Warning: this article contains minor spoilers about the overarching plot of the Assassin's Creed franchise.
Science Fiction author John L. Beiswenger has filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against Ubisoft for taking many key ideas for the Assassin's Creed series from his book, Link. In the suit, Beiswenger accuses Ubisoft from knowingly stealing key plot devices and terms from his book.
In Beiswenger's book, people can use a "link" chair to recall and relive their ancestors' memories. While there may not be an order of Assassins, per se, the book spends time talking about going using the chair to relive assassinations. The plot also has a religious component, and specifically refers to Adam and Eve, Eden, and "the forbidden fruit."
As you may know, the story of the Assassin's Creed series revolves around the use of the "Animus", a chair-shaped device that allows players to relive the memories of their ancestors, and involves a conspiracy about the nature of god, specifically referring to Adam, Eve, and the Apple of Eden.
Link was originally published in 2003. The first Assassin's Creed was released in 2007.
Needless to say, the two are very similar, but that doesn't necessarily mean Ubisoft copied them directly from Beiswenger's book. As engaging as the Assassin's Creed series has been, it would be hard to argue that the story isn't the result of a well-tread hodge-podge of concepts from popular entertainment, including The Matrix and The Da Vinci Code.
Interestingly, Beiswenger's lawsuit also targets gaming media outlet Gametrailers for posting trailers and stories about the Assassin's Creed series despite knowing the connection between the book and the game series.
Should the suit be successful, Beiswenger will receive between one and five million dollars for his trouble, depending on how many ideas are said to have been lifted directly from the book. Beiswenger has also claimed the right to block the release of all future AC games, including Assassin's Creed III.
Do you think Ubisoft stole the idea for Assassin's Creed? Tell us your conspiracy theories in the comments!