Headscratchers: Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood
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- If Cesare Borgia attacked the Villa, what happened to all of the famous paintings the player bought? They must have survived somehow, but it seems kinda unlikely.
- As noted on the information listing in AC2, most professional painters of the time specialized in making copies of existing famous works. You weren't buying the originals in the first game, you were buying duplicates.
- And even then, the Borgia were hardly above stealing the paintings for themselves.
- The villa itself is largely intact, aside from a couple of cannonball holes in the front. There's no reason to believe the cannons destroyed the paintings, and the Borgia likely looted them.
- ^Confirmed in the Da Vinci Disappearance DLC in Brotherhood; two of the paintings were destroyed, but the Borgia took the rest.
Woman saving Ezio
- Who was that woman who gave Ezio shelter after he escaped Monteriggioni? She says Machiavelli sent for Ezio, implying she works for him, but then Machiavelli says he didn't send for Ezio because he thought Ezio was dead, implying she's working for someone else. Also she watches Ezio put on his Assassin gear and play around with his Hidden Blade without any sign of surprise, implying she knows of the Assassin Order. I went through the whole game expecting this woman to come up again but she never did. What gives? Who was she working for? What agenda does she have?
- Machiavelli later states that he was the one who took him to Rome. The woman could possibly be one of his associates.
- I don't remember that. When does he say that? And if he did bring Ezio to Rome, why would he lie earlier when he said he thought Ezio was killed in Cesare's attack?
- I can't remember exactly when he said it, but it was around the time Ezio became Grand Master. I'll do some searching to find it.
- Why exactly was Machiavelli so damn cryptic about the whole thing? Yeah, being a puppet master is fun., but this is war, you jackass. Play it straight with us and we can make sure we don't run rimshot into one of your schemes and get a whole bunch of people killed.
- Machiavelli felt that he didn't have to. He explicitly asked how Ezio's trip was as if he already knew and acted like nothing was wrong. Plus, he and Ezio were at odds with each other because they were vying for the title "Grand Master of the Assassins."
Other members of the Order
- Whatever happened to the other members of the Assassin Order, like Antonio and Paola and Sister Teodora?
- They still have important jobs to see to, overseeing the Venetian Thieves Guild and the brothels in Venice and Florence. Machiavelli, La Volpe and Bartolomeo have no ties to any specific location so they are free to assist Ezio in Rome. While the Templar agents throughout most of Italy had been wiped out, the Borgia still controlled the Church and it would have been foolish to not have agents still placed in Venice and Florence, where the Templars could re-emerge if they were pushed out of Rome.
- Yeah, but...not even a mention of how they're doing? No question from Ezio about whether his friends in Florence and Venice are safe from the Borgia?
- They're likely fairly safe anyway. Florence and Venice are controlled by Assassin allies, and are not tiny towns like Monteriggioni, which still took a massive Borgia army to destroy. They're fairly safe from overt Templar attacks, and, being Assassin-controlled, they're generally safe from subversive Templar efforts once Ezio has dealt with the Pazzi and Barbarigo forces. The majority of Ezio's friends and all of his surviving family are in Rome, and Antonio, Teodora, and Paola can take care of themselves when they've got the armies of Venice and Florence at their backs.
- That's what your Brotherhood is for. Ensuring peace for those guilds. Don't you read the contracts? Defend the Courtesans in Florence?
- In Brotherhood, why did they get rid of the voice-overs for the character descriptions? Those were awesome!
- Because it was annoying. Most people can read faster than the voice-over. They were a complete waste of time. It's like the narrated Codex entries in Mass Effect; you just mute the sound and read it.
- Too much effort for too little gain. I know quite a few people who didn't even bother reading any of the databases (yep, their loss); it's not too hard to believe that Ubisoft just didn't see the point in working so hard on something that a lot of people wouldn't even notice.
- Too bad. This troper thought it a nice substitute for the obnoxiously long cutscenes back in 1 establishing the targets as evil, especially since the voice-over segments do just as well a job at explaining why this particular asshole has to die. Now all we have to go on is, "This guy is — or is associated with — a Borgia (or a Templar). You know what to do."
- Those "Templar Lair" dungeons bug me. Specifically, the reward you get at the end. Not only is it a huge anticlimax to get all the way to the end of a long-ass dungeon and get rewarded merely with a sack of gold (come on Ubisoft, my renovation income is higher than that!), am I expected to believe that when Ezio is confronted with a massive treasure chest half-filled with gold, jewels, and assorted other treasures, all he does is scoop some coins into a bag and leave?
- Since the Templar Lairs were originally released as store-exclusive pre-order bonuses, they couldn't have put anything too desirable or necessary in there. At least the Palazzo Medici has a few more cutscenes with Lorenzo. What Just Bugs Me is that the Auditore Crypt - which is accessible to anyone with the game and an Internet connection - has no bonus for completing it beyond the bit of lore about Domenico Auditore.
- A unique weapon would have been nice, at least. Mass Effect 2 had exclusive weapons for players who bought from certain retailers. I don't see how this should be any different.
- Well the one in Florence never bugged me, because it was Lorenzo's secret treasury. Ezio isn't a big enough jackass to just take all of his stuff, so he just grabbed a handful instead. Can't say a really concrete reason for anything about the Lairs in Venice, but I'd like to think that Ezio either didn't want the Templars to realize that Ezio found any of their hideaways (since they can be entered stealthily, if I remember correctly), or he just went back and told Antonio for the Thieves Guild to steal later on.
- Frankly, I would have preferred Shop Quest items, since I was stupid enough to sell a Shrunken Head early in the game. And I could have done without the asshole who kept bragging about stumping an Assassin, when I really was scratching my head for 10 minutes wondering how to shut that guy the fuck up.
- If Ezio put the Apple in the vault under the Colosseum, where did Napoleon get his one? Cause it's quite clearly there when the modern day gang go fetch it and AC2's truth puzzles show that Napoleon had an Apple in his possession. Who would have replaced it?
- There are at least three Apples. Napoleon probably got a different one.
