never met before. If you help me, I'll try to keep the other colonials from butchering your tribe and stealing their land, honest!"

Pr0metheus 1962
11-23-2014, 01:54 PM
The Jacobins weren't some secret masterminds cackling for power, they were just the most competent, driven and efficient political party at the time of the Revolution and they only held power for a few months before being totally shut down. What was it that Napoleon said, "At that time, every man of feeling was a Jacobin", including himself of course.

It's a pity the developers of Unity didn't take that to heart before they made their latest "Screed".


Moderates are good. Extremists are bad

I agree that the game's developers take this as their philosophy, but they seem to choose the defenders of monarchy as their "moderates". I cannot fathom how they could find those who oppressed the poor for hundreds of years as "moderates".

Maybe it's because they couldn't figure out who the true moderates were at a time when anyone who got into power started chopping heads off with abandon. But I'm guessing no one on the development team learned how happy the monarchy were to chop people's heads off. Maybe someone should have advised them to read Candide.

I just wish they'd chosen to side with the revolution rather than against it, which is what it seems they did - at least that's how it appears to me, considering that we seem to spend half the game helping out rich folks. At one point - one of the many times the game made me feel embarrassed - we even have to find some rich guy's money and we dutifully give it to him while there are folks starving all around.

The game's only saving grace is that Arno actually complains about the Assassins helping out the monarchy at one point. I had to like him for that - although he doesn't do much to back up his words. He pays lip service to the revolution, but not much else.

VestigialLlama4
11-23-2014, 03:24 PM
Maybe it's because they couldn't figure out who the true moderates were at a time when anyone who got into power started chopping heads off with abandon. But I'm guessing no one on the development team learned how happy the monarchy were to chop people's heads off. Maybe someone should have advised them to read Candide.

To be really fair to the developers, the French Revolution is a difficult time for this series because it happened in a short period of five years where things happened fast, things changed fast and each change was bolder than the last. One historian compared it to a multi-stage rocket launch, where in each stage earlier parts were removed. Weaving a single player narrative around the events would not have been easy since it would require a lot of intricate work. Ideally what they should have done is go the GTA V route and have, well not three characters that might have been stretching things, but say, two Single Player Characters. Have us play as both Arno and Elise across Paris, with each side getting a different set of missions, some missions being joint and others being separate. And also it could fit the political themes, Arno could be Jacobin, Elise could be a Feuillant/Girondin. That would have been a cooler game and you will get a double perspective of the revolution.

Assassin_M
11-23-2014, 05:09 PM
Yes, kiddies, believe it or not, your generation didn't invent video gaming. Mine did. Deal with it.
Oh it's not that, buddy. I know the industry's history pretty well and I know 60 (and even 70) year old gamers. It's just you act like a snobbish, spoiled and immature brat that I thought you were AT LEAST 15.

Pr0metheus 1962
11-23-2014, 05:38 PM
...Arno could be Jacobin, Elise could be a Feuillant/Girondin. That would have been a cooler game and you will get a double perspective of the revolution.

That's where I thought it was going until I found out Robespierre was a Templar. To me, Arno supporting the Girondins makes no sense whatsoever. But hey, what do I know.

I also thought that they might be keeping Elise as a secret playable character, but I was giving Ubisoft way too much credit on that one. She does have breasts after all - can't possibly have a playable character with breasts (breasts are just so expensive to design - they use up way too many resources)... unless she happens to be ported over from a handheld.

I shake my head every time I think of the things I thought they might be doing with this game. I actually thought they would bring all the great stuff of the series together in Unity - you know, because it's called Unity, and because they had 4 years to develop it. And because it's set in Paris and I figured they'd pull out all the stops because Ubisoft is a French company. So I never for one moment imagined it would be this bad - this empty of meaningful content, this stripped down of features, this simplistic black and white story with stereotypical bad guys being the guys everyone always assumes are the bad guys in the French Revolution. Oh, it's just so sad! So much of a lost opportunity.

GunnerGalactico
11-23-2014, 06:03 PM
Oh, don't even get me started. Every single homestead mission starts with "Oh, some British dude murdered/stole from/ raped my entire family, please help me, native American dude who I've never met before. If you help me, I'll try to keep the other colonials from butchering your tribe and stealing their land, honest!"

http://i1.kym-cdn.com/entries/icons/original/000/004/029/disgusted-mother-of-god.png

Derp43
11-30-2014, 08:09 AM
I will say this again, I would like sources for everything you have mentioned above.

rprkjj
11-30-2014, 09:18 AM
I learned quite a bit from this, thanks. But I don't play Assassin's Creed to learn history. There's plenty of better ways to do that. I take everything in the games with a grain of salt, except for the database, which is more or less accurate. Also, again with the "lies". Nobody claimed the game was 100% accurate, stop with the melodrama.

Pr0metheus 1962
11-30-2014, 09:18 AM
General Marcourt is fairly clearly based on Armand d'Hubert from Ridley Scott's film "The Duellists".

VestigialLlama4
11-30-2014, 11:43 AM
I will say this again, I would like sources for everything you have mentioned above.

My OP has been updated, to include Sources. I haven't sourced it completely because some of it is too absurd that no one thought they would have to explicitly refute it. But for the Single Player Campaign and general stuff, I've put sources yes.

In any case, for your sake I'm putting it here for you to read.

Single Player Campaign

SEQUENCE 1 - SEQUENCE 8(MEMORY 1) (19 MEMORIES)
I am going to give credit to Ubisoft, these sequences are fair. The Estates-General and the Storming of Bastille happen more or less the same way they do in history. Mirabeau's truce with de la Serre has the spirit of initial unity that fit the Revolution. So far the metaphor is not implausible. The only inaccuracy is that there is no way that Arno will be sent to Bastille for being accused of Murder. Bastille was a prison for debtors, political and moral criminals and general imbeciles. For the crime of murder, especially of an aristocrat at Versailles, Arno would be sent to a tougher prison but I am going to let this pass since its too iconic a moment for Arno to miss out on. Now the producers have stated that they are avoiding the historical element of the series by not making Arno front and center of the Revolution, so until say, the mission where Arno invades the Tuileries and meets Napoleon, I will say that the game is fair and not offensive. Then it eventually goes off the rails.

SEQUENCE 8(MEMORY 2) - THE SEPTEMBER MASSACRES(1 Memory)
Where it goes off the rails is the September Massacres, a mission where your target sadistically sings La Marseillaise in Alex DeLarge fashion by submitting the prison warden to ultra-violence.

The Elephant in the Living Room is something that goes unmentioned in the entire single player campaign, the central event of the French Revolution, is the 1792 Declaration of War.

In history, when the Constitutional Monarchy was on its last ebb, a faction of the Republicans known to history as the Girondins(not their name at the time) decided to declare a pre-emptive war to "Spread the Revolution". This war was supported by the King and Queen because they felt that it would divert and diffuse the revolutionary tensions. The people who opposed this war...those crazy extremists Marat and Robespierre who felt that democracies had no right to go to other nations and impose freedom at the end of a gun. That's right the moderates believed in war to distract people from reforms and break deadlock, the extremists were anti-war because they thought it could lead to military dictatorship and set reforms back even more than the Old Regime. The Queen of France, Saint Marie Antoinette personally gave information of French military preparations to the the Austrians in the hope of sabotaging the French war effort. And sure enough, France after some initial victories started losing. This led to the September Massacres where people of Paris, in panic decided to invade prisons and murder political prisoners and in the end, they killed common criminals, prostitutes and priests along with political prisoners. In the game, this is shown as a Templar tactic of intimidation because, Templars, amirite?

SOURCES: There are several books which cover this, but I am using these two short links, since they are by respected academics and its concise:
http://quod.lib.umich.edu/w/wsfh/0642292.0034.006/--uses-of-power-lafayette-and-brissot-in-1792?rgn=main;view=fulltext
SYLVIA NEELY:
- "Once proclaimed in the spring of 1792, war dominated Europe for almost twenty-five years. The development of the Terror is inconceivable without the background of war and the paranoia that came with it."
- "In the twentieth century, imbued with the pacifist strain of the left wing in France, many historians seemed somewhat embarrassed to find that the heroic people of revolutionary myth had been so bellicose. They focused on Robespierre, who opposed the war because he feared putting too much power in the hands of the aristocrats, and they came to believe that the Mountain joined him in opposing the war, which could then be blamed exclusively on the Girondins. Revolutionaries at the time, however, sided with Brissot, not Robespierre. At the trial of the Girondins in 1793, Brissot was accused of fomenting war against England in 1793 when the country was not sufficiently prepared."
DAVID AVROM BELL - This is a review of a recent book that is anti-Revolutionary but corrects the same facts. Here he describes the September Massacres:
- "Upon the news that the Prussian army had broken through French lines and was marching on Paris, crowds of sans-culottesstormed the prisons and killed at least 1,200 alleged counterrevolutionaries."

SEQUENCE 9(MEMORY 1 and 2)(2 Memories)
This mission tells us that the evil psychopathic Templars artifically created the entire food crisis and famine that drove the popular movement outside and inside Paris. Basically the royal family were unfairly targeted by those evil Jacobin Templars and their merchants and poor widdle Louis XVI was absolutely blameless. The food crisis and its relation to war naturally goes unmentioned.
SOURCE
For this I will cite a wikipedia article since its well sourced in these instances. In any case the idea of a single group creating a faction is such an absurdity that it has never been posed to be outright disproven in detail.
-http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pacte_de_Famine This one talks about how conspiracies about witholding grain were common in pre-Revolution times and how they were usually wrong but used as a political tool.
-Another article mentions another cause - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Fear#Causes_and_course_of_the_revolts
"The rural unrest can be traced back to the spring of 1788, when a drought threatened the prospect of the coming harvest. Harvests had in fact been bad ever since the massive 1783 Laki volcanic eruption on Iceland. Storms and floods also destroyed much of the harvest during the summer, leading to a fall in seigneurial dues and defaults on leases."
- So in other words, no one person could have been responsible for such widescale famine.

SEQUENCE 10 (2 Memories)
The biggest lie is the execution of the King, which they said comes down to one vote 361-360, with a Templar puppet casting the key vote. The King's execution enjoyed a majority of 394 for Death to 321 for imprisonment. Of the 394, 34 wanted Death with Delaying Conditions, 360 wanted immediate summary execution. The King was extraordinarily guilty by any stretch of the definition thanks to another incidient not mentioned in the game, called the Flight to Varennes, when the King and Queen went to Austria where a foreign army was ready for the King to command to invade France. In the game, the Templars kill the King because the Bad Guy had this speech that the writers thought was cool and evil, but is a poorly written Bond Speech instead, missing only the Evil Laugh. In the game, Hero Assassin kills LePeletier. In real-life he was murdered by a royalist fanatic who wanted to uphold feudal monarchy, so make of that what you will.
SOURCES:
DAVID P. JORDAN's Book The King's Trial is there on Full View in Google Books. This Link takes you to the Appendix that deals with the issues of vote-count and whatnot, it uses archive research and discusses earlier attempts to make it a shorter queue. It is usually considered the best book on the Trial in English and written by a respected historian.
http://books.google.co.in/books?id=0sigPXBq4IEC&printsec=frontcover&dq=inauthor:%22David+P.+Jordan%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=l-Z6VNeDJMmGuASysoHwBg&ved=0CCUQuwUwAQ#v=onepage&q&f=false

SEQUENCE 11 - SEQUENCE 12(Memory2) (4 Memories)
I will say, that Robespierre in the Single Player campaign doesn't come off too badly, aside from being a Templar. The Brotherhood missions are a different thing which I will deal with later. But in the single player, Robespierre is this meek pedantic dude who seems a little weird with his Festival of a Supreme Being and while that is not flattering, it isn't unfair either. It's certainly a legitimate area of criticism to put him under. The real falsehood is the Mission "The Fall of Robespierre" where Arno finds out that the Paris Commune freed Robespierre by murdering a bunch of guards and they defend their leader with violence. There was no violence at all that day on Robespierre's part or his faction and Robespierre refused until the end to raise calls for the Paris Commune to attack the National Guard.
SOURCES: This link by Author Marisa Linton(a respected academic at Kingston university, author of CHOOSING TERROR) conveys it well:
http://www.port.ac.uk/special/france1815to2003/chapter1/interviews/filetodownload,20545,en.pdf
"The Terror began to wind down after Thermidor – though not immediately; the greatest days of carnage on the guillotine were the 10 and 11 Thermidor, as supporters of Robespierre, within the Convention, the Revolutionary Tribunal and the Paris Commune,were despatched before enthusiastic crowds. The deputies who had conspired to bring about Thermidor were themselves active Jacobins, including members of the ruling Committees, together with several men such as Fouché and Tallien, who had aroused suspicion from Robespierre for the excessive zeal with which they had employed terrorist methods while they had been on mission."

SEQUENCE 12 - THE TEMPLE(1 Memory)
Evil Boring Templar gives this speech about how the Revolution was masterminded by him to destroy the old order, who they framed, backstabbed and executed. The Revolution's violence did not come out of circumstances and difficult moral conundrums but out of an evil plot to show people that Revolutions will always be violent. Basically, the Assassins are on the side of the Constitutional Monarchy that came out of the Tennis Court Oath, that is "a peaceful" revolution, while the Templars represent the Violent Revolution of Bastille, Tuileries and the Terror. In other words, the Templars are shown to side with the people and the people are made to look like idiots(By the way almost every adult Parisian Male across class lines was literate at the time of the French Revolution). Poor King Louis was killed because he was framed not because he conspired with foreign powers to invade France. Basically it says that the people really didn't hate the King or have a reason to hate the good king Louis and his wife but were made to do so by a pack of evil middle-class people and envious scumbags that comprise the Templars. All I will say that this latter interpretation derives from a real-life book called ''Histoire des Jacobins'' by Abbe Barruel which was the first book that stated that conspiracy theories inspired the French Revolution.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memoirs_Illustrating_the_History_of_Jacobinism#Con tribution_and_legacy

The French Revolution was a complex event several years in the making, the idea that it was done by a few people in a dark room because one guy believed he was the reincarnation of Jacques de Molay and wanted revenge is...well...let's just say I miss Rodrigo and his Staff of Eden, that was way more subtle and believable.

I don't want to add any sources for this, but I will quote David A. Bell, author of The First Total War in the same Book Review I excerpted above:
"But history does not have the neatness, or the moral clarity, of conspiracy fiction. There was no Great Copt plotting out the events of the French Revolution and driving it forward."



Brotherhood Missions

The game's brotherhood co-op missions are supposed to represent real events which the developers couldn't work in the single player so they made it for co-op. So let's run through them.

Among these Missions, there are five that I would call Fair. By fair I mean even if there is artistic license and inaccuracies, I don't think its something worth getting worked up over, since the spirit and content is broadly correct.


1) Women's March - It overemphasizes Theorigne de Mericourt's role but since she is a historical badass and is obscure, I am going to pardon it and the mission as such is harmless.

2) The Food Chain - Another Theroigne One. Not historical, more fictional, again the usual Templar conspiracy motif, so I am going to pardon this.

3) The Austrian Conspiracy - Now this mission sort of touches on the war. So I will give it credit, the fact that the war is dialed down and reduced to the side is itself a grotesque simplification but I am not going to get into that. It does get into some of the paranoid atmosphere that happened at the time, where people were worried about royalist conspirators everywhere. Now whether Danton could actually wield a sword and fight, anyway I'll let it pass. One major mis-step. This mission takes place in September 1792 at the same time the September Massacres happen in history and the main game. Danton was Ministry of Justice at this time and pretty much looked the other way when the Massacres happened and convinced everyone to agreee with it. The point is this mission is lacking in proper context and Danton is presented as a simplistic good guy.

