The Real History behind Assassin’s Creed Games

 

                People who keep saying that playing video games does nothing but corrupt the brain and make you stupid clearly haven’t played Ubisoft’s most popular game, Assassin’s Creed. I’ve been playing the series for months now and the reason why it’s taking me a long time to finish one AC game is because I don’t want to rush such a masterpiece. You see, Assassin’s Creed is based on actual events in history and though some parts are fictional, the rest are fairly accurate. So for all you history nerds and video game aficionados out there, here are some of the real historical events featured in the Assassin’s Creed series:

The ‘Hashasins’ of Masyaf

The Real History behind Assassin’s Creed Games

                In the first installment of Assassin’s Creed, we follow the story of Altair Ibn La-Ahad, the master assassin of Masyaf who lived sometime in 1165-1257. Most of the story in the game occurred from 1189-92, the time which the Third Crusade took place. Now, the dates are accurate but did a secret order of Assassin’s existed during that time? Yes and they were called ‘Hashasins’. The Assassin’s guild, based at the castle of Masyaf, was established by Hassan-I Sabbah, a Persian missionary and philosopher. His assassins would target leaders, politicians and many influential people to give warnings to those who are planning to oppose him. They were also trained in martial arts and can blend with the crowd just like Altair.

They also do these killings in broad daylight to send a powerful message to the masses. Salāḥ ad-DīnYūsufibnAyyūb (better known as Saladin) who’s often mentioned in the game, is an actual Sultan who in real life, had problems with the assassins. Though he wasn’t assassinated, he backed off from fighting with them after an assassin left a dagger under his pillow that truly put him in his place.

The Knight Templars

The Real History behind Assassin’s Creed Games

                We now know that the Assassins were a real deal but what about their enemies, the Templars? Like the Assassin’s, the Templars were also written in history and was very active during the crusades. They were known as the Knight Templars and their original aim is to escort Pilgrims to the Holy Land. However, it soon grew into a military order that gained favors from very powerful people, including The Pope. Soon, corruption and murder overtook the knights and they were disbanded right after the crusades. Although, some people still claim that the organization still exists under a different name. Kind of like Abstergo Industries in the game, history books say they are long gone. Also, the appearance of the Templars in AC 1 were also historically accurate since most Templars works as guards, doctors and military leaders during that time.

Historical Characters

The Real History behind Assassin’s Creed Games

                Aside from Sultan Saladin, there were also a lot of real historical people scattered around the Assassin’s Creed universe. Most prominent is Rodrigo Borgia or most commonly known as Pope Alexander VI. In AC II, he was the main antagonist and if you think he’s evil in the game, he was reportedly so much worse in real life. He bought his way into papacy and was known to be a womanizer. He did whatever it takes to stay in power until he was poisoned in 1503. In the game, he was poisoned by his own son, Cesare (who’s also as bad in real life as his character in the game). Leonardo Da Vinci also appeared as EzioAuditore’soldest friend.

The Real History behind Assassin’s Creed Games

In AC III, George Washington gave aid to the assassin named Connor as he tried to free the US from the Templars. Black Beard, the legendary pirate king appeared in Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag. In the latest installment Assassin’s Creed Unity set in the midst of the French revolution, Napoleon Bonaparte assumed a very important role in the game.

                There are more historical Easter eggs hidden in the Assassin’s Creed universe and it adds to the fun trying to find and read all about it in history books. So, the next time you play AC, watch out for the real events and people in history in the game and it might just help you ace your exams.

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2014’s Most Shocking Events  

                A lot of shocking events has happened in the year 2014. Some of them are too tragic to forget. To sum up all the events that made the headlines last year, here’s a list of the most shocking events of 2014:

The Ukraine Crisis (January 2014- Present)

2014’s Most Shocking Events   

                2014 didn’t start easy for Ukranians as disagreements between protesters and separatists factions spiraled into an almost civil war. It all began when a number of Ukranians protestes against the government when they dropped the plans to forge a closer trade with the European union. In February 2014 alone, hundreds of protesters have been killed. Up until now, the crisis in Ukraine remains unresolved.

