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Video Game / Assassin's Creed Syndicate

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"Ladies and gentlemen, we are Jacob and Evie Frye. And as of this moment, you all work for us."

Assassin's Creed: Syndicate (not to be confused with Syndicate) is the eighth major title in the Assassin's Creed series. It was released on October 23rd, 2015 on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 and November 19th for PC. Its companion novel Assassin's Creed: Underworld was released on November 5th in the UK and December 1st in the US. It is set in London in the Victorian era.

Jacob and Evie Frye are fraternal twins and Assassins. They seek to spark an uprising in an age of class iniquity. They will rise among the organized crime syndicates to rebuild the Brotherhood through their street gang - The Rooks. The game has new features like emerging vehicle transport, carriages, trains, as well as modern methods of communication. The twins also have possession of a grappling hook that can help them access the higher rooftops of the changing city.

A Season Pass was announced promising additional missions and weapons as well as the Story DLC Jack the Ripper set in 1888, 20 years after the main campaign. One of the mission packs, The Last Maharaja, centers around Duleep Singh, as the Frye Twins attempt to help him reclaim his birthright as Maharaja of the Sikh Empire, testing his friendship with the Queen and putting him in conflict with the Templars. Another mission pack (which is not included in the Season Pass) is Dreadful Crimes, a series of whodunits.

Assassin's Creed: Syndicate contains examples of the following tropes:

