The Gorgeous Representation In Assassin’s Creed Mirage Is Pure Serotonin

Assassin's Creed Mirage Representation Diversity Gaming

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“Check in on your Arab gamers this weekend because they might be suffering from a case of Feeling Represented right now,” says game reviewer Chris Dafeer on TikTok.

While I, a Korean-Australian casual gamer new to the Assassin’s Creed franchise, am clearly not the demographic represented in the latest instalment of the game, I am positively basking in reflected glory. (TIL it’s actually a real thing known as BIRGing, where other people’s wins feel like your own through association, like your fave team winning a championship.)

The joy for me, as someone who’s painfully unknowledgeable in both the AC game franchise and Arabic culture, is that I can actually enjoy this well-known game without the fear that it’s, you know, racist as hell. Which means I can sit back, relax, and assassinate whoever I must without any qualms. The dream!

When authentic cultural diversity is threaded into popular media, especially well-established franchises like Assassin’s Creed, it’s almost like a cheat code to being better informed. Turns out, that’s one of the reasons why Sarah Beaulieu, narrative director of Assassin’s Creed Mirage loves the AC franchise.

“What I really love Assassin’s Creed games myself is that you actually discover new things about history. We’re very proud about making an Assassin’s Creed game in Baghdad, ninth century.”

Baghdad was a huge vibrant city, and was the city during the Islamic Golden Age. Because of its link to trade routes, including the legendary Silk Road, the city became known as a centre for culture and knowledge.

“In Mirage, you embody Basim and you are going to become this master assassin: from street thief to master assassin, ” Sarah explained. We made it possible for any newcomers to actually understand the story because you still have time to learn, and you can still wander the city and do other stuff, in your own way and your own rhythm.”

So, I can play games and learn things? Sign me up. In addition to narrative design, authentic voice acting also plays a huge part in creative a meaningful, considered story. Just ask Shohreh Aghdashloo, voice of Roshan.

“What else could I have asked for?” Shohreh asked, with a chuckle. “There are times, with your characters, that you wish it was a bit stronger, or a bit less this and that. But in this one, she was perfect. Made for me.”

“I don’t want to be selfish but who better than I to voice this strong woman from Persia.”

Not only is Shohreh the perfect choice, but she’s also here to guide us through the game, for those that aren’t too familiar with the Assassins Creed franchise (it’s me, hi, I’m the problem, it’s me).

“Don’t worry, I’ll take you around,” she says. “I’m there to take care of you. I’m there to protect you. Just lean on me, and play the game, and let me take you to far, far, far, exotic places.”

It all seems so simple when it’s executed well. Which occasionally sends me spiralling, questioning why it’s taken us so long to get to this point and how frequently we still deal with loudmouthed bigots complaining that games are getting too woke or political. And that’s my cue to get back to mercilessly assassinating my enemies in Assassin’s Creed Mirage. Bye!