The Ebola Outbreak (February 2014)

2014’s Most Shocking Events   

                One of the worst epidemic of the 21st century, The Ebola outbreak began in West Africa on February 2014. A lot of health officers died in the area while trying to stop the virus from spreading. However, the virus spread so quickly that it even reached the United States of America. It caused massive scare on the entire world and up until now, the World Health Organization is still diligently working to eradicate this epidemic quickly.

The Missing Flight: MH370 (March 2014)

2014’s Most Shocking Events   

                On a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 disappeared somewhere over the Gulf of Thailand along with its 239 passengers on board. There’s been a lot of speculations why the plane suddenly disappeared and the most popular theory is a terrorist attack. However, none of these have been proven to be the real since the flight is still missing. Experts believe that the plane might have crashed near the Indian Ocean. So far, no sign of the airplane has been found there since though the search continues to this day.

The UC Santa Barbara Killing Spree (May 2014)

2014’s Most Shocking Events   

                A 22-year old student named Elliot Rodger started shooting fellow students inside their campus simply because no one would date him. He started off by killing his roommate and his friends inside their dorm and then he proceeds to shoot students around the campus. Before he committed the heinous act, he reportedly sent an email called “manifesto” to his relatives and posted a video on Youtube about his plans on how to he will go about his killing spree and why.

MH 17 Shot down over Ukraine (July 2014)

2014’s Most Shocking Events   

                Following the crisis in Ukraine and the disappearance of MH 370, another Malaysian plane got involved in another tragedy. Malaysian Airlines flight 17 has been shot down by surface-to-air missile, blowing up the plane and killing all the 298 people inside. It was believed that Russian separatists did the shooting.

Israel Invades The Gaza Strip (July-August 2014)

2014’s Most Shocking Events   

                One of the most shocking events of 2014 is the Israel invasion of The Gaza strip where thousands of people, including children have been killed. It started with the execution of Israeli students in Gaza committed by a group called Hamas. During those seven days of hell, 2,107 Palestinians and 71 Israelis were killed.

The Ferguson Riots (August 2014-Present)

2014’s Most Shocking Events   

                Following the death of an unarmed African-American teenager named Micahel Brown by the hands of the police, a massive riot erupted in Ferguson, Missouri. The protesters called for justice for the death of Brown and hundreds of other African-Americans because of racism and stereotyping. This protest receieved a massive following worldwide and gained support online. To this day, the policeman who shot Michael Brown hasn’t been arrested for murder.

Robin William’s Suicide (August 2014)

2014’s Most Shocking Events   

                The suicide of Robin Williams, one of the most iconic comedians of all time and an award winning actor, brought the whole world to tears. He was found dead in his home in Paradise Cay, California. His death reminded us once again that people who usually make other people happy are the ones who are battling the biggest demons.

What should be on Your New Year’s Resolution?

                Writing a New Year’s Resolution is a secular tradition in which a person makes a promise to do a big change or any act of self-improvement for the coming New Year. It is said to have started since the Babylonian era where they would promise to their Gods that they will return any borrowed objects and settle any debts at the start of each year.

Now, every New Year, most people make up a list of things they want to change or improve on for the coming year. The problem is, most of these New Year’s resolutions are left undone and worse, forgotten. So, to avoid breaking your own promises to yourself, here are a few tips in writing your New Year’s Resolution:

  • Keep it ‘Doable’

The main reason why so many resolutions go to waste each year is because they’re not at all realistic. You must keep your resolutions simple, specific and easier to abide by. For example, if you’re planning to lose weight before the next holiday season, don’t write “become thin by December’. Instead, write “Work out more frequently to achieve weight goal every month till December”.

  • Reflect on the good things

Don’t just jump on to the New Year as if the last one didn’t happen. Before you make plans for 2015, make sure you cherish and remember all the good things that went well on 2014. Whether it’s a job promotion, a new car or just a memorable bonding moment with friends and family, they are ought to be remembered, celebrated even. This way, you’d be able to look at the New Year with a more positive outlook and more enthusiasm to make your resolutions a reality.