- According to Subject 16's puzzles in ACII, there are at least five Apples. The controversy comes from the fact that in the first game, Lucy tells Desmond that Alta´r's Apple was destroyed in the Denver incident in 2012; in ACII, the implication is that Ezio's Apple is the same one. Of course, as we see in Brotherhood, Ezio's Apple is still around in the present day and has been in a Vault beneath Rome for over 500 years. Presumably then, Ezio's Apple is a different one from Alta´r's.
- Revelations confirms this in the end; Alta´r hid the Apple under Masyaf, and it stayed hidden in his vault under the castle. The Templars eventually penetrated the vault and retrieved it, and it eventually was destroyed in Denver.
Ezio and the Vault below the Colosseum
- Is it ever stated how or where Ezio learned about the Vault beneath the Colosseum, in order to hide the Apple there in 1507? I know there's a four year gap between Sequences 8 and 9, so he may have learned about it during that time, but some confirmation would've been nice.
- He could have learned about it from the Apple itself.
- Read the Scrolls of Romulus. Brutus found the temple first. He even drew sketches of it. And showed where it was. Ezio must have thought after reading the Scrolls that this was a good hiding place. He was right, since it remained untouched for 500 years.
Two hidden blades
- Why is it that in Brotherhood, you have to wait until you meet Leonardo before you can use the two Hidden Blades again? Ezio still had his father's one during the battle of Monteriggioni and Machiavelli made another one for him. That's two. Even if the first was stolen after he passed out on the way to Rome, you begin recruiting new Assassins before you meet Leonardo and they all have Hidden Blades, so either Ezio or someone else operating in Rome's Assassin Guild has the ability to make Hidden Blades. Why didn't Ezio get one from that person?
- IIRC, the design for the second Hidden Blade was distinctly different than the design for the first. It was hidden in a Codex page, after all, and no one else has a second blade, probably for this exact reason.
- That's another thing. What makes the second blade so special? It doesn't seem to be any different from the first blade and it doesn't have any of the extra accoutrements (i.e. the gun or the poison blade/darts).
- According to Page 13 of the Codex, constructing a Hidden Blade is very difficult, both because of the mechanisms and because the metals they use in the blades are very difficult to obtain. Even when Alta´r was around, he stated that the Hidden Blades were a fairly scarce resource and they would have to be very careful in picking who would carry a second one for that exact reason. From this, we can reasonably conclude that the Hidden Blade is a precious resource among the Assassins. If Ezio is rebuilding the order, it would make sense that he would choose to not expend the limited resources of whoever is constructing the Assassins' primary weapon when he's already got a Hidden Blade of his own. He can afford to wait until he's found Leonardo to rebuild his second one. It's the classic example of the leader putting the equipping and arming of the men first ahead of his own.
- That explains why the second blade is rare, but not why it's so unique that you need a whole other set of schematics for Leonardo to build it.
- Well, all Assassins have the Hidden Blade on their right arms, right? So in order to make one that works, you just need to copy the same mechanism with only minor adjustments for size. But obviously your left hand has a different layout, so to speak, of bones, muscles, that sort of thing. Obviously the left hidden blade is just a reversed model, but you'd need someone who was quite knowledgeable about the human body to be able to get it to the precision the blade needs to be. So in short you'd need someone who was knowledgeable in both medicine and craftsmanship to do it.
- Obviously they needed someone as skilled as Leonardo da Vinci to build it. What I asked was why they needed a whole separate set of schematics to build it. Why couldn't Leonardo have just puzzled it all out himself? It can't possibly be that hard to take the standard Hidden Blade model and build a mirror-image of that same design. Certainly not for someone like Leonardo da Vinci, a man whose engineering skill is generally regarded as unmatched by anyone else in his lifetime.
- In that case, I was under the impression that Leonardo building the second Hidden Blade the first time in Florence was less "we can't build it without the schematics" and more of "here are schematics for a reversed blade...hey, that's a cool idea, let's make one!"
- Take a look at the Hidden Blade the recruits are carrying before they achieve the rank of Master Assassin. Their Hidden Blade looks crude and not as well designed as Ezio's. Also, at that point of the game, you can only recruit few people so I assume that the Assassins not engaged in field work (Machiavelli) just lent theirs.
- Is it just me or do the characters not seem to care much about Mario's death? I think he's mentioned maybe once or twice after being killed off. Considering that the death of Giovanni, Federico and Petruccio was the catalyst that kicked off the entirety of the previous game, this just feels weird.
- If the second game is anything to go by, Ezio and Claudia barely knew Mario before the events of ACII. They didn't even recognize him when he rescued them from Vieri's goons.
- Yeah, but by the start of Brotherhood, Ezio and Claudia have been living with him for over twenty years. That's longer than they lived with their father and brothers.
- True, but that doesn't necessarily mean they were close. Ezio was busy doing Assassin stuff so much during those 20 years that his relationship with Claudia became a total wreck. Maybe Mario was so busy doing mercenary stuff that Ezio and Claudia never had a chance to get all that attached to him.
- From what I saw in my playthrough, Ezio and Claudia did seem distressed and affected by his death. The difference between the deaths of Ezio's father and brothers and the death of Mario is that both Ezio and Claudia are older and have become accustomed to violence and death by the time of Brotherhood. They have such an intense reaction to their father and brothers' deaths because it came out of seemingly nowhere, they were unaccustomed to death and danger, and they were teenagers. By the time Mario dies, they're aware of the Assassin Order, and are aware of the dangers of being associated with it, and are quite simply much older and more mature and able to handle it better. Even then, they do speak of Mario fairly often, from my observation.
- Perhaps they both know that worrying about Mario will only leave them vulnerable to the Borgia, as they intended it to do. Besides, they may very well have had some intense mourning time off camera...methinks a repressed memory?
