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- Why in AC I does the map at the end have modern borders?
- The Pieces of Eden are not restricted by silly things like "time." Ezio and Altaïr both used them to see the future, and Those Who Came Before explicitly possessed the ability to see into the future.
- Before I played AC II, I wondered about this detail myself. After I finished AC II, I realized that the map was intended for Desmond to see through the Animus.
- Am I the only one confused by the fact everybody from Masyaf is just as freaked out by Altaïr jumping all over the place as the rest of the cities in the game? Honestly, Jerusalem, Damascus, and Acre make sense as they've never met him before and probably assume he's just some madman in white, but the whole jumping off buildings and running all over the place should seem pretty common in a small city almost made up exclusively of Assassins.
- The entire city isn't made up of assassins, and I don't see hordes of white-suited men flipping and jumping off walls regularly when I'm passing through it. Besides, there's no reason for an Assassin to be free-running through the city when there's that wondrous invention known as a "road" for them to use. I highly doubt that every Assassin leaving Masyaf leaves the same way the player usually does by cutting a straight line over the rooftops.
- Also, most Assassins can't necessarily do things like Altaïr. They are novices, and he is Grand Master, after all.
- The meta reason would be that the developers couldn't program Masyaf differently. The in-universe reason would probably be that it looks stupid for an Assassin to run and jump about like a monkey for no apparent reason. The Masyaf inhabitants are pretty tolerant about it, but they still think it makes no sense.
- Altaïr is basically a Master ranked assassin showing off his skills like a Novice. In other words, he's a bit of a manchild.
- This will seem awfully selfish thinking, but how come there's not a single Jew in the entire Holy Land during this game? Did Altaïr really just never interact with enough Jew to have a memory of their existence?
- Well, there is a synagogue in Jerusalem.
- There most likely were plenty of Jews — as said above, there are synagogues in Jerusalem. It's just the story is focused on Crusaders vs. Saracens, so the Jewish population isn't really important to this story. They're mentioned from time to time, and a good chunk of the people you meet in the streets are likely Jewish, but they don't stand out and aren't major players in the Crusades or the conflict between the Templars and Assassins at that point.
- Maybe the "scholars" in Damascus and Jerusalem were Jews. It would explain why they're always getting hassled by the guards.
- Despite the good explanations above, it could be something else. Consider: Jerusalem, the Jewish holy city, is marked by a cross when Acre already claims the cross in-game and Damascus has an Islamic crescent, and a piece of the Ark of the Covenant, an Israelite artifact if there ever was one, has a cross on it.
- Jerusalem is claimed by Muslims and Christians as well. The cross most likely marked which "faction" was controlling the city and item.
- That cross is the symbol of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, a Christian nation which was established at the end of the First Crusade. By the time of the game, Saladin had only recently taken the city, so it makes sense that that cross would still be associated with it.
- Or, as some historians pointed out, by that time the actual Jews of Biblical times have been driven out, multiple times in fact. It's probable the game plays during one such exodus.
- The second game features a Codex Page that shows the Pieces of Eden creating various religions and the religious symbols therein. No Jewish symbol is provided. Either this is a story element or Ubisoft feels it too politically incorrect to insult Judaism.
- Actually, a Piece of Eden is included in Judaism, and has been since the beginning of the series: the Staff of Aaron, identified as the "Staff" in a glyph and in the short movie that was shown before the first game came out (which I cannot remember). There's also the Apple, obviously the Apple of Eden. Beyond that, it could be that the Star of David is more of a racial/cultural symbol than a religious one.
- The Star of David is a relatively new addition as a symbol of the Judaist faith, though it has had uses in the culture for quite some time. It's a symbol of the religion in the modern days, but its uses were a lot more limited back then.
- It's implied that the men being hassled by guards who, upon being rescued, allow you to move hide in crowds of scholars are Jews—their dialogue implies that they're harassing these men out of anti-Semitism with lines like "We are the chosen people! God favors us!" And, as mentioned above, likely many other nameless characters are Jews but it just isn't brought up because they aren't important to the story. While there is a trope of All Jews Are Ashkenazi, Jews in (the area of) Israel are mainly Sephardic and Mizrahim and therefore wouldn't resemble stereotypical American or European Jews.
Guard instant knowledge
- How do the guards instantly know you're up to no good? "He's running! Get him, he's obviously an assassin!"
- Because of a strictly enforced pedestrian speed limit.
- Probably the long sword, sharp dagger, plethora of knives, white robe, the missing ring finger with a strange device attached to the stub, and the fact that you're not a guard or Templar, so you probably shouldn't have weapons in the first place, gave the guards enough evidence to deduce who and what you are.