4) The Tournament - A nice fun harmless mission dedicated to the coolness of Thomas-Alexandre Dumas. Not really about history, since it revolves around a fictional General Marcourt who looks and sounds like Errol Flynn.

5) Infernal Machine - Another harmless mission about bodyguarding Napoleon. Nothing controversial or especially wrong. Except Napoleon should have a hair cut, and be wearing a Red Coat since he was First Consul/Dictator of France.



The remaining Six missions though are a pack of lies.

6) Political Persecution - Now the Lying Begins. The Girondins are brought down because they disagreed with the Evil Robespierre and Danton is shown as a bleeding heart liberal who doesn't want Robespierre to launch Terror. In actual fact, it was Danton who justified the Terror, "Let us be terrible so that the people who don't have to be", he was the one who put in place the Revolutionary Tribunals and he sat on the Committee of Public Safety for two full months before Robespierre got elected. Danton fully supported the fall of the Girondins and didn't go out of his way to save any of them.The man who did continually argue that 75 deputies be spared and not be persecuted, who did it time and again right through the Terror, that guy was Robespierre. As for the Girondins, those guys it has to be said, plunged Europe into a 20 Year War for shady reasons of furthering their business interests and political cache. They also proved incompetent at winning the war and France was close to being invaded by the time the People rose against them and brought the Jacobins to power.
SOURCES:
http://socialistreview.org.uk/339/danton
"Before his fall from political grace Danton cleared the way for the reign of terror that reached its height in the summer of 1794. It was Danton who made the Committee of Public Safety the executive body of government in the summer of 1793. It was Danton who created the infamous revolutionary tribunal ("Let us be terrible to prevent the people from being terrible!")."[/url]

7) Danton's Sacrifice - This famous incident, the source of Danton's good name gets even more biased to make Danton look good and Robespierre as a sadist but aside from that it has the right details. Danton was executed for political reasons at a show trial and it was a catastrophic moment for the Revolution. He is still sympathetic even if he was, as is widely proven, corrupt, deeply involved in bribes and stock market fraud. There's no need to make him a saint or martyr. What he was is a victim, of the very Terror and Tribunals that he had himself installed.
SOURCES:

Book Review - by Miguel Faria of David Lawday's ''DANTON: Giant of the French Revolution"
http://www.haciendapub.com/articles/georges-danton-%E2%80%94-fallen-titan-french-revolution
"But returning to the book at hand, in Lawday makes a fairly good case for absolving Danton of having connived in the Duke of Brunswick bribe affair just prior to the Battle of Valmy (1792); but does not do as well in exculpating him from involvement in the horrible September Massacres."
"Lawday also exculpates Danton for his incitation to violence and repeated calls for death to the "enemies of the Revolution" as flowery language. How were the people, the fickle Parisian mobs and the violent sans culottes, always thirsting for savage revenge, to know that Danton's incitations were "parliamentary theater" and only "figures of speech"?
This is from a Film Review, a rather long article:
http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:Xpamx6RNTr4J:digitalhistory.concord ia.ca/courses/hist306f07/files/darnton.pdf+new+york+darnton+double-entendre&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&client=safari
" Most French historians today probably would concede that Danton's finances do not stand up to close scrutiny. In 1789 he was a not especially successful lawyer loaded down with at least 43,000 livres in debts. In 1791 he paid off his creditors andbought an estate worth 80,000 livres without an ostensible improvement in his practiceor the acquisition of another legitimate source of income. He probably took moneyfrom the court. But a politician may fatten his purse without betraying his country, andDanton certainly led the resistance to the invading armies after the overthrow of themonarchy on August 10, 1792."


8) Heads Will Roll - This mission is fictional but again we have a demonical, evil, Robespierre who sells out his own spy when the guy digs up dirt that Robespierre was a Templar. This needless to say never happened since Templars don't exist. The only purpose it serves is to make Robespierre be a scumbag hypocrite.

9) Les Enrages - Now the Enrages were a bunch of extremists yes. They did advocate for seizure of private property, radical redistribution and were proto-anarchists. What they weren't are psychopaths, Jacques Roux didn't run around plucking heads off necks with his bare hands. He didn't strangulate people with chains either. So another ghoul show and falsification that serves to demonize the popular movement.


10) Moving Mirabeau - Another bit of falsehood. The evil Robespierre now removes the Saintly Mirabeau's remains from the Pantheon. This happened months after Robespierre died. Robespierre didn't order it. Now on learning fo Mirabeau's corruption, which the Girondins had revealed not him, Robespierre did call for him to be removed from the Pantheon and ordered statues of him broken in the Jacobin Club. But he never bothered about Mirabeau after that, simply because work on a War Cabinet was far more important than settling petty scores.

11) The Jacobin Raid - Crypto-Nazi Jacobins are tunneling to Argentina/Corsica but the people are led by Theroigne to bring them down. The Jacobins are shown to torture Theroigne by whipping her in a montage. In actual fact, Theroigne was attacked and beaten by Revolutionary women and the person who saved her was none other than crazy psycho Marat. The Jacobins are all shown as Robespierre lackeys when many of them joined in attacking him on the day of his fall. By the way, this action takes place the day after Robespierre's execution. In actual history, the day after Robespierre's execution, 77 of his supporters were executed without trial, the largest mass guillotine of the entire Terror.
SOURCES:
For Marat rescuing Theroigne
http://books.google.co.in/books?id=SLfHu0A6v1oC&pg=PA95&dq=Theroigne+de+mericourt+Marat&hl=en&sa=X&ei=A-t6VPCFCJPjuQS1ioGQDg&ved=0CDAQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=Theroigne%20de%20mericourt%20Marat&f=false
Another link, behind a pay wall, but its written by author Hilary Mantel:
http://www.lrb.co.uk/v14/n10/hilary-mantel/rescued-by-marat



PARIS SIDE STORIES
Now my main problem with the SIDE MISSIONS is just that a lot of the time, its very shoddy work. I mean there are basic errors in facts, the kind of errors that undergraduate students would be embarassed about. So some of these missions are offensive only for its incompetence.

1) American Prisoner (DLC MISSION) - Now this one isn't inaccurate or malicious, but it is INCOMPETENT.The gist is that Thomas Paine is under house arrest in this prison and the warden has his book ''The Rights of Man'' which he was working on. A single look at wikipedia can tell you that the reason Thomas Paine was ''invited'' to France was because of THE RIGHTS OF MAN, a book which defended the French Revolution against English conservative Edmund Burke. The book Paine was working on while imprisoned during the Terror is THE AGE OF REASON, a book that is critical of Christianity(albeit froma Deist/Theist perspective). Why this basic fact is neglected I don't know. And by the way the guy who conspired to get Paine imprisoned was the American Ambassador in France at the time, Gouvernor Morris.

2) A Romantic Stroll - Arno being an Assassin and oblivious lackey/b-tch of Napoleon that he is, serves as secret service on Napoleon's romantic date with Josephine. This is a kind of cute mission overall. Except for one thing. Josephine calls herself a divorcee. This is ridiculous for many reasons, namely the fact that Josephine's husband

3) Chemical Revolution (DLC Mission) - Jean-Paul Marat is not just a journalist but some kind of mob-boss who sent thugs to attack the great Lavoisier because he's jealous of him. This incident never happened. Marat was dead in early 1793 and played no role at all in the persecution and death of Lavoisier, but invoking his name kind of attaches him to slander. Marat played a major role in the ousting of the Girondins (who lavoisier was close to) but that clash was non-violent and the Girondin leaders were sent to the guillotine while Robespierre rescued 75 deputies from joining their ranks against the wishes of more bloodthirsty advocates.

4)) Coat-Of-Arms - My favorite piece of bilge unearthed in UNITY yet. One of the actual honest-to-God badasses in the French Revolution is Louis Antoine de Saint-Just. This guy was gorgeous. He was also a Robespierre loyalist and made his mentor look cuddly by comparison. He was also brilliant, he co-wrote the 1793 Constitution, super-competent and a great military organizer. And he was 26 years old when he did that. What he wasn't is a psychopath. This story is based on an "anecdote" published in a work of fiction issued in 1820 that Saint-Just once tried to seduce a woman and when she turned him down, Saint-Just had her killed and then skinned her and made her human hide into breeches for him to wear. Because everyone likes Game of Thrones and why not make Saint-Just into Ramsay Bolton, even if the only source is a lie that even right-wing historians never take seriously.

5) Up-In-Arms - Another piece of vile slander. Apparently the Commitee of Public Safety under Robespierre and Saint-Just are working to sabotage Napoleon's career by spiking his cannons so that it will blow up. This one is absurd. The Commitee of Public Safety gave Napoleon his first big promotion via Robespierre's little brother who served as their representative in Toulon. Napoleon wasn't in Paris during the Terror and the only time he came to their notice was in Robespierre's last days when his brother gave him a letter formulating a military plan of his to him. Napoleon was a lifelong defender of the Terror, apologist for Robespierre right unto Saint Helena and in private told anyone and everyone that the Committee of Public Safety was the only real government of the Revoluton. In the game, Napoleon is this cool guy who complains about the bloodshed of the Revolution.
SOURCES
http://books.google.co.in/books?id=SkWIK1nyPR4C&pg=PA202&lpg=PA202&dq=Napoleon+Montholon+%22Robespierre+hated+bloodsh ed%22&source=bl&ots=C_1VpmmwVR&sig=3oJLLdQtgZPrZNaPiGrwKJLJyBY&hl=en&sa=X&ei=wO56VMOhH4iQuATfp4KQBQ&ved=0CB4Q6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=Napoleon%20Montholon%20%22Robespierre%20hated%20 bloodshed%22&f=false
"Do you believe the men who led France in 1793 chose the Terror for pleasure? Absolutely not. Robespierre hated bloodshed as much as I. He was restrained by events and, I repeat, by conviction. He did it out of humanity, to stop the massacres, to control the resentments of the people. He created the revolutionary tribunals as a surgeon saves lives by amputating limbs."
-- NAPOLEON


6) Flying Boy - The famous physicist Laplace is in Paris during 1793-1794. He was actually in the countryside but here he's there to stop the bad science of the Revolutionaries. It again serves no other purpose other than to slander the Revolution by bringing up all the scientists and artists they persecuted (the artists and scientists who supported the Revolution are obviously ignored).

MURDER MYSTERIES

1) The Assassination of Marat
Now why this mission is a "Murder Mystery" I have no idea. If ever there was a murder lacking in mystery. But the whole point of the mission is to explore what a pathetic waste of a human being Marat was. We see Jacques-Louis David painting Marat at his crime scene, an embellishment that is poetic and so I will forgive. Then we meet Marat's wife, dressed to resemble her actress in Marat/Sade and she and Marat's sister Albertine, complains about how Marat leeched them dry with his lifestyle. In real-life, these women loved Marat and preserved his writings and memory for several years. You have a Girondin dude complain about how Marat persecuted him for suspicions of treason and he wanted to die a martyr, completely whitewashing the Girondins involvement in warmongering and political corruption. Then we meet Charlotte Corday who isn't looked at too much but is basically seen as a woman who is cool and did the world a favor. I like Marat and I like Charlotte too, so I'd like ambiguity but all the same, pathetic.

2) A Body in a Brothel (see also DE SADE's REPRIEVE in PARIS SIDE STORY)
Now generally, the game kind of whitewashes Marquis de Sade. I don't have problems in so far as Sade is otherwise quite misunderstood. The real guy was an ambiguous, scary figure who wrote about power and how the strong will always oppress the weak, a philosophy that the game reduces to "freedom" and kinky sex with sex workers(to whom Sade is a generous pimp apparently). The real guy's ideas are better conveyed in MARAT/SADE. The real Sade during the Revolution was an out of work playwright who had relationships with actresses. He became a member of the radical ward of Piques but he was too independent minded. During the Terror, he served on a tribune and generally got people off, criminals, political prisoners, even a couple of aristocratic enemies who in the old days sent him to jail. De Sade got accused of "moderatism" and was sent to Prison and then transfered to a mental asylum in Picpus (where outside the window he'd see beheaded bodies being buried). The game presents this as Sade being persecuted for being a degenerate with the Evil Psychopath Saint-Just paying a butler to murder a prositute to arrest him. Again this kind of fiction serves no other purpose than to slander the Revolution. The real reasons why Sade was sent to jail cast them in a bad enough light already and shows Sade in a very good light indeed. There's no need to make them super-psychopaths or reduce Sade to being persecuted solely for his sexual schenanigans rather than his political activity.

There's also the fact of incompetence. One of the pieces of evidence that Arno finds is the book 120 Days of Sodom in a student's garret. That book was written in the Bastille by Sade and after its fall, the Marquis cried to everyone that it was gone for good. The book wouldn't be discovered until the 20th Century. Now they might have created something revolving around it, some mystery or some hint, but to casually drop it as a piece of evidence like this in a side mission is absurd and stupid


Cafe-Theatre/Social Club Missions

1) Retribution for a Rabble Rouser
This mission has you assassinating a Jacobin demagogue who is criticizing the Girondins. When you approach the guy, he talks about how the Girondins unleashed war. I am amazed that this fact gets thrown in here of all places and that we get to attack an anti-war critic. The Assassin Council tells you that the Girondins are the "moderate" faction, but the guy you are attacking shouts at people, "What's moderate about starting a war?" and then you have to ask, since the game doesn't, what's heroic about killing a guy who asks this basic truth.

2) An Engaging Egyptologist - Another one for INCOMPETENCE. Now the famous Egyptologist Champollion was the Frenchman who decoded the Rosetta Stone for the first time. France invaded Egypt in 1799, an imperialist adventure Napoleon's PR team paralyed into an Enlightenment Science Project but anyway. Now the game is set between 1790-1794 broadly but the last brotherhood mission takes place in 1799 so I will allow references to a period as late as that in this game. But the problem is that Champollion was born in 1790, Arno's older than him by 20 f--king years, why do we see him as an adult interacting with Arno in this mission.

3) Marat's Missive - Another mission where Marat gets slandered, apparently he gave some thugs license to kill and rob graves, because he's evil.

4) Betrayer of the Queen - This mission has you attacking a Templar who prevented Marie Antoinette from escaping and played a role in slandering Mirabeau's reputation. Since Mirabeau was corrupt and accepted bribes from the royal government while trying to curtail reforms in the Assembly, I fail to see what they had to do to slander his reputation.

VestigialLlama4
11-30-2014, 11:58 AM
I learned quite a bit from this, thanks. But I don't play Assassin's Creed to learn history. There's plenty of better ways to do that. I take everything in the games with a grain of salt, except for the database, which is more or less accurate. Also, again with the "lies". Nobody claimed the game was 100% accurate, stop with the melodrama.

Let me quote the words of Alex Amancio, game director of Assassin's Creed: Unity


http://time.com/3471390/assassins-creed-unity/
"What we actually try to do, and I think this is just a personal belief that we have, is to avoid reducing history. You can’t start taking sides, because that makes it biased, and what we’re really trying to do is expose every slice of history in the most unbiased way possible. It’s obviously incredibly difficult. History is always subjective, because it’s written by people, and no matter how objective you try to be, human nature makes it subjective. We try very hard to portray things as factually as possible."

So that is why I use lies because those specific things Mr. Amancio said they wouldn't do are the exact things they did in Unity as I showed in detail. You cannot say I don't know the game since I have cited exact missions where they lied and how they lied and why that lie is terrible. I have updated my OP to include Sources of original information as well, so you can submit me to fact-checking if you like.