Templars using the bleeding effect
- The whole concept of the multiplayer and the Templar use of the bleeding effect. How is this supposed to work? I was under the impression that the bleeding effect can only happen when the tested subject is related to the person he is following. Vidic stated that the recorded Assassin abilities through tested subjects like Desmond just changed their appearances. In other words, the Abstergo employees are just re-using Assassin data and changing the avatar. So it isn't like the actual Templars could do the things an assassin could with the exception of Fiora(The Courtesan), Lia da Russo(The Smuggler), Lanz(The Footpad), and Il Lupo(The Prowler). So how can Vidic hope that the employees gain these abilities when they have no connection in the lineage of the Assassins, or even the avatars themselves (Most of those Templar agents were either killed by other Assassins or Ezio, or the Courtesan)?
- There's probably plenty of people out there who have at least some genetic connection to the Assassins at some point. A significant number of the people who currently live in Asia, for example, can claim direct genetic connection to Genghis Khan's bloodline (admittedly, he and his sons were quite a, ahem, prolific set of breeders....). The Templars also have a group referred to as the "Lineage Team" whose entire purpose seems to be to keep track of genetic bloodlines precisely for the use of the Animus. More likely than not, the Templars are running employees through the Animus who have some genetic connection to the Assassins, probably tangentially. People like Desmond, Subject 16, and others probably get the special treatment because they are more closely connected to the Assassin bloodline than others. Considering the kind of man Ezio was, his genes probably got around.
- OP here. Genetic Connection is one thing, but lineage is a completely different matter altogether. One might be related to Ezio at one time, but there was no way they could have known if they were related to him by being a distant nephew or niece or a friend of a friend. Direct lineage means that one's genealogy is directly linked to him/her. It's a lot tougher to locate one specific person's history to just one guy. And yes, Ezio was not celibate in the slightest—or at least not the period Cristina died in his arms—but you can't compare him to Genghis Khan and his sons who were notorious for their breeding. We are talking about one man here in a period where people don't live long and anything can happen. We are unsure if Ezio ever spawned a child, but judging by Desmond's genetic memory, Ezio wasn't shagging at the level of, say, the Borgias. Sure, Abstergo/Templars can use a Lineage Team to track people's genetic history down. However, they don't exactly know who was an Assassin and who wasn't or, better yet, who is an Assassin and who isn't.
- "We are unsure if Ezio ever spawned a child" - he certainly had at least one after the events of his games, the whole point of the Animus is that it's letting Desmond relive the lives of his ancestors.
- Exactly the idea. We don't know if he spawned a child before Desmond's obvious ancestor. So it is kind of odd to say that Ezio had multiple children before the point of conceiving Desmond's ancestor.
- While I may just be remembering something incorrectly, did Abstergo not rig the Animi to work just like a videogame, ignoring the whole problem of bloodlines and relations by making, essentially, a videogame in the Animus? Just use uploaded memories of the Renaissance Templars like templates without worrying about the subjects being related.
- The problem is synching up with the memories. As noted in AC 1 you can't take a new user and drop them straight into a stressful memory, because their mind rejects what is happening and fights the process. So while you could view some memories without being a descendant (a la the DDOS from Project Legacy) it limits what you can see without your mind rejecting it and desynching you. Plus the DDOS only shows you events as they occurred and offers no control, which is another problem with the technology. The only use of the Animus in a context where it is not showing your ancestor's memory is the Multiplayer section of Brotherhood, and in that case it's not showing you memories but rather putting you in a fabricated environment, and whenever you perform the actions that your persona did, the Bleeding Effect transmits those instances of muscle memory into the Bleeding Effect.
Modern portions of the game
- Couple of things in the modern portion of the game bugs me. In Monteriggioni: first of all, why is there no one outside at night? You'd think someone, anyone, would be awake and about during the night. And why does everyone bother to send e-mails to each other when they're right next to each other in the Sanctuary? Where are these meetings Lucy keeps mentioning? And finally, Desmond can go outside and see red footprints leading into the Villa entrance later in the game...and he doesn't tell anyone about it. Why would he not mention that the Templars are right there?!
- 1. I was always under the impression that Desmond was running around Monteriggioni just before sunrise. I have no idea if it is different in Italy, but the crack of dawn is pretty early for people to be around a random tourist attraction. 2. The team watched Desmond sneak around and pick up bits and pieces of information by being nosy at Abstergo. Honestly, they don't want to tell him everything, so I guess this is their way of being as discreet as possible around him. It doesn't work, but that's the best theory that I can think of and it kind of bugged me, too. As for the location of the meetings, I assume that when Desmond calls it a day, they rest at the inns within the walls of Monteriggioni. If you look around, there are restaurants and locales and all kinds of stuff. 3. No idea why the player wasn't able to mention that. Then again, who says that the threat wasn't already taken care of? They were in the area for weeks. Those footprints appeared after the first few days.
- The red footprints were apparently put in an early version to help people find their way back to the vault, because they were getting a little lost in a mapless Monteriggioni, and the dev team either neglected to take them out or figured they'd be helpful for players. Or the dev team was lying about the footprints not being a clue that Lucy was a secret Templar.
Subject 16 puzzles out of order
- Not exactly a JBM, but something I'm curious about. In Brotherhood, the Subject 16 puzzles have you getting hints from Shaun, and when you get The Truth there is a conversation involving the three modern Assassins. Does anything change if you leave it until after completing the main story before doing this?
- No, not a single change. Notably, Lucy even talks at the end of the puzzles despite being, well, probably dead.
- About the capes in Brotherhood. Why do the Auditore Cape and the Borgia Cape do exactly the same thing? Both reduce your notoriety to 0% and keep it there. For some reason, (apparently because after the Villa attack, the Auditore Cape was in possession of the Borgias) guards will ignore your actions while wearing the Auditore Cape. That's right — Being in a white, hooded Assassin cloak, with the Auditore Cape on and shoving a Hidden Blade into someone's neck won't raise your notoriety meter. WTF? Wouldn't it make more sense to have the Borgia Cape keep you at 0%, and the Auditore Cape keep you at 100%, just like in AC II? There isn't even a cape that makes your notoriety meter stuck at 100%. It's almost like the developers made a big mistake and accidentally gave the Auditore Cape the wrong function.