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    Tropes A-L 
  • Acceptable Breaks from Reality: The Frye twins can swim in the Thames. As per the Industrial Revolution, the Thames qualifies for Squick and Scenery Gorn; yet after five straight games where the cover of water makes a lot of killing easier, it would be an outrage to cause automatic desynch from landing in it. Also, let's just say both controls and durability of horse-driven carriages (e.g. steering like a car or crushing trees and wrought iron obstacles with a horse or a wooden vehicle) have nothing to do with realism.
  • All for Nothing: One mission in The Last Maharajah has Evie and Jacob trying to infiltrate the Tower of London during a party, recover the Koh-I-Noor, prevent Singh from being framed and get away with the diamond. And then Henry Green reveals the diamond in the Crown Jewels is a fake, and that if they'd mentioned this to him, he could've told them.
  • All Just a Dream: The Charles Dickens mission "Dead Letters" is this. During the investigation, Frye Twin helping Charlie takes a short break on a large bundle of cloth, and after their short rest find a letter from a woman named Elizabeth they've never met addressed to her "Dear Frye". After reading the letter a carriage containing a kidnapped woman races down the nearby street. After chasing, hijacking, defending and escorting the carriage to the woman's home, the woman introduces herself as Elizabeth and asks her savior to sit in the carriage with her for a moment. The carriage is empty aside from a suicide note addressed to Elizabeth's parents. At which point, per this trope, our hero wakes up, having fallen asleep on the cloth.
  • Anachronism Stew: One of Colt's most iconic revolvers (the Single Action Army) is available earlier than the date of its design in 1872, four years after the game's setting.
    • The Dreadful Crimes DLC has a character use the phrase "slipping a mickey", which originated almost forty years after the events of the game.
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: Not including the twin protagonists, the World War I simulation has you play as Lydia Frye, the grand-daughter of Jacob Frye and grand-niece of Evie Frye.
  • And the Adventure Continues: For the Frye twins after eliminating Starrick. They receive acknowledgment and knighthood from Queen Victoria for thwarting the attempt on her life, and will now be tasked to complete some missions for her. The game even goes with this further by foregoing the obligatory credits roll after the ending, allowing players to resume gameplay right away. The credits can be viewed from the menu at the player's own decision.
  • Animal Motifs: Averted with the Player Character names but the Rooks, the name of the Frye twins' street gang, comes from the British Rook, a form of crow commonly seen in England. Signified later as Maxwell Roth also gets a rook (the actual bird) when he teams up with Jacob, and kills it after their alliance ends.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • The game furnishes us with a grappling hook/zip line attachment to the Assassin's Gauntlet that allows one to avoid climbing buildings the slow way and accelerates the parkour. Somewhat of a necessity now that London is a bit more to scale, with higher buildings and wider streets to match.
    • Carriages behave more like automobiles. All are towed by Automaton Horses that can run forever, and are tightly controlled and easily maneuvered.
    • Although Jacob and Evie will still get desynchronized for killing civilians themselves, there is no penalty for running into said civilians with a carriage at a full gallop - which is fortunate, because Victorian Londoners don't have the survival instincts that we do.
    • Some missions can only be done by one of the twins. If you attempt to start the mission with the wrong twin, the game automatically swaps you, rather than force you to decline, open the pause menu, and swap characters.
  • Anti-Hero: Jacob Frye's idea of defeating the Templars is to establish his own gang, including saving children from the factories... and putting them to work as spies and pickpockets.
  • Artistic License – History: See the franchise's page.
  • At the Opera Tonight: The Alhambra Music Hall is stage to Maxwell Roth's assassination. Roth invites Jacob to a show that culminates in the theatre getting set on fire.
  • Automaton Horses: Horses can run at top speeds forever, and it's even more of a stretch this time around because all the horses in the game are towing carriages. This is an Anti-Frustration Feature however, since the developers wanted carriages in the game to behave more like automobiles than actual carriages, both in terms of speed and maneuverability - and presumably the Animus is responsible anyway, being a playable version of events.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: For eliminating Starrick and thwarting the attempt on Queen Victoria's life, Jacob, Evie, and Henry are knighted by the Queen into the Order of the Sacred Garter.
  • Ax-Crazy: Maxwell Roth's response to Jacob objecting to him setting fire to a building with kids inside? Burn down a theatre full of innocent people after a live show of murder.
  • Bad Boss: Starrick.
    Servant: Mister Starrick- (gets Killed Mid-Sentence via Boom, Headshot!)
    • Context for this scene reveals Starrick was in mourning after the assassination of Pearl Attaway, his cousin.
    • Maxwell Roth's opinion on Jacob killing his men? He thinks it makes things more fun.
  • Base on Wheels: The Frye siblings' main base of operations is a train they took from the first gang leader they defeat.
  • Been There, Shaped History: As with every Assassin's Creed protagonist, the Fyre twins are involved in many events of history including suggesting to Alexander Graham Bell to name his invention "telephone" instead of "phonetic telegraph" and inspiring Artie to write crime novels when he grows up and suggest that he use his full name, Arthur Conan Doyle.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory: Mostly averted - while you can buy XP boosters and resources in the in-game store, the game is reasonably easy and not too grindy; after purchasing all the income upgrades you'll be swimming in money simply by collecting the revenue from the box on the HQ train every half an hour. However, some of the DLC gear is Purposely Overpowered, like the Bloofer Lady Outfit which has the same stats as Evie's best armor, the Aegis, but doesn't require an extemely lengthy collection quest to complete and is available right from the start.
  • Britain Is Only London: Apart from the beginning being set in Croydon, London serves as the backdrop for all of the events that occur in Syndicate.
  • Big Bad: Crawford Starrick is the ringleader of the British Rite of the Templar Order and he uses his henchmen to enforce their territorial dominance over the factories of London by using illegal child labor to produce products and other goods.
  • Big Good: The Frye twins lead a British working-class crime syndicate in London for the purpose of undermining Templar control over the city.
  • Bond One-Liner: After Jacob survives a train crash in a daring escape, he sees fit to quip, "Looks like we've made an unscheduled stop."
  • Bookends:
    • "Shall we?" "Let's." Jacob and Evie have this exchange when they board the train to London, and then before they assassinate Starrick.
    • When they first arrive at London, the twins have a race to the first viewpoint of the game. At the end of the game, they race each other to their headquarters.
  • Boom, Headshot!: From the sound of it, it seems that Alvaro Gramatica and Violet Da Costa communicated with Consus by first wrapping Violet with the Shroud, then shooting her in the head. At which point Consus takes over to repair the damage, allowing Gramatica to speak to him.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: A Charles Dickens side-quest features a man hypnotizing people into performing crimes for him. He even manages to hypnotize the twins into stealing for him before they eventually remember what they did and bring him to justice.
  • Brits Love Tea: Crawford Starrick gives a Templar New Era Speech that uses tea as a metonym:
    Starrick: This tea was brought to me from India by a ship, then, up from the harbor to a factory, where it was packaged and ferried by carriage to my door, unpacked in the larder and brought upstairs to me. All by men and women who work for me. Who are indebted to me, Crawford Starrick, for their jobs, their time, their very lives. They will work in my factories and so too shall their children.
  • Burning the Flag: Whenever Jacob or Evie take over a Blighter stronghold, they hand a torch to one of their Rooks to burn the Blighter flag.
  • The Bus Came Back: In the modern day storyline, Rebecca Crane returns after having been absent from Unity and Rogue.
  • Call-Back:
    • Evie describes Jacob's plans regarding the Rooks for London as being similar to what Ezio did in Rome during Brotherhood. Though judging by the consequences, Jacob's campaign against the Templars appears more reminiscent of Connor's in III.
    • London's Assassin-free nature at the start of the game is because of the success of Reginald Birch and Haytham Kenway's purging in their time.
  • The Cameo: You can find Lewis Carroll reciting a draft of his famous poem The Jabberwocky to some children.
  • Camera Abuse: During the finale in the modern day segment, Otso Berg punches out the Desmond drone in the camera.
  • Capitalism Is Bad: From the "Twin Assassins" trailer.
    Jacob Frye: When you steal from the rich, it's criminal. But stealing from the poor? That's capitalism.
    • In general, if you find a capitalist in the game, he or she is probably evil. The Frye twins liberate factories run by involuntary child labor, most of the Templars in the game run some kind of business, and on the occasion you work with a capitalist, they'll probably betray you.