Pr0metheus 1962
11-30-2014, 12:15 PM
I second VestigialLlama's post. A big selling point of Assassin's Creed was that the series respected history. Until Unity, we could always rely on the developers to get the history right. You could even use the games to teach - albeit in a casual way - because the games got into minor personalities and little details that historical documentaries do not.

The idea that there are "better ways" to teach history is questionable. No other medium - no documentary, no book, no history class of any level - puts you actually into the world of the Crusades, the Renaissance or the 18th Century like Assassin's Creed does.

No one is demanding that Assassin's Creed be 100% accurate, but AC: Unity makes a mockery of history - it makes up absolute lies about a number of personalities and real life happenings of the time. No Assassin's Creed game has actually lied before, except in terms of the Assassin vs. Templar fiction - a falsehood that is completely understandable.

I used AC1 to teach my daughter what the Crusades were like; I used AC2 and Brotherhood to teach her what Renaissance Italy was like; I used AC: Revelations to teach her what Constantinople was like after the Ottomans took it from the Christians; I used AC3 to teach her what life was like in Colonial America; I used AC4 to teach her what life was like in the Golden Age of Piracy. All I can do with AC: Unity is teach her what 18th Century French architecture was like, because the game lies about just about everything else. It's not just error - it's lies, and the one thing the developers said they wouldn't do was simplify, reduce, lie about history.

I often wonder if this has anything to do with Jade Raymond quitting Ubisoft. The series took a dive when Patrice Desilets left, and now it's taken another dive after Jade Raymond left. The only one of the original three who produced this series is Corey May. I think he's really the last hope we have to get this franchise back on track.

Megas_Doux
11-30-2014, 02:51 PM
I used AC1 to teach my daughter what the Crusades were like; I used AC2 and Brotherhood to teach her what Renaissance Italy was like; I used AC: Revelations to teach her what Constantinople was like after the Ottomans took it from the Christians; I used AC3 to teach her what life was like in Colonial America; I used AC4 to teach her what life was like in the Golden Age of Piracy. All I can do with AC: Unity is teach her what 18th Century French architecture was like, because the game lies about just about everything else. It's not just error - it's lies, and the one thing the developers said they wouldn't do was simplify, reduce, lie about history.

.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHA HAHAHAH

A video game BASED, BASED on historical stuff...

In ACI pretty much all the crusader targets are heavily fictionalized and their saracen counterparts just entirely made up. Acre looks like your dark, gritty and gloomy stereotypical version of a XIII/XIV gothic european, and most english medieval town instead of what really looked like...

Cesare Borgia was one of most cunning military figures on his time, excelling in both strategy and even close combat.Yet in ACB he is portrayed like a spoiled little brat yealing guards all the time. It was like "Jershey shore meets the Renaissance." Which by the way, dont get me started on their "italian" accents.....

The more modern you get, the more documents are resources you find, and thus the more complicated it gets for the developers and writers to compile a story that encapsulates a lore that includes two millenary antagonizing organizations that have been feuding since the birth of human history over some pretty powerful ancient devices constructed by a long gone ancient civilization.

Summarizing, I do find these complaints pretty nonsensical because this is NOT an history book, nor it selling itself as such and that is been the case since AC I.

It is pointless as saying you dont like Back to the Future because it is impossible to time travel with with just 1.21 Gigawatts......

Edit, I know you wont answer Prometheus, However could not help but quoting that, sorry....You made my day, though and I thank you for that.

VestigialLlama4
11-30-2014, 03:43 PM
The more modern you get, the more documents are resources you find, and thus the more complicated it gets for the developers and writers to compile a story that encapsulates a lore that includes two millenary antagonizing organizations that have been feuding since the birth of human history over some pretty powerful ancient devices constructed by a long gone ancient civilization..

I actually agree with that, which is why they should find stories and situations that suit their metaphor and concept and not make stories about historical events and periods they clearly don't care about but go along because fans asked for it. As a Franchise, Assassin's Creed is under no obligation to chronicle the complete history of the world, but once they take a period they should show it with the same amount of fairness and historical fidelity that earlier titles had. AC3 wasn't a game that was all that interested in the American Revolution and I didn't think the American Revolution was much of an AC setting either, but it was still a good game and it had merit for being fair, respectful and generally correct in spirit.

The best games and the ones that have most detailed in the historical realization are the ones made by developers who were genuinely interested in the time period like Patrice Desilets about the Renaissance. Likewise Ashraf Ismail/Darby McDevitt clearly cared about the Pirate Era and Amancio/McDevitt obviously had fun creating ziplines across Istanbul. The historical element is fundamental to Assassin's Creed, get the period wrong and the game as a whole fails, as Unity clear does. Which is why unless they are really interested in the setting and its history, AC developers should not make the game, simple as that. The only reason unity is set in the French Revolution is because it was a fan request. They didn't learn the lessons from AC3 and they made the same mistake only the first time was tragedy, the second time is farce.

It's clear from UNITY that the developers and writers had no interest in the French Revolution and what it was really about. I would have prefered it if they did something radical like make a game about Paris in different eras and make it entirely around architecture, platform parkour-climbing and Time Anomalies, I liked the parts in Unity that wasn't set during the Revolution(the Prologue especially) because that was something the developers had more interest in and put more creativity in evoking than the mess with which they made the Revolutionary time. Heck I wouldn't have minded if they made a game entirely about Napoleon and his rise to power, since the developers are fairly interested in him.

Megas_Doux
11-30-2014, 04:24 PM
You do have some valid points Vestigia, thing is that AC has never been accurate; the uber fictionalized version of Acre, Cesare Borgia being like a character out of Jersey shore, the Byzantines as the plain bad guys....
My point???? Unity is NO different from that.....Why begin to nitpicking now????

Why is that Ubi had explain what was the French Revolution"really" about??? Why dont you read some books about it instead? They did not do so with either the Crusades or the Renaissance for that matter....

In regards of AC III and American Revolution, well:

MANY heavily criticized AC III´s depiction of the American Revolution being caused and guided and ultimately won by basically one man ALONE!!! Connor was in the Boston Massacre, Connor planning the tea party, Connor being there at not one, but two continental congress, Connor commanding the first "official" battles of the American revolution -Lexington and Concord-, Connor at Bunker Hill, Connor causing Charles lee´s demise from the continental Army in Monmouth, Connor leading the French Navy at Chesapeake..... Gameplay wise is pretty linear stuff and story wise, SUPER forced.

As Sixkeys said, AC fans DO NOT know what they want....

ME??? I prefer Unity´s and despite the fact I am not fond of its story.

VestigialLlama4
11-30-2014, 05:18 PM
You do have some valid points Vestigia, thing is that AC has never been accurate; the uber fictionalized version of Acre, Cesare Borgia being like a character out of Jersey shore, the Byzantines as the plain bad guys....
My point???? Unity is NO different from that.....Why begin to nitpicking now????

My main grouse is that any time I discuss history, people only assume that its about accuracy and that the issues are solely about getting one person wrong, or the city was false. The point is about fairness, and not accuracy. If you read my OP(which I edited to make it more reader friendly) I mention some of the stuff they got right. What I point out and expose is the total falsity and deceit in every other part of the game. Nitpicking is pointing out that the weather in Paris is not right(ideally they should have had snow, rain, fog, rather than the fashionable sunlight and occassional rain), lack of fairness is claiming in interviews that you'll make a game without bias than get basic details wrong to a level that is phenomenally absurd.


Why is that Ubi had explain what was the French Revolution"really" about??? Why dont you read some books about it instead? They did not do so with either the Crusades or the Renaissance for that matter...

Well some quotes from different AC titles in drop box

From ASSASSIN'S CREED I
King Richard The Lionheart: Why? Why travel all this way, risk your life a thousand times, all to kill a single man?
Altaïr: He threatened my Brothers and what we stand for.
King Richard: Ah. Vengeance then.
Altaïr: No, not vengeance. Justice, that there might be peace.
King Richard: This is what you fight for? Peace? Do you see the contradiction?
Altaïr: Some men cannot be reasoned with.
King Richard: Like that madman, Saladin.
Altaïr: I think he'd like to see an end to this war as much as you.
King Richard: So I've heard, but never seen.
Altaïr: ''Even if he doesn't say it, it's what the people want, Saracen and Crusader alike.
King Richard: The people know not what they want. It's why they turn to men like us.
Altaïr: Then it falls to men like you to do what is right.
King Richard: Nonsense. We come into the world kicking and screaming, violent and unstable. It is what we are. We cannot help ourselves.

From The Ezio Games:
"Did you know that the sun is most likely the midpoint of the universe, not the Earth? I see the movements of the moon and stars, and yet I can only observe. So much is unknown to me. This age of reason is but the beginning of an end I will never see. Someday we will be able to influence this world, to exploit the power of the human will to harness light and perhaps even travel into the heavens. But I am getting ahead of myself, first we must see the sun spinning at the center."
— Nicolaus Copernicus

"The world is a tapestry of many colors and patterns. A just leader would celebrate this, not seek to unravel it."
— Suleiman the Magnificent

From Black Flag (an actual real-life speech)
"In honest service there are thin commons, low wages, and hard labour. Yet as gentlemen of fortune we enjoy plenty and satisfaction, pleasure and ease, liberty and power... so what man with a sensible mind would choose the former life, when the only hasard we pirates run is a sour look from those without strength or splendour! Now, I have been among you six weeks, and in that time I have adopted your outlook as my own, and with so fierce a conviction that it may frighten you to see your passions reflected from me in so stark a light. But... if it's a captain you see in me now, aye then... I'll be your bloody captain! For I have dipped my hands in muddied waters, and withdrawing them find 'tis better to be a commander than a common man!"
- Black Bart

These dialogue exchanges directly address what the period is about. I can't find a single speech of the like nature in UNITY which actually addresses what the French Revolution actually was.

The fact is ASSASSIN'S CREED is about History, whether the developers like it or not, or you like it or not. Even if you don't know all the details, even if you aren't a scholar or expert, the best games work because they take advantage of the history and setting and breathe life into it. AC2 and Ezio and his cast became popular because that was a game the developers really cared about history and made it entertaining and interesting to audiences. It got fans interested in history who never were before. Assassins and Templars are both real organizations who existed in the actual period of the Crusades. Once the games take them out of that history and place them in a quasi-fictional conspiracy theory context, they have to recreate and redraw it differently across periods after it. The gameplay had to change too. The first AC game didn't use database and actual monuments but with AC2, the period was so vast and so filled with interesting places and people that they went out of their way to get it right and put in a database to show people what they got right. Imagine if they made a Pirate Game like they did AC1, the action was entirely on land, you hardly went on boat anywhere and you only attacked targets in one place or setting. Instead they modified it and made it into a real pirate game and created something original.

If Assassin's Creed isn't true to that history, if they take a time period and shoehorn elements for pure gameplay reasons then the game will fail, as Unity fails. They should not have made a game about the French Revolution if they didn't care about the time period. They should have modified the game and the metaphor to make it work to their interests.


As Sixkeys said, AC fans DO NOT know what they want....

Which is why Ubisoft should not listen to fan demands. They should follow through on their instincts and make a good game. The only reason they made Unity was because people wanted a French Revolution setting, not because it was something the developers were interested in, they didnt care about the history. The end result is a bad product. If they wanted to make a game set in Paris, they could have made an awesome game where you went to Paris at different times.

Dev_Anj
11-30-2014, 05:37 PM
but with AC2, the period was so vast and so filled with interesting places and people that they went out of their way to get it right and put in a database to show people what they got right.

I always got the impression that AC2 did have a lot of buildings with databases, but the database wasn't introduced because those buildings were all particularly interesting, it was introduced as a convenient way of providing some details about several buildings in the cities. I'm pretty sure such a database could be made for AC 1 as well. As such, the databases were often a minor part of the game and normally, you had to go to the in game menu to access them, or hold a button when the prompt for a building appeared.

Megas_Doux
11-30-2014, 06:13 PM
I stand to my point that, minutiae stuff aside, Ubi does not explain Crusades, Renaissance or French Revolution, the game are just set there, the struggle between templars vs assassins SHOULD be the main concern.....

In regards of "what revolution actually was" is PRETTY complicated, to some it was just a massacre lead by Roberspierre, whereas others view it as a triumph of the "people" and a solid step to the modern world....There is NO such thing as a consensus.




Which is why Ubisoft should not listen to fan demands. They should follow through on their instincts and make a good game. The only reason they made Unity was because people wanted a French Revolution setting, not because it was something the developers were interested in, they didnt care about the history. The end result is a bad product. If they wanted to make a game set in Paris, they could have made an awesome game where you went to Paris at different times.


Can you blame Ubisoft?????

AC II is regarded as the second coming of Christ by the majority of critics of fans alike to point it even gets away with much of the stuff the other games get torched for. The reason? Ubi listened to the feedback most of them provided, which more or less, was like that:

Positive stuff about AC I:

Interesting lore, good mechanics, great cities.

Negative stuff:

No side stuff, boring dialogues, boring protagonist.

Result??? A more "childish approach" in the likes of Ezio and his joyful persona, cliche accents, Mario Auditore impersonating Mario from Mario Bross, better side content, easier combat, easier assasinations and such.

rprkjj
11-30-2014, 06:21 PM
Let me quote the words of Alex Amancio, game director of Assassin's Creed: Unity



So that is why I use lies because those specific things Mr. Amancio said they wouldn't do are the exact things they did in Unity as I showed in detail. You cannot say I don't know the game since I have cited exact missions where they lied and how they lied and why that lie is terrible. I have updated my OP to include Sources of original information as well, so you can submit me to fact-checking if you like.

Nowhere in there does he claim that the game is 100% accurate. Lies is just being melodramatic, when it sounds like they just failed to meet their goal. They never guarantee it, only state they strive for it. That's like say this is lying:

>Hey, I'll try be really good at this.

>But you weren't the absolute best at this. You lied!

>wut

VestigialLlama4
11-30-2014, 07:00 PM
I stand to my point that, minutiae stuff aside, Ubi does not explain Crusades, Renaissance or French Revolution, the game are just set there, the struggle between templars vs assassins SHOULD be the main concern.....

Well for that struggle to have any meaning or value, it has to tackle the historical element. The games work best when the Assassin-Templar conflict works as metaphor for something people can relate or understate, and the historical conflict provides that, have the Assassins-Templars fighting in some fantasy world and no one will care, say that the Assassins killing the Templars can provide a chance for you to convince Richard Lionheart to possibly open peace with Saladin, say that doing so will unleash the Renaissance or that killing your Templar father will save America from becoming a puppet-dictatorship at the cost of being an expansionist slave-owning democracy, and it automatically means something, it puts something at stake and defines the context of your actions.

In gameplay terms, it t allows the series freedom to be a game where nothing is true and everything is permitted, where it's not just one kind of game. The historical element is the main reason why in AC1 or AC3, AC4 and Revelations, those memory corridor scenes worked since the targets weren't just random things you could kill but people who lived in a certain time in history. As compared to Unity where all your targets(with two exceptions) are psychopaths. The point of the earlier games is that the conspiracy element was a joke since it shows how hard controlling events and history is. That's why the series is appealing to people like me, who don't believe in conspiracy stuff.

As such, the historical element is fundamental to everything.


In regards of "what revolution actually was" is PRETTY complicated, to some it was just a massacre lead by Roberspierre, whereas others view it as a triumph of the "people" and a solid step to the modern world....There is NO such thing as a consensus.