  • Write Goals with Impact

Aside from writing resolutions for self-improvement, you should also write a goal that has a lasting impact on you and everyone else. Don’t just do things for yourself, do for other people as well. You can try volunteering for a charity or joining a Non-Government Organization. You can also try teaching and helping out in your own community.

  • Think Small

One of the most common mistakes of people who often bail out on their New Year’s Resolution is thinking too big. Don’t fight your biggest battles head on. Instead, break them down into smaller pieces and try to achieve them step by step. Don’t rush your improvement. After all, you’ve got 365 days ahead of you.

  • Work On It

Your resolutions are worth nothing if you don’t work on it every single day. Develop a time table for each promise and monitor your progress every week. You can even ask a relative or a friend to check up on you so you’ll know how you’re holding up. Think of your resolutions as a challenge that you need to overcome and always keep your eye on winning.

  • Enjoy the Process

You’re not going to reach your goal if you’re dragging the entire process of it. If you keep complaining on how big your sacrifice is to achieve your goal, you might as well quit instead of making yourself miserable. You should always devise a way to enjoy every bit of doing your New Year’s resolution and take no short cuts so when the time comes when you finally achieve your goal, it’ll be worth it.

How To Spend Your 13 Month Pay Wisely

                Once the ‘-ber’ months appear on the calendar, everyone knows that the Christmas season is upon us again. For kids, this is the one time of the year where they get presents and cash from their relatives and godparents and for all the employees, it’s time for the most awaited pay of the year: The 13th Month pay. There are many ways to spend your 13th Month pay and other bonuses but most of the time, it’s all spent come January. So, to make sure you spend your bonus wisely, here are a few tips to help you put your hard earned money to good use:

Make a List of Things You NEED To Buy

How To Spend Your 13 Month Pay Wisely

                When we get a large amount of money and don’t know exactly what to spend it on, it will always end up spent on something not-so important like spur of the moment shopping sprees or buying an iPhone when you still have a functional phone. To avoid this, make a list of things that you truly need and calculate your expenses.

Pay Your Debts

How To Spend Your 13 Month Pay Wisely

                Whether you’re a serial credit card user or just a person who owes a lot of people some money, now is the best time to pay it off. Debt is the main obstacle that can actually threatens your financial stability so you better clean the slate now while you still have money to spare. Going debt free when the New Year comes is a good start and you might want to stop with using credit cards or at least use it moderately so you can use your next bonus on the things you really want.

Open a Savings Account

How To Spend Your 13 Month Pay Wisely

                Opening as savings account is the first step to take if ever you wish to invest on something big in the future like a house, a car or your own condo. This is specially for young professionals because having a savings account at an earlier age will give you the best chance of getting the investment of your dreams quicker. Plus, it will teach you to be more responsible with your money and not spend it on temporary things like most yuppies do.

Buy A Health Insurance Plan

How To Spend Your 13 Month Pay Wisely

                You know how they always say that ‘Health is Wealth’? Well, it’s very much true for everyone else and if ever you get injured or become gravely ill and you don’t have enough money for it, you’re basically doomed. However, there is a way to remedy that by buying a health insurance plan. Don’t just rely on your PhilHealth because most of the time, it will not be enough especially now that more and more hospitals are getting privatize and medical expenses are getting higher every year. Plus, you’re not the only one who might get sick so you better save up for your family as well.

Be a Smart Shopper

How To Spend Your 13 Month Pay Wisely

                Yes, Christmas is a time for giving gifts but that doesn’t mean you must spend a lot of money buying your relatives material things that they won’t be using for the next few years. When buying gifts and other holiday stuff, always be on the lookout for big sales. Shopping malls usually hold a lot of sale events when the holiday season comes and you can also visit tons of bazaars for cheaper items. Better yet, stay away from stores and just make your own gifts. Handmade gifts are much more appreciated anyway because it’s specially made. But if you really want to but your gifts but don’t want to spend too much, you might want to try shopping after December 25th because most items drop their prices.

