Saturday, November 17, 2012

Diary of an Assassin – Fifth Entry

At the end of Assassin’s Creed, Altair is a strong, stoic, idealist. He is the type of person who would make a great teacher. He was born into the assassin’s guild, and it’s surrounded him his entire life.

Ezio, on the other hand, is a charming, funny, and energetic person. Loyal to the core, he’s someone who you’d want to have as a childhood friend. If you were in trouble, he’d always have your back.

As I trek through Assassin’s Creed: Revelations, and having just recently finished the first Altair memory, I finally agree with the consensus that Ezio is the better character of series. That’s not to say Altair isn’t an interesting character, but Ezio is more relatable, likeable, and shows more emotion, giving players a reason to care.

I say finally agree because, having an outside perspective from not playing the series at the time, it seemed like Altair was swept under the rug. To me, it was odd Ubisoft would drop Altair as a character so quickly after only one game. Through some misguided and unfounded loyalty, it felt like a betrayal to a character they established and then left out to dry. However, writing these diary entries and playing through the series back to back shows how wrong I was not only in character development, but also in narrative.

While he may not have been the main playable character, Altair didn’t leave the series at all. In fact, since the first game Altair has become almost legend in games’ narrative. In Assassin’s Creed 2, Mario, Ezio’s uncle, tells him of Altair’s armor, and how only someone more powerful than he could claim it. The entire plot of Assassin’s Creed: Revelations revolves the secrets inside Altair’s vault.

Returning to play and learn more as Altair feels a bit like coming full circle. I started the series with him, and now I finally get to see the conclusion of both his and Ezio’s story.

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