Assassin's Creed Devs Don't Hate the British

John Funk

U.N. Owen Was Him?
Dec 20, 2005
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Assassin's Creed Devs Don't Hate the British

The American Revolution was a "British civil war."

A bit over 200 years ago, the fledgling Thirteen Colonies of America declared their independence from the British Empire and fought a war to prove it. (Spoiler alert: They won.) Assassin's Creed III takes place during that American Revolution, and protagonist Connor is on the side of the Minutemen and Sons of Liberty, which means he's going to be killing more than his fair share of British soldiers who thought that wearing bright red uniforms to one of history's first modern guerrilla wars was a good idea. (Spoiler alert: It wasn't.)

Despite that, though, AC3 writer Corey May swears that Ubisoft Montreal doesn't have any latent anti-British or overwhelmingly pro-American sentiment behind its next climby-stalky-stabby game. The story is "not meant to be [British] loyalists versus [American] patriots," he said.

"It's assassins versus Templars. There's a revolution going on and Connor will experience all facets of it. It's not as simple as Templars backing the crown and assassins backing the patriots, it's really two factions at war against the backdrop of another war. I have nothing against the Brits."

What's more, says May, is that the actual historical backdrop was rarely so cut and dry as "Americans vs. British." "It occurs against the backdrop of the Revolutionary war. Everyone back then was a Brit, this was not Americans against British - this was a British civil war."

That said, Connor is fighting on the Patriot side, and the E3 demo [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/editorials/reviews/previews/9684-E3-Preview-Assassins-Creed-3-Hands-On] featured him captaining a warship for some naval combat against British forces. Are all those sailors Templars? Probably not. On the other hand, given that Connor is partially Native American, he might not have all that much loyalty or fondness for the colonists that oppressed and murdered that side of his family.

But hey, it's kind of understandable in a way. After all, Ubisoft itself is French, and they did have that whole Hundred Years' War [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hundred_Years'_War] thing a while back. And Ubisoft Montreal is French Canadian! I'm just saying, maybe there's some latent historical resentment going on.

In all seriousness, this is actually an interesting thought. We have a great many readers from the various parts of Great Britain - do you feel that Assassin's Creed III is unfairly targeting you? Is it going to be odd playing a character who stalks and kills your great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfathers?

To be fair, though, you were kind of the bad guys.

Source: CVG [http://www.computerandvideogames.com/350667/assassins-creed-3-dev-promises-weve-got-nothing-against-the-british/]

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Ed.

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Jan 14, 2010
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Seeing it explored as a British civil war would be interesting.

The first protests form the colonies were very reasonable but the Tory government and liberal oposition (same guys who are in now actually) refused to listen, always wanted to see that as a jumping off point for alt history what if they had given representation.
 

lobster1077

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They all seem to be voice acted to resemble Disney villains so the inherent hilarity afforded by such a design choice far outweighs the apparent justice I should feel given that I'm Irish bred and born.
 

MANIFESTER

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Daystar Clarion said:
John Funk said:
Matthew94 said:
John Funk said:
To be fair, though, you were kind of the bad guys.
And you needed the french to win.

We'd rather lose than ally with them.
See? Latent historical resentment. I knew it!
If we really wanted to keep America, we would have :D

Wasn't worth the loses though.
And here I thought you guys did want it back. You know that whole...incident in 1812. Then you guys realized it just wasn't worth it with the whole Napoleon thing.
 

Sixcess

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John Funk said:
To be fair, though, you were kind of the bad guys.
We're always the bad guys. Ever since I heard the Helghast soldiers sounding like British squaddies I've become resigned to us being the bad guys, except in James Bond movies I suppose.

At least with AC they're justified (for once) in giving the villains british accents.
 

The Artificially Prolonged

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Jul 15, 2008
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I hope so, all the trailers so far have shown only brits getting a native hair cut and scenes in which the word freedom is used while the American flag is raised which does have me worried that it will be us=good brits=bad. Although Ubisoft generally do good research on each Assassins Creed game so I imagine that my worries will be proved wrong once we know more of the story elements; I trust the French Canadians won't be sore losers. Otherwise I might just go round killing minutemen in the game out of protest :p

I'm calling now that the story will involve a twist where both the colonists and British are ultimately controlled by the templars who are involved in a internal struggle for power and decide to use the Assassins as a pawn to give one side the edge over the other. You heard it here first.
 

Jack and Calumon

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Dec 29, 2008
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Ordinarily, I would see this as nothing different as killing the English crusaders in Assassin's Creed 1. In the country for dickish reasons because Britain, as everyone knows, is the bad guy of the world because we did so many bad things in the past. That's why we make the best movie villains, because British people are naturally evil. I have accepted that once my face hair sorts itself out I will be twirling my moustache as I feed another servant to my pet piranhas.

However, Conor isn't a colonist, nor totally British. He's a Native American. He's someone who lived originally here and his people and way of living were destroyed by the colonists, through disease, cheating, pillaging and raping. This was not a good guys versus bad guys war, this was a bad guys vs even badder guys war. All I ask is that Conor at least spends 5 minutes looking at the side he is fighting on and says "Jesus christ guys, what the fuck?" and maybe assassinates one.

Really, yes, that's what I want. I want Conor to kill at least one blue coat. Just one, then I'll be happy. You kill a single man in a blue coat (who is not in disguise, no cheating) and then I will be totally satisfied. I don't care if the mainstream media in America may see it as controversial that you kill one of the people who fought for independence in their great country, I want you to have the balls to say "They weren't all that good" and dirty your blade with someone tangibly responsible. Do it and I will never ever make any jokes about the connection of the French and cowardice.