Sharp as a Tack: Ways to Enhance your Memory

                        Have you ever experienced going to another room and forget why you’re there? Have you ever forgotten a friend’s birthday or forgot to feed your pets? Our ability to remember becomes weaker as we get older. They say you can’t teach old dogs new tricks but experts say otherwise. You can definitely improve your memory if you follow these tips:

  • Exercise your Brain

To Sharp as a Tack: Ways to Enhance your Memory

Keeping your mind active can definitely help in enhancing your memory, especially if you’re already in your 50’s. Do crosswords puzzles or take a new route when you’re going somewhere. You can also try to learn a new language or play an instrument. Just do whatever you can think of to keep your mind active.

  • Get Happy

To Sharp as a Tack: Ways to Enhance your Memory

Stress plays an important role in messing up your memory. So if you can avoid getting stressed out, do it. Do whatever it takes to make yourself feel light and happy despite any situation. Remember: sulking in sadness does not solve anything. You can also try meditation and surround yourself with positive people.

  • Eat Well and Eat Healthy

To Sharp as a Tack: Ways to Enhance your Memory

                        Eating healthy does not only help the body but the mind as well. Eat food that is rich in Omega-3 because the amino fatty acids that it contains are very beneficial to the brain. Limit your consummation of calories and saturated fat. Eat more fruits and vegetables and stay away from junk food. They are called junk food for a reason. Also, drink green tea or even wine but moderately.

  • Pay Attention

To Sharp as a Tack: Ways to Enhance your Memory

                        This will definitely be most applicable to students, especially those who are having a hard time studying for exams. If you have actually paid attention to your classes, you wouldn’t have to do so much memorizing. Paying attention helps the short term memories to become long term memories so you can get them back easier if you actually understood them. Listening is a very important aspect of paying attention so you better work on that first.

  • Get Organized

To Sharp as a Tack: Ways to Enhance your Memory

            You are more likely to forget things when everything you own is in chaos. Try organizing your stuff, especially the ones you use the most and discipline yourself to put them back wherever you originally found them so you won’t ever forget. Mostly, keys are often the ones that get lost and forgotten so make a single space for your keys on your desk or wherever you please. Just remember to put them back there each time you use it. That way, you always know where your things are.

  • Sleep on it

To Sharp as a Tack: Ways to Enhance your Memory

            Sleep is a major memory enhancer. Lack of sleep kills a lot of neurons so make sure you get that 8 hours of sleep. For students and yuppies, I know it’s hard to get long hours of sleep but try. If you got nothing to do on weekends, try to catch up on your sleep so your brain and body can rest and rebuild itself. Make sleep a priority and take power naps whenever you can.

Famous Killers:  Celebrities Who Actually Killed People

                Celebrities are people too, and as far as people go, we all make mistakes. It’s just that sometimes; celebrities have ways to get away with it even if it’s actually killing someone. Here are some famous celebrities who have blood on their hands:

Matthew Broderick

Famous Killers:  Celebrities Who Actually Killed People

                You may know him in his role as the troublesome Ferris Bueller in the hit 80’s movie Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.  He may not be as much of a troublemaker like his famous character but Matthew did get into a huge trouble that killed some people. On August 5th 1987, Matthew was driving with his co-star Jennifer Grey on a country road in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland. His car veered into the wrong lane and collided with an oncoming car. The woman who was driving the car and her elderly mother died instantly. It was determined that the actor wasn’t drunk at the time of the accident, and he was charged with causing death by dangerous driving. However, he was eventually convicted only of careless driving, with a $175 fine.

Keith Moon

Famous Killers:  Celebrities Who Actually Killed People

                The iconic drummer of the rock band The Who is known for his violent and aggressive behavior on stage and even in real life. However, the accident he got himself involved in is not actually a product of his behavior but instead, ruled out as an accident. While trying to get away from a bunch of rowdy fans, Keith Moon accidentally ran over his body guard, Neil Boland outside a pub in Hatfield, England. He wasn’t charged with anything.

Sid Vicious

Famous Killers:  Celebrities Who Actually Killed People

                Any fan of punk music knows who Sid Vicious is err was… and not just because he’s the iconic bassist of the father band of punk, The Sex Pistols, but because of his involvement in one of the most controversial murders in the history of music. After a heroin filled night, Sid and his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen was staying in their room at the hotel Chelsea in New York City. Sid woke up to find his girlfriend sprawled on the bathroom floor, covered in her own blood. She was stabbed to death. He was arrested and convicted for the murder of Nancy Spungen but he claims he did not do it despite the evidence. Then he changed his story and admitted that he did not mean to kill her and then claimed, he did not remember what happened. Months later after being released on bail, Sid Vicious overdosed on heroin. It was not clear whether or not he committed suicide but they have found a note in his pants pocket asking to be buried beside his Nancy.

