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Assassin's Creed - Leap of Faith

(posted 3/17/2008)

The assassin Altair takes a leap of faith from a perch atop a tall minaret into a waiting cart of hay below. Exactly who goes around putting these hay carts everywhere, the world may never know.

The protagonist of Assassin's Creed is Altaïr, a member of an order of assassins based out of the Byzantine fortress of Masyaf during the Crusades. His order, for some reason that couldn't possibly be historically-accurate, apparently wishes to bring peace to the land. They plan to do this by killing lots of people. Among Altaïr's many abilities are the power to keep his hood perfectly in position even when riding a horse at rapid speeds or jumping off the top of a building, and the ability to blend in with a crowd of monks or scholars despite the fact that he's bristling with visible weaponry.

All minifigs on this creation were made using custom decals (stickers) that I designed myself. Don't forget to check out my Shop for decals and minifig accessories!

Since I usually build spaceships and video game stuff, I've very rarely tried my hand at detailed LEGO architecture. For some reason the idea of building the minaret of a mosque really inspired me, perhaps because it was different from my usual fare. I really got into building it.

Some design elements you may note include the striped arch made of 1x2 plates (yes, it's made entirely of bricks - no printed parts, stickers, or paint - except on the minifigs, of course) and the use of minifig legs on the wall. Since you already know I could never come up with anything as ingenious as the latter idea, I'll have to admit that I got it from Corran101.

Ever played any of the Thief games? There is an interesting parallel (or rather opposite) between the two games: while Assassin's Creed takes place entirely during the day, Thief takes place entirely at night. I'm already considering making an alternate version of this vignette featuring Garrett the Master Thief as opposed to Altair, climbing up part of a Gothic catherdral-eque building as opposed to a minaret...

 As Altaïr looks out over the city, or lack thereof, the eagle overhead threatens to ruin the pristine whiteness of his robes.

Does anyone ever wonder if a human could really break a fall that big with a little pile of hay? Somebody call Mythbusters.

Since LEGO has never made any birds with actual outspread wings, I was forced to come up with this really wacky design for the eagle that always soars away when Altaïr approaches his perch.

Another shot of the upper half of the minaret. I actually had some extra sections in there at first, but I had to remove them to photograph the thing properly. The total height is around 28 inches!

I was a bit disappointed that they decided to include so many sci-fi and conspiracy buff elements in the storyline of Assassin's Creed. When I first heard about it, I had really hoped it would simply be a reasonably historically-accurate medieval action game. Those are very rare in the gaming world. Most medieval games are strategy titles, and all the other genres feel the need to include fantasy elements with anything medieval. I would have preferred the game without the genetic memory story and the sequences as Desmond... Oh well.

They call it a leap of faith, but it's not very clear exactly what Altair has faith in...

Hope you enjoyed the model as much as I enjoyed making it! More Assassin's Creed or just generic crusades creations may be coming in the future!

Don't forget to check out my Shop Page for custom decals and minifig accessories!

 

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