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File:S Creed II for TV Tropes 2 182.jpg

"Insieme per la vittoria!"[1]


Carlo: We kill thinking it's best for us, do we not, Messer Ezio?
Ezio: I do this not for myself. Compio questo sacrificio per il bene superiore. Requiescat in Pace. (I make this sacrifice for the greater good. Rest in peace.)


Assassin's Creed II is the sequel to the Assassin's Creed game, created by Ubisoft.

Contrasting to the Crusade time period of the first game, this one jumps us forward a few hundred years and a few hundred miles to Renaissance Italy, while in the real world, the game picks up right where the first left off: Desmond and Lucy escape Abstergo's facility at the beginning of the game and flee to an Assassin safe house, where two other Assassins put him in a new and improved Animus, hoping he'll pick up some of Ezio's skills and find more Pieces of Eden.

The focus this time is on another one of Desmond's ancestors, Ezio Auditore da Firenze. Ezio is like most other young guys of his age and class: Rich Idiot With No Day Job, carefree, spending most of his time wooing girls (and then some) and jumping around the rooftops of his native Florence. Life takes a brutal turn for the teenager when most of his family is arrested in a political plot that leaves his father and two brothers dead... it turns out his father was an Assassin, and he has passed that mantle (along with some shiny equipment) to Ezio. Ezio, seeking revenge, flees with his sister and mother to his uncle's villa and begins to track down those responsible for the death of his family, following clues that lead from Florence to Tuscany, Forlì, Venice and even Rome.

Both Ezio and Desmond follow the plot all across Italy as hidden truths become uncovered and ancient conspiracies become unraveled. The way things appear is not the way things are, as secret messages from Desmond's predecessor Subject 16 reveal, and the men in both time periods find themselves wrapped within something that is much bigger than just the Templars versus the Assassins. As Ezio hunts down his family's killers in the Templar ranks, he gets closer and closer to discovering the truth: a truth that reveals the very core of who we are and where we came from to be one big lie. Like the first game, it ends on a very clear cliffhanger.

On the actual non-plot side, the game has been widely praised by reviewers and players alike for correcting many of the issues players complained about in the first game, with a wider variety of missions, smarter (but also easier to escape) guards, a more robust combat system, and a streamlined control system that allows for more free-running options. Two episodes of DLC were released to fill in missing Sequences 12 and 13 (Battle of Forlì and Bonfire of the Vanities) offering a more complete experience to the game. However, unlike the first game there is no ability to replay story memories on the same playthrough. You can redo the "secret messages" (the Glyph puzzles) in "The Truth" Menu by clicking the red puzzles.

As far as more games go, Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood is the direct successor to both Desmond and Ezio's stories, taking place in Rome. A third game Assassin's Creed: Revelations was released late 2011, taking place in Constantinople, mainly following Ezio and Altair, while also filling in some of Desmond's backstory. Revelations neatly ties off Altair's and Ezio's story lines, leaving a third game free to pick up with a new historical character, while Desmond travels to upstate New York.

Additionally, Ezio crossed over to another series, as a Guest Fighter in Soulcalibur V.

Tropes used in Assassin's Creed II include:
  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: There are a number of catacombs and Assassin tombs to navigate.
  • Acceptable Breaks From Reality:
    • Played straight with being able to loot treasure chests as you find them, though most of the treasure chests are located in areas where people don't want you to find them... Also, you can buy a map of their location in each city... Do the citizens just not want to loot them or something? Or are the art merchants secretly rich and just feeling altruistic?
    • Sometimes the circumstances of your killings, or how wanted posters and heralds mentioning you only pop up when you get a little Notoriety (i.e. stealing or High Profile kills), even if you made a clean getaway with no witnesses. Or the fact that wanted posters often show up in places wherein it is VERY unlikely the general populace would ever see them.
    • The fact that Brutes in heavy armor probably about half their body weight can scale building with no efforts is pretty appalling within itself. As well as how a particular Hidden Blade counter-kill has Ezio tossing them away, heavy armor and all. Though this could be explained in that Ezio's Precursor DNA makes him physically stronger than normal humans (which is apparently canon).