    • That said the Fryes, especially Evie, support individual entrepreneurs like Ed Bayley, the Omnibus maker who wants to start a United Transport Company with other investors, rather than be oppressed by the Mob and big companies ("What it is they say in America? "For the people, by the people?"). Evie also prevents a run on the Bank of England and an economic crisis. Likewise, Alexander Graham Bell supports the Fryes because he's opposed to Starrick's monopoly and abuse of telegraph media. So the Fryes may be opposed to the capitalists and pal around with Marx, but they aren't out to overturn the system; rather they are reformists.
  • Character Customization: Weapons and clothing/armor can all be swapped out and upgraded, much like in Assassin's Creed: Unity, albeit without nearly as much options and without the hassle of microtransactions. The Assassins can also be upgraded with perks to make them better at stealth, brawling, and using their environment.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The final memory of the Dreadful Crimes DLC has a lot of CallBacks from past cases.
    • Lines spoken by suspects and Artie are remembered by the player character.
    • Throughout the DLC, there are clues that carry no importance or have any relevance to the case. A few of these mention the Scepter with the Dove that Queen Victoria keeps in her vault at Buckingham Palace.
    • Probably the most obvious clue is the presence of an African spider that was used in a previous case. Said spider's venom contains an anesthetic that puts its victim in a death-like state.
  • Co-Dragons: Lucy Thorne occupies this role with Maxwell Roth to Crawford Starrick. Thorne is entirely loyal but Roth is The Starscream.
  • Collapsing Lair: David Brewster's laboratory and the Alhambra Music Hall.
  • Color-Coded Armies: The Frye-led Rooks wear green and appear as such in Eagle Vision, while the Templar-aligned Blighters wear red, also in Eagle Vision. Subverted with the law enforcement in the game, as officers can wear either blue or grey and Grenadiers will of course wear red, but all three types will appear as blue in Eagle Vision.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • David Brewster has in his possession the Head of St. Denis from the Dead Kings DLC for Unity.
    • The database entry for the Kenway Manor recounts some of the broad points from Forsaken, as well as Black Flag and Unity's novelizations, including Jennifer Scott's encounter with a young Elise from the later.
    • The hidden files detail the history of the Shroud and Consus from Project Legacy, complete with Dr. Grammatica grumbling about how the files Abstergo has are still messed up from Erudito's hacking. Gramatica himself is noted to be the one who invented the Data Dump Scanner in the first place.
  • Cool Old Guy: Charles Dickens, Charles Darwin, and Karl Marx turn out to be this. As does Winston Churchill.
  • Cool Old Lady: Queen Victoria, Mary Anne Disraeli, and Florence Nightingale.
  • Cool Train: Bertha, a locomotive run by Agnes McBean, is the Assassin HQ Base on Wheels. This moving train serves as the Hub Level where you can upgrade, keep track of your progress and other keepsakes. Notably the train has full interiors and exteriors and constantly moves across the whole map. Also, one of your associates (i.e. Henry Green, Ned Wynert, Clara O'Dea, etc.) and the twin you're not playing as can be seen lounging around the train as well.
  • Covers Always Lie:
    • The cover shows Jacob sitting in front and center while Evie and other nameless Rook Mooks take the back. This sells the concept that the Fryes are leading a syndicate, all right, but the player can still decide which of the two Fryes to play as for most of the game. Aside from story missions which are tied to specific characters, there's a lot of room for you to play as either Jacob or Evie to your heart's content.
    • Also, the cover and for that matter, most artwork and other promotional materials of Jacob and Evie have the former holding the cane sword. In-game, there's little real incentive for Jacob to wield it as most of his gear is designed to improve his kukri damage output. Evie is the one who gets the bonuses toward cane-sword usage, funnily enough on the other hand a number of promotional materials have her brandishing a pistol which Jacob can wield slightly better as he gets a special skill perk for it that Evie can't access.
  • Cultured Badass: Jacob and Evie's looks both give off this vibe, though when it comes to actually being cultured, Evie clearly outdoes her brother, even quoting Plato at one point (while Jacob only recognizes the quote from their father).
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Evie versus Lucy Thorne, as indicated by the full sync requirements, which dictate that Evie counter all of Lucy's strikes. This is downplayed in the sense that, although Lucy never manages to actually hit Evie, she does get the key off Evie and then escape with it.
  • Cutscene Incompetence: Evie's first encounter with Lucy Thorne. If the player had full control of Evie throughout, ending Lucy right then and there and retaining the vault key would be child's play, but the story mandates a different outcome.
  • Dances and Balls: The final mission has Jacob and Evie attending the Queen's Ball at Buckingham Palace to confront Starrick and stop him from claiming the Piece of Eden.
  • Decoy Antagonist: Sequence 5 establishes Jacob allying with Pearl Attaway, Starrick's business competitor, to sabotage Malcom Millner who is Starrick's puppet. But upon assassinating Millner, Jacob finds out he's been fooled — Attaway is his true target, and not only is she a Templar, she's also Starrick's cousin.
  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: The vastly different social standards of the Victorian-era are brought up on several occasions. Maharaja Duleep Singh is faced with the challenge of reclaiming the Punjab from British rule, and is treated condescendingly in London because of the prevailing attitudes of White Man's Burden and imperialism of the day. Pearl Attaway has been hounded by men her entire life for not giving up her business enterprise by entering a marriage, and one of the "Dreadful Crimes" side quests involves a woman who tried to use a fake psychic to trick her brother into giving up the family fortune since he received all of it as the male heir. In the World War I simulation, Lydia Frye pressures Winston Churchill into returning to Parliament to fight for women's suffrage, and Evie mentions in her penultimate notebook entry that although Starrick is dead and London has been freed from the Templars, female suffrage and education must be accomplished before all of London can truly be considered free.
  • Depraved Homosexual: According to Word of Godinvoked Maxwell Roth is in love with Jacob, and once Jacob breaks off their partnership, he decides to burn down a theatre and everyone inside it in a suicidal final performance he dedicates to Jacob. The whole sequence reads like one bad break-up. The only in-game hint to this is the kiss he gives Jacob right before he succumbs to Jacob's assassination.
  • Developer's Foresight: After completing a Child Liberation side mission you're given a short cutscene. If there were any guards left alive after freeing the last group of children, the cutscene shows your Rooks beating them up while the kids run for safety. If you eliminated all the guards beforehand, it instead shows the Rooks calmly reassuring them and walking with them out of the factory.
  • Destination Defenestration: Subverted. During Evie and Lucy's fight, Lucy charges at Evie (who is standing in front of a large stain-glass window), intending to push or throw her through the window. Evie steps to the side at the last second and Lucy ends up throwing herself out the window. Although she's able to grab Evie's necklace key and hang from it, threatening to take Evie with her. Evie uses her Hidden Blade to cut the key off, saving herself but losing the artifact.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: Lucy Thorne, the most prominent recurring Templar after Starrick and his second-in-command, gets assassinated by Evie in Sequence 6, with two targets and Starrick still remaining. Evie goes after Thorne thinking that the Shroud of Eden is found in the Tower of London, only for Thorne to reveal in her dying speech that the Shroud isn't there at all.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: The Templars in The Last Maharajah try to murder Duleep Singh for wanting to reclaim his country from the British Empire.
  • Elite Mooks:
    • Brutes and Enforcers for the Blighters and Rooks.
    • Royal Guards for law enforcement.
  • Enemy Mine: Jacob makes alliances with Pearl Attaway and Maxwell Roth before he realizes their true intentions. Both naturally end with Jacob assassinating them.
  • Establishing Character Moment: The entire Templar Order collectively gets one when Jacob assassinates Rupert Ferris in the first memory of the game. He mocks Jacob and the Assassins, asserts that the entire city of London is under the Templars' control and nothing the Assassins can do will make any change, and glitches his way into standing upright through his confession. All this establishes the Templar Order as untouchable, requiring a more methodical approach than any Order the Brotherhood has faced before, the upper members of whom will all piss Jacob off.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: Jacob and Evie fight female crime bosses and thugs just as often as male crime bosses and thugs. Also presumably why trans man Ned Wynert is in the business.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: The Templars chose not to claim the Kenway Mansion, in spite of potential Assassin secrets hidden within, out of respect for Haytham Kenway, who left the property to his sister Jennifer Scott. They would later acquire it after Jennifer's passing.
  • Everyone Has Standards: One of the trophies in the game - obtained by making five carriages crash by shooting the horse - is called "WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU" all in capital letters.
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: Jacob has this realization after getting back Desmond, Mary-Anne Disraeli's dog...and remembering he left her alone at a pub in one of the most violent parts of town!