- Yet walking in this gear is perfectly permissible?
- If someone walks past you on a crowded sidewalk, you're probably not going to notice. The guards (at least, early on) have no reason to be paranoid. Running through a crowd is a pretty damn noticeable thing to do, and that's when their attention is drawn to you.
- Guards don't attack you if you run past them, unless you've just carried out an assassination and put the city on alert, or they have some other reason to suspect you, i.e. you just killed someone. If you run by them, they'll comment that you must be running from somebody and are suspicious, but if they don't have any other reason to suspect you, they'll let Altaïr go.
- I'm more bothered of why a galloping horse immediately gets identified as Assassin, but walking horse is not, even though that way the soldiers get a far better view of the rider.
- The guards have horse sense?
- Actually, that one makes sense. When traveling between cities in such a hot environment, you'd probably go easier on your mount than the game allows. Therefore, anyone galloping at top speed in the middle of nowhere is probably up to no good and likely running from someone, which makes sense for the guards to intervene.
- Except that people galloping at top speed in those environments was a very common sight at the time; they were called messengers, and their job was to get bits of parchment from a general to another as quickly as possible.
- Surely the old guy in the castle(and whoever is on the message's receiving end) isn't the only one smart enough to use a carrier pigeon.
- If he's a messenger, he would be wearing a uniform and carry identification, and would slow down to identify himself to a guarded checkpoint, not blast straight through it at full gallop.
- In that case, the 'running on foot' thing above is justified, too. Pedestrians even say, "He must be running from someone!"
- Well, Assassins have a very distinct mode of dress, with bright red sashes and white robes. Plus, you know, two swords, fifteen knives, shiny metal gauntlet, fingerless gloves, combat boots....its less a question of how they know you're an Assassin and more a question of how they don't notice you're one.
- Well, there are many kinds of knights in the Middle East at that time, and red and white are a very popular color-combination (*cough* Templars *cough*). It wouldn't be unlikely that Altaïr gets mistaken for a knight who isn't wearing his armor at the moment. Unfortunately the dialogue implies that he gets mistaken for a monk, instead. Now there were many monks in the Crusades who weren't averse of bashing some unbeliever skulls, but due to the canon law, they were only allowed to use blunt weapons, so the collection of sharp blades should really have made it obvious that Altaïr ain't no clergy.
- The blunt weapons thing is a myth. The Templars were all monks, and they used swords and spears as well as flails, maces, and morning stars.
- Plus, its the sash that should really give it away that he's an Assassin. Everyone from Masyaf wears one, it seems. White robes, lots of weapons, sash from a very specific town with its giant Doom Fortress full of Assassins...
- Obviously, the developers were too lazy to implement a disguise mechanic.
- Or any reasonable methods of stealth or guard AI. If you're the only person standing around in a pile of a dozen dead guards and crusaders they'll just keep asking themselves who must have done this. Walk away slowly and they won't care. You can even stab a man in public, quickly turn around and run away at top speed and they often won't show up until you're down the block and no longer looking for you. But if a crazy person pushes you into them you're obviously an Assassin.
- I think the idea is that a crowd offers a far better disguise than any article of clothing, or lack of such. Therefore, for the guards to recognize Altaïr, they'd first need to actually spot him in the mass of variously dressed people. This makes those times when he's not noticed without having a crowd to surround him seem a bit nonsensical.
- I always figured it was because the guards were, well, guards. Presumably they aren't going to notice someone unless they're acting out of the ordinary, and most of their time is spent wandering around with nothing to do, standing guard through hour upon hour of dull, boring tedium. It's been shown time and again in real life that security guards can be bypassed by anyone who looks vaguely like they belong, unless the guards have very specific orders to not let people pass without clearance.
- The answer seems clear enough to me. When you're walking you blend in with the crowd. When you run you draw attention to yourself. (If you were walking down the street and all of a sudden a guy appears out of nowhere running at full speed, wouldn't you turn to watch him?) And when the guards start paying attention to you they can instantly see you're an assassin, hence they begin to chase you.
- Except when the crowd is running and screaming their heads off. Walking slowly would be about the MOST conspicuous thing you can do in that case. Yet, it's running along with the crowd that will get you caught...
- The literal answer here is that the Animus is essentially a video game. A hyper-advanced video game based on Altaïr's memories, but still a video game, and thus has characters acting in odd, illogical manners. In effect, the Animus is one giant lampshade of all video game tropes. You take an action within the context of the Animus' simulation that would alert guards, and they're onto you.