So who says it has to be consensus? why not give a double view. Take a look at these list of quotesl:
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Quotes/TheFrenchRevolution



AC II is regarded as the second coming of Christ by the majority of critics of fans alike to point it even gets away with much of the stuff the other games get torched for. The reason? Ubi listened to the feedback most of them provided, which more or less, was like that:

Did any of the fans ask, after ACI that we want a new game where the Assassin-Templar conflict is set in the Renaissance? I am just asking. They could have made an Altair sequel where Malick is the star or a new Assassin-Happy Altair basically.


Result??? A more "childish approach" in the likes of Ezio and his joyful persona, cliche accents, Mario Auditore impersonating Mario form Mario Bross, better side content, easier combat, easier assasinations and such.

Look Altair fitted the Crusades, that was a very dark grim period in history. The Renaissance was an optimistic period, even if there's darkness and violence, it was a time of great discoveries and invention and high adventure. So Ezio's joyful persona(actually he's quite serious a lot of the times) is part of that, and Mario Auditore stating that was awesome. So Ezio fitted that time period. You can't have the same tone as AC1 in a setting like the Renaissance. AC3 has to have that seriousness, while Black Flag can be light and adventuresome. UNITY doesn't have any major note aside from Arno whining essentially, "I was making it to third base with Elise before you Templars started driving these starving peasant morons to ask for rights". It doesn't work at all.

VestigialLlama4
11-30-2014, 07:28 PM
Nowhere in there does he claim that the game is 100% accurate. Lies is just being melodramatic, when it sounds like they just failed to meet their goal. They never guarantee it, only state they strive for it.

For the sake of argument, can we say UNITY Is say 90% accurate? - No. How about 75%? No. How about 50% No.

35%? - Just about barely

Let's go back to Mr. Amancio:

http://time.com/3471390/assassins-creed-unity/
"What we actually try to do, and I think this is just a personal belief that we have, is to avoid reducing history. You can’t start taking sides, because that makes it biased, and what we’re really trying to do is expose every slice of history in the most unbiased way possible. It’s obviously incredibly difficult. History is always subjective, because it’s written by people, and no matter how objective you try to be, human nature makes it subjective. We try very hard to portray things as factually as possible."

Now does that honestly read to anyone as saying "our game is about 35% historically accurate", I'd say it's promising 70-75% historical accuracy (around the levels of Black Flag, III, AC2), rather than say 60% historical accuracy(Assassin's Creed 1, Assassin's Creed Brotherhood), or for that matter 50%(Revelations).

From reading this quote and interview, readers, certainly i did, actually thought that maybe the promotion is promising a different game than the one we're getting. That the game would be more mature, complex and interesting than what we saw before. That was also my experience with Black Flag, where the trailers say, Jack Sparrow - The Game and you play White, Blonde Pirate Dudebro, whereas the game parodied the promotion with Abstergo Entertainment.

Instead, UNITY was less complex and more simplistic than the promos.

rprkjj
11-30-2014, 07:36 PM
For the sake of argument, can we say UNITY Is say 90% accurate? - No. How about 75%? No. How about 50% No.

35%? - Just about barely

Let's go back to Mr. Amancio:


Now does that honestly read to anyone as saying "our game is about 35% historically accurate", I'd say it's promising 70-75% historical accuracy (around the levels of Black Flag, III, AC2), rather than say 60% historical accuracy(Assassin's Creed 1, Assassin's Creed Brotherhood), or for that matter 50%(Revelations).

From reading this quote and interview, readers, certainly i did, actually thought that maybe the promotion is promising a different game than the one we're getting. That the game would be more mature, complex and interesting than what we saw before. That was also my experience with Black Flag, where the trailers say, Jack Sparrow - The Game and you play White, Blonde Pirate Dudebro, whereas the game parodied the promotion with Abstergo Entertainment.

Instead, UNITY was less complex and more simplistic than the promos.

That doesn't make any sense. So if the person doesn't promise something, and I want to make him look like a liar, I should act like his promise has some arbitrary and baseless value and compare it to what was an allegedly ensured but also arbitrary and baseless value? Jesus, do you hear yourself? How does that make any sense to you? Amancio never lied, you're just pretending he said something he didn't based on what people interpreted the statement to mean just to inflate your stance.

Megas_Doux
11-30-2014, 08:34 PM
Look Altair fitted the Crusades, that was a very dark grim period in history. The Renaissance was an optimistic period, even if there's darkness and violence, it was a time of great discoveries and invention and high adventure. So Ezio's joyful persona(actually he's quite serious a lot of the times) is part of that, and Mario Auditore stating that was awesome. So Ezio fitted that time period. You can't have the same tone as AC1 in a setting like the Renaissance. AC3 has to have that seriousness, while Black Flag can be light and adventuresome. UNITY doesn't have any major note aside from Arno whining essentially, "I was making it to third base with Elise before you Templars started driving these starving peasant morons to ask for rights". It doesn't work at all.

Being honest, I am seeing A LOT of double standarts....

AC I is the LEAST accurate, there was ONLY one historical event! Acre looked NOTHING like it, the crusader targets were HEAVILY fictionalized and the saracen ones were plain made up to begin with, 60%???????HELL NO!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lorenzo de Medici is a saint in AC II, Cesare Borgia´s portrayal was not precise, Rome did not have baroque architecture in ACB, the italian accents were awful, Monterigionni was not sieged in 1500 and many, many MANY other things and I did not see you complaining about it.....

I have been fan since 2007 and I remember an interview in which Patrice said that "Feedback" helped A LOT in the creative process. Again, Altair was viewed as a piece of wood by most, whereas Ezio fulfilled any possible italian stereotype to date. AC went from a serious game, to a more cartoonish one....

The rumours before the announcement hinted Feudal Japan, XV Italy was a big surprise. Now the setting does NOT have anything to do the protagonist´s personality, check Robin Hood for instance and his story is set in the middle ages, which according to you, is all about about darkness.......As the for Crusades being 100% such, well is FALSE. Any European medieval town, As Acre is designed to look like, would be full of coloured facades......

Again, AC III failed because it focused TOO much on the American Revolution and even though Unity´s story is somewhat weak to me. I´m glad Arno was NOT forced into EVERY event possible, because the focus of these games SHOULD be neverending templar vs Assassin conflict or the character´s story, not a "lets meet every historical figure and events available in a 100% accurate approach". For is a proven fact that it leads to linear gameplay and restricts freedom to both writers and developers.....

Saying you want historical accuracy from a video game which premise has always been "BASED ON HISTORICAL STUFF" is as nonsensical as expecting science from Back to the Future, for both are FICTIONAL.... If you want real stuff read a history book and even that is disputable.......

Xstantin
11-30-2014, 08:42 PM
Saying you want historical accuracy from a videp game whose premise has always been "BASED ON HISTORICAL STUFF" is as nonsensical as expecting science from Back to the Future, for both are FICTIONAL.... If you want real stuff read a history book and even that is disputable........

Indeed when the very beginning of the games always tells you "inspired by historical events and characters, this work of fiction yada yada" :)

Derp43
11-30-2014, 08:50 PM
Also, Unity is not supposed to be historically accurate. It says it right there on the title screen: "Inspired by historical events and characters...".

VestigialLlama4
11-30-2014, 09:48 PM
Amancio never lied, you're just pretending he said something he didn't based on what people interpreted the statement to mean just to inflate your stance.

I didn't pretend anything he said. That comes from an interview with TIME Magazine(that link is there), I used the exact direct quote. I didn't interpret anything. I take it for granted that, since Mr. Amancio didn't issue a retraction, and that TIME is a magazine/journal/website of quality that the interview is correct.

Please focus on this excerpt,

http://time.com/3471390/assassins-creed-unity/
"What we actually try to do, and I think this is just a personal belief that we have, is to avoid reducing history. You can’t start taking sides, because that makes it biased, and what we’re really trying to do is expose every slice of history in the most unbiased way possible. It’s obviously incredibly difficult. History is always subjective, because it’s written by people, and no matter how objective you try to be, human nature makes it subjective. We try very hard to portray things as factually as possible."

Focus on
1) "Avoid Reducing History"
2) "we're really trying to expose every slice of history in the most unbiased way"
3) "We try very hard to portray things as factually as possible".

These are statements he said. I have quite thoroughly refuted how Assassin's Creed Unity does not achieve any of those three things, which is why I call the game full of lies. You can check my facts also, since I've added sources.

If Mr. Amancio said that Unity would actually not be so beholden to history that the game takes a more irreverent approach to history, while that would not change my feelings that the game is a failure and that its handling of history is a central reason for it, I would at least not be able to call the game a lie. And this interview comes in Oct 6, 2014, A month and six days before release, so you can't even say they modified the game later in development.

johnsmith145
11-30-2014, 10:07 PM
Amancio never lied, you're just pretending he said something he didn't based on what people interpreted the statement to mean just to inflate your stance.
Oh, they might have dressed it up with pretty words, but that does not make it true.

– Haytham Kenway

rprkjj
11-30-2014, 10:11 PM
I didn't pretend anything he said. That comes from an interview with TIME Magazine(that link is there), I used the exact direct quote. I didn't interpret anything. I take it for granted that, since Mr. Amancio didn't issue a retraction, and that TIME is a magazine/journal/website of quality that the interview is correct.

Please focus on this excerpt,


Focus on
1) "Avoid Reducing History"
2) "we're really trying to expose every slice of history in the most unbiased way"
3) "We try very hard to portray things as factually as possible".

These are statements he said. I have quite thoroughly refuted how Assassin's Creed Unity does not achieve any of those three things, which is why I call the game full of lies. You can check my facts also, since I've added sources.

If Mr. Amancio said that Unity would actually not be so beholden to history that the game takes a more irreverent approach to history, while that would not change my feelings that the game is a failure and that its handling of history is a central reason for it, I would at least not be able to call the game a lie. And this interview comes in Oct 6, 2014, A month and six days before release, so you can't even say they modified the game later in development.

It doesn't achieve those things, but they never said that's what they would do. They said they would try. Thus it is not a lie.

VestigialLlama4
11-30-2014, 11:28 PM
Being honest, I am seeing A LOT of double standarts....

To be frank, the issues of historical accuracy and fidelity to spirit is a complex topic. For sake of keeping things concise(even with my fondness for wall-of-text), I have tended to blur my arguments. My feeling is compared to blockbuster movies like these appalling 300 and its equally wretched sequel, or that turgid TV show Da Vinci's Demons(which features a supposedly "bisexual" leonardo who mostly sleeps with women), Assassin's Creed looks pretty good by comparison. I am not comparing it to great historical fiction or great historical films, I am comparing it to the already lowest common denominator in terms of accuracy and the fact is that it surprised me that it gets as many things right as it does.

Until the Assassin's Creed games, no video game series really came close, or tried to for that matter, to giving you a sense of the past as a living thing, no series set as many standards of accuracy in video games until these games and that's one reason why Assassin's Creed has the following that it does. When I apply standards of accuracy its based more on expectations and how it measures against earlier portrayals of that particular period, and whether it captures the general sentiment of that time. If say video games were a mature medium like film or even comic books for that matter(leave alone literature) I would be less than impressed by it. I measure the games against the standards of Hollywood blockbusters(as opposed to say films on the Criterion Collection), stuff like Pirates of the Caribbean or The Patriot, it feels nice that video games are using their own medium to arrive at history rather than recreate how movies showed a particular period.


AC I is the LEAST accurate, there was ONLY one historical event! Acre looked NOTHING like it, the crusader targets were HEAVILY fictionalized and the saracen ones were plain made up to begin with

Let's talk about what AC1 gets right. The Assassins and Templars are actual historical organizations in this period. Now the series was inspired by Patrice Desilets reading Vladimir Bartol's ALAMUT which featured Hassan-I-Sabah drugging up young recruits with promises of paradise and the Assassins get high on hashish with promises of paradise and nymphs, and are called "The Hashashin". In the game, the Assassins are described by Malik with the historically correct word Asasiyun, the Hashashin stuff is based on historical slander that survives to the present day but there's never been real evidence that that's true. So already the game went out of its way to correct issues in the book that inspired by it(there's just one easter egg, that garden in the back with that illusion of girls but that's just an easter egg) and show the Asasiyun closer to how they were. It also shows the Assassins to be scholarly, Al Mualim(Rashid ad-din Sinan) in his study with scrolls, other Assassins looking scholarly, Malik making up maps. Basically it captures the philosophical ethos of the Assassins that Friedrich Nietzche so famously celebrated and which made them a cult for Beat writers like William Burroughs. Most of the game is focused on these aspects, and this it gets right. Other stuff it gets right, it shows Richard Lionheart speaking English with a French accent(and by the way, he and Robert de Sable sound awesome, why did they use those appalling accents in UNITY I never know), acknowledging that he hardly spent any time in England and barely spoke English. Also shows him to be this warrior dudebro who sees that Altair is a badass first and a heathen second, which once or twice he actually did, when he wasn't killing by dozens. Most of the game focuses on this rather than chronicling the great battles of the Crusades, so for me, considering the narrative they chose them adopting the perspective of the Assassins who were known to kill both Crusaders and Saracens alike historically, makes sense and is faithful to the historical record in the main. So I say 60% of the focus of the story is accurate.

Asking them to get Acre right (hardly anything survives from that time and very little information about how it was) was next to impossible and it wouldn't have made for a better game. Getting the Assassins right makes for a good game. Some targets they moved backward and forward in time is okay, making William de Montferrat the target when his son Conrad got whacked(in a bathouse in Tyre) is fair since the developers didn't want to cheat by bringing the son several years back before he was born(it would take UNITY to stoop to this in the side mission with Champollion). The main thing they dial down is the religious element but then if the game went for that level of accuracy I doubt there would be an AC2 or that Ubisoft would even release it for that matter.


Lorenzo de Medici is a saint in AC II,

I don't think he's a saint in the game. The game says that the Auditore are friends with the Medici and that Ezio's father and he are pals. Lorenzo Il Magnifico was the man who actually oversaw the end of the Medici as a major banking power, since he cared more about spending money in art and stuff than getting banking done. The Medici became bankrupt(thanks in part to the War of the Roses) under his time, but he also sponsored Amerigo Vespucci's travels and he also helped out Leonardo and Michelangelo, so he has his place in history as this cool guy. In the game, he sends Ezio to do Assassination contracts for him and he says that he'll kil the Pazzi for killing his brother, so I don't think that's saintly at all, he's nice to people who help him and ruthless to his enemies and he didn't draw first, the pazzi were the ones who attacked him and he did what other reasonable men of his time did. So I think its fair to him. I don't think the real guy was especially cruel, not the way the real Cesare Borgia really was.


Cesare Borgia´s portrayal was not precise, Rome did not have baroque architecture in ACB,

That's true enough and the game neglects to mention Rome's Jewish Quarter or the fact that Rodrigo Borgia went out of his way to settle exiled Jews in Rome with full civil rights and no pressure of conversion. I don't care much for Brotherhood on the whole, even if its got some amazing missions in it. As for Cesare Borgia, I don't see why there's such a big deal to get worked up on him. Machiavelli deliberately exaggerated him in THE PRINCE(a book that spoofed a particular genre of Advise on Government that was popular at that time), he was hardly this great military genius that people make him up to be. He was a competent commander and good organizer but he never really had it in him to unify Italy. The game shows him to be this buffoon who takes himself more seriously than he deserves to be, and you know I actually think that's a fair portrayal. It neglects some of his other qualities but I think that's a fair portrayal, I don't think he's slandered the way Robespierre and other French Revolutionaries are or the way Charles Lee is, for that matter.