  • Fight Clubbing: You can compete in underground boxing matches for money and XP, with either Jacob or Evie. Despite the considerable muscle/size difference between them, they perform equally in the ring. note 
  • Flower Motifs: The Pressed Flowers challenge asks you to collect flowers based on the motif of the Victorian Language of Flowers. Evie and Henry Green discuss various flower meanings and what it suggests when you give someone a bouquet of that. Narcissus means self-centered (Evie wants to send a bouquet to Jacob). Irises mean you want to send a message. Red Tulip means love, which Henry gives to Evie, after she collects all the flowers at the end of the game. He then proposes to her and she says yes.
  • Foregone Conclusion: The existence of Lydia Frye confirms that Jacob and Evie will live until an old age to train her as an Assassin.
  • Foreshadowing: In the database entry for the Assassin Brotherhood, Rebecca chimes in with the question of what they and the Templar Order called themselves before the Crusades. The next game would give us an answer.
  • Fourth-Date Marriage: The reward for collecting all the Pressed Flowers is a cutscene of Henry proposing to Evie. Of course, this can come across as an early surprise if you prioritize completing the collectibles before the main story.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: Unlike Unity, bugs in Syndicate were more insidious, such that even after patch support has ended, certain bugs were still not ironed out:
    • The game can just randomly crash. This becomes a big issue when playing the Dreadful Crimes DLC, as the game does not save your investigation progress. It is entirely possible to be one step away from solving the mystery before the game crashes and then having to do everything from the start.
    • Associate missions (which do not have a loading screen) can randomly bug out during replays by desynchronising the player immediately after the mission is reloaded. Being in the vicinity of the mission before reloading can mitigate this bug, but is no guarantee.
    • The Last Maharaja has a more glaring example whereby the desynchronisation takes place when reloading the previous checkpoint during a mission. As one may guess, this is very frustrating to players who wish to reload a checkpoint in order to get the optional objective done for 100% completion.
  • Grappling-Hook Pistol: The twins get a rope launcher as part of their gauntlets. It can rappel them to rooftops with ease, and likewise it also shoots a line of rope to zipline across the city, working as a cross between the Grapnel Gun and the Line Launcher in the Batman: Arkham Series. It also brings to mind Ezio doing similar with the Hookblade in Constantinople; although he couldn't make his own ziplines back then.
  • The Ground Is Lava: The Charles Dickens mission "The Terror of London" has one of the twins chasing Spring-Heeled Jack across London. Once he climbs onto the rooftops, the "don't touch the ground" objective activates, and you'll have to chase him using ziplines.
  • Hammerspace: Jacob tucks his top hat somewhere under his arm when he pulls his hood up to sneak. This can of course be hand waved with it being foldable. On the other hand, don't ask where the cane-sword goes.
  • Hell Is That Noise: You will soon learn to despise the sound of police whistles. Hear one, and you're about to be swarmed by officers far superior to any Blighters.
  • Hidden Weapons: Due to Victorian laws, Jacob, Evie, and other characters keep their weapons concealed.
  • High-Speed Train Reroute: In the opening sequence, one of the Mooks reroutes the rails so that they lead to a cliff in order to get rid of Jacob Frye who was still on it. The driver attempts to stop the train but it's too late and he is forced to abandon the train. Jacob barely escapes.
  • Historical Domain Character:
  • Hot Blooded Sideburns: Jacob sports a prominent pair of muttonchops.
  • How We Got Here: The E3 cinematic trailer starts with Jacob already in a bar brawl. The next portion of it shows what lead to that fight, which involves a gang boss selling children to Templar slavemasters.
  • Improbable Infant Survival: Child NPCs can't be killed. Bullets pass right through them, and melee attacks never connect. Even catching a fleeing child thief replaces the usual tackle animation with a gentle nudge on the shoulder.
  • In-Game Banking Services: All proceeds from the Rooks' criminal activities are deposited into a safe on the Jacob and Evie Fry's train. The funds increase roughly once an hour and the player is notified once it has reached capacity, at which point no additional funds will generate until a withdrawal is made.
  • In Love with Your Carnage: Maxwell Roth decides to befriend Jacob after he sees how much chaos he's caused the city of London.
  • In Medias Res: The Lydia Frye memories start with her having just stealth killed someone in the house she happens to be infiltrating in her search for German spies.
  • Interface Screw: During one of the missions in The Last Maharaja, Jacob gets in a drinking contest—with every pint you down, the screen gets more and more wobbly. Then you have a shooting match, where your normally rock-steady aim sways across the screen. Then you have to solve a "mystery" (helping your competitor discover who spilled his drink) while stumbling through a pub. Even the next morning, after you wake up shirtless in a haycart, your screen is still slightly distorted, indicating you're either still working off your buzz, or you're experiencing the hangover.
    • Several of the Charles Dickens memories involve the twins chasing after a hypnotist. Not surprisingly, you get hypnotized several times across these missions, where your interface takes on a green hue and blurs significantly. Yes, you still have to complete missions in this state.
    • One Charles Darwin memory involves a hallucinogenic plant that the twins will have to get rid of. The screen turns technicolor and wobbly while you're in the plant's vicinity until you kick the pots away. Later a carriage full of it can be ridden, wherein you can weaponize the effect against any enemy unfortunate enough to find themselves in your carriage's wake. Completing the mission reveals it actually was the pots inducing the hallucinations.
  • Interface Spoiler: The Progress Tracker already lists World War I among the menus for memories and collectibles.
    • The Legend on the map already lists an icon for Queen Victoria Memories. However, they are only unlocked after completing the main story.
  • In the Past, Everyone Will Be Famous: A staple of the series. Jacob and Evie rub elbows with Karl Marx, Alexander Graham Bell, Florence Nightingale, Charles Dickens, and Charles Darwin. Not to mention the Disraelis and Queen Victoria.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: When Jacob catches up with a sniper connected to a plot to assassinate the Prime Minister, he decides to get some information out of her by dangling her from a rooftop.
    Jacob: What's his game?
    Sniper: Please, he'll kill me...
    Jacob: And a three storey drop will shatter your legs and send you to the workhouse. Difference is you can run from him.
  • Jekyll & Hyde: One of the Dreadful Crimes missions is based on the original Trope Namer. Specifically, a girl gets murdered by the womanizing alter ego of her doctor. Said doctor was experimenting with a medication that deals with mental problems which gave birth to his alter ego when he tested it on himself.
  • Just Train Wrong: One promotional image shows a train pulling into a station. While the locomotive, a Stirling 4-2-2, is correct for the era, it has the British Railways 'cycling lion' symbol on the cab, which wouldn't be seen until the late 1940's. The trailer reveals more; the locomotive's tender is emblazoned with 'LSWR', which stood for the London and South Western Railway. The Stirling Singles belonged to the GNR, or Great Northern Railway. The locomotive was also introduced in 1870, two years after the game's setting. To top it all off, wood is seen in the tender as opposed to coal. The second gameplay trailer has a GWR Dukedog in LBSCR crimson, which never existed as a livery.
    • Tender engines are modeled with the locomotive and tender as a single unit, without any articulation between them. As a result, the locomotives cannot negotiate tight corners and will conspicuously derail while going around them.
  • Kukris Are Kool: One of the three primary weapons equipped by the protagonists.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall:
    Juno: Is it any wonder so many of these simulations revolve around violence?
  • Lighter and Softer: On the whole, this game is the lightest game in the entire series, lacking the gloominess of the earlier titles, and featuring no major character deaths aside from villains. Evie's final notebook entry however notes that even if Starrick and the Templars dead, the Assassins have loads to do.
  • Load-Bearing Boss: The game presents why the Templars in modern times are harder to kill than earlier. By harnessing capitalism they make themselves indispensable to society at large, as foretold by Germain in Unity, they start controlling the society rather than trying to rule outright, via the transportation, medicine, capital and communication institutions. Directly attacking the Templars like in earlier games leads to various sectors of society being disrupted, and the Assassins facing blowback for their actions, with their friends and allies directly compromised and affected by the consequences. Eventually, Jacob realizes that truly attacking Starrick would involve crossing moral lines such as killing child workers and he becomes despondent to the point that he thinks there's no point stopping Starrick from taking the Shroud. By this point, the Templars have changed the game totally.
    Rupert Ferris: You Assassins can circle London to your heart's content. The mechanism we have built has been going strong for a hundred years, and will run a thousand more. It is the very city itself.
  • London Gangster: Both Jacob and Evie, and they are building an organized crime syndicate to fight the Templars.
    • Maxwell Roth is also one of these, as the leader of the Blighters, and Ax-Crazy to boot.