- As an added point, the instruction manual, largely written as Vidic and Lucy's research notes, specifically states that they designed the Animus to provide the user with a video-game-like interface based on the assumption that their subjects would have a much easier time learning it. Vidic's notes say the assumption was correct.
- I would chalk it up it being, yes, a Show Within a Show, but possibly the Animus replaced what Altaïr would have actually worn with an identifiable "Assassin's" outfit, as well as the other guys. Altaïr would have the ability to recognize his assassin friends by face and posture and what not, but since you don't, the Animus helps you out by giving everyone obvious outfits.
- Guards probably have a lousy track record against Assassins. If you were a guard, and you thought someone just walking by, not doing anything wrong, was an assassin, would you really want to provoke him if you didn't really have to?
- The one that pissed me off even more is when the guards are alerted by you being pushed by a leper. "He let that leper push him, the punishment for that is death!" Seriously, WTF?, Animus?
- Getting pushed by a leper draws attention. It makes the guards notice you, and then they notice the other odd things about you.
Guards and free running
- To be honest, I'd be more interested in knowing how ordinary guards (who probably don't deal with such agile adversaries on a daily basis) are capable of duplicating nearly all of Altaïr's acrobatic feats. Jumping from rooftop to rooftop while in pursuit, climbing ledges... those guys sure are fast.
- In full armor no less. The Crusaders are awfully fit.
- I had a hilarious encounter where I saw a guard who had been chasing me jump up ten feet and grab a ledge I had been spending some time climbing.
- Ditto. Seeing a guard who had lost track of Altaïr fling himself off a three-story building, dust himself off and continue his patrol was particularly memorable.
- Even more hilarious is spooked drunks who have trouble standing jump from pole to pole when spooked in Acre's port.
- Also great is blocking off stairways by completing certain missions in just the right spot, rooting you in place as the cutscene plays out, and watching civilians who are shockingly determined to follow their routes suddenly begin climbing walls and jumping fences to get around you.
- Since the Animus levels are all being built out of Altaïr's memories, it's possible these super-guards aren't really accurate to what he really faced, but are rather Altaïr's impression of what it's like to be chased through a city. Altaïr must have felt constantly threatened and hounded everywhere he went, so the Animus translates this paranoia to Desmond by creating guards that can always be one step behind him. This would explain why all the beggars, drunks, and mentally ill people only follow or attack Altaïr — he believed the whole world was out to get him, so the Animus made it so. Remember that any place you can die in the game isn't really where the real Altaïr died — it's just Desmond letting his mind wander.
- That was... brilliant.
- They can grab a ledge directly overhead and jump between rooftops, but not any of the tricky stuff (climb up windows, grab ledges from jumps, jump from walls, etc.). A bit more than you'd expect from the average flatfoot, but not totally outlandish; desperation and rage are pretty powerful motivators.
Timeline of climax
- Something that bugs me is why the writers chose to have the game take place in 1191 with the penultimate level being the Battle of Arsuf (which took place in early September of that year) and not in 1192, the year of the Third Crusade's final battle (the Battle of Jaffa). This would have allowed the writers to use Conrad of Montferrat as they had originally planned (instead of his father William), and matched up the death dates of the other historical characters with the death year of their historical counterparts — Garnier de Naplouse, Sibrand, Robert de Sablé, and even Al Mualim (based on Rashid ad-Din Sinan). Why, Ubisoft? WHY?
- Because that was when it "actually" happened. The fact that everything takes place at a historical date is probably a relatively subtle nod by the developers that the Templars are quietly rewriting history.
- Anyone else feel a loss of suspense upon finding out how the Animus works in the first cutscene? After all, genes, and thus, 'genetic memory', are passed on in the moment of conception. The logical conclusion is that the Medieval Altaïr will ultimately survive whatever disasters the future titles will throw at him, since his descendant shouldn't have any memory of what Altaïr did after fathering him.
- Well even without that, the player character was hardly likely to suffer Plotline Death mid-game so I wouldn't see that as a particularly large source of tension anyway.
- That was also how it worked in the Prince of Persia series, but that didn't exactly strip it of all the suspense, as there is a large gaping hole from where the story starts and the story ends and the ways to get through them.
- But the same can be said of nearly every video game. If the main character dies, it's usually game over, can't really play without the playable character. Besides, I don't think Genetic Memory is exactly scientifically accurate, so thusly the Animus may be able to see things past his conception. Though while we're talking about character death, isn't it kinda interesting that no matter what Altaïr does, he will have been long dead by the actual events of the game?