Now the setting does NOT have anything to do the protagonist´s personality, check Robin Hood for instance and his story is set in the middle ages, which according to you, is all about about darkness

First of, Robin Hood is not really a historical character is he? He's folklore based on other outlaws at the time. Second of all, The Crusades as a setting means the Middle East, you know people whose lands got invaded by Europeans. The English and French Middle Ages are a different setting even it it takes place in the same time period.


Again, AC III failed because it focused TOO much on the American Revolution and even though Unity´s story is somewhat weak to me. I´m glad Arno was NOT forced into EVERY event possible

AC3's storytelling floundered because it bit off too much to chew on and the developers didn't care a great deal about the American Revolution or how to make an AC game out of it. They could have done it if they read a little bit more like say, Gore Vidal's BURR(the best novel about that period). But you know better to sin in excess than do nothing at all with a premise like Unity is. Instead of a cool level where you could storm a Palace, you get to sneak into a room and watch yourself, helpless to do anything, as you become Napoleon's b-tch. That's not exactly fun. At the end of the day, AC3 may not be much of a fun game but it has value because anytime you play it you feel like you have a front-row seat to history, so you don't feel cheated out of your money.


Saying you want historical accuracy from a video game which premise has always been "BASED ON HISTORICAL STUFF" is as nonsensical...

I would have said that had I not played Assassin's Creed II, Black Flag and III, but now there's no going back, the series has become a victim of its own success and it can't go about saying that "we are video games and we can't do ambitious stories and use graphics to portray the past in a way few ever experienced before". All UNITY had to do was be as fair and accurate as those games and they sunk to a very new low, lower than Scarlet Pimpernel, so i am sorry.

Pr0metheus 1962
11-30-2014, 11:35 PM
Amancio never lied, you're just pretending he said something he didn't based on what people interpreted the statement to mean just to inflate your stance.

LOL. He said "We try very hard to portray things as factually as possible."

That's a lie because it would have been easier to portray the truth in Unity. You have to make up a fiction - the truth is already known.

Pr0metheus 1962
11-30-2014, 11:50 PM
First of, Robin Hood is not really a historical character is he? He's folklore based on other outlaws at the time.

Robin Hood is indeed, not historical. I should know - I was born 3 miles from the village of Loxley (where he was supposedly from) and I lived part of my life in Nottinghamshire. Robin Hood was most likely made up as a folk hero by balladeers around the time of the Harrying of the North - he may have been based on stories told of Hereward the Wake.

Megas_Doux
12-01-2014, 12:11 AM
Of course I know that Robin Hood is not a historical character, however my reasoning remains; he was a pretty joyful tale in an age that you call "dark and gloomy" Contradicting your argument that Ezio, who is also fiction, was playful because the stereotype of the renaissance being such....Ezio was written that way in order to please the critics and fandom that called Altair "boring".





... the Medici and that Ezio's father and he are pals. Lorenzo Il Magnifico was the man who actually oversaw the end of the Medici as a major banking power, since he cared more about spending money in art and stuff than getting banking done. The Medici became bankrupt(thanks in part to the War of the Roses) under his time, but he also sponsored Amerigo Vespucci's travels and he also helped out Leonardo and Michelangelo, so he has his place in history as this cool guy. In the game, he sends Ezio to do Assassination contracts for him and he says that he'll kil the Pazzi for killing his brother, so I don't think that's saintly at all, he's nice to people who help him and ruthless to his enemies and he didn't draw first, the pazzi were the ones who attacked him and he did what other reasonable men of his time did. So I think its fair to him. I don't think the real guy was especially cruel, not the way the real Cesare Borgia really was.
And then

Instead of a cool level where you could storm a Palace, you get to sneak into a room and watch yourself, helpless to do anything, as you become Napoleon's b-tch. That's not exactly fun. At the end of the day, AC3 may not be much of a fun game but it has value because anytime you play it you feel like you have a front-row seat to history, so you don't feel cheated out of your money.
.

I wont quote every part of if, however it really bothers me how you call Arno "Napoleon´s Bcthhh" and at the same time Ezio is just "Medici´s pal" where he could EASILY fit the former category. For EVERY contract there was in Florence, San Gimignano, Forli and Venice came out of Lorenzo´s will. Was he a master Assassin or even a mentor?????? NO!

Same situations, different judgement, veredict:

Double standarts.

You have your opinion and I have mine, end of story. Thing is you seem to be a little bit biased.

VestigialLlama4
12-01-2014, 12:26 AM
I wont quote every part of if, however it really bothers me how you call Arno "Napoleon´s Bcthhh" and at the same time Ezio is just "Medici´s pal"

Ezio's dad, Giovanni, in the game saved Lorenzo from drowning when he was a small kid, he and Giovanni were family friends. I think you can call Giovanni Lorenzo's b-tch (and I think that's why he and Mario don't get along too well) but for Ezio the equation is different. For Ezio, his father and Lorenzo were attacked by the same people. Besides, he was young at that time and not yet fully an Assassin, and he lost his father, so to him Lorenzo was also a father figure someone he knew whereas Uncle Mario was estranged from his Dad and hardly saw him growing up.

It's not the same where Arno and Napoleon are the same age, he's this Master Assassin and he's a fellow interloper in the King's chambers and Arno never bothers asking why he's helping him. I mean he's obviously not a looter since he's searching for something specific and he's not an Assassin either, so he should ask questions there. Instead Napoleon sees him as an easy mark and fools him. There's also the side missions where Arno does more b-tch work, accompany Napoleon as a third wheel on his dates, serve as bodyguard and errand boy. I mean its pathetic. And Napoleon basically treats Arno as hired help anyway, and this guy lets him treat him this way.


where he could EASILY fit the former category. For EVERY contract, each and every one of those in Florence, San Gimignano, Forli and Venice came out of Lorenzo´s will. Was he a master Assassin or even a mentor?????? NO!

He was an Ally. One of the many Realpolitik decisions the Assassins make in their fight against Templars.

Megas_Doux
12-01-2014, 12:47 AM
Lorenzo = Napoleon. Come on!!!!!!!

The former gets saved by Ezio two times, one even at his mansion without Lorenzo asking for it while Ezio joyfully cheers "Signor Lorenzo, Signor Lorenzo". He also gives you TONS of orders that range from killing HIS enemies to save HIS friends, as a prize you receive a cape. Again he is NOT an assassin, Ezio DOES NOT have to be taking orders from him, yet he DOES.

ze_topazio
12-01-2014, 12:51 AM
Let's not forget Lorenzo was the big boss of Florence, Ezio, being a native of Florence, most likely, grew up knowing he had to respect and even obey that dude.

VestigialLlama4
12-01-2014, 02:13 PM
Of course I know that Robin Hood is not a historical character, however my reasoning remains;he was a pretty joyful tale in an age that you call "dark and gloomy"

It's a joyful tale because it happens to white people in England. For an Arab in the Holy Land, like Altair, being Robin Hood with a band of Merry Men and singing songs in a forest was simply not an option. The Crusades marked the decline of the Arab Golden Age (it finally ended when Hulegu Khan, the same guy who destroyed the Historical Assassins, sacked Baghdad and burnt down the House of Wisdom) so all in all it wasn't a happy time period for people in that part of the world, and Altair's personality suits that. If they wanted an Ezioesque or a Joyful Arab Dude they should have gone to Moorish Spain or Baghdad under the reign of Haroun al-Raschid, the age of the Arabian Nights or likewise Istanbul in the Ottoman Period (a lot of fans loved Yusuf Tazim in REVELATIONS and wanted a game around him).

This is not a particularly race related thing. During the Florentine Renaissance, the period of AC2, England was torn apart by the War of the Roses and had political instability for fifty years, so obviously a Robin Hood/Ezio/Edward Kenway type character wouldn't work in England during the same time. It wouldn't work for that matter during the time of Cromwell, which was the English Civil War, and a very dark period in English History. For an Ezioesque character you would need say the Elizabethan Age, when the Renaissance came to London. Or in BLACK FLAG, where you can go into the Pirate Era and root for white dudes in a New World since, like Robin Hood, they are only robbing slave-owning colonialist Empires.The fact is the history provides necessary limitations. The kind which forces you to rethink your series and avoid repeating the same tricks and come up with new kinds of stories. The fact that AC can shift its tone from the paranoid and grim AC1 to the joyful and warm AC2 showed that. Or you know in BLACK FLAG you shifted from Edward to Adewale's story in Freedom Cry which is a really dark depressing story. That's why I say that the historical element, and getting a period right is a crucial element of Assassin's Creed as a franchise.

Arno as a character would have better fit the Musketeer Era of Louis XIII and Louis XIV, under the aegis of Cardinal Richelieu. Arno's detachment to the French Revolution, concentrating on his "personal story" itself is kind of ludicrous, as this this review in the Escapist mentions:

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/video-games/columns/criticalintel/12639-Assassin-s-Creed-Unity-Doesn-t-Reflect-The-French-Revolution.3
"A Parisian not feeling or thinking anything about the Revolution in 1791 would be like a New Yorker not having a reaction after the 9/11 attacks."
Arno would not have fit in the Hundred Years War (where France lost a huge chunk of her population) or the period of the Bartholomew Day's Massacre (more people killed in two days than the numbers guillotined during the Reign of Terror) and he certainly doesn't fit the Revolution while Elise and Pierre Bellec do fit that time period better than he does and the game would have improved by miles had either of them been the main character.


Lorenzo = Napoleon. Come on!!!!!!!

There's really no connection between that at all. Lorenzo de'Medici is closer to Mirabeau in terms of characterization and importance to the hero. For Arno, Mirabeau is this father figure after losing his real and adopted father, similar to what Lorenzo was to Ezio. Mirabeau doesn't make much sense as an Assassin, and the game similarly sentimentalizes and whitewashes him like they did Lorenzo, but again I don't think the portrayal of Mirabeau in the game is especailly unfair or inaccurate as I wrote in the OP, its one of the few things in the game(the first section) that I felt was within reason.

Napoleon as a character in the game is closer to Cesare Borgia, to whom the real-life guy was often compared. You know young, good-looking, a born leader who gets others to do grunt work for him. Only difference is Napoleon, unlike Cesare, is not a sociopath with daddy issues, he's a smooth operator and he manages to wrap Arno around his little finger. Let's face it, he makes the hero his b-tch.

Megas_Doux
12-01-2014, 03:54 PM
Summarizing:

You said Ezio and AC II in general were written that way in order to match general the perception of "joyfulness" the renaissance has. Which is just not true, there are tons of novels, movies and tv shows written and set in that age that are way darker than AC II, like the Borgias for instance.
The real reason of such thing was to counter the critics Altair and AC I got in the likes on being boring. So they resulted into EVERY italian stereotype possible and then I used the counter argument that, despite the fact the middle ages - and not the just crusades in the holy land in which AC I is set- are viewed in the general public as a pretty gloomy age of history, produced a tale of a rather playful man...

For I think is a PRETTY POOR and obtuse writing technique having your main character and/or tone of a work to necessary match the overall impression that your setting supposedly has in the public eye. Or else "life is beautiful" wont exist, just to name one, for there are 8498420982092 examples.

In regards of Lorenzo = Napoleon, I used it because they have the SAME role of "hey, go there, do this, do that , save me" with none of them being either master assassins or let alone mentors. But you called Ezio his pal and Arno his B7yttch. Which is why I abandon this discussion because even if you do have valid points -you do in fact- you are clearly biased and hate the game.Which I respect, but makes any further attempt to discuss this, pretty futile. See ya!

PD I like the fact that Napoleon might betray Arno, he is one of the greatest masterminds in recorded history after all.

Dev_Anj
12-01-2014, 04:50 PM
I can accept that a character should be influenced a bit by the environment around them, but it makes no sense to make characters unhappy simply because they were in a turbulent period of time, or happy because they were in a flourishing period of time. The happiness, sadness, anger, kindness, apathy, joviality and so on of a character is determined by many factors, and the general state of their time period may not be a big factor for them. Characters aren't as simple as that.

VestigialLlama4
12-01-2014, 08:30 PM
The real reason of such thing was to counter the critics Altair and AC I got in the likes on being boring.

Even if that was the case, they could have taken a different tack. After AC1, a sequel could have had an European Knight becoming an Assassin after AC1 and have you be this White Guy in an Arab Organization attacking European and Arab targets in the Crusades. They could have even had jokes about him returning to England and meeting up and becoming the Robin Hood of legend, that would have been cheery and happy and it would be an adventure story. It might even have been a good game though it would not be especially orginal. The creative thing was make a character with a lighter personality and set it in a time period that was less tense and dark than the Crusades. When they did that, it was no longer really about the Assassins-Templar conflict or the adventures of a single character, but it made the setting have greater attraction. And believe me Ezio would never have been popular had he not had that Italian accent and adventured across Renaissance Italy and hung out(and killed) famous figures.


So they resulted into EVERY italian stereotype possible...

Its actually not that stereotypical at all. Italian macho stereotypes as seen in mob movies don't allow the subtle friendship between Ezio and Leonardo, nor do they show italians to be as cold and rational as Machiavelli is in this game(whose accent is elegant and soft). The italian accents were done with care, mixing actual Italian words and phrases with English pretty well, and you know using phrases like "In buocco al lupo" and "crepe in lupo" which me and my friends picked up there. That's actual Italian slang and also using Italian spellings for Names and Lands. Calling Naples Napoli, Florence Firenze, Rome Roma(along with the Tiber River being Tevere and so on) so that you get a sense of a culture from the people who are inside it. It's obviously not 100% real Italian but it gives you better immersion than the Royal Shakespeare Company speaking BBC English for no sane reason.

The basic thing is you assume that if a game with a historical setting and plot isn't 100% accurate than it has the license to be 100% fictional. I don't believe that one has to take such an all-of-nothing approach. Video games as a medium is still in early years and until Assassin's Creed no games really provided standards of historical fidelity to measure up against. The fact that AC2 is 70-75% accurate and avoids touristy traps(like putting Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel in the Final Rodrigo Mission when it wasn't made at the time) was quite amazing because it was something nobody expected. To put it in relief, the greatest film about the Renaissance which is 90% accurate is the Italian film THE AGE OF THE MEDICI(in the Criterion Collection) and most good books and plays never made it past 85% at best.


For I think is a PRETTY POOR and obtuse writing technique having your main character and/or tone of a work to necessary match the overall impression that your setting supposedly has in the public eye. Or else "life is beautiful" wont exist

Well so long as Assaassin's Creed is a sandbox game and has one player character(unlike GTA-V) then it has to have player characters be representatives of a particular era or setting. It wasn't all that true of AC1 because the Asasiyun as a publicly known organization with a well established historical basis, so Altair is just one Assassin among many. Once the Assassins and Templars became metaphors that hopped across history, the scope of the games increased and with that, the demands on the character increased with it. Ezio is not just Ezio Auditore, he is the Renaissance personified. Edward Kenway is the Golden Age of Piracy himself.