    Tropes M-Z 
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: It's kept ambiguous in the Charles Dickens missions if Spring-Heeled Jack is a man in costume and theatrics or genuinely supernatural.
  • Mooks, but no Bosses: In keeping with the most recent few games in the seriesnote . Most of the assassination targets have no combat skills at all, and even the ones who are legitimate fighters (namely Lucy Thorne) go down as easily as any other mook in a straight fight. There is a final confrontation with Starrick, but he fights just like a regular enemy, with the fight only being drawn out by scripted Puzzle Boss elements. Slightly subverted with the gang leaders, who you must defeat in a one-on-one fight in order to fully take over their territorynote , though they tend to just be Elite Mooks with higher health and occasionally a unique gadget that you get after beating them.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • The opening montage narrated by Henry Green has a Red Locomotive titled "The Great Eagle" with the number 1191. 1191 is the year in which Assassin's Creed is set, and the Great Eagle is the sobriquet of Altair.
    • Similarly, in a Freeze-Frame Bonus, the train that Jacob and Evie ride in sequence 1 has the number 1476 on it. 1476 is the year that Ezio began seeking revenge against the Templars in Assassin's Creed II.
    • Isabelle Ardant's office is filled with portraits of Haytham and Elise. Her computer likewise has a database of British Templars and Assassins, including characters from companion media such as Memories, Pirates, and Oliver Bowden's novelizations.
    • The mission "Playing it By Ear" goes to the Kenway Mansion, Edward's home in England after he quit piracy in Black Flag that has become semi-abandoned one hundred and thirty years later. It's filled with memorabilia and Edward even has a secret room that features the rudder wheel of Jackdaw. And the interactive piano puzzle that opens an underground passage? It's the tune to the shanty "Lowlands Away"!
    • The names of the camera drones that follow Shaun and Rebecca are Desmond, Lucy, Clay and Hannahnote .
    • Mary Anne Disraeli's corgi is named Desmond. (In the respective database entry, Shaun is not impressed at all.)
    • The assassination of Maxwell Roth is a replay of the Assassination of Jubair, with multiple copies to be Assassinated around the room. Like Jubair, Roth wants to burn things, but instead of books, he wants to burn an entire theatre with all the people in it.
    • The final mission at Buckingham Palace has Evie Frye wearing a ballgown with similar restrictions on gameplay and movement as that of Aveline in Assassin's Creed III: Liberation. Also Evie later engages in a dance with a Templar, similar to Aveline in another one of her missions.
      • Additionally, Evie's referring to the dress as an 'infernal contraption' mirrors Elise's mention of "feel[ing] like a mummy", and she discards the dress with a 'Requiescat in pace'.
    • Posters advertising shows at the Alhambra include "Ballad of the Buccaneers" which features an illustration of the cast of Black Flag as well as a romantic melodrama titled "Ezio" which features Ezio romancing a woman.
    • Evie's Notebook includes her drawing of Henry Green, echoing Altair drawing Maria Thorpe in his Codex.
    • Just like Altair in the first game with his feathers, Jacob and Evie use handkerchiefs to collect the blood of their assassination victims. During the final confessions in the White Room, the victims are also presented as healthy and able-bodied when they speak their lines.
    • Two missions for Charles Dickens feature the twins encountering a hypnotist named Enzio Capelli, who claims to be Italian. Dickens even mispronounces the man's name as "Ezio", only for the twins to correct him and find out that Capelli is not Italian at all. "Enzio" is notably the mispronunciation of Ezio Auditore's name in the Abstergo marketing analysis video from Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag.
  • Neighborhood-Friendly Gangsters: Jacob and Evie run a criminal syndicate whose illegal activity is confined mostly to street brawls and underground fights with worse gangs. Oh, and complicity with Jacob and Evie's assassinations, but even those are to uproot a sinister conspiracy. All of this is done with the support of the police, and you even solve murder mysteries for them in the side missions.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: Evie rarely showed up in the trailers early on, as much of the game's reveal focused solely on Jacob. Jacob also has more story-centric missions (and particularly more assassinations) than his sister. However, both characters are equally playable for free-roam and side activities, which is plenty of time to play as the character of your choosing. It's possible to play most of the game as Evie and only switch to Jacob during his story missions, or vice-versa.
    • In the Story Trailer, Evie narrates the names and roles of the Templars under Starrick, with the exchange between her and Jacob suggesting they will take down the members of Starrick's order together. In the main game, the twins are split up by their differing objectives, and Evie couldn't care less about assassinating the Templars because her priority is to find the Piece of Eden. Jacob assassinates five out of six major targets whom Evie never meets, and vice-versa for Jacob having no direct confrontation with Lucy Thorne, but the twins do come together to assassinate Starrick.
  • Noob Cave: Whitechapel is the starting borough when the Fryes arrive in London, and is the first borough they conquer with only a suggested level of 2.
    • Prior to London, Jacob and Evie's first individual missions are set out in the countryside of Croydon, which work as tutorials with only the most basic of skills and gameplay available.
  • Not His Sled: "The Fiend of Fleet Street" is a Dreadful Crime that features homages to a certain penny dreadful such as a barber named Feeney Sodd, a bakery shop owner named Mrs. Moffat, and a leather worker named Tobias. You will hear about a string of people disappearing who happened to be customers of the barber's, and you will find clues that point to meat and manure being made of a most unlikely material. You may be highly compelled to accuse the crime on Feeney Sodd—and that is where Ubisoft succeeds in tricking you, because the barber is not committing the murders at all!
  • One-Steve Limit: Averted, both Charles Darwin and Charles Dickens show up, as does Karl Marx (Karl being the German form of Charles).
    • There's also Desmond the dog in addition to Desmond the Assassin. Shaun isn't happy about it.
    • Also Henry Green and Henry Raymond.
    • There are technically two Lucys in the game. Lucy Thorne, the Templar in Victorian London; and Lucy the drone camera in the modern day, named after Lucy Stillman.
  • Opening Narration: The historical story begins with Henry Green writing a letter describing the present situation in London—the Templars are in firmly-seated control, and it's not good for the Assassins.
  • Pacifist Run: This game encourages more non-lethal approaches, and you are fortunately given the option to Knock Out a target to subdue them without taking their life. Mostly this is in the case of London's law enforcers (the police and royal guards). For Abberline's Bounty Hunts, the full-sync requirement is to bring back the targets alive, and some missions in the later end of the main story have the optional objective to not kill anyone. (However, occasionally, you can circumvent this optional objective by letting your Rooks do the killing in your stead.)
  • Politically Correct History: The game glosses over other forms of values dissonance several times throughout the plot. Ned Wynert is a transgender man whose gender identity is entirely ignored in the game beyond a brief sideways glance exchanged between the Frye twins at his introduction. At multiple points, Evie gets away with things that would be unthinkable for a woman to do during the Victorian Age, like investigating murders alongside London's police force and commanding a regiment of troops during her infiltration of the Tower of London. Both Evie and Jacob regularly interact with the Disraelis, ignoring the social class differences of the day that would have prevented commoners like Evie and especially Jacob from interacting with "high society", and are ultimately knighted by Queen Victoria herself and become personal friends with her, furthering the stretch. Also notable is the absence of prostitutes from the game despite it being a significant issue in Real Life during the era.
    • And in the middle is the grey area where the presence of women and racial minorities as powerful members of the Assassins and Templars (and their proxy gangs, the Rooks and Blighters) can be explained by the "everything is permitted" philosophy of the Creed and the Equal-Opportunity Evil policy of the Templars. Appropriately, women aren't seen openly serving in Britain's police force or military, an obviously modern development.
    • On a meta level, this is the first Assassin's Creed game to feature the modified pre-game startup disclaimer that the game is made by "a multicultural team of various beliefs, sexual orientations, and gender identities."
  • Putting on the Reich: The Templars that work the streets can be told apart from the Blighters by their black leather uniforms, which include an armband depicting the Templar Cross in red on a white background. This is further compounded in the WWI memories, where German spies and Templars also wear this uniform.
  • Rail-Car Separation: Players can decouple cars while trains are in motion.
