A quick glance at the calendar indicated that today, Feb. 22, is George Washington's birthday. You know, the first President of the United States of America? One half of the reason we have a Presidents' Day weekend? Yeah, that guy. But if you think about it, a couple different decisions here and there we might not be celebrating him at all, or if so, at least in a different way.
During the American Revolutionary War, Washington was an integral part of our victory, serving as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army. Years later, he oversaw the drafting of the Constitution, of which the foundation for our government was established, and was then elected unanimously the first President. We all know this, thanks to the stellar education system we have in this great country, right?
Well, what if Washington had a little bit of corruption in his blood, and the newly-discovered power that he was given over and over again just fed his growing ego? What if he took the country by the throat, and instead of establishing the foundation for a free country rooted in democracy, he instead opted for a monarchy, one in which he would be king of the newly-separated territory and rule over the land as a tyrant, ruthless in his ways and unforgiving in his conquest of all those who opposed.
Interesting to think about, isn't it? Well, apparently the find folks over at Ubisoft thought so to, thus explaining the three-part DLC to their smash hit Assassin's Creed 3. With AC3 taking place in Colonial America, and George Washington himself being a NPC character in the game, the opportunity to explore this dark, twisted alternate reality all but created itself. When is the last time you saw Washington in a game, and how often do you see this time period being revisited in future games? The opportunity to do this was now, and Ubisoft obliged. I present to you ... Assassin's Creed 3: The Tyranny of King Washington.
When I first heard about this DLC, I couldn't have been more excited, which is odd for me because I'm usually not a DLC kind of guy. But this struck me as different, as it would still be played in AC3 (a game I LOVED, by the way), but telling a different story and one in which had nothing to do with anything I had already done in the main game. Basically, a stand-alone separate story based in the main game's universe. Rockstar did this wonderfully with Red Dead Redemption's Undead Nightmare, so this concept isn't new, but also isn't overplayed yet either. For 10 bucks a pop you can get each one of the three chapters of this story, with the first one being released a couple days ago and the next two coming over the next couple of months.
The first one, which I played tonight, is called "The Infamy," and it sets up the story that is sure to take many twists and turns over the final two episodes. You start the game off as Connor, the assassin you played as most of the main game, but there is something different. You aren't "Connor," but rather still using your Native American given name, and your mother is still alive. You aren't the assassin you trained for years to become, but instead just a warrior. You are dazed and confused, but you quickly find out that your mom being alive isn't the only crazy thing going on. Apparently, George Washington, in which you helped during the main story, is now sending his men out into the frontier, slaughtering innocent people who oppose his monarchy. When he is first reference as "King Washington," you head almost explodes as you try to understand. You seem to still have the memories of what you went through in the main campaign, but it's not fully explained how or why that is, hopefully saving it for a big reveal down the road.
I don't want to spoil any more than that, but I will say the first episode was about 2 hours of game play with a lot of really cool cinematic cut scenes, of course. I'm looking forward to exploring this story to the end. I'm glad I have a reason to go back and play some more of this game, as I had so much fun with it, but eventually, got burnt out of the grinding afterwards for some trophies I will never get. But a new, fresh start to a landscape that I spend dozens of hours in is something I can get behind.
Once again, happy birthday, George. Or should I call you King, instead?