With AC3, they ran into problems since they had a Native American Assassin who can't really represent the American Revolution, so he ends up becoming this personification of America's Guilty Conscience. In movies or books you can have a different approach as you note. The fact is that for Assassin's Creed to approach that level, they have to radically change their approach to storytelling and the equation of the Assassin-Templar conflict. The one taken in UNITY is not good since unlike AC3 which sinned by excess of ambition, it basically runs away from the problems of its structure and doesn't come up with an intelligent away of dodging it.


you are clearly biased and hate the game

I don't hate the game, otherwise I would not write so much about something that I dislike. I am profoundly disappointed at UNITY precisely because I love the Assassin's Creed series and until UNITY it never put out a bad game and I am trying to understand the reasons for that failure in detail. And the ultimate reason for that failure is not the Next-Gen, its not the bugs and glitches, its ultimately a failure because it didn't engage with the history, and indeed they slandered it in the side missions and database entries. You can be nostalgic for the AC1 style gameplay and the fantasy of being an Assassin and a blade in a crowd but that only worked because it was rooted in a setting where the Assassins actually existed in history. To go back to that simplicity, you have to make another game set in the Crusades again(and I think that would make a good game). The fact is AC2 changed the franchise, the side missions and the additional features came directly out of the new setting where the Assassins have to operate under disguises and other fronts and that applies for the games after it. The linear style missions make more sense as well. Same with the sailing in Black Flag. In Unity the setting called for a serious change in structure of storytelling and modifying the Templar-Assassin dynamic in a really dark morally gray setting, instead of meeting the challenge and innovating on it, they ran away from the challenge and decided to malign and abuse the historical element because they didn't care about the setting. This is why it's a bad game.

rprkjj
12-01-2014, 09:04 PM
LOL. He said "We try very hard to portray things as factually as possible."

That's a lie because it would have been easier to portray the truth in Unity. You have to make up a fiction - the truth is already known.

If the game was about the truth, sure. But it's fiction. It already was fiction. Considering every moment is spent with Arno, the entire game is fiction, you might as well consider the Robespierre the game presents as an entirely different character because it's already far removed considering Unity's Robespierre existed in a world with Templars and Asssassins and Precursors and met Arno and Elise and OG Robespierre didn't. Thus, the historical accuracy has to fit around a fictional groundwork. Fitting said accuracy around said fictional groundwork is harder than abandoning accuracy altogether, as opposed to literally just copying the most accurate representations of everything during the time and pasting it onto paper. So it's not a lie.

Pr0metheus 1962
12-01-2014, 09:36 PM
you are clearly biased and hate the game.

Are you very young or something? I'm asking honestly, because you seem unable or unwilling to understand that constructive criticism comes, not from hatred, but always from the desire to improve something. A critic must love the thing he criticizes. Clearly VestigialLlama loves Assassin's Creed, or he wouldn't spend so much time pointing out how badly the developers fumbled the historical parts of AC: Unity.

Do you really think a mere troll would write pages and pages of text, assessing the historical parts of the game, just out of hatred? I assure you, he would not. Do you really think a troll would discuss these issues, always patiently, when faced with a bunch of people who are unwilling to even understand the points he's making? I assure you a troll would not. VestigialLlama has a hell of a lot more patience than I have - I would have told you folks to go **** yourselves days ago, because all you seem to do in response to his thoughtful and respectful points is call him a hater.

The point of criticism is to show how this game has failed where previous games got this stuff right. The series can recover from this downturn, but only if the players and developers know what went wrong. If no one discusses the issues - if no one is willing to show what went wrong and how it can be prevented from happening again, it will happen again. And if it happens again, the franchise may not recover.

If you love Assassin's Creed, you should ALSO be trying to help point out the flaws in Unity. Because look around the forums - not many people like this game, and there's a reason for that. You're not supporting the series by shouting down those who are trying to make the next game better.

johnsmith145
12-01-2014, 09:54 PM
/thread

Megas_Doux
12-01-2014, 10:02 PM
Its actually not that stereotypical at all. Italian macho stereotypes as seen in mob movies don't allow the subtle friendship between Ezio and Leonardo, nor do they show italians to be as cold and rational as Machiavelli is in this game(whose accent is elegant and soft). The italian accents were done with care, mixing actual Italian words and phrases with English pretty well, and you know using phrases like "In buocco al lupo" and "crepe in lupo" which me and my friends picked up there. That's actual Italian slang and also using Italian spellings for Names and Lands. Calling Naples Napoli, Florence Firenze, Rome Roma(along with the Tiber River being Tevere and so on) so that you get a sense of a culture from the people who are inside it. It's obviously not 100% real Italian but it gives you better immersion than the Royal Shakespeare Company speaking BBC English for no sane reason.

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I said I was abandoning this thread, but I had to clarify the following:

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHH The accents were done with care?????

I ´m an italian NATIVE speaker -my dad is from Spain and my mom hails from Milano- and I can assure you the accents were plain awful. It remained it me of this:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9JhuOicPFZY

Roger Craig and some others did a pretty good job with the acting, but the accents????? HELL FREAKING NO!!!!!!

Now, in regards of the italian stereotypes, I know them and some of those were present in AC II and ACB:

1 The "suave" womanizer that does not take anything too serious??? Check.
2 Loud-mouthed even shouting people????? Check!!!! In case you are wondering, there was Cesare Borgia, Francesco De Pazzi and Bartolomeo d'Alviano that yealed like 50% of their lines...I liked machiavelli though.
3 All Italians look like Mario and Luigi from Mario Bros?????Check!!!!!


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RJcPc6OQ384

Not that I was/am offended, but I just cringe every time I read stuff like "the accents were good" and such.

And I agree with Dev_Anj, it makes NO sense that of "the respective age is seen as dark/gloomy and/or Happy/flourishing. I mandatory have to adjust that to my character/ tone". Why is not possible to have an stoic character during the Belle Epoqué???? Why cant we have a character similar to Ezio in the 100 years war or the Viking Age???

I find it strict, restrictive and plain obtuse.


Are you very young or something? I'm asking honestly, because you seem unable or unwilling to understand that constructive criticism comes, not from hatred, but always from the desire to improve something. A critic must love the thing he criticizes. Clearly VestigialLlama loves Assassin's Creed, or he wouldn't spend so much time pointing out how badly the developers fumbled the historical parts of AC: Unity.



I am NOT pretty fond of Unity´s story and I truly have a love/hate relationship with the game, but that is not due to the historical stuff, for AC I was FAR from being accurate and I still liked the story. Thing is there has been double standarts. For example he called Arno "Napoleon´s b76ch" whereas Ezio is just "Medici´s pal" despite both scenarios are pretty much the same.....

Which basically proves and means the discussion is futile, he wont convince me nor I will convince him....

And I am not "shouting him down" for I said I was leaving the thread. I did not "kicked him out" because I dont have right nor the power to do such thing.

Xstantin
12-01-2014, 10:48 PM
Its actually not that stereotypical at all. Italian macho stereotypes as seen in mob movies don't allow the subtle friendship between Ezio and Leonardo, nor do they show italians to be as cold and rational as Machiavelli is in this game(whose accent is elegant and soft). The italian accents were done with care, mixing actual Italian words and phrases with English pretty well, and you know using phrases like "In buocco al lupo" and "crepe in lupo" which me and my friends picked up there. That's actual Italian slang and also using Italian spellings for Names and Lands. Calling Naples Napoli, Florence Firenze, Rome Roma(along with the Tiber River being Tevere and so on) so that you get a sense of a culture from the people who are inside it. It's obviously not 100% real Italian but it gives you better immersion than the Royal Shakespeare Company speaking BBC English for no sane reason.



That's just not true. Seriously you're pointing out all these huge unforgivable missteps with Unity, while glossing over ACII. I like ACII as well but it's not that perfect.

VestigialLlama4
12-02-2014, 05:47 AM
1 The "suave" womanizer that does not take anything too serious??? Check.
2 Loud-mouthed even shouting people????? Check!!!! In case you are wondering, there was Cesare Borgia, Francesco De Pazzi and Bartolomeo d'Alviano that yealed like 50% of their lines...I liked machiavelli though.

1) "Suave womanizer who does not take anything too seriously" is only true of Ezio in the first section of AC2. Immediately after that he accepts responsibility, ensuring to keep his mother and sister safe and insisting to Mario that instead of becoming an Assassin, he wants to leave Italy and go to Spain with them. Then he has a different side with Leonardo and others. He lapses back into womanizer mode when he tries to hit in Caterina but she ends up using him. In Revelations, its there more as a joke than anything where he tries to hit on Sophia with that old tack but doesn't bring that up in the rest of their interactions.

2) Among the people who are not Loud Mouthed or Shouting, there's Giovanni Auditore(except when he's about to be hanged-which is fair), Uberto Alberti, Lorenzo de Medici himself(he only loses it after the Pazzi killed his brother, which I hope you think is fair under the circumstances), La Volpe isn't like that, Leonardo is definitely not like that(and he has the most screentime of all the supporting characters) nor is Antonio the Thief-Guild-Boss from Venice. Even Mario Auditore is not such a loudmouth (after his flamboyant entry), though he looks like he should be. There's Girolamo Savonarola, Carlo Grimaldi, Emilio Barbarigo, Jacopo de'Pazzi, Betrand Baroncelli -- all of them non-loudmouths. Girolamo Savonarola is not a loudmouth either(though he hardly has any speaking scenes). In any case the biggest loud mouth and shouting character in the game is Caterina Sforza, which I guess is the less common Italian Diva stereotype(Maria Callas, Sophia Loren) while Rosa is more the working-class loudmouth girl(Anna Magnani type-though not as large). Rodrigo Borgia is also shown, and referred to as the Spaniard, though his stereotype is Renaissance-Age Mafia Boss which again given that his character is this villain type makes sense.

So most of the characters aren't loud-mouthed or suave womanizer types at all.


Not that I was/am offended, but I just cringe every time I read stuff like "the accents were good" and such.

The fact is that if you want good Italian accents(and I am sure you know that Italian accents vary in region to begin with) you have to watch real Italian films (and even there, they have Sicilian characters speaking with Northern accents and vice versa, not to mention they dub everything there in post using voice actors to remove the regional accents of the original actors and impose the News-TV dialect). Among Hollywood films, The Godfather Part II went out of its way to get Sicilian dialect right but that's the exception.

By video game standards AC2 is pretty good. That has always been my point. If someone comes up with another game set in Medieval Italy and they decide to have the characters speak in BBC English, I am sure there might be critics who say that this avoids the jokey accents of AC2 and I am sure that if someone makes a real effort and features accurate accents, they will say its more correct than the cliches of AC-II. Whether its right/wrong or not, the fact is AC2 gave them the standards to contend with, when before they had none. In Hollywood, the original gangster films and period films had ethnic stereotypes as well, whereas The Godfather and Scorsese's movies had something more accurate than before. That doesn't mean the classic gangster films were wrong to feature that style at all, even if you make mistakes, making an attempt at putting across a different culture, regarldess of pitfalls you fall, ought to be respected especially in a very immature medium. Simply not making an effort - well no guts, no glory.


And I agree with Dev_Anj, it makes NO sense that of "the respective age is seen as dark/gloomy and/or Happy/flourishing. I mandatory have to adjust that to my character/ tone". Why is not possible to have an stoic character during the Belle Epoqué???? Why cant we have a character similar to Ezio in the 100 years war or the Viking Age???

I find it strict, restrictive and plain obtuse.

Nevertheless so long as Assassin's Creed have open-world, single-character games and have a conventional narrative as opposed to something experimental and the like (which they can try if they can convince the management) they have to engage with that. It's part of the logic of the Open World Game, the character doesn't have to just be a character, he has to be a guide and representative to the world, the kind who can mix in both high places and low places. Given the period and time of these stories, that kind of freedom is tricky to accomplish without taking advantage of the tone. For Ezio, a nobleman in the Renaissance, living in the Florentine Republic in the City State era, he has more options than Altair in the Holy Land. Altair is a lower-class Arab who only got education and the like by being an Assassin, otherwise he'd have to be in the Army, a Thief or in the Priesthood. This by the way is the view of Maxime Durand, the in-house historian of the series:

http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2014-10/23/assassins-creed-unity-interview-maxime-durand "Then you have Ezio, who has a lot more freedom as a nobleman, and Altair who has absolutely no freedom. It's the same for Connor; he's involved in a fight but he has no power really."

If Unity had two playable characters, say both Arno and Elise, then the issue would be moot. Since you have two different ways and personalities with which to interact with the same sandbox and neither has to be the representative of the era. Assassin's Creed can do the things it would but then if they did that, put characters and bits inside stories and setting with no attention to context before UNITY, I wouldn't be here because I would never have considered it worth taking seriously nor would AC have the reputation that it does.

Assassin_M
12-02-2014, 06:56 AM
The fact is, Lama, you'v been pretty biased against Unity. When anyone brings up ANYTHING from past games to show your double standards, you just come up with the weirdest reasons about why they're okay in that game but not in Unity. Reading your posts, I see you put a lot of thought into them and i REALLY hate arguing against someone who likes things that I like but, really, your arguments have so many holes and bias that I wouldn't even bother.

VestigialLlama4
12-02-2014, 07:42 AM
The fact is, Lama, you'v been pretty biased against Unity. When anyone brings up ANYTHING from past games to show your double standards, you just come up with the weirdest reasons about why they're okay in that game but not in Unity. Reading your posts, I see you put a lot of thought into them and i REALLY hate arguing against someone who likes things that I like but, really, your arguments have so many holes and bias that I wouldn't even bother.

Why exactly are my reasons weird? Can you tell me that?

As for bias, I have to ask what exactly am I biased against? Unless you define that specifically, it doesn't make sense to bring that word. You can argue that some people are biased against Connor because he's not an embodiment of a white male fantasy the way his father Haytham or Ezio is, that case can be made. Some people can be biased against AC2 because they feel the Italian accents are too stereotypical, that is a bias as well because they are letting one issue colour their entire argument.

I am not biased against Unity for any one specific reason. I think the game is disappointing on multiple levels - its historical inaccuracies, poor storytelling and poor gameplay, the fact that Arno is a market-friendly character rather than someone who fits that period like Elise and Pierre Bellec. I have even mentioned that there are some parts of the game that are good and that the game could have been better if they had simply had a more experimental story that had to do with Paris in different time periods rather than a setting the developers didn't want to tackle.

All the praises I have seen for Unity, among people who like the game has to do with stuff like, "the accents aren't cheesy like the Italian stuff in AC2", "you don't gump around history like Connor in AC3". I have not heard or read one single word about say, "that was the most awesome level ever" or "this mission was the best Assassination mission". People call it a great game or defend it out of some sentimental value but they don't give any good reasons for it. It's all the Parkour has improved, and Combat is not as easy as it was in earlier titles. About the side missions, I have not heard anyone mention one that was as fun as the Assassination Tombs in AC2. It's all the side-missions don't have the bad animation of the Homestead Missions and so its better for not having Homestead Missions.

And now I mention historical inaccuracy they cite one or two or three other flaws in an earlier game and say Unity is the same. But I mention the other stuff that the games get right and how the historical element is nowhere as offensive or unfaithful in this game, and they say the game is going back to the Assassins-Vs-Templars fight rather than the historical textbook stuff, and they cite the first game, which is set during the Crusades, at a time when both Assassins and Templars were actual historical organizations and so they end up proving my point again.

Unity avoids the flaws and mis-steps but also avoids the many virtues that come with "having cheesy Italian accents" or "gumping through history" which is immersion with a particular time and setting, which the game abuses and maligns at every step.

Assassin_M
12-02-2014, 07:57 AM
Why exactly are my reasons weird? Can you tell me that?
Because they gloss over arguments. The third crusade had people die on wrong dates..etc, oh no that's okay. It's the double standard.


