Ubisoft won't be presenting a white-washed version of America or their revolution in Assassin's Creed 3. Instead, they plan to take a realistic look at the setting, including one of the ugliest parts of American history: slavery.
"It’s something we’ve been very aware of," lead writer Matt Turner told OPM UK. "Everybody had slaves at that point; the first groups who rallied around emancipation didn’t come around until 1787 – largely driven by Benjamin Franklin funnily enough. That was very much after our game and slavery was maintained in culture."
Added Turner: "We feel that kind of a subject deserves a certain amount attention because it’s so serious and it needs to be treated with utmost respect. We’re definitely not going to shy away from it in terms of not showing it."
This is, honestly, a relief to me. I didn't notice a single slave in any of the AC3 screenshots released thus far. Granted, most of shots to date have focused on snowy wilderness but still, I was nervous. Historical accuracy isn't usually a top priority for game developers.
The protagonist, Connor, is said to be half-Native American. I assume that the game delves into the conflicts between settlers and Native American tribes as well. Maybe Connor's tribe is wiped out in the beginning of the game? Ubisoft developed the game with assistance from a Native American consultant so it seems they're taking that cultural perspective seriously, too.
As an American, I'm really thrilled to be able to experience the Revolutionary era through a video game. I can't think of a time period I'd be more excited to see in a Creed game. That being said, I think the experience would've been cheapened if Ubisoft had decided to gloss over the unfortunate parts of our history. I'm glad they won't be pulling any punches.