Playing one of Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed videogames is like experiencing the most gory and thrilling lecture your high school wouldn’t let your history teacher get away with. The first game sent you to Jerusalem in the midst of the Third Crusade, making it the rare video game about the Middle East that doesn’t obnoxiously flirt with controversy. Assassin’s Creed II upped the history-porn quotient by letting you pal around with Leonardo da Vinci. Also, the last boss was the freakin’ Pope. (As a lapsed Catholic, I found that boss fight very cathartic.) The newest entry in the franchise, Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood, maintains the Renaissance setting, but sets you loose in the massive metropolis of Rome. I’m excited…but part of me is looking forward to the next game, and wondering where/when it will be. In which historical time period would you like to assassinate people?
To me, there are three specific pillars that make the Assassin’s Creed games so enjoyable: a big, bustling, imperial city; some sort of epoch-shifting backdrop (the Crusades, the Renaissance); and the potential for the game’ s storyline to overlap with a major moment in the history of the Catholic church. With that in mind, my personal vote would be for Assassin’s Creed to venture into France circa 1790. The game could kick off during the French revolution, but then move into the rise of Napoleon. You could explore center-of-the-world Paris during its brutal descent into Reign of Terror madness, and then watch it become the center of a massive empire. And you want papal chicanery? I’ll give you some papal chicanery!
Would you play a France-centric Assassin’s Creed? Or are you more intrigued by the much-bandied-about notion of a WWII-set sequel? Anyone feel like playing as Ezio’s Austro-Hungarian great-great-great-grandson?