Home Editorial Balance An open letter to the fervent gun control advocates of Assassin’s Creed...

Dear Intellectual Opponents,

You seem to be under the impression that I am promoting the Hidden Gun to people because I believe it to be in each individual’s interest. That I am inadvertently causing what few fans I have to undermine the fun of Assassinate. I assure you this is most certainly not the case.

I encourage people to use Hidden Gun precisely because it ruins Assassinate. Its very interaction with Assassinate demonstrates the absurdity of the game mode’s principles.

In all other game modes, Hidden Gun is balanced for several reasons.

  • It cannot be used as defense.
  • The opportunity of using it is not worth the loss of discretion bonus.
  • The unlikeliness of earning Execution bonuses with it lowers its value.

This all makes sense in game modes where the discretion meter serves a purpose.

In Assassinate, no such balance exists. Ubisoft’s “pursuer exposed” mechanic was so poorly thought out that they essentially created a separate game that operates on none of the principles of the other game modes. Perhaps this was intentional; perhaps not. Regardless, such a decision lends itself to powerful, albeit counter-intuitive, tactics. Many have mastered them, and I have been repeatedly impressed by the videos of players who have accumulated a great deal of technical skill over the course of thousands of matches.

However, many of these players seem to believe I should feel a great dishonor in using the Hidden Gun because it is the cheapest, lamest skill in the game. Or because promoting its use to other players will hurt Assassin’s Creed multiplayer.

I suppose the jig, as they say, is up.

You see, in my ideal world everyone would use the Hidden Gun to the point at which Assassinate was so unfun that Ubisoft would have no choice but to remove the “pursuer exposed” mechanic from Assassin’s Creed 3. Consider this all an elaborate a form of protest, if you will.

Furthermore, I contest the common assertion that the game is about getting points (and therefore the Hidden Gun is a bad skill). This is a matter of opinion, but the motivation of others does not particularly interest me.

I personally play for two reasons. Primarily, to end each round in first place (as I almost always do). And secondarily, to make other players lose.

I hope you understand I don’t make a habit of gunning down random, gullible players (at least I’d prefer not to). I check the in-game scoreboard regularly, stalk the characters doing the best, and shoot them as soon as they’ve set up what I’m sure is a 1000 point kill.

While other players tire of following a single target for no payoff, I find there are great rewards in robbing the entitled of their investments. Surely, Robin Hood was similarly motivated. And it comes of no surprise to me that these players will opt out of rematches as soon as it becomes apparent to them that I have no interest in letting them dominate terrible players without consequence. Very well; more points for me.

Do I take a sick, twisted satisfaction in doing this? In a word, yes.

In two words, very yes.

Moreover, I do it to remind these players that for every rock, there is a paper. Alternatively: there is always something higher on the food chain.

A doormouse may feel it is “cheap” that a hawk can fly, but the feelings of the doormouse have no value in a hunter-prey equation. The hawk is a flying bastard because God made him that way. God is responsible for making the equation so unbalanced. And as far as Assassinate goes, Ubisoft is our god. A flawed god whose creation should be ridiculed by his very subjects, one bullet at a time.

But ultimately, this isn’t nearly as important as the truths of creation or any of that. It’s about a  random blogger’s stance on a video game strategy. A self-absorbed man on the internet who espouses a strategy you dislike… in a game that will be replaced by its successor come 2013. Nothing of grave importance or long term consequence is at stake; nothing of value is lost in its dissection. Does this truly merit such vitriol?

Of course not. Not even this diatribe itself is warranted; it serves only to stoke my literary ego. If it ends up having value beyond that, I would be most delighted.

As for those who feel there is only one method of playing Assassin’s Creed: I counter, “Nothing is true.”

To those who feel none should adopt a tactic they find dishonorable: I say, “Everything is permitted.”

And to those who think they have can keep employing single-minded strategies with impunity: I say, “Requiescat in pace.

Your Humble Antagonist,


42 replies to this post
  1. Nice ending! with the nothing is true tagline, that was extremely creative and efficient, brings in clarity and strength to the argument by using their own line. (sorry i do debate)

  2. Awesome article WiNG! I especially agree with that the game is not only about getting points.
    I also enjoy other challenges such as trying very hard to stay alive, or getting on the podium with least amount of kills, focusing on quality.
    I dont like assassinate at all as there is no real stealth in it compared to other modes.

  3. I totally agree and it’s a little fun win you hear someone screaming into the mic after shooting them down.

    PS- “Requiescat in pace” are my favorite words from Assassins Creed.

  4. I use the Hidden Gun for mainly two scenarios: 1) taking out a target which would otherwise require a chase or a climb, including climbers and runaways, and 2) taking out a target which is on the roof and refuses to come down. Problem is, Assassinate tends to have a lot of those two, and in some maps in Deathmatch (Venice and Rome are the two main offenders, especially Rome) too.

    In any case, proud gunner, reporting in.