  • Action Girl:
    • Lucy Stillman proves herself to be quite handy at dispatching Abstergo guards.
    • Rosa, Paola and Teodora also fall into this, the first being part of the Venetian Thieves Guild and more than capable of handling herself with an arrow in her leg, the latter being Assassins and performing leaps of faith at the end of :Memory Block 11.
    • Caterina Sforza also gets in on the trope during the Battle of Forli expansion, where she takes part in the battle itself.
  • After the End: The ending reveals that the current civilization, ours, is actually the world's second civilization. The first was destroyed by what is implied to be a massive solar flare that reversed the earth's magnetic poles, unleashing massive earthquakes.
  • Alternate History: By this game, the developers have outright proclaimed it to be Alternate History. Somewhat justified by Abstergo's deliberate muddying of the waters.
  • Altum Videtur: Ezio says "Requiescat in pace", but "requiescat" is the active third-person singular present tense that means "he/she/it may/must/should rest". Since the active second-person singular present tense is "requiescas", meaning "may you rest", the term should be "Requiescas in pace" ("May you rest in peace").
  • Ambiguously Gay: The profile for Leonardo da Vinci outright states that he was most likely homosexual. Despite this, he does admit to spending some time at the local, er, "convent" for some quality time with ladies of the evening, so he's bisexual if anything. There's also the fact that this was probably true about the real Leonardo.
  • An Aesop: If the series itself does have an aesop to teach, it is that people should not allow others to choose their path and what they believe, but to decide it for themselves.
  • An Axe to Grind: Ezio can disarm Brutes and use their axes against them.
  • Ancient Conspiracy: As of Assassin's Creed II, it might be safer to ask who wasn't involved in this mother-of-all-conspiracies. Name a historical figure. Yep, they're involved on either the Assassin side, Templar side, or were just shmucks/ descendants of Those Who Came Before who ended up with a Piece of Eden. A short list:
    • On the Templar side, we've got: Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, J.P. Morgan, Oppenheimer, Tsar Nicolas, Rasputin, George Washington, Adolf Hitler and FDR and Winston Churchill, Lee Harvey Oswald, Rodrigo Borgia (a.k.a. Pope Alexander VI), the Pazzi family. Oh, and lest we forget, you know who the first Templar was? Cain. That's about as ancient as an ancient conspiracy gets.
    • On the Assassin side, we've got: Dante Alighieri, Niccolò Machiavelli, possibly Gandhi and Joan of Arc. Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood indicates that Brutus and the forty Senators who killed Caesar were also Assassins, which means that Altair's musings on the possibility of the Assassin Order predating Mu'alim are true: the Assassin Order has evidently been around for at least two millenia, probably much, much longer. Nikola Tesla wasn't an Assassin himself, but after the Templars had ruined him the Assassins contacted him to recommend that he assist in Tunguska. Marco Polo either was an Assassin or was associated with them, and the same holds true for Kublai Khan.
    • On the schmucks/Those Who Came Before side, we've got Jesus, King Arthur, Houdini, John F. Kennedy and maybe Gandhi and John the Baptist. Oh, and Cleopatra, Caligula, Genghis Khan, Alexander the Great, the First Emperor of China and King Xerxes? All killed by Assassins. However, those are just the ones famous by Ezio's time; Subject 16 mentions additional people. Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood adds Gaius Julius Caesar to the list of people killed through influence by the Pieces of Eden.
    • Also, a number of major historical events, such as the Moon landing, the assassination of JFK, the first nuclear detonations, and THE MURDER OF JESUS were done either because of or to acquire Pieces of Eden. The Tunguska Event, on the other hand, was an attempt to destroy a Piece of Eden by Nikola Tesla. It failed.