- Or, y'know, the function of the Auditore Cape on the guard's behavior is an abstraction of how it realistically would have worked, like everything else in the Animus. If you were walking around in Rome during the Borgia rule, wearing the Auditore Cape, it was an obvious sign that that you were in the Borgia favor and the guards were going to be more lenient. The Animus translates that into not affecting your notoriety.
- So if I was walking around with the cape bearing the coat of arms of a well-known Assassin family, that wouldn't make the Borgia guards (aka guards who work for Templars) suspicious?
- Did you bother reading the description of the Auditore Cape? The cape was owned by the Borgia at the time. Anyone walking around while wearing that cape is clearly in the favor of the Borgia if they were given said cape. The only other reason they'd be wearing the cape would be if they were an Assassin, and we all know that's just ridiculous!
- The Borgia Cape is gained by gathering all 101 Borgia Flags. The Auditore Cape, on the other hand, is gained when you have 100% completely renovated Rome. In other words, you have destroyed all the Borgia towers and own every building in the city. You control the city's mercenaries, courtesans and thieves. Vigilantes are at every street corner ready and willing to aid you. In other words, the entire city is united behind you and against the Borgia. Your notoriety doesn't rise because no one dares report your activities — including the guards, they're terrified of you! The Borgia Cape, on the other hand, identifies you as a servant of the Pope. Even if you do something to get noticed, no one is going to report you. And even if they do, no one is going to go after you. Surely only the Captain-General or Alexander VI gifted that cape to you? It would be suicide to put the word out against you. Make sense?
- Wouldn't it have made more sense to release the Cristina missions as DLC for Assassin's Creed 2 and work them into the main story like the previous DLC? It would have flowed much better as part of the main story and it would have shown a more vulnerable side to Ezio, particularly later in the story, where I felt he had become a little flat. I know they wanted to promote Brotherhood and all, but would anyone have not bought Brotherhood if it didn't have the Cristina missions?
- The Cristina missions were added very late in development by a very reluctant dev team under pressure from fans for more development of the Cristina character. It was probably so far into development of Brotherhood that releasing it as DLC would have just been silly.
- Plus, they're not exactly long or engaging enough to warrant DLC.
- In the mission where you get to drive a tank in Brotherhood they put in a NO DAMAGE TO THE TANK EVER apart from bullets? And then put in a Battle royal with THREE Tanks AND explosive barrels? In the end I had to resort to cheat-esque maneuvers.
- I don't know, I only got hit once in that mission, I figured I could probably do it if I tried maybe a few more times. Surely it can't be that hard...right?
- I finally got it, so yeah. My point about impossible 100% sync requirements still stand.
- You know, I actually went to try this mission, and it wouldn't be half as bad if you didn't have to do the whole damn mission over again, which means you have to spend at least 5-8 minutes trudging through a tailing part, a combat part, and a free-running part just to get to the tank section. Another extremely frustrating mission is getting 100% sync on the mission "Calling All Stand-Ins". The requirement for 100% is that you have to let your assassin recruits kill your target for you. Sounds simple, right? Not when the game won't count your kills if the recruits kill them with the hidden gun or throwing knives, which they love to use because they spawn on top of structures. Did I mention the entire mission consists of just following an NPC for a good 8 minutes?
- I never had problems when calling the recruits for the kill. Even an Arrow Storm was registered as a recruit kill, IIRC (I recall thinking "easiest 100% ever" for that very reason). You sure it wasn't bugged?
- The trick with the tank is to try and kill the cannons ASAP (aim for the explosives and you'll probably kill them before they even get to aim), preferably with the tank equivalent of cover-based shooting. For the enemy tanks, constant circle-strafing worked wonders for me.
- My personal theory is that the really difficult 100% sync conditions aren't really there as a challenge to the player, even though they're possible. The really difficult ones (like the tank mission, or not taking any damage when getting ambushed by a baker's dozen Romulans) are there to drive home the point of how much of a badass Ezio is. They're supposed to be hard, even nearly impossible. That's just how good Ezio is.
- Maybe in theory, but things like this, 8 minutes to get through a sprawling labyrinth, getting past an army of guards with only the Apple of Eden and taking no damage, etc. went WAY over the line. Just a massive rookie mistake on the part of UbiSoft (much like those shoving bastards and every loudmouth in the city giving the same 4 speeches over and over and over). Revelations' conditions are much more reasonable.
- If you're talking about the Catacombs Romulus Lair as the sprawling labyrinth, I found out that there's an easy way to navigate the maze: At intersections, go in the direction of where the torch is hanging on the wall. But yeah, the tank mission and the mission where you have the Apple and need to make a break for it were the most annoying ones.
- The whole business about buying businesses and landmarks in Rome leaves a pretty important question open: did the Borgias never think to question about this anonymous moneyman buying off massive influence in their city under their very noses? Shouldn't it have been rather obvious for them who was burning down their towers and buying out their businesses? It would have been nice if there'd be one optional mission where you try to buy a major landmark, only to discover that the entire business deal was a trap.
- Cesare's a pretty poor leader. When Ezio first starts re-opening shops and destroying towers, Cesare either isn't taking notice or thinks his guards will be enough. After a while he leaves Rome altogether, entrusting it to his followers who are probably even worse leaders. By the time he gets back, the Assassin influence in Rome has increased so much that there's little he could do. Even so, it is worth noting that tougher guards start spawning throughout the city as the game progresses.
- This is a pretty big factor. And Truth in Television, to boot. In Real Life, Cesare was an impressive fighter and general, but overall a very poor statesman and politician: shortly after his father died and the Papacy shifted hands, most of his former allies in the Vatican, including the new Pope, turned against him, with Pope Julius outfoxing him politically at every turn. On the matter of statesmanship, Cesare conquered a lot of Italy very quickly, sure, but didn't really seem to understand that to keep the whole thing together he would have to stop relying on the iron word-is-law of the Papacy backing him; his proto-kingdom quickly and rapidly imploded after the Pope died and it became obvious the new Pope wasn't going to back him up, because none of his conquests felt any endearment or loyalty to maintaining what he was trying to build.