As for bias, I have to ask what exactly am I biased against? Unless you define that specifically, it doesn't make sense to bring that word. You can argue that some people are biased against Connor because he's not an embodiment of a white male fantasy the way his father Haytham or Ezio is, that case can be made. Some people can be biased against AC2 because they feel the Italian accents are too stereotypical, that is a bias as well because they are letting one issue colour their entire argument.
you're biased against a game that gave you an overly negative experience (Which has mistakes that EVERY game in the series has had) You can argue that Unity did it worst but I can argue otherwise as well. I mean, heck, you're even glossing over other people's arguments about accents. "Oh, that's just coloring your whole view of the game" Didnt you detest what I just said about bias? You're doing EXACTLY what I did RIGHT now.


All the praises I have seen for Unity, among people who like the game has to do with stuff like, "the accents aren't cheesy like the Italian stuff in AC2", "you don't gump around history like Connor in AC3". I have not heard or read one single word about say, "that was the most awesome level ever" or "this mission was the best Assassination mission". People call it a great game or defend it out of some sentimental value but they don't give any good reasons for it. It's all the Parkour has improved, and Combat is not as easy as it was in earlier titles. About the side missions, I have not heard anyone mention one that was as fun as the Assassination Tombs in AC2. It's all the side-missions don't have the bad animation of the Homestead Missions and so its better for not having Homestead Missions.
See, here's where you lose sight. You gloss over people's praises and complaints, you don't give yourself a chance to view it from THEIR shoes. Harder combat can be EVERYTHING to someone. It can make the game for them, you don't know. Removing the gump factor can be EVERYTHING for someone else, you don't know and yet you dismiss those on the grounds of the "virtues" accents and gump factors bring. Eh? when did you become the be all of opinions and what has virtues and what doesn't? and when did you get to decide what matters and what doesn't?

YOU'RE NOT supposed to look at other people's views with your standards, it simply does not work.


And now I mention historical inaccuracy they cite one or two or three other flaws in an earlier game and say Unity is the same. But I mention the other stuff that the games get right and how the historical element is nowhere as offensive or unfaithful in this game, and they say the game is going back to the Assassins-Vs-Templars fight rather than the historical textbook stuff, and they cite the first game, which is set during the Crusades, at a time when both Assassins and Templars were actual historical organizations and so they end up proving my point again.
Again, you're glossing over the fact that the Templars were a christian organization and the Assassins were a strict Ismaili muslim organization. A LOT of christians were offended at the portrayals of Templars in AC I. Historical liberties have been taken in EVERY SINGLE GAME but i'm sure you'll find a reason as to why it's okay there but not okay in Unity.


Unity avoids the flaws and mis-steps but also avoids the many virtues that come with "having cheesy Italian accents" or "gumping through history" which is immersion with a particular time and setting, which the game abuses and maligns at every step.
*sigh* Not everyone is like you. I don't think i NEED an accent or a gump factor to be immersed in a historical period. I'm pretty sure I know what I need for immersion. Accents have no virtue to me.

I'm not dissing you nor viciously trying to tear you apart, I actually like your posts. They have a lot of thought in them and you obviously care about what you talk about. I just hate that you sound so much like Pr0m.

VestigialLlama4
12-02-2014, 08:29 AM
Because they gloss over arguments. The third crusade had people die on wrong dates..etc, oh no that's okay. It's the double standard.

As I wrote before to Megas_Doux and I'll repeat here:
"The basic thing is you assume that if a game with a historical setting and plot isn't 100% accurate than it has the license to be 100% fictional. I don't believe that one has to take such an all-of-nothing approach. Video games as a medium is still in early years and until Assassin's Creed no games really provided standards of historical fidelity to measure up against. The fact that AC2 is 70-75% accurate and avoids touristy traps(like putting Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel in the Final Rodrigo Mission when it wasn't made at the time) was quite amazing because it was something nobody expected."


Let's talk about what AC1 gets right. The Assassins and Templars are actual historical organizations in this period. Now the series was inspired by Patrice Desilets reading Vladimir Bartol's ALAMUT which featured Hassan-I-Sabah drugging up young recruits with promises of paradise and the Assassins get high on hashish with promises of paradise and nymphs, and are called "The Hashashin". In the game, the Assassins are described by Malik with the historically correct word Asasiyun, the Hashashin stuff is based on historical slander that survives to the present day but there's never been real evidence that that's true. So already the game went out of its way to correct issues in the book that inspired by it(there's just one reference, that garden in the back with that illusion of girls but that's just an easter egg) and show the Asasiyun closer to how they were. It also shows the Assassins to be scholarly, Al Mualim(Rashid ad-din Sinan) in his study with scrolls, other Assassins looking scholarly, Malik making up maps. Basically it captures the philosophical ethos of the Assassins that Friedrich Nietzche so famously celebrated and which made them a cult for Beat writers like William Burroughs. Most of the game is focused on these aspects, and this it gets right. Other stuff it gets right, it shows Richard Lionheart speaking English with a French accent(and by the way, he and Robert de Sable sound awesome, why did they use those appalling accents in UNITY I never know), acknowledging that he hardly spent any time in England and barely spoke English. Also shows him to be this warrior dudebro who sees that Altair is a badass first and a heathen second, which once or twice he actually did, when he wasn't killing by dozens. Most of the game focuses on this rather than chronicling the great battles of the Crusades, so for me, considering the narrative they chose them adopting the perspective of the Assassins who were known to kill both Crusaders and Saracens alike historically, makes sense and is faithful to the historical record in the main. So I say 60% of the focus of the story is accurate.

Even if Unity was say, 60% accurate I would have tolerated it(or at least not bring up the historical biases as an issue) but its at best 35% accurate (and even that I am actually being generous, its probably less than that - its that deceitful). The Single Player Campaign is actually okay for most of the first section, falling apart later, but if the Brotherhood and Side Missions were more accurate, I wouldn't make it an issue. But the Brotherhood and Side Missions, the kind that's there for gamers who are interested in history and so not something the developers have to put in the story, go out of their way to print the most ludicrous and unbelievable lies and at that point. The Brotherhood Co-Op missions are just these missions where you go through buildings, stab folks and collect documents with B, the historical thing comes in the cutscenes which could have been accurate or nuanced, instead they go out of the way to slander and malign the events.


Again, you're glossing over the fact that the Templars were a christian organization and the Assassins were a strict Ismaili muslim organization

Historical accuracy is not an all-or-nothing issue. Its unfair to bring this particular argument about the religious issue when the series used the conspiracy element and First-Civ specifically make it something that appealed to gamers and not deal with religion. If they had made it honeslty about the Nizari-Asasiyuns, it might have been a good game but it wouldn't be a mass market franchise. So I don't think that's especially fair as a charge to bring up. Assassin's Creed was never a documentary game series, it was always a game about popular eras which were slightly more accurate than other games and stories are in that period, and generally it corrected misconceptions about times and places, like showing the Asasiyun not as mindless fanatics but as this weird and cool secret society(which is also fair to history, the original Assassins weren't entirely fanatics).

The fact is UNITY is a drastic comedown from one of the things that made the Franchise so great and original. All UNITY had to do was be more accurate than A Tale of Two Cities, Scaramouche or Scarlet Pimpernel, that is all it had to do, and instead it failed miserably, its even less accurate than that.

Assassin_M
12-02-2014, 08:00 PM
Historical accuracy is not an all-or-nothing issue. Its unfair to bring this particular argument about the religious issue when the series used the conspiracy element and First-Civ specifically make it something that appealed to gamers and not deal with religion. If they had made it honeslty about the Nizari-Asasiyuns, it might have been a good game but it wouldn't be a mass market franchise. So I don't think that's especially fair as a charge to bring up. Assassin's Creed was never a documentary game series, it was always a game about popular eras which were slightly more accurate than other games and stories are in that period, and generally it corrected misconceptions about times and places, like showing the Asasiyun not as mindless fanatics but as this weird and cool secret society(which is also fair to history, the original Assassins weren't entirely fanatics).
See? you refuse to see it any other way. You blast Ubisoft for their negative portrayal of Robespierre and call it slander, while glossing over the fact that A LOT of people view the subjectively negative portrayal of the Templars to be slander and accuse Ubisoft of having an agenda. It's the same case, it has nothing to do with religion. It's about the negative portrayal of an entity. you pick and choose what's fair and what's not and gloss over anything that YOU don't consider to be of the same standard to what you're arguing.

king-hailz
12-02-2014, 08:12 PM
I'm just sad they didn't show the terrible death of the Queen! It was sick! The reason why historically previous games have been better is because they showed the greyness of 'sides' in this it is more against a certain people...

Assassin_M
12-02-2014, 08:17 PM
previous games have been better is because they showed the greyness of 'sides' in this it is more against a certain people...
Just AC I, AC III and AC IV. The entirety of the Ezio trilogy had no grey (apart from ACR, Ezio's beard was clearly grey)

Farlander1991
12-02-2014, 09:14 PM
Just AC I, AC III and AC IV. The entirety of the Ezio trilogy had no grey (apart from ACR, Ezio's beard was clearly grey)

I don't know, I would call Manuel and whats-his-face (I seriously forgot his name, Suleiman's Uncle >_< ) fairly grey (while Leandros and Shahkulu are pretty black). Like, they're not fleshed out, but they're far above and beyond AC2-ACB Templars.

Assassin_M
12-02-2014, 09:57 PM
I don't know, I would call Manuel and whats-his-face (I seriously forgot his name, Suleiman's Uncle >_< ) fairly grey (while Leandros and Shahkulu are pretty black). Like, they're not fleshed out, but they're far above and beyond AC2-ACB Templars.

Yeah, Ahmet and Manuel were pretty grey but it's just that there wasn't enough of it, I felt. Maybe I just need to replay the game again.

Shahkulu, sure, he's better than anything AC II-ACB wise. He had a history with the Ottomans. They humiliated his people and driven them out of their homes and his bitterness was displayed well. Leandros was a borderline psycho.

VestigialLlama4
12-03-2014, 05:34 AM
See? you refuse to see it any other way. You blast Ubisoft for their negative portrayal of Robespierre and call it slander,

I don't blast Ubisoft solely for that, I blast it for slandering the entire Revolution maliciously, using the most threadbare sources and shallowest research simply because they didn't care for the period. In my OP, I mention that the Robespierre in the Single Player Campaign is not a portrayal that struck me as especially wrong. I have more issues with the Brotherhood Missions where the intros paint him as a baby-eating nutjob.


while glossing over the fact that A LOT of people view the subjectively negative portrayal of the Templars to be slander and accuse Ubisoft of having an agenda. It's the same case, it has nothing to do with religion. It's about the negative portrayal of an entity. you pick and choose what's fair and what's not and gloss over anything that YOU don't consider to be of the same standard to what you're arguing.

So your point is, that because the Templars supposedly got a bad rap in AC1 and the Borgia weren't shown with some of their (very few) good points, and that Charles Lee was shown one-dimensionally, why should Robespierre be any different? That is a fair point. But as I said above, it's not really about one person.

If Robespierre was made into the bad guy/Templar but people got the Revolution and the background right, then I wouldn't quibble, they could have gone the usual route and made Danton the hero, I would feel that it was a conventional choice but one that I would have accepted provided they didn't slander the background and whitewash events to the extent done here, where even side mission content, the kind that's there solely for people who might be interested in history, is filled with grotesque distortions and incompetent research.

All they had to do was get, at least, 60% right and be slightly more complex than other famous stories set in the time period.

In AC1, even if the Templar targets got a bad rap(though the fact that people talk of how sympathetic those targets are shows that it wasn't all that bad a rap) at least they showed the Asasiyun(their real subject) with a good deal of fairness and complexity. In AC3 even if Charles Lee got a bad rap, they got the Revolution right, they didn't show it as all good/all bad nor did they say that the American Revolution was entirely an all-Templar affair which the Assassins(Players-aka-Good Guy) didn't contribute to all in any way. Or in AC2, even if the Borgia are villains(albeit highly entertaining and memorable as opposed to Unity's pack of boring psychos), they got Machiavelli right, they got Caterina Sforza right, they got Leonardo da Vinci right, they got the setting and events right in the main. In REVELATIONS, they showed Ottoman Turkey to be quite different from an empire of harem girls and religious nutjobs. In BLACK FLAG, they showed Pirates more accurately than other depictions. In UNITY, we have what, a sanitized Mirabeau, a sympathetic King Louis XVI who is framed for a crime he didn't commit(which dodges the real complexity of the trial, where people almost unanimously considered him guilty for treason) and where the people are shown as sheep/morons or monsters with no complexity or sympathy whatsover and the entire Revolution is written of as a false uprising, which is an appalling filthy lie of the highest order, something which even A Tale of Two Cities did not do.

As such I think UNITY is a new low and a fall from the series own standards of accuracy, it resulted in a poor game and a poor story, because the history for all the licenses it allows, is a fundamental element of the franchise and it can't be distorted and abused without any sense or purpose.

VestigialLlama4
12-03-2014, 05:39 AM
I'm just sad they didn't show the terrible death of the Queen! It was sick! The reason why historically previous games have been better is because they showed the greyness of 'sides' in this it is more against a certain people...

Yeah, somehow even the Borgia and Renaissance Templars are more complex than UNITY is.

ltheghost
12-03-2014, 06:38 AM
Maybe the French Revolution was too complex of a story for people to grasp. And they went with the inaccuracies. DAMN I never knew there were so many...Wow..

Avidadollars111
12-04-2014, 12:58 AM
First of all, thank you all for this thread, I've been following it since it began and it nearly made me want to post something too (which I ended up doing... But because of another thread)! It's been a really good read!

I think people said pretty much everything that had to be said, I don't remember everything so I'll probably repeat some stuff...

I can't judge the gameplay as I can't play the game (can't afford a new console), but it seemed really nice when it wasn't glitching, on the walkthrough I watched. However this isn't the topic of this thread...


I've only seen the main missions, so I know the details of the side missions only thanks to some members of this forum. From what I've seen, it feels like Arno is a pale copy of Ezio, who's all "élise this élise that" (he needed her more than she needed him, seriously). As a french AND a parisian, my very first reaction has been "WHAT. THE. F*CK." Because i'm born in Paris, always lived there and actually think that Parisians tend to be angry at pretty much everything (the history of Paris and its inhabitants is quite a heated one (no wonder why many kings didn't feel like living in it...)). So even if he isn't gumping as much as Connor did (not that I dislike Connor, he's one of my favorites. And he actually realised the importance of the events he was involved in), I think it's a pretty dumb move to make him be so unconcerned about what was going on. Because he's not only french, but from the parisian region, and I really expected a smart character who would actually care and say what he was thinking about such major events. The French Revolution was an amazing setting, so many things could have been done (and some people here rewrote the story pretty well! It didn't seen as absurd/lame as what we've got)... I just feel like an occasion was missed. And seriously, I could follow the events because I knew it already, but sometimes I wondered how a foreigner who didn't know the details about it could actually understand what was really going on, since through Arno, the player wasn't involved in the Revolution.

I probably expected too much from Arno (the simple fact that he was so oblivious about the Bastille (and also, he had nothing to do there in the first place, it wasn't a prison for (rich) murderers. Rich people - like Sade - were generally sent to the Castle of Vincennes, east of Paris, where the old royal castle / ceramic center had been converted into a prison. But hey, it wouldn't have been that impressive then so why bother?) was enough for me to want to punch him had he been right in front of me.) .

When it comes to the other characters... Well, as it's been said, Robespierre would have made a great radical Assassin imo. But I can see why they made him a templar. It just feels terribly cliché. And don't get me started on Saint-Just. Maybe he wasn't a pure being made of light, but really... Same goes for the Marquis de Sade, a walking cliché. Sure, he's been put in prison by his own family because of his writings and all, but really, making him some sort of perverted dude ready for a no-panties party with Elise and all? REALLY?

