The Evidence For Assassin’s Creed III Being Set In America, Or China, Or India

The Evidence For Assassin’s Creed III Being Set In America, Or China, Or India

Where will the next Assassin’s Creed take place? When will it take place? You could guess off a survey, or you could consider the theories of Kotaku‘s biggest AC fans, one of whom claims to have seen Assassin’s Creed III in action.

You will find below a bunch of theories our readers have made about the new game. Some were offered in the comments section of a story I did about the ending of the game. A few came through in email, including one from a person who says they were shown a portion of ACIII by Ubisoft. I could not verify that person’s account, so take it with as many grains of salt as you need.

Prepare for spoilers, of course…

For the record, once I finished the game, my best guess was that we’d spend some of our time as the new 16th-century Chinese assassin Shao Jun who was introduced in the new Assassin’s Creed Embers short film (and who was prominently featured in the series’ recently-issued encyclopedia). I also guessed that we’d spend some of the new game in the city of the First civilisation, which we get a glimpse of in the end of this month’s Assassin’s Creed: Revelations

Here are the best guesses I got from readers:

  • Reader Andrew Bettner: “Im 95 per cent sure that they are going back to Desmond’s childhood home.”
  • Reader editor26: “Why upstate New York and not… Montreal? Might your target be off a few hundred miles That’s the base of Ubisoft’s production of the game, one of the oldest cities in North America, and pretty much the seat of the European new world until the 18th century. If I’m a European and I’ve got some amazing artifacts I want to hide in the 1500s, I’d sure as hell head there.
  • Reader mortpetit: it’ll probably never happen, but i gotta say early that early 1800s India would be awesome. You’ve got a bunch of different factions like the Mughals, Sikhs, Marathas, and East India Company, crazy weapons, beautiful landscapes and cities, and diverse, rich cultures would combine to create an environment without equal.”
  • Reader Blackdawn451: ” I am 80 per cent sure that it will take place during the French Revolution. Look up the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen and watch [the Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood ending again.”
  • Reader Rennie_B: “There is one crucial element you may have forgotten in your attempt to figure out next year. In Brotherhood once you solved the Subject 16 puzzles you met a “ghostly image” of Subject 16 in the Animus. He tells Desmond to find Eve, or as it’s written in the encyclopedia “Cryptic as ever, Subject 16 alluded to the necessity of finding a woman called Eve.” And also in the Encyclopedia, (if it wasn’t common knowledge) it is reminded to us that Subject 16 was in fact a descendant of Adam, hence the video we were able to see when solving his puzzles from ACII. (Otherwise known as “The Truth”)

    “Of course Shao Jun isn’t Desmond’s relative in any way. Desmond and his line have been the conduits, the messengers. The one that will be the connective line between Adam and Eve.

    “She is a descendant of EVE. She must be.

    “So now, Desmond and his team need to find her most current relative and get her into the Animus, therefore leading to my ultimate theory: AC3 will be a FEMALE protagonist, set in China and we’ll get some time with Shao Jun. Because watching “Embers”? There was clearly some time and love put into not only the art style of all the opponents from China, but the story told both through the mini cinema AND the encyclopedia are the perfect set up for 3. Oh and the gameplay jump? Could be so lovely.

    “At least that’s my two cents after beating the game/watching “Embers” and reading through most of the Encyclopedia ^_^;”

  • Reader armfish: “Old-old school Japan. Ninjas.”
  • Reader dropsplah: “Assassin’s Creed III will be where we discover that all these games have actually been the memories of a protagonist we haven’t even met yet. Somewhere in the far-flung future, our new main character is sitting in The Animus 5.0 reliving Desmond’s life as he relives Ezio’s and Altair’s. ” An imaginative reader who emailed me: “We could play as Altair’s son in Alexandria, Egypt. There’s supposedly a great library under one of the pyramids there. This would be a great setting for the franchise. A most outlandish theory would be Desmond has now got Subject 16’s memory’s. He said in a cutscene that our memories are the sum of a person… something along those lines. He also said they could share his body for awhile! When he grabbed him at the end, when the island was in deletion, he could have somehow transferred his ancestor’s memories to him, opening up a whole new story arc!”
  • A guy who emailed me and said he saw Assassin’s Creed III in action several months ago, but who I couldn’t confirm was legit: (I’m paraphrasing what he told me.) The game is in America, during the Revolutionary War, starring a half-American/half-Native American assassin who meets George Washington and builds up a homebase farm of some sort. He mentioned a mission involving tracking redcoats on a frozen lake (the ice could be weakened so they fell through) and a level involving three-mast ships in grand combat. [Note from Stephen: Would be cool if it was true, no?]
  • And, finally, another reader who emailed me and went with “American Revolution” — or is that “Civil War”? — based on some blurry evidence: “I believe that the next game (Assassin’s Creed 3) will be set in America during the Revolution. The symbols mentioned at the end of Brotherhood came together in more then one place but America was one of them. I imagined that they could build it much like ACII was by using New York, Boston and Philly in place of Venice, Florence and Tuscany. When the Da Vinci DLC dropped and the location was in New York I almost shit cause I would love to see an assassin styled after a Paul Revere kinda look. Anyway while I was shopping on Ubisoft for my Encyclopedias I watched the making of documentary and was astounded to see a piece of art in the background of a shot while they were interviewing an artist for the book [Note from Stephen: Actually, it’s Richared Farrese, a writer/editor on the book and that could just be some pretty fan art that someone sent in… or an excellent tease. Who knows!].
    “I have sent along the shot which is not of a high quality but you can see it shows what appears to be a Revolutionary era Assassin and some soldiers holding what looks like the American Flag. You can also still see this video on the site. I will look up the address and send it your way. Let me know what you think.” [Another note from Stephen: It might be a Civil War uniform, actually. And that image is behind multiple interviewees, so it’s probably something they wanted us to see. Watch it yourself.]