- Cesare, for the most part, is simply out of Rome and not able to maintain a close eye on his minions. The guys he leaves in charge are not the most terribly loyal or brilliant of men, consisting of a banker who spends most of his time getting baked and throwing revelries and a French nobleman who is planning to betray him and take over Rome. Between Cesare's focus on his campaigns throughout Italy and the fact that all of his secret weapons are getting destroyed, he's fairly distracted from the sabotage occuring in his base of operations. Couple this with the fact that Cesare isn't terribly mentally stable to begin with, and you've got a guy who'd likely miss what's going on in Rome.
- Given the disrepair all these landmarks have fallen into, it seems to me the Borgia don't particularly care about them and wouldn't be bothered enough to pay attention to who's buying them up or why.
- That lingerie Caterina wears for Ezio at the beginning of the game bugs me. Not that it wasn't nice to look at, but did skimpy lingerie like that really exist during that time period?
- Yep. It most certainly did. Renaissance and Victorian-era lingerie was actually quite complex and well-designed. Those tailors didn't just make pimped out dresses.
- So, if the Animus 2.0 can run on a truck battery, why does Rebecca make Desmond hook it up to Monteriggioni's power supply at the start of Brotherhood?
- The Animus probably drains the battery pretty quickly, at least to the point where it's probably better to run it off a relatively plentiful power supply like a city power grid instead of a finite resource like a battery, saving battery power for when they need it. They also need more than just power to operate the Animus. You don't think all those additional servers, floodlights, computers and the (implied) refrigerator run off pixie dust, do you?
Multiplayer genetic memories
- How did the Templars get the genetic memory of the Multiplayer characters? Did they get their descendants? Since they were using Ezio memory for the movements and parkour, did they just take Ezio memories of seeing the targets to use as skins for their training programs?
- Probably searched for some people present in Ezio's memories and that had Templars/Abstergo worked as descendants. They ARE a world-wide company, it's probably not that hard to find these guys.
- Does present-day Monteriggioni have no night life?
- It seems to be a small tourist village. It's possible that almost no-one even lives there any more, and the place is filled just with empty houses and gift shops.
- It probably does, but Desmond appears to only go out just before dawn, when it's likely everything's closed up shop and everyone's at home.
- The real-life Monteriggioni is a carefully preserved historical landmark. An active nightlife means drunk drivers, graffiti, etc. I would think that a city that prides itself on carefully preserved historical architecture would want to discourage that sort of thing. But I've never been there myself, so take that with a grain of salt.
- It's hardly a city - more like a small village. Presumably bars and night-clubs are a bit thin on the ground. And in-game, you can see that the gates are closed at night, with a notice on them that cars aren't allowed in the town after nightfall.
- Why is it that one has to buy a heavy sheath for Ezio to carry around heavy weapons when there is no sheath visible? In fact, none of his weapons have scabbards. I'd ask why Ezio doesn't keep his his weapons from slicing his legs open during free runs but that was "answered" on the main page's headscratcher.
- As has been said, multiple times across the AC pages, it's an abstraction of the Animus.
- For a less snarky and probably more accurate answer, it probably wasn't worth animating. Ezio changes his weapons whenever he wants, so why bother animating all sorts of different scabbards? Also, what if you use a mace or bludgeon? No scabbard needed.
Followers of Romulus
- What's with the Followers of Romulus? Machiavelli made them out to be a serious threat to the population of Rome, but there is exactly one incident where Ezio encounters them where he wasn't intentionally raiding one of their bases. He doesn't even always fight them when in said bases. The Cento Occhi at least were seen to be trying to rob people on occasion. These guys effectively don't exist outside of the missions about them. Also, Machiavelli acts as if being able to prove a connection between the Borgia and the Followers of Romulus would allow the Assassins to strike a major blow to Rodrigo's power. But when you finally kill the Pope's point of contact with the Followers of Romulus and get the code sheet to decrypt the messages they exchanged, nothing happens. There isn't even a cutscene where Ezio gives the sheet to Machiavelli so that they can attempt to use the information that they had apparently been after for three years.
- You've already got around a bazillion parallel plots running to the main story, with the missions of the Thieves and Courtesans and such. If those didn't have any bearing on the main plot, why should the Followers of Romulus? At least that one got you special armor.
- Because there's no actual conclusion to that plot point. There were still a couple of priests that the Cardinal was controlling on the loose, not to mention the actual followers. They are never really destroyed, they just vanish from the plot when Ezio isn't around one of their bases, and he eventually runs out of bases to rob.
- Just because Ezio didn't hunt down and kill every single Follower of Romulus doesn't mean he didn't destroy the organization. If they're scattered and on the run, it's as good as being destroyed.
- Most of what they do seems to happen offscreen, but that's probably a result of the Animus and the emphasis on Ezio's memories. The Romulus agents seem to mostly keep out of Ezio's way, and appear to fade into the background once the Assassins start taking over the streets. There is a conclusion to the Romulus missions, but that's when Ezio runs down the Cardinal in command of the entire order and finishes him off; after that, it is safe to conclude that the cult fell apart.
- The games main writer said that they actually planned that Ezio gives the last scroll to one of the heralds and from then on you would occasionally hear the town criers spreading the word that the Borgia were to blame for the attacks of the Followers. It┤s not in the final game because that was apparently not possible to lock sound bytes for the random NPCs for limited time. It still would have been better when the random encounters had included bandits and Followers.
Modern day villa
- The modern-day villa at Monteriggioni is in a most peculiar state. Not only is it in poor repair compared to the rest of the town, though you would expect it to be the main attraction. And when you enter it, you find that the secret door is still bolted shut after 500+ years, there is the skeleton no one has bothered to remove even though it is in a rather obvious location, and there is a massive cavern with walls and scaffolding that has not collapsed or rotted away for centuries - all which mean that the villa is actually in excellent shape for being neglected for so long. And you can't blame the abstractions of the Animus either - those sequences are supposed to take place in the "real" world, and the villa is actually stated to be an Assassin sanctuary. It would have made more sense if you explored a well maintained tourist attraction using Eagle Vision to find secret passages and such left behind by Ezio and Assassins from the intervening years instead. To say nothing of silliness like the sword being stuck in the ground next to a tree.