- Actually, since the next game is supposedly going to be set a few centuries later, it doesn't particularly matter anyway.
- I just interpreted it as Desmond being the one in danger. Damned if he doesn't get the memory fast enough, damned if he does. They try and press this angle in the game during the chapter interludes, repeatedly saying his life is at stake to show the danger he's in, but you're right, this game has no Game Over condition. Maybe the sequel might do "lives", with a set number of synchronizations possible before the memories are completely locked/the genes damaged/etc?
- Not sure what you're getting at here. The whole point of the Animus is that you need to "synchronize" with the ancestor, i.e. do what he did (which also means no harming of innocents, no matter how aggravating or intrusive they get...DAMN, that was a whopper of a rookie mistake by Ubisoft). If Altaïr dies or lets a target get away, the program shuts down because that didn't happen. The suspense doesn't come from whether Altaïr succeeds or fails, it's what the results of his successes ultimately were (and by extension, how much they differ from the history books). It's exactly the same for Ezio Auditore, BTW (and there are no life or synchronization limits of any kind).
- Why do the games even need lives or a game over setting? Most games these days just reload the previous checkpoint when you fail...exactly like these ones do. Die in Halo? Checkpoint. Die in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion or Fallout? Load the most recent save. Die in Arkham Asylum? Checkpoint. Die or fail in Assassin's Creed...checkpoint.
Templars and Christian imagery
- Okay, so you run into random Templars, in full Templar gear, right? Now, their emblem is a big red cross on the front of their smock. Obviously Christian imagery, right? So why the heck are they in Jerusalem and Damascus, both of which are under Saracen control? Why don't the guards attack them, but instead protect and aid them? Somebody explain this to me!
- The game explains that all your targets are actually Templars themselves, so presumably the Saracen soldiers have been instructed to treat the Templar foot soldiers as allies.
- Considering both of the rulers of Damascus and Jerusalem are Templars...
- Also, remember that Assassin's Creed is an abstraction of Altaïr's memories. It could simply be that the Animus makes the Templars into what is an obviously Templar-esque guise to help make them distinctive in its simulation.
- Of note is the fact that the random nameless Templars that you can encounter in Damascus, Jerusalem, Acre, and the Kingdom will speak any of the languages that the guards can; in one place you'll find one speaking German, in another he'll be shouting at you in Turkish, and so on. It could be that—as mentioned above—the Templars only share a basic appearance because as far as Altaïr was concerned, they all looked the same (or the Animus was programmed to make all the Templars look the same so that they stood out better), and what they actually looked like when Altaïr saw them in his actual life is more like the culture that their language was attached to. For example, the Templars speaking Turkish may have looked little different from the Saracen soldiers that you encounter in Damascus or Jerusalem.
- Ay, wait a sec! In a fight with a Templar in Jerusalem, some guards come, and guess what? They attack the Templar! Not me! (But I killed all of them, including the Templar.)
- Am I the only one that found it weird that everyone in Acre had English accents? It's not like being taken over by a foreign force makes everyone change ethnicity and linguistic background at the drop of a hat! (It may not have been Acre, but I remember that one of the cities was like this.)
- If you're speaking about a city seen in the Animus, surely you realize you're talking about a city which wouldn't be speaking in Modern English in the first place.
- If you bothered talking with Lucy, Desmond asks about this right off the bat. Lucy explains that the Animus translates everything into understandable English for ease of understanding, and that she could make it sound more "authentic" but that would be like reading Chaucer.
- The point was that the regular civilians in Acre are pale-skinned European types speaking with English accents, while the other cities are populated by swarthy Middle-Eastern types with Arab or similar accents. It does not make sense that Acre would be inhabited entirely by Europeans that have not even adapted their manner of dress to the local climate.
- Animus. Animus. ANIMUS. Every single aspect of what happens inside the Animus cannot be considered "real" because the Animus is, for all intents and purposes, a video game.
- This is their all-purpose explanation for lazy research (but inexplicably hired a pair of historians they must not have listened to all the time) and any other element of laziness or convention. Why, for example, does Acre resemble a European city with a gothic cathedral that would have been cutting-edge for the time period (and thus, not in a war zone thousands of miles away from France without access to the skilled craftsmen and decades needed to build it)?
- Not to mention that with the exception of the previous four years, Acre had been under Crusader control for the better part of a century and in 1191 would have been teeming with newly-arrived (and therefore improperly-dressed) Europeans thanks to the Third Crusade — presumably the designers wanted to reflect that. Even so, making them all European, let alone British, is still overkill.