    • Me as well. I even have the gun in my Attack Manhunt build.
      Most of the time you have 3 complete idiots by your side and the first attack is a stun fest.
      I use templar vision and kill the first guy (usually if I can tell whi it is, the highest in prestige) with the gun to stop them from getting the 50 Hidden Bonus!
      Then I line up my focus aerial kill while the others go getting themselves stunned.
      That way, I reduce the enemie’s stunning potential and at least 1 of my team get’s a decent score.

    • Same here! I use the gun primarily to knock down “roof campers” and “ledge monkeys” (as I like to call them), and chasers (usually artifact thieves). I don’t play too much Assassinate anyway, so those are the usual scenarios.

  5. I kind of spammed the Hidden Gun in Assassinate when you suggested it, then I played Rainin. After he destroyed me he told me to opt for Mute instead because of the bad kills I was getting. I took that in a slightly different direction. I took it as, use the Hidden Gun when the target is running and that kill will get you 1050 points, Streak Bonus, Greater Variety, Kill, Execution. Now I never go for less than 400 point Gun Kills or Roofers. I also have 2 Assassinate sets since they are good multi-taskers.

    • I still recommend another ability instead. ;) Any kill can be big with variety and streak bonus’s. Also you don’t need the gun bonus’s for variety i get extreme variety almost every game without using the gun at all.

  6. Wingspantt, your tactic didn’t work on me and i beat you 3 games in a row when we played. Just saying… you might find enjoyment out of ruining others points, but i find enjoyment in beating people fair and square. Sure you might say “the gun is in the game therefore it is fair” or “ubisoft set up this mode wrong”. Wingspantt why don’t you just not play assassinate if you dislike the mechanics and the strategy people use to score big? You’re basically admitting that our strat is better for scoring points, which is the object of the game if you want to win, level up faster, and most importantly improve your game. I know your tactics don’t forget i did play against you, i know it was you that shot my grab kill on venice, and i know it was you that griefed me several other times in those games. But i still beat you every time, if im wrong please correct me.

    • I honestly don’t remember. It’s probably true. Keep in mind, however, that you didn’t beat “me.” You beat “me and 6 other players.” And until my mind control beam is complete, I cannot prevent them from doing themselves in.

      • I can’t control the 6 other players either, and winning in assassinate public lobbies is having the most points..What would you rather me do? only go after you? You play like a complete troll, trying to kill you is just annoying, and it’s a waste of my time. I have better things to do then play around with you and your gun. If you’d ever like to try a 1v1 without the gun let me know. I’ll show you that good assassinate players are about more then just luring noobs into brutal escapes.

      • I’m game though I don’t understand why you want to ban the gun. If it’s so bad, I’m sure I can’t win with it.

        Also, on my video comments you asked me why I encourage people to use the gun. I think it is fairly obvious the reason is that my videos are the only way I can influence how other players play.

        Unfortunately I think you will find 1v1 Assassinate will come down to whoever gets the lead earliest will win. Some other player challenged me to a 1v1… I got the first kill then just ran from him for 9 minutes. Easiest 200 point win ever.

      • Yeah, in 1v1 the gun is overpowered, and that is why i would ban it. Oh, and you wouldn’t be able to run from me for 9 mins, but that isn’t a bad strat. If the gun wasn’t banned in a 1v1, i’d use it because 1v1 is vastly differen’t then a full lobby. You know that, silly wingspantt. ;)

      • Also, i have never said you’re a bad player. I actually think you’re quite good and obviously very intelligent. I just don’t think you realize that the gun is not going to grab a win in a lobby full of good players. 1v1’s are stupid, how about i just invite you into a lobby with me and my friends? You can use your gun and see how it does against a lobby of some of the best assassinate players on xbox360. It’ll just be for fun, and of course we will not be teaming up on you or anything childish like that. Just some assassinate games for fun, and hopefully my point will be proven that the gun just doesn’t cut it against really good people. :)

    • ” scoring points, which is the object of the game ”
      This isn’t true. The goal of the game is to get more points than second place. If you’re in a spot where you can go for a kill, or stun the guy who’s score is within 500 points of yours. Then the right course of action is to stun.

      I used to agree with you on the hidden gun. A Solid player with a gun can still beat 90% of the player base. You on the other hand are one of the BEST players that post their game play. I don’t think anyone is surprised that you got more points.

  7. I’m not aiming for an ego boost by beating you or anything, but honestly you offend me and every other good assassinate player that doesn’t use the gun by saying our tactics are cheap. Sure we may lure noobs that chase us into brutal escapes, because its the BEST STRATEGY FOR POINTS. It’s quite differen’t in a lobby full of good players because are you obviously know they won’t fall for that, but you CAN still land stuns on good players with skill and timing. Therefore mute and smoke is still far superior to your gun, in all situations and in all lobbies. Anyways, play how you want man, i really like your commentaries, your articles, and everything else you do. I think the only thing we can’t seem to agree upon is your strategy in assassinate. And I suspect we never will. I’m going to leave it at this because i got what i wanted to say out. Believe me it’s not just me that is annoyed by your stance on the hidden gun. I don’t care if people use it i just don’t want people to get the idea that it’s in any way better then several other abilities. Use the gun all you want, anyone that reads this.. if its fun for you then great. If you find enjoyment in ruining others scores, that’s cool..whatever floats your boat. But if you want to score big, and if you’d like to learn how to play better without troll tactics i’d be glad to help.