- Don't discount the Animus explanation so readily. There's a brief bit of dialogue during the credits which implies that all those scenes supposedly taking place in "the real world" have actually been an Animus simulation all along, possibly from someone else playing through Desmond's memories. If true, this would explain everything.
- Info about the next game, Revelations, would seem to discredit the double simulation idea. In it, Desmond is trapped in a coma and is in an animus to keep his mind working, which fits perfectly with the voices heard during the credits, at least one of which can be assumed to be those of the high-up assassin mentioned in the team emails.
- Assuming I understand you correctly, even if that's the case then it still means everything we've seen including the "real world" segments have been an Animus simulation, which was the original troper's point of contention. But we'll have to wait for the next game to be absolutely sure.
- Hmm. The fact that subtitles are available outside the Animus is another piece of evidence supporting this hypothesis.
Leonardo and the Borgia
- Leonardo is forced to work for the Borgia, but security is lax enough that he can afford to secretly meet with Ezio in the city, but for some reason won't use that opportunity to flee Rome or go into hiding with the Assassins? And Ezio is just fine with that? There's all sorts of missions to help people under too much Borgia scrutiny, but he just lets his best and oldest friend be bullied and pushed around by Cesare with a death threat hanging over him constantly?
- Da Vinci was passing information to the Assassins, as Ascendance implies.
- Maybe da Vinci didn't really want to be rescued? His only complaint was the use of his war machines, but Ezio took care of that. He probably just got comfortable enough that he didn't think it was worth bothering his friend over. Perhaps he even said as much.
- Actually leaving Rome would be harder than it looks, with all those guards at the gates. And if Leonardo escaped from the Borgia, they would be after him like starving wolves. He's a strategic asset that Cesare cannot afford to let fall into the hands of any of his enemies. The only real way Ezio could rescue him from the Borgia would be to break their power; otherwise he'd be an eternal fugitive from the Templars.
- Yeah, it's implied that while Ezio is weakening Borgia influence within the city, the Borgia still have all passages in and out of town locked down. Ezio can get in and out because he's a badass Assassin and not everyone knows his face. Leonardo on the other hand is a well-known figure in Roma and the guards at the outer gates have probably been instructed to keep an eye out for him so he can't flee the city. And even if he does somehow get out, he'll be a wanted fugitive until Ezio can take down the Borgia. And since Ezio was going to do that anyway, Leonardo has nothing to gain from going on the lam. As a virtual prisoner of the Borgia government acting as a double agent was the best he could do.
- And he couldn't just ask Ezio for some Assassins to escort him out? Or even just move to the Assassin's Guild? Besides, it's highly doubtful that the Borgia would be smart enough (albeit Cesare is paranoid enough) to have guards in the underground-tunnels. Ezio can keep passing through those unnoticed, and a genius like Leonardo Da Vinci didn't think of that?
- Its not an issue of hiding, its an issue of escaping and then keeping free. Da Vinci is a strategic asset capable of manufacturing weapons literally centuries ahead of their time; if he escaped the Borgia would waste no time tracking him down, and if he hid in the Assassins' Guild, they'd begin house-to-house searches, and for all the Assassins' power, they're no direct match for a Borgia army. The only reason Ezio is able to get away with his shenanigans in Rome is because Caesar is away and leaving the city to a relatively incompetent relation and a power-hungry French noble. If Cesare returns to Rome and directly controls the Templar operations in the city, the Assassins are in for a world of hurt, and the escape of his resident superweapon-designer would definitely count.
- So after Ezio becomes il mentore is he the leader of the entire Assassin Order, or merely the leader of all the Assassins in Rome/Italy? Machiavelli's dialogue implies the former, but the Assassination Contracts and Yusuf in Revelations mention that other cities have guilds and leaders.
- It's not clear. The Assassin order might not even have a fully unified leadership. Secretive, guerrilla forces tend to compartmentalize, especially considering the Assassins have been around since before Abel and Cain. There's likely regional leaders of specific Assassin orders in various parts of the globe, with Ezio being the regional leader of the order in Europe.
- The wiki defines it this way: the Assassin Guilds are local city-based groups of Assassins. The Guilds all come under the greater Assassin Order, the head of which is the Grand Master. In Brotherhood, that's Ezio Auditore. Grand Master and Guild Master can overlap, so Ezio is head of both.
- Actually, throughout Brotherhood, there are three Grand Masters: Mario, Machiavelli (de facto), and then Ezio.
- The vibe I got from Revelations was that Ezio was Yusef's boss. When Yusef dies, Ezio is the one to appoint a new leader. He's also the one who appoints the leaders of each Den in the city, and all the Assassin's respectfully refer to him as il mentore at all times.
- From what I can tell, Ezio's regarded as the biggest badass in the Brotherhood. Yeah, Machiavelli and Mario might have technically been in charge, and Yusuf was in charge of the Guild in Constantinople, but they all defer to him, even before he's referred to as "il mentore." He may not have more authority, but he certainly is more respected. I think part of this confusion comes from Ezio still being out and about, doing his thing. Al Mualim never really went out and assassinated people (for good reason, the guy looked to be about two years older than Moses) but was in charge of the Hashashin, managing their day-to-day operations. Ezio's more of a free agent. The other Assassins will defer to him, assist him, and follow his orders, but their day-to-day instructions come from someone else.
New hidden blade
- Why does Desmond suddenly have a completely different hidden blade? I'll admit it looks more appropriate for the time period rather than the exact copy of Ezio's he got in the last one, but why the change? When did they get this new blade when they were on the road all that time? And where did the new blade come from? If they had it all along, why not give it to Desmond right away instead of the old one and if they acquired between ACII and ACB, where did it come from?