O.J. Simpson

Famous Killers:  Celebrities Who Actually Killed People

                Football star O.J. Simpson was recently divorced from his wife Nicole Brown when one of the most controversial murder of all time happened. On the night of June 12, 1994, Nicole and her friend Ronald Goldman was found stabbed to death outside her home in Los Angeles. Simpson was arrested and was put to a very publicized trial that the entire world eagerly watched. Despite the evidence pointing to Simpson, he was not found guilty of homicide. However, in a civil trial held in 1997, he was deemed to be liable for the two deaths and had to pay a fine of$12.5 Million to each of the victims’ families.

Charles Bukowski: The Tortured Genius of Poetry

               

                                They say behind every genius lies a tragic story. Sometimes these tragic stories become science discoveries, inventions that change lives and sometimes, they transform into the most beautiful poetry the world has ever seen; that my friends, is the poetry of the great Charles Bukowski, one of America’s most prolific poets of all time.

                Born Heinrich Karl Bukowksi on August 16, 1920, Charles had a very rough childhood. He was born in Germany and was brought to America when he was only two years old. His father is a firm believer of straight discipline and he would often beat Charles and his mother, even for the simplest offense. Charles’ school life wasn’t so good either because he was bullied by bigger kids his age. He also had a hard time with girls because no one would even look at him because he had a very bad complexion.

Charles Bukowski: The Tortured Genius of Poetry

                It was in 1939 when Bukowski decided to leave his Los Angeles hometown and drop out of college to move to New York City. It was in the beginning of World War II and he tried to make it as writer in a new city. He spent so many years writing, travelling and receiving a lot of rejection slips from various magazines and newspaper companies. Because of his series of failures, young Bukowski gave up on writing and just decided to do something else; by something else he meant almost destroying his life completely by drinking too much.

                After coming back to Los Angeles, Charles began writing again. He was thirty five years old when his writing career actually began and unlike all the other writers of his time, he started publishing in underground newspapers. His works became popular through word of mouth because the main character of his stories which he named Henry Chinaski, is so relatable. There was so much rawness and truth in this character that people are beginning to see themselves in this semi-autobiographical character that Bukowski has created.  In 1955, Bukowski was treated from near-fatal bleeding ulcer and after his release from the hospital, he began writing poetry and his alcohol addiction became worse.

Charles Bukowski: The Tortured Genius of Poetry

                Charles Bukowski wrote more than 40 books of poetry, novels and prose. His most popular novel is entitled “Women” which tells the story of a man’s crazy and unusual love and sex life. His books of poetry are widely popular since they all have a taste of satirized machismo with stories that dwell in alcoholism, poverty and bad experiences. He is known to make himself the hero of his stories without trying to look good and no sugar coating of anything whatsoever. He used his bad experiences and made them sound as bad they really are, and in turn, readers and critics alike found his work honest and straight to the heart. It was as if his hands popped out of his book and ripped your heart out into pieces.

                I haven’t read all of Bukowski’s works, especially his novels because I’ve been captivated by his poetry for some time now. His writings are so different from all the other poets I’ve read and his words will really stick to you no matter how unremarkable the words he used are. He’s not even trying to impress you with big words. It’s just conversational and it feels real. And that’s the reason why he is one of the best poets because he knows how to word out emotions without pretense. My most favorite Bukowski poems are “So You Want To Be A Writer” -the poem I read to myself every time I feel like quitting and “Roll The Dice”- the poem I read to myself before I start to do anything.

Charles Bukowski: The Tortured Genius of Poetry

                Charles Bukowski died of pneumonia on March 1994, but his works continue to inspire and affect readers of young and old with stories as real as the scars on our skin. He may be gone but Bukowski’s words and poetry will live on forever.