Historical fiction offers a fascinating gateway to the study of history as it inevitably engages with historical events and figures while also making choices to deviate from the historical record. Video games in particular offer a compelling depiction of history, one that is visual and allows players to explore historical time periods in their full complexity.
In this course, students will explore the historical accuracies (and inaccuracies) of the Assassin’s Creed series through lecture, discussion, and research. Students will examine select events and characters, the historical reality they reflect and adapt, and analyze the changes. Students will explore the Italian renaissance, the rise of the Ottoman Empire, and the American Revolution through The Ezio Collection and Assassin’s Creed 3 (though this course can be tailored to a particular game of the student’s interest). They will develop a grasp of the historical context of these time periods and of key events and figures while honing their critical thinking and analytical skills. These skills prepare students for both English and history courses. At the conclusion of the course, students will complete independent research and prepare a 15-20 minute presentation on an event or figure not covered in the course to demonstrate their ability to analyze a depiction of history.
Students will need to purchase their own copy of the following games: The Ezio Collection and Assassin’s Creed 3. Both titles are available for purchase on PC, Switch, Playstation, Xbox.