- Abstergo already bothered hiring multiple voice actors for the "video game" only one guy ever plays. I guess a little bit of cost-cutting.
- They aren't all English. There are French and German people in Acre too. Any soldier who's wearing a helmet will jabber at you in French or German. Also keep in mind that the Animus is an abstraction of Altaïr's memories and impressions. He likely noticed the Englishmen standing out more than the French and Germans and the Animus translates that into "Everyone in Acre is English."
- And speaking of accents, why is it that Robert de Sable has a French accent, while Richard does not? The historical Richard spoke hardly any English, spent very little time in England and his native language was certainly French. It is at the very least an inconsistency in the Translation Convention, and I believe it happened because giving him a French accent would lead to a Reality Is Unrealistic situation caused by people believing that an English king should sound English too.
- The Animus did it. That is literally the explanation here; accents exist because the Animus artificially introduced them.
- Richard's accent does sound French though, doesn't it? It certainly didn't sound English.
- IIRC, England was ruled at the time by the descendants of the Normans, who came from France.
- That leads to another problem — some of the guards are speaking German (I think). Why doesn't this translate? Is it because Altaïr didn't speak German, and if so, why would an Assassin know English and French in the first place?
- That's not German, that's Old English.
- Old English and German really don't sound anything alike. It's recognizably German.
- Old High English and Old High German are quite nearly identical, it wasn't until after Romanization that the two started to diverge, and by the time of the Crusades, Old English and Old German were already gone, having evolved into Middle English and Middle German. So they would have some notable differences, but also Modern German has heavy French influence. Kind of a pain, what started as mostly two dialects of the same language has become 6 distinctly different languages.
- ....for the same reason everyone learns foreign languages? He's an assassin. Knowing a foreign language would be useful.
- Why on Earth would an Assassin based in the Middle East learn German?
- I dunno, maybe the fact that every so often they get hit by a Crusade that includes Germans, perhaps?
- It also makes the game more interesting if you can speak those languages. Hearing some French Templar shout that his wrath will be terrible in his native tongue certainly adds to the atmosphere.
- Since Desmond understands English, and his ancestor understands Arabic, then both of them will sound like English. Neither Desmond nor Altaïr knew French or German; therefore, they remain untranslated, since Altaïr would have not been able to understand them, and because Desmond doesn't either.
- One would think that the Animus itself could make up for that, though. Lucy was talking about the Animus translating for everyone (see the post above that includes the word "Chaucer"). I didn't get the sense that it was because Altaïr knew Arabic that it was translated for Desmond; if that was true, he'd more likely hear Arabic, but be able to understand it.
- AC: Brotherhood addresses this. Rebecca and Desmond talk about understanding things, and Rebecca says that the Animus 2.0's translation software is still imperfect, leaving some expressions in Italian untranslated. She then says that it works well enough in its present form, but if Ezio encounters any French or German, he's out of luck. Lo and behold, any French or German soldiers in AC:B are still untranslated. TL;DR — The Animus translates Old English, Arabic, and Italian, but not French or German.
- This seems to be consistent in Revelations, where Altaïr seems to have gained an accent during his playable missions, seen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hiARH6kHMMw
- So near the end of the game, you talk to Lucy and there's one of those "glitch" moments which shows you close up of her hand and you see she's missing a finger, letting you know she's an Assassin...so how come throughout the rest of the game, you can look at her and she has all ten fingers in tact? More importantly, why would a modern-day Assassin still do the finger removal thing anyway? I thought it was done to make access to the hidden blade easier, they haven't found a way to improve this method after hundreds of years? (made even worse by the fact that the finger removal is apparently no longer used by the time of Assassin's Creed II.)
- Or she could have just pulled her finger back against her palm.
- Your right that they don't need to remove their finger, nor in fact that they do. It's just symbolism, like a secret handshake.
- I'm gonna say it's either this or that she has some kind of false-finger she wears to keep her bosses from seeing that she's an Assassin.
- I always thought it was like above said, a gesture. I'm pretty sure The Other Wiki says the same thing
- Wait...It's a Gesture...Missing the ring finger....Holy shit, I'm never looking at someone throwing up "The Shocker" the same way again.
- It's pretty clear she's just pulling the finger back. Like how if you equip the Altaïr armor in MGS4 Snake pulls that finger back into his palm, but if you look it's still there.
- It should be obvious she's pulling her finger back. Look at her hands at any point in either game. She's got ten fingers, all full length. This is something that could have been verified by a single glimpse in first-person.