  • Rasputinian Death: One of the murder victims in the Dreadful Crimes pack is shot, stabbed, poisoned (twice) and has a heavy crate dropped on him (the case is fittingly titled "The Most Hated Man In London"). Finding out which of these actually caused his death is the real challenge of the puzzle. In case you're wondering, it was the stabbing.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: The final mission of The Last Maharajah has the Big Bad give one of these to Singh, for wanting to try and get out of the Gilded Cage that is his life.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: There's been some hubbub over Evie openly participating in boxing matches during the extremely sexist Victorian age, under the assumption that female participation in combat sports is a recent development. However, women's boxing was actually a thing in Victorian England. One example is Elizabeth Wilkinson, who fought even earlier during the early 18th century. She also went up against men in mixed-gender boxing matches. Things only start to become less grounded in reality because Evie doesn't appear to have much muscle, but still packs as much a punch as Jacob, using the same moves. See Rule of Fun.
  • Reed Richards Is Useless: The Templars, Lucy Thorne and Crawford Starrick, call out the Assassins for sitting on First Civilization technology and hiding it around London and refusing to harness its potential for the greater good. The Frye twins never point out the hypocrisy of such statements.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Of the sibling sort! Jacob is Red, being action-oriented and ready to get his hands dirty. Evie is Blue, acting as the cool-headed brains behind Jacob's actions. Make no mistake though, Evie is as deadly as her brother, if not more so.
  • Recurring Riff: The first five notes of "Bloodines", the main theme of Syndicate, appear in either piano or violin form in a good portion of the soundtrack.
  • Repressive, but Efficient: The Templars are the people who distribute medicinenote , handle the British economynote , control the transportation systemsnote , and generally keep everything running in the British Empirenote . Every time Jacob kills one of their members, the effects cause London to start falling apart.
  • Revolvers Are Just Better: Firearms have finally improved to the point that six-shooters are the guns of choice. Ultimately averted later - the two best pistols in the game aren't revolvers at all.
  • Romanticism Versus Enlightenment: The twins come across as this in one of the trailers; Jacob is shown to have a fairly romantic view, in that he's skeptical of London and modernity and progress, while Evie sounds more optimistic about the new scientific developments, even if she does recognize that it's vital they work towards justice.
    • It's more complicated in the game, in that Evie is more interested in the Pieces of Eden and First Civilization technology and use that to combat the Templars while Jacob wants to work pragmatically and erode their base in the criminal underworld.
  • Rule-Abiding Rebel: The Assassins' posture as underclass rebels and spokesman for the oppressed against the capitalist Templars kind of gets undermined when they side with Conservative Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli and later get knighted by Queen Victoria herself. The Assassins claim to side for freedom and protect the people but ultimately aren't out to topple the Victorian establishment, they merely want to take over Templar territory and become the new secret society in charge. This is congruent with their attitudes in the French Revolution. Subverted when Evie and Jacob break off their friendship with Queen Victoria because they disagree with her Imperial values.
  • Rule of Fun:
    • Evie's weapon of choice is a cane sword, but she can also equip the same brass knuckles as Jacob if she so chooses. However, despite Jacob being at least Evie's weight and a half, they both use the same attack animations, preventing the player from needing to accustom to the different timing that could result from Evie using a Waif-Fu approach.
    • The twins can wield kukris in combat, and oftentimes they can be seen stabbing their enemies with it. Anyone who owns a kukri (whether as a tool or as a weapon) will tell you that while they can be used to stab, chopping is their intended use and thus much more efficient.
  • Scenery Porn: As per usual for the series, but subverted quite often in close-ups, turning into Scenery Gorn, particularly when you see the disgustingness that is the Thames.
  • Sequel Hook: For both the modern day and the historical portion.
    • There are four shown at the end. First, the Templars manage to obtain the Shroud and plan to use it to reconstruct a living Precursor. Second, Rebecca is shot and her survival is left uncertain. Third, Juno is manipulating Abstergo from behind the scenes and has her own plans for the Shroud. One of the Assassin Intel logs show that somewhere in New York, a ten-year old boy getting a checkup happens to be a Sage, and he also happens to share the same patrilineal line as Desmond and William Miles!.
    • In the Victorian Age, the final entries of Evie's notebook reveal that she and Henry Green will visit India next year. The end of the Pressed Flowers challenge closes with a cutscene showing their engagement. After completing all the post-game Queen Victoria missions, the Fryes end their friendship with the Queen by stating that they oppose the Empire much as they like her. In the World War I section, Jacob's granddaughter Lydia Frye has her own adventures.
    • Evie's parting conversation with Duleep Singh (in the second-to-last mission of the story) has her acknowledge that they may work together yet again, possibly alluding to the "Last Maharajah" missions set for DLC.
    • Shawn's database entry on the Assassin Brotherhood observes that both they and the Templar Order have existed for just about all of recorded history. Rebecca chimes in to point out that would technically mean they existed before both the Arabic Hashashin and the actual Knights Templar, so what were they called before then? The next two games would answer her question.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: In the opening mission, Jacob has escaped on a train that has just been diverted to an unfinished bridge. When the train conductor can't stop the brakes in time, he jumps off.
  • Sherlock Scan: Featured in the Dreadful Crimes and Jack the Ripper DLCs when using Eagle Vision around the crime scene.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The "Twin Assassins" trailer has one to the opening lines of GoodFellas:
    Jacob Frye: As far back as I can remember, I wanted to be part of London.
    • The Alhambra headquarters of Maxwell Roth, and Roth himself, borrows a lot from Satan's Circus and Bill the Butcher in Gangs of New York.
    • The ending with Queen Victoria dubbing Jacob, Evie and Henry Green into Knighthood and Damehood is a straight lift from the end of Shanghai Knights.
      • Similarly, the scene where Jacob gets pickpocketed by a street urchin shortly after arriving in London and chases the thief through the streets of London before dealing with thugs is also straight out of Shanghai Knights.
    • One of the missions is called "Driving Mrs. Disraeli."
    • Next to Henry Green's curiosity shop is Todd's Pies. And there actually is a bakery in Whitechapel that sells cannibalistic meat pies.
    • A lot of the Dreadful Crimes investigations draw heavily from literature written during or taking place in the Victorian age. "The Case of the Conflicted Courtship" is about a doctor who discovers a chemical potion that creates a dark, murderous alter ego of an otherwise normal person, which ultimately causes the death of his lover at the hands of his alter ego "Baxter". "The Fiend of Fleet Street" is a half-Expy of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, and features meat pies made with human flesh and a menacing barber named "Feeney Sodd". In a twist though, both the baker and the barber are innocent, and in fact it's the leather worker who has been killing people around Fleet Street and "using" their Human Resources.
    • Your contact in the post-ending Queen Victoria missions is Alfred Fleming, who is in charge of Her Majesty's secret service.
    • A line in Pearl Attaway's biography jokes that her failed personal transport service was not uber.
    • After clearing the Charles Dickens memories, Jacob will lament the mundane results of the Ghost Club investigations and remarks that he wanted to meet a ghost. Or a goblin.
    • An achievement for hijacking 20 police cars is entitled "You Wouldn't Steal a Policeman's Helmet."
    • Two of the three missions in the "Darwin and Dickens Conspiracy" set are based off the plot of Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens. At the end of the third mission, Darwin asks aloud why it all feels so familiar.
    • The final memory in Sequence 9 is called "A Night to Remember".
    • Lord Cardigan is briefly heard addressing a government minister named Hacker.
  • Shown Their Work: Albeit with slight adjustments in scale and distance, Central London is almost perfectly recreated — so much so that some observers have been able to perfectly recreate their daily routine purely by recognizing and navigate the landmarks (Victoria Station, Buckingham Palace Road, Green Park and Piccadilly), with the scale large enough to correspond the time frame nearly similar to real-life.
  • Siblings in Crime: Jacob and Evie are siblings and the leaders of a working-class British crime syndicate based in London.
  • Songs in the Key of Lock: The piano in Kenway's Mansion opens a secret lair by playing a set of keys on the piano. The tune incidentally is "Lowlands Away", a sea shanty from Black Flag.
  • Spanner in the Works: Clearing Sequence One nets you a trophy/achievement titled this.
