Imagine a world where everything that happened was secretly controlled by a large organization of people. Every day you are constantly recorded and monitored. Everything that you do is secretly planned out in advance, yet you think that everything you’re doing is by your own free will. Everyone including your family, your friends, and the government are all controlled by this organization, and you can’t even tell. While you blithely and involuntarily follow the path planned out for you, another organization is secretly and quietly trying to put a stop to the evil plans of the organization that wants to control your every move. This is the plotline of a very popular videogame known as Assassin’s Creed. Assassin’s Creed is a great game that has influenced and challenged people’s view on government and democracy. The game Assassin’s Creed influences people’s minds by making them think more outside the box, and by aiding there curiosity of conspiracy theories.
Assassin’s Creed take places in 2012, following the life of Desmond Miles, a bartender who is a descendant of several Assassins. Although Desmond was raised as an Assassin, he fled his nomadic family to seek out a more common lifestyle. While enjoying his freedom he is kidnapped by an evil company known as Abstergo Industries, the modern-day face of the Knights Templar who are aware of Desmond’s ancestry. Templars want to control everyone, and they believe in absolute order similar to totalitarianism. Desmond is forced to use a device known as an “Animus” which allows him to experience his assassin ancestral memories. Abstergo is seeking to discover the location of several artifacts, known as “Pieces of Eden,” in order to obtain great power and control mankind and alter its fate, bringing humanity into a single unified group. Later Desmond escapes Abstergo due to the help of some modern-day Assassins who he later ends up working with.
Desmond uses their version of the Animus (Animus 2.0) to continue to re-live the memories of his ancestors and discover the locations of the Pieces of Eden before Abstergo can do so. Desmond relives the events of his Assassin ancestors who live in worlds full of chaos, injustice, and indirect captivity. Doesn’t this seem similar to the way the world is today? Several countries have yet to establish a government system where people have a say in what they want the government to do for them. There are even more countries that have yet to abolish their governing laws on slavery. Our own government is hiding secrets from us (trying to protect us), yet causing more accidents and tragedies that could be avoided if only we had access to their classified information. Assassin’s Creed is a completely made up story, but it has a lot of interesting and intuitive facts to its plot. In fact, the majority of it seems plausible, and many others within my age group seem to think the same after playing this game.
Along with the several games that my peers play that can relate to Assassin’s Creed, there are also several books that are similar. Assassin’s Creed got its inspiration from the novel Alamut written by a Slovenian writer Vladimir Bartol, which is what inspired most of the first game’s plot. Another story very similar to the plotline of Assassin’s Creed is The Traveler written by John Twelve Hawks. The book takes place in the future and lays out a world where the power lies not with people or governments, but in the hands of a secret organization who call themselves “the Brethren.” Their enemies refer to them as “the Tabula”. The Tabula are an ancient secret society who thinks that control and stability are an absolute necessity, similar to extreme Utilitarianism. The Tabula gets the majority of their influence from the ideas of philosopher Jeremy Bentham. The Tabula wish to enforce a Virtual Panopticon which is a society where all individuals become accustomed to being watched and monitored and they act at all times as if they are being observed; making them more afraid to do immoral things.
The Tabula’s sole objective is to kill all Travelers. Travelers are people with the special ability to “cross-over”, which is often inherited from an ancestor. Crossing-over can be defined as your spirit leaving your body and going off to another realm, and then returning. Upon this return, most Travelers would have experienced a different perspective of our world. Many Travelers become religious prophets, or enemies of the Tabula who have hunted them almost to extinction. Harlequins are a warrior group sworn to defend the Travelers from the Tabula. The Harlequins are opposed to the Tabula, and the two sides spent centuries fighting over control and power which allowed the Tabula to gain control and almost completely exterminate the Travelers and Harlequins.
Despite the nobility and self-sacrifice of their cause, the Harlequins are cold and cruel figures who dedicate their lives to fighting and killing without remorse or hesitation. Sound familiar? Due to its graphic, plausible, and suspenseful storyline, Assassins Creed has become a big hit to gamers, historians, and conspiracy theorist alike; causing them to have a current series of five games in all, selling millions of copies worldwide. The series has been a big success and has won a number of awards. All of the Assassin’s Creeds make an adolescent see the world they live in differently. I wouldn’t even have considered governmental control, Templars & Tabula, or Assassins & Harlequins as being realistic, but now I’m starting to have second thoughts (I also know of several friends in the same state as me). Reading books similar to The Traveler and playing videogames similar to Assassin’s Creed makes one think a little more outside the box and take into consideration other conspiracy theories and stories.
Courtney from Study Moose
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