I mean it.

Calumon: Please do, he won't be quiet otherwise. >.<
 

John Funk

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Dec 20, 2005
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DVS BSTrD said:
Uh sorry to burst your bubble there Funk, but the Revolution was NOT a guerrilla war NOR would it have been one of the first.
Daystar Clarion said:
John Funk said:
Matthew94 said:
John Funk said:
To be fair, though, you were kind of the bad guys.
And you needed the french to win.

We'd rather lose than ally with them.
See? Latent historical resentment. I knew it!
If we really wanted to keep America, we would have :D

Wasn't worth the loses though.
All I hear is "Waa-waa-waa-waa Why can't WE have an assassin?!"
The big battles, Yorktown, Saratoga, Lexington and Concord to start, sure. But there was a lot of guerrilla action in between that totally cribbed tactics from the French & Indian War (or Seven Years' War, depending who you're talking to). It was a strange sort of war fought both on major battlefields and guerrilla style.

Also, it makes for a good joke. :)
 

Thorenus

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Feb 15, 2012
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Some quotes from Television Tropes.com:

"Seeing which way the tide seemed to be turning, the king of Spain also declared war on Britain, and the Dutch - the second-biggest commercial power after Britain - started to bankroll the French and the British-American rebels. The colonies were now the least of Britain's problems; they were now practically at war with every major power except Austria, Russia and China, which had no navies with which to threaten Britain's dominant fleet."

"The transformation of a reluctant civil war into a world war with the foremost foreign powers of the day threatened Britain's holdings in the Caribbean and India. Britain itself was threatened, with the (Catholic) Irish making rumbles about siding with Britain's (Catholic) enemies again. All this led to a change in strategy. Having failed to achieve decisive victory in the northern colonies, in 1778 the Army shifted its efforts to the South, where there were more Loyalists (colonists still loyal to the Crown) and revolutionary fervor was weaker."

"This decisive defeat marked the collapse of Parliament's will to prosecute the war, and the end of major combat operations in North America. After further fighting between the French, Spanish, and British at sea, at Gibraltar, and elsewhere around the world, the Treaty of Paris (1783) ended the war and established the United States of America as an independent nation. A twentieth of the population of the former colonies, some hundred thousand people, emigrated to remain under the patronage of George III. Most loyalists emigrated to Canada, a milestone in the history of that nation which effectively secured it for the Empire by reducing the potentially rebellious French majority to a minority.

It would be a mistake, however, to think that the fledgling nation was now an incontrovertible fact. The United States of America were - 'were' and not 'was' because the constitution as known today had yet to be drafted and the federal government was very weak - under-populated, poor, debt-ridden and exhausted from a civil war which had practically torn them in half. They had no real army to speak of and no naval forces whatsoever. It remained to be seen if the secessionist colonies could form a strong and coherent state of their own or whether they would return to the Crown, by mutual agreement or by force. If there was one lesson history taught about republics, it was that they inevitably failed, and the state of the republic in the following decades would seem to confirm this assertion. Ironically, the Republic's survival was ultimately due to the actions of some hundred powerful oligarchs acting against the wishes of the majority of the people. Together they conspired to write and have ratified by the states a constitution, one that bound the states under a central government, to keep the fledgling nation afloat. Out of this clandestine agreement came the Constitution and, later on, the Bill of Rights as Americans know it today - the point of the bill being to undercut popular opposition to their attempt to subvert the power of the states to which most people who remained owed their allegiance. It would be another half-century, and a war that nobody really wanted before people could say with confidence that the new nation would be around to stay, in one form or another. "

Just wanted to debunk some of the overly romantic shit I see in the trailers. I think I am getting too old for videogames.
 

Richardplex

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We're always the bad guys or the super elite fighting force, we're keeping a stiff upper lip about it all.
 

DEAD34345

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Resentment?

The American civil was was actually our plot to separate ourselves from those obnoxious Yanks and royally screw over the French while we were at it. It was a great success, even if it did get a little out of hand.

I'm actually looking forward to this game, regardless of the perspective it takes. It's quite a novel setting, especially for video-games, and we haven't been over-saturated with that time period in other media either. Or at least, I haven't.
 

Chrono212

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May 19, 2009
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[image height=300]http://www.gamebreakers.co/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/British-Flag-Wallpapers.jpg[/IMG]




Anyway, I really hope that Ubisoft doesn't demonise the British like they have every other 'bad guy' peoples in past games.

The biggest difference in this game and the previous Creed titles is that Britain and America still exists, unlike the fractured city-states of Italy or Constantinople and the Ottoman Empire as portrayed in Revalations, meaning that demonization could be more of an issue.

As with everything, there were a lot of shades of grey.

But what is more important than the British or American characters is there needs to be a large group of French characters, as they played a huge part in the build up to the war, during and after, with the French Revolution almost directly attributable to the War of Independence.
John Funk said:
To be fair, though, you were kind of the bad guys.
 

Savryc

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Don't mind at all, it's only natural to fear your superiors somewhat, which makes the British being the bad guys in nigh on everything an inevitability.
 

luvd1

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Resentment? Nah. What was being asked was totally reasonable and people agreed with it... Cept the government at the time. Typical Tories.