  • Spring-Heeled Jack: Two versions of Spring-heeled Jack appear as a side mission Jacob and Evie Frye can investigate.
  • Standalone Episode: Sequence 8 seems to be this, due to its unique unlock condition. While the other sequences are unlocked in chronological order, Sequence 8 is available after conquering three boroughs in London, making it the player's choice to decide which sequence to play next. As a result, Sequence 8's storyline is made to not reference the rest of the main plot, and only centers on two characters: Jacob Frye and Maxwell Roth.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Done somewhat frequently by several characters throughout the game, including Robert Topping and Lucy Thorne among others.
  • Stealth Pun: In the final mission, Evie knees Starrick in the groin in an attempt to find the vault before he does. Her response to the shocked witnesses? "I never liked balls." Of course, she was just coerced into dancing the mazurka with the Grand Master...
  • Steampunk: The Assassins this time around have Arkham inspired rope-launchers that operate on a clockwork mechanism, and both can use electric "voltaic" grenades to stun their enemies. A lot of the fashion in the game is stylized as well on more prominent characters, rather than being historically accurate (and boring). Lucy Thorne, a Templar antagonist, for example bears a greater resemblance to a Steampunk cosplayer than a genuine lady from Victorian times.
    • Not to mention that one of the first items announced as being included in the Season Pass is a Steampunk weapon-and-outfit pack, which is Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
  • Sure, Let's Go with That: Henry assumes that the Frye twins were sent by the Council and the Fryes don't have the heart to tell him otherwise.
    Henry: Well thank goodness the Council saw reason and sent you to aid us.
    Jacob: Yes... thank goodness.
  • Swap Fighter: Evie and Jacob are twin protagonists that the player can switch between at will by pressing a button (R3 on consoles), save for specific missions. And again, save for a few specific nodes, the twins share the same skill tree and share most of their equipment.
  • Take That!: According to Karl Marx's bio as written by Shaun, Marx's greatest contribution to modern society are the hipsters who whine about the evils of capitalism all the while drinking overpriced coffee.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: By the final sequence, Jacob and Evie are in such disharmony that they resolve to part ways after the mission to eliminate Starrick. Fortunately, the final fight against the Grand Master helps them realize how they need to work together, and the subsequent victory lets them make amends.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: The eponymous victim of the Dreadful Crimes mission "The Most Hated Man in London" was crushed by a crate, shot, stabbed, and poisoned twice within the span of ten minutes. The doctor finds the scene so outrageous that he decides that it's best for everyone that you just accuse the one who actually caused his death, instead of arresting all five perpetrators.
    • What makes it even more amusing is that none of those involved were working together. By sheer coincidence, all five people (including the man's wife AND his mistress) decided to choose that day to kill the man, and every single attempt happened to occur within the same general timespan.
  • Time Skip: Averted. Much like the first Assassin's Creed, the entirety of Syndicate takes place in one year, 1868. Jack the Ripper takes place 20 years after, and the secret time anomaly simulation takes place in 1916, during the height of World War I, for Lydia Frye's segment.
  • Timed Mission: Several. For instance, Evie has to procure medicine for Florence Nightingale before Clara's health deteriorates.
  • The Unfettered: Maxwell Roth shows the dark side of Assassin ideology as he wants nothing more than to do whatever he wants, when he wants, no matter how violent or crazy it is. He's basically a Victorian Grand Theft Auto character.
  • Thematic Sequel Logo Change: The Assassin sigil is made of metal to represent the game taking place during the Industrial Revolution in 19th Century Britain.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: In the story trailer, Evie identifies the names and roles of all the members under Crawford Starrick's order. But in the actual game, the Assassins don't actually know who their targets are, aside from Ferris, Brewster, and Thorne who are all met in the beginning. The sequences are set up where the player has to discover the identities of their opponents like unraveling a mystery.
  • Unwanted Assistance: Although the twins are split up by their differing objectives, Jacob initially helps Evie on a mission to steal a Templar chest—which ends rather chaotically. By the time Jacob offers to help Evie a second time, she tells him to leave and he complies.
  • Vetinari Job Security: The reason the Templars have such a firm grip on London is they occupy so many vital positions that the city would fall into chaos if they died. Jacob killing them anyway causes one crisis after another and it's only Evie's quick thinking that keeps the city from destroying itself.
  • Victorian London: The main game is set in 1868, with the add-on campaign Jack the Ripper set in 1888.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: Generally downplayed. You can't attack civilians in melee, and while you can shoot them when aiming manually or kill with explosions, the game warns you against this behaviour, and killing too many results in a Non Standard Game Over. However...
    • Reckless carriage driving, especially when fighting off a few enemy vehicles, often results in pedestrian massacre hardly short of Grand Theft Auto proportions. The worst offender is the fact that at least one drop-off point for delivering cargo is surrounded with bystanders, and it's nearly impossible to park the carriage without crushing a few innocents.
    • Crossing Thames via Le Parkour over river traffic usually causes a few boatmen pushed overboard to their deaths. In fact, it's impossible to land in an occupied small boat without its owner tumbling over into water.
    • You can detach carriages from trains and barges from tugs in the Thames for no other reason than to mire up traffic.
    • Shooting horses during pursuits is not only possible, but in fact easier and more efficient than shooting the driver, causing the vehicle to crash immediately.
  • Villain Ball: The Templars seem to suffer from this to a greater degree than usual in the Victorian Era. Despite the fact they have control of the banks, medicine, transportation systems, and other vital infrastructure in London, they engage in things like drug-dealing and robbing the Bank of England. Indeed, if not for their unnecessary criminal ties, it's very likely Evie and Jacob would have no idea where to begin their campaign against the Templars.
  • "The Villain Sucks" Song: There are "murder ballads" in the game's soundtrack singing about the deaths of major assassination targets.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: George Westhouse, Rupert Ferris, and Sir David Brewster, whose roles in the narrative are complete after appearing in only one sequence.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: As typical with AC games, the Templars berate the Assassins with their dying breaths, accusing them of trying to stop progress and destroying society just to pursue their shortsighted feud against the Templars. Jacob and Evie also do this to each other, with Evie accusing Jacob of making conditions in London worse by destroying its pillars of society, while Jacob shoots back that Evie's focus on the Pieces of Eden and general inaction would have led to the Templars further consolidating their power.
  • What the Hell, Player?: The achievement for killing horses is "WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU", all in capital letters.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?: The Bounty Hunt missions task you with capturing the high-value target alive; both the gameplay objective and Frederick Abberline's dialog reinforce this, the latter quipping that the morgue doesn't need any more corpses. No one cares if you murder everyone *else* in the zone where the target is found, though.
  • Wide-Open Sandbox: London is about 30% bigger than Unity's Paris.
  • Working-Class Hero: Jacob Frye sees himself as one — although his accent, which veers towards the RP at times, suggests he's something of a Bourgeois Bohemian. Either that, or it's a case of a Misplaced Accent. Indeed, on their first meeting, Karl Marx notes that while the Fryes have helped people on arriving at London, it's mostly been those who are well provided for and he challenges them to actually help "the working people".
    Jacob Frye: It's a bloody marvelous time to be alive. So many clever blokes dreaming up impossible machines. Salting away more gold than Queen Victoria herself. But none of those shillings ever makes it into the pockets of the poor devils whose blood is spilt building this glorious Empire. The working class. It walks through life unaware of the machine that drives them...Let's wake them up then, shall we?
  • Would Hit a Girl: Jacob's just as fine with shanking and punching female goons as he is with doing the same to male ones. And, he assassinates Pearl Attaway.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Several factory foremen are rather abusive towards the children under their labor and some can be heard attempting to make them work harder by getting one of their friends "missing".
  • World War I: Lydia Frye's portion of Syndicate takes place in 1916 while her parents are operating on the continent, and has her participating the defense of London from zeppelin raids in-between her search for German spies.

