Monday, March 1, 1999

Extremely Dire Situation With My Wonderful Novel!?

Almost 2 years before Assassin's Creed II was released, I had started a novel about 15th century Renaissance Italy. I included the Medici Family and the Pazzi Conspiracy. I mentioned nothing about assassin's but I did have a main protagonist unrelated to either families. He is a thief turned explorer. Upon return from Jerusalem via Greece with some priceless artifacts, he is beset in Florence by the commander of Pazzi's forces. After suffering a vicious beating and having his loot stolen, he informs the Medici of his troubles. They then contract him to kill the Pazzi conspirators. While doing so, he extracts information from each about 3 tombs hidden in 3 countries. Italy, Greece and The Holy Land. These tombs contain detailed maps and secrets of The New World. I am for the purposes of my novel, removing Christopher Columbus and the Spanish conquest of Yucatan at this time. This allows me to have my protagonist discover certain areas first without prior exploration, thus adding a bit more mystery.

Essentially, my problem is that a large bulk of my story is within and around Renaissance Italy. I have Leonardo Da Vinci as a supporting character. Although I have never submitted any information to Ubisoft and or the developers of Assassin's Creed II, I feel like my entire story and brain child has been ripped away from me. Although my story is authentic, I have not released it yet. Therefore, because AC-II has been released already, I feel critics and readers will dismiss myself and my novel as a rip off of the game.



Answer on Extremely Dire Situation With My Wonderful Novel!?

Disclaimer: I have not played Assassin's Creed 2.

As long as the plot is sufficiently different from the game's plot line, don't worry too much about the fact that it's in the same location.

Is the plot different? As long as the plot is different, you'll be fine. Yes, there may be some critics who think you may have been influenced by the game, but if your story is unique, then you shouldn't have a major problem. All of the characters, locations, and time periods are historical, so they're fair game for use in a story.

From my brief glance at the wikipedia article, it doesn't sound like there's much overlap in plot: there's no mention of the new world, for example.

I say keep moving forward with it. Even if you decide not to go forward with it, then you should rest assured that this is was an excellent idea.

Oh, and if you're worried about copyright infringement, you'd need to check how close the stories are. If they're really close, then someone might think you've created a derivative work. A publisher who accepts your novel will have a legal team who will excel at looking into issues like this. If you've already done the majority of the work, you may as well try submitting it.

You can even turn this into an advantage: people who enjoyed the game may be likely to enjoy your book. This gives you access to a market of people who have already shown interest in the area.

Good luck!