  • An Entrepreneur Is You: There's a mini-mechanic were the player has to manage banks and sells stuff.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Ezio obtains a pair of capes, the Medici and Venetian Capes, that mark him as a friend of them, keeping his notoriety from rising in Florence and Tuscany/San Gimignano (Medici Cape), and Venice. However, the reward for collecting all 100 feathers is the Auditore Cape, which makes you notorious everywhere except Monteriggioni; removing it sends your Notoriety back to whatever that was before you equipped it. Also, the game's ultimate reward is Altaïr's Armour, which is made from uber-metal that was literally only discovered with the help of the Gods (i.e. Altaïr consulting his Piece of Eden). It maxes out the health bar and is completely unbreakable, along with looking awesome.
    • The last one here is also oddly Inverted. Acquiring the Armor of Altaïr makes Ezio unable to change his appearance by dying his clothes, so Your Reward is Fewer Clothes unless you want to deliberately reduce your health bar and continue paying for repairs.
  • And Your Reward Is Interior Decorating: The house in Monteriggioni becomes decorated with portraits of Ezio's assassination victims and with art objects that Ezio is encouraged to purchase. The appearance of the rest of Monteriggioni also improves as Ezio's actions cause the town to become more prosperous.
  • Animal Motifs:
    • Both games have a thing for birds. Both protagonists are named after them, the presence of birds marks important/useful spots in the world, and bird feathers play a prominent background role in both games. Also, both Ezio's and Altaïr's assassin's garbs feature a beak-like peak in the front of the hood and a wing-like split in the back of the lower 'cape', thus emulating birds, especially when diving off of rooftops.
    • The art book for the first one explicitly compares Altaïr to a bird-of-prey, saying that it was a big part of the inspiration for the character's design. Side-by-side art pieces show artists emulating the shape of an eagle mid-flight with Altaïr.
  • Annoying Arrows: While bowmen can be very frustrating, especially while fighting other enemies in close quarters, its amazing how little damage their arrows do. Ezio can have five arrows sticking out of his torso and still keep fighting. And then Rosa continues to move and fight despite have an arrow clear through her leg!
  • Anti-Villain: Dante Moro. His master Marco Barbarigo tried to have him killed so he could steal his wife. His plan failed, but since Moro was left brain-damaged, Marco fooled him into divorcing his true love, and then hired him to be his personal bodyguard. And then married his ex-wife.
  • Apocalypse How: Somewhere between Class 2 and 3b in the distant past. And it's about to happen again in Desmond's time...
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: The Pazzi and Barbarigo families and Rodrigo.
  • Arm Cannon: The Hidden Gun.
  • Armor of Invincibility: The Armour of Altair, which you receive for completing all the Assassin Tomb free-run missions. It offers the best protection in the game and is literally invincible (but unlike the Missaglias armour, which offers the same amount of protection and is breakable, doesn't allow you to dye your clothes).
  • Artificial Brilliance: Civilians and Guards both act a lot more realistically than they did in the previous games. The later will even start searching nearby hiding spots if you try to hide too soon, and seekers will pick and poke every hiding place they can find if you're notorious.
  • Artificial Stupidity:
    • The AI is only mediocre (i.e. slower and somewhat less strategic) at free-running, and will on occasion get stuck on a plank or fall off it. Thieves and Borgia informants are notorious for this.
    • Speaking of theives, there's a spot in Florence where a bunch of thieves are located a little too close to a roof guard. They won't as so much react while the guard injures and picks them off one by one.
    • Rooftop guards will also shoot Borgia couriers when they try to escape you, even if the city's guard is aligned with the Borgia. ...While ignoring you completely. Of course, once the Courier/Pickpocket is out of the way they'll turn their attention on you too.
    • Guards still have next to No Peripheral Vision, you can sneak up behind them rather easily even from the side. You can even shoot them with an extremely loud pistol and they won't find you if you're shooting from a rooftop.
    • Somehow, Ezio is the only Italian capable of swimming. This comes in handy when fighting guards on docks or canal bridges.
  • Asshole Victim:
    • Why do we kill them? Because they are all corrupted bastards! Unlike the first game though, most of their evil deeds are now informed by exposition (via Shaun's database) rather than overly-long scenes establishing their corruption.