Which theory do you like the most, Assassin’s Creed fans?


  • It’s looking more and more like it’s gonna be set during the American Civil War, which is kind of disappointing. There much more interesting settings… China or Egypt sound awesome.

    That said, it is telling that they’ve set up so much time establishing the Chinese assassins if they’re not going to do anything with it… but with so many people claiming they know that it’s the American Civil War, and the picture in the background of the interview… hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

    • Whoa, I need to proofread my comments.

      *That said, it is strange that they’d spend so much time settting up the Chinese assassins if they’re not gonna do anything with it.

    • I agree. I really hope they dont go with the American Civil War. I really will be quite disappointed if they go that way.

      • Why? The other ways are more of the same. This way you have complete new situations. Farmsteads, native americans, forests, flintlock and matchlock rifles and pistols as standard weapons, bayonettes… it opens up a whole new world of weaponry and combat. The other ways are just more simple hand to hand weaponry and badguys. Versing redcoats would be insanely good, especially if you get involved in tallship combat, leaping from ship to ship midcombat!!!

  • As long as it’s in the 17th/18th/19th century I’ll be content but I’d love it if it was in the French Revolution. That would be absolutely awesome. There’s so many sleazy dudes back there who would make perfect Templars.

    • The French Revolution is what I am hoping for. Its a perfect setting. I can’t really connect all that much with the American revolution or civil war either.

      • The American Revolutionary Wars (1775-1783) preceded the French Revolution (1789-1799). The french were heavily involved in the former, and the ruined french economy was a huge factor in the latter. So it seems likely, given that the Ezio story is drawn out over such a long an interesting period, that AC3 and future games might be built over this period.

        Prior to these events were the ‘Seven Years War’ fought between Britain and the French (with their Native American ‘allies’), a la ‘The Last of the Mohicans’ novel, set in 1757. Maybe a little too early in date, but it would be good if there were some elements from this landscape thrown in there too.

  • Playing as a female assassin in China sounds cool. I hope it’s not set during the American Revolution or American Civil War. I know the Americans would probably love that but I’ve always found them (the wars) to be rather boring.

  • I so hope it’s not set in China. There’s already so many games set in this period, or in Japan. And they all look the same, boring as hell. It’s been done

  • I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the next game has a great deal of firearms. They’ve slowly been introducing us to the idea in previous games. That said, at least I have a year before I have to decide whether to buy it or not 🙂

  • Can pretty much bet my bottom dollar it with be American Revolution. Then the follow up games in the AC3 Trilogy will be French Revolution and possibly Napoleon. All events could fit within the span of a characters life or at least a character and his son/daughter which Desmond would also have access to.

  • I first thought that ACIII would be us playing as a portagonist who has been reliving Desmond’s memories too, but that would be crap. I think Desmond is the real protagonist and the person controlling Desmond is the player – which is obvious, because hey, you sit down and play Assassin’s Creed with your Xbox/PS3/PC, right?

    But I think Ubisoft will actually reference this directly and break the 4th wall. Don’t tell me none of you got a little chill at the end of AC2 when the alien chick looks past Ezio into the “camera”. A few seconds later it’s revealed she’s talking to Desmond while poor Ezio is like “UH HELLO, I’M RIGHT HERE”, but come on. That was Ubi deliberately messing with us and possibly dropping hints about our role in the game, as more than just the player.

    As for the setting? Yeah, China or whatever. Sounds fine.

    • That fourth wall breaking was hands down my favourite part of any AC game to date.

      Genuine chills when she mentioned Desmond.

      • Same here. Similar feeling to MGS2, running about el-bollocko as Raiden with all that freaky stuff going on. I wanted to turn off my PS2 and hide.

  • I dont think we’ll be seeing any desendents of Desmond mainly cause the games climax is centered around the whole 2012 end of the world fluff. How ever I’d love to see a female protagonist for the series and she’d better be wearing 47 layers of clothing and not be just eye candy.

  • I can see myself getting psyched for some time in China as well as the American/French Revolutions… but for some reason the ‘Civil War’ one doesn’t sound as interesting. Very few pieces of fiction/media really get the Civil War anywhere close to ‘right’ and they usually all come out pretty boring 😛

  • We can’t really tell where the next AC will be because ubisoft is unpredictable and likes to throw us off especially in the AC series. Although, i have to admit that the French Revolution would be awesome, snow, buildings close together that you can climb up and the reign of terror. Russian Empire era would also be really fun; St. Petersburg and all that.

  • I think that now Desmond will have to fight the assassin’s who were been trained in mutiplyaer, and in the last “movie” send to kill, William Miles.

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