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Speaker(s): Jill Murray
Company Name(s): Ubisoft
Track / Format: Advocacy
Overview: Variety is the spice of life. Games are a playful exploration of life. Clearly the two are made for each other. For writers and narrative designers, this means building diversity into the cast of characters with whom we populate game worlds. This requires research, imagination, consideration, and yes, the risk of getting it wrong. But attention paid to diversity strengthens every aspect of writing, and opens us to new narrative possibilities and gameplay paradigms. This session is a diversity bootcamp covering everything from "sensitive topics" to finding the nugget of commonality we share with each character we invent. [SOURCE]
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Assassin’s Creed 3: Liberation writer Jill Murray has downplayed Ubisoft’s decision to feature a black, female protagonist, instead calling on the rest of the industry to catch up.



Speaking to Kotaku in an interesting feature on Aveline’s creation, Murray said some of those arguing in defense of all-white, all-male casts are being creatively lazy.

“[There's a] fear that ‘diverse’ characters are risky and might offend or alienate players by their simple inclusion — that including them requires a magic touch, special bravery, a trembling sensitivity, or a mandate to ignore sales,” she said.

“Creating “diverse” characters is no different than creating any character, and I believe that those who struggle with it need to address deeper issues within their own creative process.”

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The Assassin's Creed spinoff title has won an award for best written game.



Winning a Writers Guild Award is no simple feat, and the writers of Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed 3: Liberation have managed to do just that.

The game took an award for Outstanding Achievement in Video Game Writing, the Writers Guild of America announced (via GI.biz) today.

The game, which was developed in Ubisoft Sofia and penned by ill Murray and Richard Farrese, handily beat out five other nominees, including Assassin's Creed 3, Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two, Halo 4, Uncharted: Golden Abyss, and 007 Legends.


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Assassin’s Creed III isn’t the only Assassin’s Creed game coming out on October 30. A totally different game, Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation comes out the same day on the Playstation Vita. The game’s star, Aveline de Grandpré, is Assassin’s Creed’s first female protagonist and is the child of “plaçage“ with a French father and a mother of African ancestry. Earlier this week, Post Arcade’s Daniel Kaszor spoke with Liberation writer Jill Murray about the game, its story and women in the games industry.




Post Arcade: One of the most interesting aspects of Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation is its fluid notions of racial and class identity. Can you speak a little bit about that?
Jill Murray:
It’s absolutely essential to both the story and the gameplay. I like to think this is an amazing example of how gameplay contributes to the story, and it can get across powerful elements of the story by involving the player.

For Aveline she has three personas. There is the Assassin persona, which looks like the assassins that we’ve seen with armour and a full load out of weapons, there’s the lady persona, where she is a respected lady, she’s and up and coming business woman in the footsteps of her father, it filters down to everything to how guards initially are just trying to protect her because she’s an outstanding citizen.


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Assassin's Creed 3 Liberation

November 2013

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