    • Somehow the Corrupt Officials are so known to be such that passing crowds won't even pause when you publicly put a blade through the guy's torso (though guards will attack on sight of this). Rather conveniently though, these guys who "bear false witness against you" (Paola's words) only appear once you have quite a lot of Notoriety...
  • Badass: All the Assassins for a start, Caterina Sforza is probably the best example since she is the only woman in Italy to rule over a city state. Also in the Battle of Forlì when her daughter is kidnapped if you listen to the chatter at a certain point it turns out that it runs in the family.
  • Badass Beard: Ezio grows one near the end, between possessing the Apple and finally confronting Rodrigo Borgia. It overlaps with Beard of Sorrow in that it grew while he convalesced and, at this point, he's questioning the virtue of taking vengeance for the murder of his family.
  • Badass Boast: Bartolomeo yells at least one of these per conversation.
  • Badass Cape: Ezio's Assassin costume comes with one of these, and he can get up to four (including the default one) as the game progresses. Antonio has one as well, but it's much, much thinner.
  • Badass Creed: The Assassin order adopted the creed of "Nothing is true. Everything is permitted" when Altair took over as the order's Grand Master. While seemingly simple, the Codex reveals that many recruits could not deal with the wide-reaching implications of the creed when they finally started to realize exactly what it meant.
  • Badass Longcoat: A villainous example with Dante Moro, Marco and later Silvio, Barbarigo's chief henchman.
  • Bad Habits: As explained by Rodrigo Borgia, the Templars are not actually Catholic and only pretend to be so in order to gain influence.
  • Beethoven Was an Alien Spy: According to the glyph puzzles, almost every prominent historical figure, from Thomas Edison to Adolf Hitler, were far more than they seemed to be.
  • Benevolent Architecture: Lots and lots and lots of conveniently placed grab points.
  • Big Fancy House:
    • Villa Auditore, the mansion that Ezio uses as his base of operations for most of the game, actually becomes fancier over time as he earns enough money to restore the surrounding town into a thriving economy.
    • You can explore the Palazzo di Medici using the "Templar Locations" variant of the Bonfires of the Vanity DLC; it's pretty damn impressive too (though it's a little bit messy since you visit it during a Templar attack).
    • The Palazzo Ducale in Venice. It is the home of the Doge, after all. Notable in that it lacks the Benevolent Architecture that many other buildings have, making it impossible to enter. Except in Memory 5 of Sequence 8. Or if you use a glitch to climb it.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Naturally. The game takes place in Italy, and though the game is mainly english throughout characters will talk some Italian from time to time. One that stands out is Ezio's uncle Mario saying "Casa, dolce casa" (quite literally home, sweet home) when you get to the Auditore Mansion. The Gratuitous Italian is explained in the Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood as a bug in the Animus 2.0. It should flawlessly translate everything spoken, but it has some translation errors that simply mess things up. According to Rebecca, it's not too bad in Italian, but if you encounter French or German, look out.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Ezio spends twenty years hunting down the conspirators and searching for answers, only to at the end be told to keep quiet while the grown-ups are talking, and he leaves with absolutely no understanding of what transpired in the Vault. Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood picks up literally at the end of this.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: Ezio's hidden blade is significantly upgraded over Altaïr's. For starters, he can use it as a weapon in standard combat; it is however one of the weakest weapons in open combat. Then he gets one on his right arm too so he can stab two guys at once. Late in the game, you get a hidden gun attachment to it, as the intro movie promises. The hidden blades are the only weapon in the game that can counter-kill an enemy regardless of his status, although it's difficult to pull of regularly because the time window for the counter-kill is the shortest of all. And, best of all, this version of the blade no longer requires you to give up a finger to equip it. According to the Codex, all of these were 'granted' to the Order by Altaïr.
  • Body Armor as Hit Points: Better armor = more health.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: Bartolomeo.
  • Book Ends: Once Ezio's story properly starts, the first scene is a fist fight with his biggest rival. His story ends with a fist fist against his mortal enemy.