- The new HB looks like the old one, minus the big gauntlet. It looks like a device specifically designed to be hidden under a long-sleeve jacket.
- Which brings up the question of why does Desmond keep his blade on the *outside* of his sleeve?
- Probably because he doesn't need to hide it at this point.
- Maybe he doesn't want to punch holes in his jacket? A blade can be stopped by a layer of fabric if it get caught just right, and it would be awfully embarrassing for Desmond to try to pop it out only for it to get caught up on his sleeve.
- The gauntlet on the outside probably isn't necessary to the function of the hidden blade, that's probably just a decoration/arm guard. They could have just removed it on the way to Monteriggioni.
- Something I noticed on a trip into Monteriggioni. A bit into the game, there's a strange red trail if you use Eagle Vision. This red trail starts near the back entrance to the Villa, wraps around one side of the building, and goes down one of the staircases before vanishing at the staircase fountain. This train bugged me, and I spent a long time trying to find out something about it in-game, terrified that it meant someone slipped into the base.
- It was Lucy, judging by Juno's actions.
- A lot of people noticed that, but no one is quite sure why it's there. As the above troper speculated, it could be Lucy's but it may also simply be a game glitch. FWIW, the red trail disappears after Sequence 8.
- The glitch idea doesn't make sense though, since it always starts and finishes showing at the same points in the game. My guess would be that it's Paranoia Fuel, to keep people on their toes by wondering what the hell those footsteps are.
- Well, maybe not so much a glitch as the remains of something cut from the game at the last minute.
- Actually, I always thought it was the dripping blood from Ezio's wound. I mean it followed the same path and I thought it was there to keep it like some sort of brick joke or something.
- Actually, the red footprints are just something from when the game was being tested, because playtesters got lost in Monteriggioni as Desmond. Those red footprints are still there because they never got it out on time.
- I always assumed that, once the player received more information about the Lucy plotline, it was supposed to imply that Lucy had been sneaking around as a double agent. Not only this, but the Eagle Vision viewed it as red because she had turned and could no longer be consider trustworthy or an ally. Eagle Vision shows enemies with a red aura, and that is what Lucy had become; though not inherently visible, his 'sixth sense' had detected this change in alignment.
- Word of God says the footsteps are there to help guide the player back to the villa. Apparently the red was an oversight.
- Let's take a quick glance at some enemy factions from Brotherhood. First, we have the Borgia. Led by a spoiled brat, they seek to control all of Italy by conquest. Then, in the Da Vinci disappearance DLC, we have the Cult of Hermes, who seek to use a "magic" artifact to force humanity as a whole to stop fighting. Hmm...which ones are the Templars again?
- The Borgia? You, know the ones who are affiliated with the Templars?
- Of course. My point was just that it's odd that the Borgia act less like Templars that the Cult of Hermes.
- Because organizations devoted to lofty goals have never been sidetracked by ambitious leadership.
- The Cult of Hermes seems to have different goals than the Templars. The Templars and their modern-day incarnation Abstergo seem to be interested in keeping people as ignorant as possible so they can be more effectively controlled. The Cult of Hermes wants the exact opposite. They want to expose the truth entirely, but they want to force everyone to accept the truth that they're about to reveal. Sort of a "forced enlightenment" if you will. It's kind of interesting since they've taken a goal more commonly ascribed to heroes and shown how it can be made very sinister.
- Even if the Hermeticists weren't assholes (they stab a guy when they could have let him live, they try to kill Ezio repeatedly, and THEY BEAT UP LEONARDO), the Assassins would still try to stop them. At the heart of their Maxim (Nothing is true, everything is permitted) is the philosophy that all men should be allowed to choose what they believe. Ezio's speech at the end of The Bonfire of the Vanities is the perfect summation of just why the Assassins combat the Templars, the Hermeticists, and others like them:
Ezio: People... Twenty-two years ago, I stood where I stand now — and watched my loved ones die, betrayed by those I had called friends. Vengeance clouded my mind. It would have consumed me, were it not for the wisdom of a few strangers, who taught me to look past my instincts. They never preached answers, but guided me to learn from myself. We don't need anyone to tell us what to do; not Savonarola, not the Medici. We are free to follow our own path. There are those who will take that freedom from us, and too many of you gladly give it. But it is our ability to choose — whatever you think is true — that makes us human... There is no book or teacher to give you the answers, to show you the way. Choose your own way! Do not follow me, or anyone else.
- Look beneath the surface. Cesare Borgia sought to bend a large chunk of Europe to his whims under the flimsy pretense of "bringing peace", ruthlessly exploited everyone who was useful to his cause (including his sister), and kept the populace mired in ignorance and poverty so they couldn't fight back. That he was a much bigger jerk than Al-Mualim doesn't change the fact that he was a Templar through and through. The Hermeticists were simply a classic case of good intentions gone horribly wrong, not unlike Girolamo Savonarola.
- This was actually discussed in the game. In Assassin's Creed: Revelations, one of the Templar Inner Circle documents that you can unlock in multiplayer reveals that the modern Templars view the period when the order was under Borgia leadership as an embarrassment and refer to it as 'the dark times'.
- Which makes sense. The people were pissed at the Borgia, and the Assassins were constantly coming out ahead no matter what the Borgia did to counter them. Templars rule from the shadows and need to keep the people complacent. Besides, Rodrigo's time as head of the Templars saw their greatest defeats - the loss of the Apple, the loss of control of Rome, and the deaths of dozens of high-ranking Templars.