- OK, small point, but where in the hell did this missing finger stuff come from? When were we told or shown that he's missing a finger to access his blade? I just always assumed that it came out from under his wrist... y'know, like we've seen in every other work to use a similar device. I didn't even notice her missing finger/gesture and wondered why Desmond is suddenly checking out her rack and only then figures out what she's been hinting pretty strongly the entire time.
- It should have been obvious if you were paying attention to Altaïr's character model. He's missing his ring finger; if you look closely, you can actually see the blade pass through the space where his ring finger should be. It's also especially visible during pickpocket sequences, where Altaïr is reaching out toward his target with fingers extended. In ACII, Leonardo even says that they have to lop off the ring finger as a "sacrifice" to use the blade.
- A small point in the meta-plot: Lucy claims that though she finished her Ph.D., no university or company wanted anything to do with her since they considered her research pseudoscience. But if that was the case, how could she have been allowed to finish her research at all, much less pass the disputation? If she couldn't back up her hypothesis with data acquired through experiments and/or direct observation, she wouldn't be allowed to complete her doctorate. If she could back it up, then they would be forced to acknowledge that her research has merit and is, in fact, real science.
- Because not a few moments after she tells you that, she points out that the Templars were manipulating everything to keep her from finding a job.
- IIRC, she said she was working on her Ph.D., not finished with it.
Children and night
- It just bugs me that there are no children anywhere, and no missions take place at night. I can buy Altaïr going for the "blend in the crowds" route, which would be much harder at night, but night recon and assassinations shouldn't be summarily ruled out.
- Hide Your Children, and it's all taking place inside the simulation provided by the Animus. Most of the assassinations are taking place during the day, too, though dialogue does indicate that the assassination of Abun Nakood is supposed the be at night.
- I would say it's because the developers wanted to avoid potential controversy by allowing you to kill children, but also avoiding Infant Immortality.
- Like the above tropers said, Hide Your Children and avoiding Infant Immortality. But I have something to add: no matter how innovative and realistic a game is, it's not going to avoid every unrealistic trope in existence. Game designers can only do so much.
- Like justify it with the animus AKA a video game within a video game. A lot more clever than just saying 'deal with it'.
- For the record, there are a total of three children in Assassin's Creed II, but they're strictly plot elements and you can't do anything to them.
- I may have read it here, but something stated that the reason that Connor sees children and the others don't usually see them is that he remembers them as he seemed like a caring person who would note them. Ezio sees his younger brother as one of the only kids in the game was because his brother was important, and he wouldn't forget about his brother.
- Where is everybody getting this Ambiguously Gay vibe from Abdul Nuqoud? Maybe it's just me but I don't see it at all.
- 1. Caressing that muscular black soldier's arm. 2. Saying that he can't worship a God that considers him an "abomination". There's probably more that I can't think of on the spot.
- It could be that Abdul is unsatisfied with his looks (he is fat and, from what I remember, his face is even deformed) and touching the guard could be to show an example of what he considers beauty. I don´t know if the last part is consistent with the dialogue.
- It could be because Abdul was either not Muslim or not Arabic (or both).
- It could be because he was a leper (they weren't well thought of throughout history), and brushing the soldier's arm was an indication that blacks were not tolerated either, something he hoped to correct.
- When you get hit, you lose synchronization. When you fall, you lose synchronization. Attracting and fighting guards does not make you lose synchronization. Hence, in all of the many, many, many sword fights you get in...Altaïr was never hit. Not once. And he never fell, either. Never got frustrated and shoved one of those bastard lepers into a wall, face first. Naturally, we've picked up on this.
- Especially interesting is that, in combat, the Templar Treasure's powers of illusion are represented by dropping the synchronization bar to deadly levels. Which means that Altaïr either finished the fight a lot quicker, or was completely immune to the power of the Piece of Eden.
- Check Fridge Brilliance right up above. Not only is Altaïr immune to it, Al-Mualim taught him how to be immune to it!
- Actually, you can defeat him without getting to the "losing sync" phase. Just switch to your hidden blade in the last fighting segment after fighting the illusions of your targets and the multiple Al-Mualims and counter-kill him.
- I always assumed that being under the effects of the illusion disrupted Altaïr's attempt's to remember it. Naturally, syncing up with poor memories is more difficult than syncing up with good ones.
- Of course, he never got hit. You know what happens when you get hit by a sword? You die, or at least get a very deep cut that's going to make a bloody mess and be generally inconvenient. As for falling, if somebody falls from the heights Altaïr and Ezio mess with, they're going to get broken bones, which means no more assassination fun time. In real life, you don't just dust yourself off and continue on when you get sliced up by a sword or fall forty feet.