  • Breakable Weapons: Some kill moves involve Ezio breaking the polearms.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Subverted. During Minerva's exposition, she looks directly at the camera and actually tells Ezio to shut up so she can speak to the one controlling him. Then it turns out she's talking to Desmond.
  • Break the Cutie: In the beginning sections of the game, we get a glimpse into the life Ezio leads. He has a loving family, a carefree and wisecracking personality, and seems to have carved a comfortable niche for himself. All that changes when his father and brothers are accused of treason and executed, while he watches helplessly. Seeing him transform from a charming young man into a revenge-driven assassin is painful to watch, and he just barely manages to avoid becoming no different from his enemies.
  • Broomstick Quarterstaff: Hammer.
  • Bus Crash: Lorenzo de' Medici disappears after Ezio goes to Venice and dies offscreen.
  • Call Back: The 3-episode miniseries Assassin's Creed: Lineage, which takes place before the events of the game, contains many plot points that are later mentioned in the game. Some of these include: the assassination of the Duke of Milan, Giovanni being an Assassin, and the Pope's approval for the destruction of the Medici family.
  • Camera Screw: Thankfully, it's at least possible to set the action camera frequency, but it's still not possible to disable it completely.
  • Catch Phrase:
    • "Requiescat in pace." Said by Ezio as a parting sendoff to all of his targets, preceded by an Italian-language, target-specific line. There's a variant in the final boss fight where he says: "Requiescat in pace, you bastard." Then the boss wakes up. While it's used in both the English and Italian versions, in the Japanese voice track, it's translated (nemure, yasuraka ni).
    • The Templars also have "May the Father of Understanding guide us." As shown much later, it seems like the Templar counterpart to "Nothing is true and everything is permitted."
  • Charged Attack: When bare-handed, Ezio can pick up a handful on sand and blind enemies with it. He can charge his throwing knives during a fight and toss up to three at once. Heavy Weapons can be charged to guard crush enemies and potentially disarm them. Spears can be charged to sweep enemies off of the ground.
  • Chekhov's Gun: There's a sign in the Abstergo parking garage: "Altezza Massima." this foreshadows Desmond's location: Italy, as shown in Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood.
  • Chick Magnet: Ezio.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Seems like Ezio suffers from it as he often agrees straight away to help even before he's properly asked.
    • Sometimes it's more of a guilt trip, like when he changed his mind about fleeing with his mother and sister to Spain and instead agreed to stick around to help Mario whack Vieri de' Pazzi.
  • Clock Punk: Thanks to Leonardo da Vinci, morso in the next game
  • Cluster F-Bomb: Lady Caterina has a very naughty mouth.
  • Comic Book Time: Even though Ezio's sister Claudia should be in her late 30s by the end of the game, she still looks and acts the same as her 15-year-old self from the beginning of the game.
    • The only obvious physical change Ezio undergoes between the ages of 17 and 40 is that he grows his beard a bit. He doesn't become any less physically fit over time either.
  • Command and Conquer Economy: With enough florins saved up, you can order your Architect to renovate your village back into the thriving economy it used to be.
  • Conspicuously Selective Perception:
    • Better about it than the first game: guards are smart enough to flush Ezio out of hiding spots if he hid while just out of sight. Also, guards will recognize Ezio more as the story progresses. You can, however, lower his infamy by tearing down wanted posters, bribing heralds, or ganking corrupt officials (who apparently no one but guards will react to). There are also minstrels, who become really tiring, really quickly. Especially when they travel in packs.
    • The main role of mercenari is to provide a fighting distraction for guards so that you can assassinate them while they're distracted. If you try to assassinate from the front even a 'distracted' guard is likely to block your attempt... but then he'll just turn back to the mercenaries he was fighting, as if you were never there. If the mercenaries started fighting with the guards and you just perform one-hit kills, it doesn't count as combat (this is an important note when trying to get "no-hitter", especially with the 10-Brutes-in-60-seconds mission, as you have to initiate combat by detection or non-fatally attacking the guard yourself before letting the mercenaries take over, for subsequent kills to count).
  • Contract on the Hitman: The subject of at least one of the assassination side missions.