    • Life is unfair. Trash-talking to the contrary won’t make you a better player. There is not good or bad, only the victor, and the metagame will determine that victor.


      • Well i outscore him despite his tactics.. im not trash talking. And the best metagame is smoke/mute or smoke/poison for assassinate. Wingspantt just doesn’t like some of the mechanics so he chooses to use the gun to prove a point.

      • You won’t outscore him in every game/match. With that being said, there is no concrete strategy for winning. Smoke and mute/poison is merely a more advantageous method; not a surefire win. You may dislike the gun, but every weapon can be used effectively in the hands of the knowledgeable. Wingspantt chooses the gun because it matches his play style. I’m not infallible and neither are you. So, let’s just get back to our regularly scheduled murdering sessions.

  8. Lol, agreed. I never claimed to win every match. The most important thing isn’t what abilities you use anyway. :)

    • Personally, I switch the hell up in almost every match.
      I usually bring the gun for the first and kill some roof runners or someone who runs around aimlessly to pick up chases.
      In any case I try to get at least one of the bonuses.

      A little time later, when people are afraid I’ll gun them down, I switch to mute/Smoke, Smoke/Poison or Smoke/Knifes and switch those up too.

      If at any point people start climbing again the gun’s back in action. After using the gun too often any half-decent player will recognize your persona and stay the fuck on the ground

  9. I like hidden guns, they make me feel better than the rest of the lobby. If I see someone running around in high profile trying to lure a stun, I shoot the bitch. It might not give me the most points, it might not get me the win, but goddamn it feels awesome. Makes me feel like I’m judging them, like a god passing judgment to the insignificant mortals for their transgression. Simply…. orgasmic…

    • Same here. Although after shooting someone who has been running around aimlessly on the roof (this actually happens a LOT in Deathmatch when you’re playing a lobby of newcomers, which is probably one reason I love Souk so much. No roofs!), I take a second to taunt their lifeless corpse. Sure, it places me in harm’s way. Is it trollish? Probably. But damn goes it feel GOOD. Although in all likelihood, the player I just shot is going to run right back up to the roof once he respawns. Rinse and repeat.

  10. i must agree with crylic, its so much more rewarding to shoot the guy that hasnt left the roofs all game then to kill a civilian everytime he comes up as your target.

  11. You have suddenly jumped about 50 points on my respect meter, Wing, with the use of that phrase. And you were pretty damn high up there. Nihil Versus. Omnia Licita. Play hard, friends.

  12. Undeniably believe that which you said. Your favourite justification seemed to be at the net the easiest thing to have in mind of. I say to you, I definitely get irked while people think about issues that they just don’t know about. You controlled to hit the nail upon the top and outlined out the entire thing with no need side effect , other folks can take a signal. Will probably be again to get more. Thanks

  13. This, my friend, is the true apocalypse.
    First tablets, then other electronical devices with no way to turn against their owners.

  14. I no longer like the gun, I played a match where everyone was using the gun, having not formulated a proper strategy for this happenstance I lost, the 1st place winner had 3500. Later I played some very good Assassinate players. XxEvilAsassin may have been in there, I forget. I came in dead last with 4250 points using SB and Mute. This is why the gun is terrible. I agree that stun-Baiters should be shot, especially if tver evem if you don’t win they’re trying to bait a prestige four which I believe you are. However even if you don’t win when everyone is using mute and Smoke Bomb , you will almost always score better than you would Hidden Gun. Bring me an Assassinate match where someone scores at least 10K whilst using the gun at least 6 times. I have seen the L3 video where he scores 10K I believe he used the gun only twice.

    • This depends greatly on the player/players. I’ve scored over 14k many times with Smoke/Gun. My best score, something like 14800, was with Smoke/Gun, including a 1200 point gun kill (with streak, of course).

      Is it as high as other players’ scores? No, but they play more often than I do and are thus also better players. I’m sure in the same lobbies as I was in with Smoke/Gun, they would have easily scored 16-17k.

      Obviously it depends on who your opponents are and what their behaviors are. Blindly aggressive players will always lose to Mute or to the Gun, though Mute will yield more points. Defensive players will lose to the gun, but not to Mute. Players attempting to lure a chase will always lose to the gun and sometimes lose to mute.

  15. Seems as though you have way too much time on your hands, or maybe realize it’s not WRONG to use the hidden gun.because it’s provided but pretty cheap. so you write a two page article trying to explain it’s not cheap I swear it’s not it’s for the greater good. Again… Too much time, but I play …don’t ever use a gun. Don’t need to. It’s low points, requires no skill and is a buzzkill in general to the awesome tactics and stealth aspect of the game. Maybe they should just remove… The gun

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