- I had noticed part of this myself. The solution is simple. In AC 2 Rodrigo Borgia is the ideal Templar. An immensely wealthy, internationally powerful and connected, highly cunning and intelligent Chess Master. In the second game, he is a broken man, after realizing that he was not the prophet. Due to this, he effectively gives most of his power to Cesare. Here's the kicker. Cesare Borgia was all the things that are bad in a long term leader. Brilliant short term strategist, horrible long term planner(as evidenced by him running Rome into the ground, and bankrupting his father so that he needed to keep killing wealthy cardinals). He was a narcissistic egomaniac with no sense of his own shortcomings. I'm not even sure he was a Templar. Sure he effectively controlled all the papal resources, but I'm not sure he ever controlled any Templar forces unaffiliated with the church. Furthermore, even if he was a Templar, he was a bad one. Not only was he not content to use the behind the scenes manipulation that the Templars have always favored, instead publicly declaring his intent to become King of Italy. In the end, whether he was officially a Templar or not,I think Cesare viewed the Templar order in the same light as he saw the Vatican. Not as something that he was a part of, but as something that gave him power, but retained enough power for itself that it would need to be destroyed later.The Templar ideology is of control. Rodrigo was obsessed with power, and so was a good fit for them. But for Cesare, it was about EGO. He's like a spoiled child. What other kind of freak would declare himself to be immortal via No Man of Woman Born? Its no wonder the greater Templar Order views his reign as an embarrassment.
- Does anyone else think Ezio could have spared Ercole Massimo, the leader of the Hermeticists? During his last minutes he was unarmed and pleading for his life. While the Hermeticists may be going about it the wrong way, both they and the Assassins have similar motives, making it unlikely that Ercole would have back stabbed Ezio as soon as he turned around. Why didn't Ezio just verbally/physically harass him for a moment, then throw him down into the pit and tell him to get out? It seems Ercole's death was just meaningless.
- The Hermeticists had just spent a lot of time torturing one of Ezio's friends, and they did try to kill Ezio himself a short time ago. I'd have killed him too.
- Whether or not the target is unarmed really doesn't matter much to the Assassins. If they're dangerous to the organization or goals, they die.
- Also, as discussed in Assassin's Creed II YMMV page on Motive Decay, the Assassins seem to have gone from stopping evil acts and schemes of the Templars, as we see Alta´r doing in ACI, to "Killing anyone who is remotely allied with the Templars and keep humanity's free will at all costs, even if at the price of war and destruction". Plus, I think that Ezio has a lot of moments that show just how the Assassins aren't much better than the Templars or even the Hermeticists. They're dead-bent on their own vision of how to make a better world, and they're willing to kill for it. While Alta´r/Ezio might rebuke or ignore whenever a Templar tries a Not So Different Breaking Speech, a sharp-minded player can see that the Jerkass Has a Point. Either the developers had this in mind(Subtly showing how all sides of the conflict had their points and similar flaws), or it's unintended and we're supposed to be playing under Protagonist Centered Moralty(Otherwise, the game's name would be Templar's Creed, Hermeticist's Creed, etc...). The Hermeticists may have been huge jerks in killing Lucrezia's former lover, attacking Ezio and beating Leonardo, but the Assassins are not beyond allying with morally ambiguous people or empires. (Caterina Sforza was no saint, Julius II(Rodrigo Borgia's successor as Pope and huge enemy of the Borgia Family) wasn't that noble and, in Revelations, the Assassins ally with the Ottoman Sultan and Empire, but we're shown multiple times that they're very little different from the Borgia, and the Assassins just accept them because, well, they don't have any other option. One gets the impression the Assassins are more interested in killing Templars and following their Creed than taking more reasonable courses of action towards helping mankind...
- 'Project Legacy' example: We see the death of Niccolo di Pitigliano from his own point of view, and we get memories from Perotto Calderon after he has passed on his genetic material. If you think about the series' established rules of Genetic Memory (or, indeed, revisit the Alta´r flashback in AC2), this gets a little confusing...
- It's possible that the DDS operates on different principles from the Animus. After all, what are the odds that everyone who uses the DDS has a direct lineage to all of the people whose memories that can be explored?
- I'm fairly certain I read somewhere that the DDOS uses a different system to show users the events as they happened, but doesn't create an full 3D interface for users to play around in. But it also has it's drawbacks and disadvantages, which is probably why they need the Animus program to begin with. The DDOS is probably just an experiment to see if they can get any tangible benefits out of such a system.
- Actually, the DDS isn't a full-blown Animus, but a "Data Dump Scanner", able to force random memories (seemingly coming from their "rightful" owners' minds) into the brains of willing applicants. The introduction cutscene before any memories warns the user of the possiblity of mindblowing glitches. Literally.
- It's possible that Perotto had other kids who were born after the memories, and the two genetic lines simply converged.
Thieves with eyepatches
- Was anyone else bothered by the fact BOTH the Thieves's Guild Traitors had only one eye and wore eyepatches? I mean, they had separate character models and all. I just found it odd...
- It's the same thief. He's been able to remain a Templar spy in the employ of La Volpe for years because apparently La Volpe trusts his thieves while distrusting pretty much everyone other than Ezio.
- Which explains why La Volpe was pissed at Machiavelli.
Ezio's Apple hidden
- Okay, so towards the end of the game we see Ezio place the Apple in the container beneath the Colosseum, and it's implied that it never left said tomb/ruins place until Desmond and Co. found it. HOWEVER, in the previous game there was a glyph, a very early one, I believe it was the second one, that showed George Washington got a hold of it. How did this happen? Are there multiple Apples? Is George a time traveler? Did he get it from a time traveler? Did someone find the door, guess the password, complete the free-running/parkour challenge, get a hold of the Apple, deliver it to George, either directly or indirectly, and then get it put back ALL within those ~500 years?
- There were several different Apples throughout the history. Ezio's Apple was hidden there for 500 years, while others were being used.
- So did Abstergo basically buy off the entire Italian government in order to catch Desmond and Company? Because otherwise they would've had an extremely easy time taking any land route out of Italy as it's a member of the Schengen Area and therefore has no border checks on any land routes into or out of the country. The border checks can be reinstated, but only at the order of the national government. I'm not discounting that Abstergo bought off the Italian government in order to reinstate border checks in order to catch them, but don't you think that's a little overkill?
- They were probably using satellite and drone surveillance to look for Desmond and co. rather than border patrols. They do have a Masquerade to maintain, after all.