  • Contractual Boss Immunity: When you finally get to fight Rodrigo, he cannot be disarmed or One Hit Killed with the Hidden Blade's counter.
  • Cool Old Guy: You wish you had an uncle as cool as Mario Auditore. Funny, smart and a pretty good mentor.
  • Cosmic Deadline: At the end of Sequence 11, right after Ezio is officially inducted into the Assassins, the Animus somehow glitches up and corrupts Sequences 12 and 13, skipping ahead to the final Sequence 14, which takes place 11 years after Sequence 11 and has Shaun helpfully inform you that Ezio's mortal enemy is now Pope Alexander VI. The broken segments are later "repaired" as DLC: Battle of Forlì, followed by the Bonfire of the Vanities.
  • Counter Attack: Significantly revamped, but the basic function is still present. Some timing windows have changed, and the ability to steal weapons by countering when unarmed has been added.
  • Coup De Grace: Attacking downed enemies while armed is a One-Hit Kill.
  • Critical Annoyance: Same as in the first game, except this time it doesn't make a lick of sense as the health meter now represents actual health.
  • Cruel Mercy: At the end, Ezio spares Rodrigo's life, implying that while killing him won't bring back what Ezio's lost, letting Rodrigo live might be worse, as Ezio has defeated him at his moment of triumph, proved to Rodrigo the he isn't the Prophet he thought he was, and was going to enter the Vault and take what Rodrigo spent his entire life searching for. In that context, it is pretty damn cruel to let him live. On the other hand, he totally effing deserves it. A more subtle complement to this: while Ezio was unconscious, Rodrigo had both the Staff and the Apple, but the Vault did not open for him... yet at the end, it did for Ezio.
  • Curb Stomp Battle: The last boss can become this. Kind of an I'm Going to Hell For This moment, since it's the freakin' Pope!
  • Custom Uniform: It's not clear if the Thieves have a per se uniform or they're all wearing the same kind of outfit for convenience, but Rosa and Antonio clearly don't use the same garb.
  • Cutscene Drop: It doesn't matter if you kill your target by shooting him from afar, throwing him off a roof and/or into the instantly-fatal-to-NPCs water, or slashing him with your sword as you gallop past him on a horse, somehow Ezio always instantly ends up kneeling on the ground with the target dying in his arms. This even happens when an ally specifically tells you to shoot the target.
  • Cutscene Power to the Max: Averted in the Attract Mode video, where the moves shown are indeed usable in gameplay.
  • Damsel in Distress: The sequence where Ezio meets Rosa in Venice follows this pattern when he has to rescue her after she is hit in the leg with an arrow. Being an Action Girl, she's able to limp away a rather considerable distance and fight, with Ezio assisting in a basic Escort Mission. Eventually, she collapses, and Ezio has to carry her in his arms to a gondola to escape.
  • Dangerously Genre Savvy: The Seeker variety of Elite Guard is a step up from The Guards Must Be Crazy, to the point of actually overturning hiding spots.
    • Regular guards may also stab hiding spots that are in areas under investigation, but the Seeker tends to do so even when there's no disturbance.
    • Rodrigo Borgia isn't lacking either, guessing that Ezio is watching him on the mission you are formally introduced to him, and cutting off a typical "we aren't failures like your last minions" speech (trope?) by pointing out that the Pazzis were brought down by one Assassin.
  • Dashed Plotline: Going from one memory to the next involves jumps of several years.
  • Dating Catwoman: Desmond briefly experiences one of Altaïr's memories as a result of the "bleeding effect" that shows both Altaïr and the Templar Maria having fallen in love. You can even find a portrait of Maria drawn by Altaïr as one of the Codex pages.
    • He also realizes that he is a descendant of that one time they did it on top of a tower in Acre, as his memories of Altaïr in that instance end at the moment of conception.
  • Dead Guy on Display: Francesco de Pazzi's body is hung from the Palazzo della Signoria... in his underwear.
  • Death Is a Slap on The Wrist: Justified in the sense that you never die, you just "desynchronize". Nonetheless, there is literally no penalty for desynching. Just that you have to restart whatever memory you may have been playing when it happened.