     Jack the Ripper 

Jack the Ripper

"I will gut every last one of them if that's the quickest way to you."

In the Autumn of 1888, five prostitutes were murdered in the Whitechapel district of London. Twenty years after Assassin's Creed Syndicate, Evie Frye is tasked by Frederick Abberline to stop the killer Jack the Ripper.

  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: In certain points, when not playing as Evie, you take control of Jack the Ripper himself.
  • Antagonist Title: It's just Jack the Ripper, don't mind him using the trade name.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: During the sequences where you play as Jack the Ripper, there are no optional objectives. This is because his "mission objectives" are presented Through the Eyes of Madness as deranged scrawls that sporadically flash on the screen, rather than being provided on a concise mission list. Adding optional sync targets in that environment would be a Scrappy Mechanic and a half.
  • Artistic License – History: Since absolutely nothing is known about the Ripper, Syndicate's theory on the murderer's identity is about as valid as any other theory put forward over 125 years. That said, there are some liberties:
    • The game portrays the "Dear Boss" letter and most of the Ripper letters to be written and sent by the true culprit. Historical consensus is that with the probable exception of the "From Hell" letter, every letter and note sent to the press was a fake and a hoax. The game also depicts the killer as a hat and mask wearing miscreant which would be unlikely since the nature and circumstances of the murders implied that the killer blended in as a client to get his prostitute victim's trust. However, the game alters the circumstances of the murders by depicting most of the victims as female Assassin initiates who assumed the names of the prostitutes in attempts to stop Jack.
    • Evie Frye, returning to London, expresses surprise at the unrest at Whitechapel when it was well known as the worst slum in England even before the Ripper murders, which merely made it internationally famous. Likewise the game's depiction of Whitechapel is a good deal "cleaner" than how it was at that time.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: The Rooks, previously members of the Blighters, then your gang, now work for Jack and are once again against you. During World War I, they'll have done this again, working for Lydia as if nothing happened. Also qualifies as a Deconstruction of Friendly Neighborhood Gangster.
  • Dark Reprise: Just take a look at the side activities. Instead of brawling in Fight Clubs, you now have to close them down by clearing out all the thugs. The Walk of Shame is a variation of the Bounty Hunt kidnapping where you walk the target through crowds to humiliate him before turning him in. As for the carriage driving aspect, most side activities involving carriages require that you cannot damage the carriage or harm the victim inside. Prostitutes need to be liberated now instead of children, and you can only allow one to be killed. And the enemy gang of this era is no longer the Blighters—it's the Rooks, who are Jack's gang now.
  • Darker and Edgier: Considering that the main game is the lightest in entry, it wouldn't take much to make it dark but the violent killings of Jack the Ripper is a drastic shift. The story is especially bleak because Jack the Ripper is a renegade Assassin, a result of Jacob Frye's mistakes. Likewise the Assassins cover up Jack's murder-spree because they don't want it known that one of their own went nuts and became a Serial Killer, doing something that you would normally associate with the Templars.
  • Decoy Protagonist: The loading screen and Opening Narration when the DLC starts try to depict Jacob as this. Then it turns out you first play as Jack the Ripper who is hunting Jacob, and when Evie takes over, the whereabouts of her brother are unknown.
  • Disposable Sex Worker: Averted. Despite focusing on one of the most notorious serial killers in history who targeted prostitutes and taking place in a time when prostitution was a major issue in a fiercely misogynistic society, the game manages to treat the sex workers in the game as sympathetic and worthwhile people who serve as valuable allies to Evie.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Like the courtesans of the Ezio games and the dancers in Black Flag, prostitutes can be hired to distract enemies and guards.
  • Face–Heel Turn: For all the time and money you spent on strengthening the Rooks up, they are now completely on Jack's side doing just about the same thing the Blighters were 20 years ago. Though Jack has killed off all the Rooks loyal to Jacob, and keeps the rest in line via threats or "free jam" (prostitutes).
  • Friendly Neighborhood Gangster: Subverted. It turns out recruiting a massive street gang from ex-Blighters and running them according to friendly local gangster ideals doesn't exactly work. They were as happy to work for the Ripper as they were for Jacob/Evie, and later Lydia as well; they can switch sides whenever it suits them, among other things.
  • Freudian Excuse: Jack himself. A child traumatized by the early death of a parent who then joined the Assassins to get revenge on those that did it is the backstory of many previous assassins, but Jack is a far more likely result of what would happen if you took a traumatized, vengeful person, taught them to kill, and told them "everything is permitted": a violent, unhinged Serial Killer.
  • Genre Shift: Whenever the player takes control of Jack the Ripper, the tone of the game changes more to that of a horror/slasher movie.
  • Graying Morality: Perhaps the most dramatic example in the series, especially considering it comes after the most lighthearted entry. The Assassins get into some seriously shady business, including the induction of someone far too mentally unstable to handle the Creed and thus being directly responsible for the creation of Jack the Ripper. Then covering up his identity to protect their own secrets.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: The crime scene of Mary Kelly's murder is not as grisly as it really was, which is probably a good thing. Evie's reaction is all you need to understand the horror of the situation.
  • Happy Ending Override: The ending to the base game implied with Starrick gone and the Frye twins on top and friends with the Queen that things would get better for the people of London. Twenty years later there's no sign of improvement, especially for women, there's a psychotic masked killer running around, and the Assassins cannot blame the Templars.
  • Historical Domain Character: The supposed Jack the Ripper and Chief Inspector Frederick Abberline.
  • I Will Find You: Evie's main objective is to find the Ripper and her missing brother.
  • It's Personal: Compared to the Templars who dominated London, Jack is Jacob and Evie's own personal menace, and both understand the need to silence the Ripper and his secrets.
  • Kung Fu-Proof Mook: Brutes are immune to fear and can calm down feared enemies.
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: Evie starts the game at Level 10 (the base game's max), with Lv 7 brass knuckles, a Lv 7 revolver, and a Lv 1 Assassin Gauntlet.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Bishop's final message is that the Assassins are going dark. Incidentally, this DLC was one of the last major releases before the hiatus between 2016 and 2017's Origins.
  • Non-Lethal Warfare: Evie's fighting techniques are primarily not to kill, but to intimidate and frighten others into running away. She even performs non-lethal assassinations, and open combat is no longer fatal; the only actions that will kill an opponent without requiring a post-collapse finisher are throwing knives, guns, and explosives.
  • Older Hero vs. Younger Villain: Evie is 41 years old while the Ripper is in his mid-20s.
  • Rule of Cool: The sequences where you play as Jack the Ripper are either this or Rule of Scary. From a story standpoint, this should be impossible, given that either genetic material or a descendant conceived after the fact is necessary to access genetic memories, and the DLC ends with Jack dead (and no reason to believe he was partaking in any... pleasures that would leave lineage). However, playing as a rogue Assassin turned historical serial killer is either mind-blowingly awesome or pants-wettingly terrifying (or both), so it slides.
  • Scare Chord: A loud indicator when the loading screen for the next memory shifts to Jack the Ripper.
  • The Scream: There's a lot of screaming in this game, from abducted prostitutes you have to rescue from carriages to any victim frightened by fear bombs, spikes, and brutal takedowns. Finally, Jack himself has a horrifying scream that induces terror in his victims.
  • Sequel Hook: After collecting all the Helix Glitches, Bishop orders all Assassin communication to go dark until they find Alvaro Gramatica and/or his laboratory.
  • Shoo Out the Clowns: The database entries entirely lack Shaun's sarcastic commentary, adding to the grim nature of the DLC.
  • Stock Unsolved Mysteries: Probably the greatest of them all, Jack the Ripper. However, unlike most Ripper stories which posits some famous figure or prominent gentleman as the murderer, Syndicate portrays the Ripper as a rogue Assassin initiate called Jack who went nuts, and we never quite see who is underneath the mask.
  • The Sociopath: Jack is a serial killer. Kinda comes with the territory.
  • Terror Hero: The DLC introduces fear as a mechanic, using tools and abilities such as hallucinogenics, spikes and No Holds Barred Beatdowns to terrify enemies into running away.
  • Through the Eyes of Madness: When playing as Jack, the visuals and sound will occasionally distort, and little notices like "Hunt Them Down", "Kill", and "TRAITOR!" will flash. Presumably that's just how his insanity affects his perception of the world.
  • The Unreveal:
    • Jack is never unmasked. All we know is that he's a former Assassin who spent time in an asylum.
    • One of the Glitch messages mentions Rebecca, and how she wasn't looking so good after the London job, but no update is given on her status.
  • Time Skip: It's set 20 years after the main game and Evie Frye and Frederick Abberline have visibly aged in the interim.
  • You Monster!: Evie calls Jack this after seeing Mary Kelly's body.


Video Example(s):


Jacob and Evie Frye

The playable protagonists of the historical portion of the game, fraternal twins and members of the British Assassin Brotherhood. Their mother passed away in childbirth and their father trained them in becoming Assassins. After the passing of their father, the Frye twins travel to London to free it from Templar control.

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