- As noted above, the Assassins appear to be Not Quite Human; Desmond, for example, is able to do everything Ezio and Altaïr do in terms of acrobatics and strength in the real world, and Ezio is shown getting stabbed in the gut by a knife and recovering a few minutes later with no ill effects.
- That's pretty much confirmed in one of Subject 16's puzzles. After choosing five pictures showing ancient Greek and Roman myths of gods gettin' it on with mortal women, Subject 16 declares in all his crazy glory, "The seeds were planted as two worlds became one. Behold, the Assassins, the children of two worlds!"
- Harming a derelict, even one little punch, will cost you synchronization, but throwing him doesn't (provided he doesn't fall into water and drown). Killing a thug dings you, but beating him up is fine. Beggars, even a harmless throw will desync, but you can draw your sword and scare 'em off without penalty (though this isn't advisable if there are guards watching). Altaïr did show remarkable restraint (far more than any of the other Assassins we've seen, that's for sure), but he wasn't a complete saint.
Right makes might
- I don't really get King Richard's logic: If you kill 10 knights and Robert De Sable, you are right; if you die, you are wrong. Eh?
- Possibly the idea was that if he could overcome such odds he must be divinely favoured or something, and therefore it pays to listen to him.
- Trial by Combat was a real thing used at the time. As the previous troper says, the idea is that God will make sure the righteous person wins a fight to the death, and so you can use the fight itself to determine who is right.
- Pretty much. Some things are made of Richard's reliance on "the insubstantial" and he is a devout Catholic, so he would naturally believe that God favors the one whose cause is most just, and thus whoever wins the struggle would be in the right. His beliefs are perfectly in line with those of the day.
- One of those unfortunate cases where the programmers had to settle for the least bad option. As someone on The Straight Dope boards pointed, out, duels calling for the judgment of God were duels. Eleven against one is a lynching (or, when someone like Altair is involved, a slaughter). Unfortunately, for anyone who's made it this far, a one-on-one fight is nothing...heck, you gotta plow through about forty guys in this stage alone! Since there are only so many fighting moves, the only way to make a duel against Robert any kind of challenge would be to make him amazingly durable (nonsensical and boring as hell) or give him some kind of power or advantage (also nonsensical and would really detract from the climactic showdown against Al-Mualim).
- The lepers in the first game — everyone calls them lepers, but they don't actually appear to have leprosy. Insanity isn't a symptom, and they aren't covered in sores and seem to have all their limbs.
- "Lepers" is actually a Fan Nickname. I forgot what the official name for them was — it was something along the lines of "Madmen", I think. If you had a serious mental illness in those days, to the point where it affected your functioning like that, there was fuck-all anyone could do to explain or mitigate it (except what Garnier was doing), so they just got dumped into the streets. Note they turn up much, much more frequently after Altair assassinates Garnier. That's what became of Garnier's "children". Altaïr must have been proud.
- And rightly so, since Garnier was creating more of them.
- Not really. Garnier even points out that the men guarding his hospital used to be Madmen, and killing him wound up leading them back into that maddened state.
- Eagle vision/sense is supposed to be a supersense allowing its user to, among other things, see past illusions and see a person's TRUE allegiance. So, how come, that Al Mualim doesn't appear red when Altair uses it? And how come Desmond see Lucy in blue after acquiring it, even though she was actually working for templars all along?
- Eagle vision doesn't show allegiances. It shows INTENT. The guards are hostile. Al Mualim and Lucy ARE ALLIES. Al Mualim only tries to kill you when you stop doing his bidding. Lucy wants you to survive.
Talking to dying targets
- How do those Talking Is A Free Actions death scenes with the targets work? Obviously, the part of them walking around and gesturing while talking is part of the Animus glitch, but they should have either died instantly or at least been unable to talk after being stabbed in the throat, not to mention the fact that there are guards and civilians around. The Animus did it doesn't make sense either, As Altair directly mentions these conversations later on when conversing with others, this means that they actually happened and weren't just part of the Animus.
- The way I always saw it was that you could never take out the target exactly as your ancestor did. Presumably, Altaïr, Ezio, and Connor dispatched their targets in such a way that allowed a few moments of privacy for the final speeches of their targets before bleeding out.
- According to something I read above, this is explained as desynchronization glitches between the Animus display (the stabbing of the victim) and the true memory (the taunting and conversations before stabbing them), or they got stabbed in the stomach first (potentially very painful if done right, something Altaïr would be more than capable of knowing) and were unable to move during the conversation afterwards. In short: the Animus did it by not being able to do it the way it originally happened due to problems with the processing.