On a positive note, since I know the city and all, I've been quite emotional over it and felt like crying sometimes, when the youtuber I was following entered a district I like to go to (like Le Marais, l'île Saint-Louis...). It was even more touching during the Belle Epoque and Paris Occupée things, because the city then actually looked like what we have now (as a reminder, the Baron Haussmann organised a huge urbanisation project to improve the city (late XIXs), so things you see on the map of Unity might not exist anymore). But the thing is, I've been emotional about places, and not the story. THAT is a problem.


Ok i'm on my phone, it's late... So i'm not entering into the details, not now. Sorry about the grammar mistakes and the lack of clarity in this post btw.

EDIT: LOL I FORGOT! The "let's hide the grain so the people will starve and ve even angrier" annoyed me... I mean, what about the embargo of out beloved British friends? What about a bad weather for some years prior to the Revolution that ruined the plants?

VestigialLlama4
01-23-2015, 11:10 AM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r47yZIYBUzc

There's this awesome episode of HISTORY RESPAWNED featuring respected author/historian David Andress who talks about the game's portrayal of history. It's quite interesting and informative and it does consider the game in detail.

Some observations
- He says that the streets should be narrower and less open, shop signs should be three-dimensional and hang out to people walking down the street rather than "19th Century storefront windows".
- He also said that crowds back then were more communal and vigilant and not unresponsive as seen in the game.
- Revolutionary Paris was full of horse-cab drivers and there were multiple traffic jams and angry cabs creating ruckuses...God they f-ked up by removing this part from the game.

Pr0metheus 1962
01-23-2015, 02:15 PM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r47yZIYBUzc

There's this awesome episode of HISTORY RESPAWNED featuring respected author/historian David Andress who talks about the game's portrayal of history. It's quite interesting and informative and it does consider the game in detail...

Interesting video. I wish David Andress had gone into a bit more detail on the decision the writers made to side with the Girondists and the monarchists. This, I feel, is the game's fundamental flaw, at least in terms of the writing. I especially like Andress' ideas for what themes he would have chosen for the story's backdrop: i.e. having the player have to make choices in terms of who to support as events transpired, and having the game ask the question of whether the forces of chaos could have been stopped. Of course, for that, Robespierre would need to be portrayed as human and flawed, and not just a stereotypical bad guy. Sadly, in the game, the issues of how and why the revolution went bad aren't even considered, and we're treated to a run-of-the-mill plot with "bad guys" just wanting to make trouble. As I've said before, it's just lazy writing, and it's very sad (and somewhat ironic, considering the game's subject) that this game, which could have been so good, turned out to be so bad. In that sense, the game is very like the French Revolution.

VestigialLlama4
01-23-2015, 03:10 PM
Interesting video. I wish David Andress had gone into a bit more detail on the decision the writers made to side with the Girondists and the monarchists.

There's a throwaway comment where he notes that the game is very charitable to the Girondins who he calls "warmongers" but by and large he sees it as a royalist counter-revolutionary game that dismisses the popular movement. I mean you can be anti-Royalist and pro-Girondin, as many historians are. David Andress and other historians like David A. Bell see the Girondins as the prototypes of the neocons and largely reinterpret the Terror from the lens of Bush's invasion to Iraq (Robespierre's anti-war speech about idiot politicians trying to spread democracy by conquest got a lot of traction thanks to Bush), noting how the Reign of Terror anticipates, on a microcosm, events like Guantanamo Bay, extraordinary rendition and the Patriot Act. It's no longer seen as a proto-Bolshevik prophecy but simply how democratic governments get repressive in face of a created/percieved/actual threat.


As I've said before, it's just lazy writing, and it's very sad (and somewhat ironic, considering the game's subject) that this game, which could have been so good, turned out to be so bad. In that sense, the game is very like the French Revolution.

Well the French Revolution over-reached so its implosion and overall victory in defeat or defeat in victory has an air of tragedy to it. The same can't be said of UNITY, they never had guts to start with.

Pr0metheus 1962
01-23-2015, 03:28 PM
...Well the French Revolution over-reached so its implosion and overall victory in defeat or defeat in victory has an air of tragedy to it. The same can't be said of UNITY, they never had guts to start with.

Well, I think that's a little unfair. Assassin's Creed was a very innovative idea when it first appeared. The only game I know of that came close to the level of historical accuracy achieved in AC1 and AC2 was a little game that virtually no one has heard of: Jordan Mechner's "The Last Express". I think it's interesting that Mechner is also the genius behind "Prince of Persia", which was essentially the forerunner of Assassin's Creed.

The problem is not that Ubisoft has no guts - I think it's that AC became so incredibly popular that the producers felt they couldn't afford to innovate anymore. It's like that old joke about "bravery" being a scary word in politics. It seems the same thing is true for game companies - it's not a good thing when a franchise achieves huge popularity. That's my take on it anyway.

VestigialLlama4
01-23-2015, 04:21 PM
Well, I think that's a little unfair. Assassin's Creed was a very innovative idea when it first appeared. The only game I know of that came close to the level of historical accuracy achieved in AC1 and AC2 was a little game that virtually no one has heard of: Jordan Mechner's "The Last Express". I think it's interesting that Mechner is also the genius behind "Prince of Persia", which was essentially the forerunner of Assassin's Creed.

Well I meant Unity in particular and not the Franchise as a whole. I mean AC3 is a tragedy. It had grand ideas and ambitions but fell over itself in execution. I mean yeah it had a Native American Protagonist but struggled to represent him intimately and hedged itself into a corner thanks to the political issues involved, but at least it did try, however imperfectly to take a challenge most movies and TV shows haven't confronted. Yes it had these amazing battles and historical figures but they didn't care enough to make them more than vocal textbooks, I like the game and defend it against its critics (including you) largely because its all alone in the kind of game it tried and failed to be and that its virtues are rare enough to forgive its flaws and execution. Unity never tried to engage deeply with its premise and I can't respect a game that coming after AC3 and facing a similar political conundrum decides to malign the problem by distorting facts instead of coming up with creative ideas.

But yes, overall what you say is true about the Franchise at its great heights of which UNITY is the absolute low point. It's come very close to sinking the enterprise completely.

I have heard of ''The Last Express'' but I haven't played it yet. I am a big fan of the original prince of persia (which I replayed recently and it still has the best swordfight in all of gaming, you and that Fat guy you run into in the middle of the game) and really cunning in its design.


The problem is not that Ubisoft has no guts - I think it's that AC became so incredibly popular that the producers felt they couldn't afford to innovate anymore. It's like that old joke about "bravery" being a scary word in politics. It seems the same thing is true for game companies - it's not a good thing when a franchise achieves huge popularity. That's my take on it anyway.

Well a franchise achieving popularity isn't as bad as a game that never becomes a Franchise or achieves success (like Beyond Good & Evil or Psychonauts or Mechner's later games for that matter). It was fun while it lasted though. That's why I forgive the annualizations, because you had six decent games (Pre-Unity) that set a standard for historical fiction in gaming and fulfilled a lot of fantasies people had about the kind of games they could play one day when graphics reach their potential.

pineal_gland
01-23-2015, 05:31 PM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r47yZIYBUzc



Nice, thanks for posting :)

I also thought the game was very pro monarchy, they implemented some nasty biased propaganda to make revolutionairies look bad.

Perk89
01-23-2015, 07:46 PM
I was initially upset (back when AC1 came out) that they just twisted the story of the Knights Templar and made them out to be Illuminati essentially (ironic since in their story, it's Abstergo who is twisting history), but I'm over that. Still not quite over all the blatant anti-Christian stuff (like Arno's ending speech which has nothing to do with the story and only serves as a plug for the writer's atheism). But the only thing I'm really upset about with Unity is the fact that the main story writers and the coop/side-mission writers didn't sit down and go over the story. In the main story, the Assassins are clearly anti-Revolution where as the Templars are pro-Revolution, as it's their undertaking. In the coop missions, it's literally the opposite. That is quite annoying. That said, the coop angle (Assassins being pro-Revolution) makes for a better story, and makes more sense.

The Revolution should have been an Assassin undertaking that went south, Robespierre should've been a radical Assassin, with his Montagnard (The "Mountain") being an allusion to Masyaf (and, by extension, Al Mualim who was known historically as "The Old Man of the Mountain"). Robespierre should've been the ending villain, with his Montagnard being the main Assassins, the Brotherhood of Paris being lesser Assassins, and this existence of two Brotherhoods representing a split within the French Assassins. Bellec should've been really a part of Robespierre's order, and they should've called their Brotherhood an "Order" and their mentor, Robespierre, "Grandmaster"( both like they were called in AC1) to signify their radical fanaticism. They would've been like Bellec, fundamentally anti-Templar and should've started and used the Revolution to get rid of Templars and their influence in France.

They would've killed de la Serre, because he was the Templar Grandmaster. They would've had Bellec kill Mirabeau because he was too soft and had amiable dealings/truce with the Templars. To the Montagnard, Mirabeau would've been a traitor. The Brotherhood, along with Arno and Elise, would've suspected that the Templars were behind it.

Elise would still be hunted by the Templars, who would've started being more radical in their response to the death of de la Serre. The end of the game would've dealt with dealing with Robespierre. With the radical Assassins put down, the Brotherhood of Paris would become the leading Brotherhood of the French Assassins, in Paris and elsewhere (Assassins in Paris would be the leading Assassins for the other French Brotherhoods to follow). The game would end with the Brotherhood of Paris would then start to address the now radicalized French Templars, who would've reached out to the British and American Templars (the French Templars would've been weaker than the French Assassins ever since the death of de Molay. These reinvigorated French Assassins would renew with a focus on economic power and not political/military power, setting up Abstergo). You could even show a meeting of French, British, and American Templar Grandmasters (Shay could be present as the American Grandmaster). The upcoming wars would begin, and the Assassins would have Napoleon as an ally, and they'd be bracing for renewed, intensified conflict with the Templars. This would set up a sequel game, and could even set up an expansion of the coop gameplay to include pvp gameplay in the sequel (assassins vs templars).

While, of course, the story would still be fictional, it would 1) make more sense, 2) end on a positive note for Arno and Elise (a hint for those who don't know the ending), and 3) be an interesting story that sets up future installments. Oh, and no Sage story...



I see wasn't the first to bring this up afterall.

arthur-peresb13
01-23-2015, 11:05 PM
For me this was the worst AC game by far since the beginning. The historycal inaccuaracies sure make it worst, but the game was dammed when they start to bee pro-aristocracy.

The templars been against the monarchy for what Philip IV did was a good idea, Haytham itself already told Connor, "we're not pro-Monarchy", but after that the game is just a failure. The Templar Order was about control and order, don't make sense they started the most mess-up revolution in history, make much more sense the Templars not been present during that period. They should been the one that get stronger with all chaos lived in the revolution and then rise to the power, suporting Napoleon into his Consul position and start a dictatorship that they can control.

the Assassin's should work with dubious people like Danton, Marat and Robespierre, then we can see the madness of Robespierre and the Corroption of Danton grow up with the time, and see what radicalism can do, just like happened with the pirates of Black Flag.

Arno should not see templars as just enemys and targets, he was raised by one and fall in love with another, so at least that I expected is to him hesitate. Suport Monarchy was even more lame, the character looks like wasn't of the period. He's not reached by the efects of revolution at all. we seen historycal figures like bad parody's of thenselfs, with no development.

The disturbed version of the revolution was just the icing on the cake.

EmbodyingSeven5
01-24-2015, 12:20 AM
do you remember in the first AC when desmond wakes up and is speaking to vidic on one occasion. desmond starts to talk about how the info displayed in the animus doesn't go along with what he learned about the period. Vidic replies by explaining books and history we know isn't totally legit. what we see in the animus is what really happened in the AC world.
so according to what we know already what we see in the animus is what really happend

EmbodyingSeven5
01-24-2015, 12:23 AM
Nice, thanks for posting :)

I also thought the game was very pro monarchy, they implemented some nasty biased propaganda to make revolutionairies look bad.

revolutionaries also beat people up and try to kill you for looking at them the wrong way. they were displayed as jerks lol

VestigialLlama4
01-24-2015, 07:09 AM
do you remember in the first AC when desmond wakes up and is speaking to vidic on one occasion. desmond starts to talk about how the info displayed in the animus doesn't go along with what he learned about the period. Vidic replies by explaining books and history we know isn't totally legit.

You totally misunderstand the whole point of that exchange. What Desmond talks about is the presence of Assassins and Templars actually shaping history, the fact that religion isn't as big a deal among Asasiyun and other basic inconsistencies. He means the general wrongness of that era.

Before UNITY, the Assassin's Creed games never really went into Alternate History (except for the Tyranny DLC which is an explicit fantasy). It's mostly a historical fiction series and works best as a historical fiction series. They went to great lengths to get the past right, portray historical figures with some degree of accuracy setting standards no game before it has ever done. You have to understand that the Assassin-Templar conflict is really a game metaphor, it's not meant to be taken literally that there were actual Templars and Assassins shaping history, if it was this game would appeal to no one but conspiracy nutjobs.

pineal_gland
01-25-2015, 01:41 AM
You totally misunderstand the whole point of that exchange. What Desmond talks about is the presence of Assassins and Templars actually shaping history, the fact that religion isn't as big a deal among Asasiyun and other basic inconsistencies. He means the general wrongness of that era.

Before UNITY, the Assassin's Creed games never really went into Alternate History (except for the Tyranny DLC which is an explicit fantasy). It's mostly a historical fiction series and works best as a historical fiction series. They went to great lengths to get the past right, portray historical figures with some degree of accuracy setting standards no game before it has ever done. You have to understand that the Assassin-Templar conflict is really a game metaphor, it's not meant to be taken literally that there were actual Templars and Assassins shaping history, if it was this game would appeal to no one but conspiracy nutjobs.

Haha yeah, weird conspiracy nutjobs. Conspiracies are pure fictional, duhh..


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9RC1Mepk_Sw

arthur-peresb13
01-25-2015, 03:38 AM
You totally misunderstand the whole point of that exchange. What Desmond talks about is the presence of Assassins and Templars actually shaping history, the fact that religion isn't as big a deal among Asasiyun and other basic inconsistencies. He means the general wrongness of that era.

Before UNITY, the Assassin's Creed games never really went into Alternate History (except for the Tyranny DLC which is an explicit fantasy). It's mostly a historical fiction series and works best as a historical fiction series. They went to great lengths to get the past right, portray historical figures with some degree of accuracy setting standards no game before it has ever done. You have to understand that the Assassin-Templar conflict is really a game metaphor, it's not meant to be taken literally that there were actual Templars and Assassins shaping history, if it was this game would appeal to no one but conspiracy nutjobs.


Agreed.
AC games have little problems with time and dates, like in BF, when Vane still alive when Mary Read died, but in actual history he was executed before.
But nothing of this disturbed the time period soo much as Unity. They made corruptions figures like Danton became saints, they made allies like Danton and Robespierre became enemies, they ignore the Louis acts and threat him as innocent, the escape of Louis XVI was completely ignored for the first time they chose a side, and distorted the facts to fit their disturbed version.

The game has probelms with himself, like the Assassins in coop be pro-revolution, and in the main campaing be pro-monarchy, the order and the brootherhood changing places in the ideas and goals, the ending of the dlc and the main game don't fit, letting a big hole to be explained... and soo on.

Unity has the worse campaing of the franchise, it's not awful, it's pretty awful. they should fired the writters of this ****.