Nature of the animus
- A lot of the justifying that the nature of the Animus is used for seems a little unnecessary. I mean sure the "videogame-like" environment helps to explain away some conventions and limitations of the medium, but translation conventions and the like really don't seem necessary to include in the machine. A memory is not a video, it's a thought. It would make perfect sense that Desmond can understand what people are saying because Altair understood it, because it's not the words that he's hearing, it's the memory of the words, the idea of the words, the meaning of the words.
- I think that, in fact, the Animus and Desmond along with it probably only exist to act as a convenient means by Ubisoft to deal with Fridge Logic. I mean, just about all of the games in the series could have had Desmond and rest of the modern day part of the game non-existent and it would have changed very little, the games are about various members of an ancient order of assassins running around assassinating people, and Desmond and the Animus are largely irrelevant to that.
- Black Flag has logs from early Animus testing where the subjects would speak verbally in the tongue of their ancestor. I'm pretty sure there was even speak of bringing in translators. Even if the person living the memories can understand the speech contained in them, the people studying the memories can't necessarily.
- I get that he's overly paranoid, but really, Sibrand is a total dumbass. He kills a scholar because he thinks he's an assassin due to his clothes. Fair enough, despite the fact that that's the point of the assassins dressing like that, but shouldn't he have noticed that the scholar had all his fingers? The mark of an assassin is having your left ring finger amputated, which is often what gives them away.
- Paranoid people consistently look for evidence that proves or validates their fears, while ignoring evidence that disproves their fears. It's what makes them different from someone who's simply wary.
- Not to mention that it seems to be that the only one missing a finger is Altair himself.
- Sibrand is 1. a Templar, 2. incredibly short-tempered, 3. paranoid, 4. convinced (rightfully) that the Assassins are out to get him, and 5. really, really not at all ready to die, especially since he doesn't believe in an afterlife. That pretty neatly explains all his actions in the game.
- It's also implied that Sibrand is simply losing his mind by this point. In his own words, he's been driven to insanity out of the realization that there's no afterlife waiting for him and he's terrified of death because of that.
- This could be Hand Waved as Gameplay and Story Segregation but how come Altaïr has all of his synchronization bars stripped in addition to his rank? The sync bars are the representation of Desmond's historical accuracy with how Altair lived but presumably Altair being an overzealous fool and costing himself his rank actually did happen so he should have kept any synchronization before and after the removal of his rank.
- Think of it this way: the synchronization meter is sort of an indicator of margin for error, and the Animus's capacity to compensate and attempt to re-sync the Subject. The fewer sync bars you have, the more strictly you have to act in accordance with what your ancestor did. The steady increase of the bars as Desmond progresses through Altaïr's memories could be seen as the foundational genetic memory growing stronger, thereby allowing more room for minor deviations (i.e. getting hit, falling off heights, etc.) And besides, very early in the game, there is very little room for said deviations anyway, so how many sync bars Altaïr starts off with isn't really relevant.
Robert and Al Mualim
- Why the hell didn't Robert expose Al Mualim right at the beginning, during the Siege of Masyaf?
- Who was going to believe him? He's just intimidated one of their top assassins and essentially disposed of two others and then laid siege to their town. And then he waltzes up to their gate to say that their leader is in cahoots with their biggest enemy at the moment? At what point would the Assassins take anything he says seriously?
- Well a late response is better than none :D Okay, you have a point, nobody might have believed him then, but it still might have helped later. I can imagine very well that Altair at least would have given more thought to the idea as time passed, with Al Mualim acting more suspiciously.
- Something that's been bothering me for a while is Desmond at the beginning. He says he was supposed to be an Assassin, as he explains to Lucy, but in the second game, he seems more oblivious to the idea that he is one. Am I just an idiot (which is more likely) and missed something completely or did they do a Retcon in the middle of making the second game?
- In what way does he seem oblivious?
- During the course of the Ezio Trilogy, it's brought up that Desmond thought his parents and the other Assassins were all just crazy end-of-the-world survival prepper conspiracy theorists in the vein of a Right-Wing Militia Fanatic and didn't take it seriously and ran away to escape from all that "nonsense". In one of the side-parts of Revelations, he even jokes about it by naming a drink he invented as a bartender a Shirley Templarnote and a friend basically introduces him with "This is Desmond. He escaped from a cult." Up until Abstergo kidnapped him, he had no reason to believe any of it was real.