  • Determinator:
    • Ezio. Borgia stabs him in the stomach after besting him with the Papal Staff, but when Ezio gets back up to challenge him to the fistfight, there is no effect on gameplay. Oddly enough, in the DLC, when Ezio is stabbed in like fashion by a dying Checco Orsi, he goes unconscious and nearly dies.
    • Rosa: she is shot through the leg trying to climb a secure building in Venice. Rosa rolls and runs off, with Ezio following. She actually makes it quite far before finally collapsing.
    • Subverted in Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood. When quizzed by Mario, Ezio claims that the armor of Altaïr blunted Rodrigo's attack. The armor, by the way, is a superstrong, superlight spacemetal forged by the Gods.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: The final boss of Assassin's Creed II is Pope Alexander VI, who by this point has both keys to the Vault, the Apple of Eden and the papal staff -- a.k.a. the Staff of Eden -- and is virtually unstoppable. So, what does Ezio say to him? "Go fuck yourself."
  • Dirty Coward: The "running Templars" you encounter in some of the Assassins' Tombs and Templar Lairs, who are near-impossible to catch just to add insult to injury. Fortunately, all of them except the first (the Basilica di Santa Maria Novella, a story memory) may be replayed.
  • Disappeared Dad: You get to see Giovanni "disappear"... by hanging.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: You can hire Courtesans not only to act as a "mobile crowd" in which you'll blend, but also order them to distract a group of guards, allowing you to slip past them.
  • Doesn't Like Guns: Curiously, the modern Templar guards in the ending scenes all use telescoping batons in trying to capture Desmond and Lucy. Turns out the Templars are mainly trying to give the false impression that they're chasing the Assassins in order to cover up the fact that Lucy is a Templar.
  • Doppleganger Attack: Altaïr apparently shared this knowledge with Ezio through the Codex, since Ezio uses this trope to its fullest when he fights the Pope. It works quite well and even the Pope congratulates him on this trick.
  • Double Entendre: Early in the game, Ezio's mother complains that he needs to find an outlet for self-expression, while Ezio claims he has plenty of outlets. Her response? "I meant besides vaginas."
  • Downloadable Content: Two pieces have been revealed: one named The Battle of Forlì, the other Bonfire of the Vanities. It was widely speculated that these two events were the missing Sequences 12 and 13, which has been confirmed by Ubisoft.
    • There are also several bonus downloadable items depending on what retailer you preordered the game from. This is also Ubisoft's first game to integrate its community-based Uplay system, which lets you gain points ("Units") redeemable towards DLC for certain Uplay-enabled games.
  • DRM: At launch, the PC version required a constant internet connection to play the game. Any interruption in that connection either from the user or Ubisoft's servers would result in the player being kicked out of gameplay. Several months after launch, this was changed and the game only required an Internet check when first starting up.
    • As of Recently, this has been removed, allowing one to play offline without a connection.
  • Drop the Hammer: Ezio can wield a maul or hammer instead of a sword. The counter-kills for these weapons are quite satisfying to watch.
  • Dual-Wielding: Ezio has two hidden blades. Most of the time, they don't operate too differently from Altaïr, but they do allow you to shank two guards at once.
  • Duel Boss: Vieri and Borgia.
    • Can be averted in Vieri's case by throwing knives (if you find the right position to throw them from) or by surprising him (possibly by bumping into him) (at 1:01), but with Borgia the only way to do so is a game-breaking bug (in the sense that you won't be able to complete the memory).
  • Due to the Dead: Ezio pays his respects to all the targets he kills, except for Uberto and Vieri. The first he gives a Bond One-Liner, the second causes him to fly into an Unstoppable Rage until Mario stops him and gives the last rites.
  • Easter Egg:
    • There's a Giant Squid in the Assassin tomb under Santa Maria della Visitazione. Here's a YouTube video showing how to see it.
    • Wait one minute on the first menu (before pressing enter to start) and a short video will play where you use a gun for an assassination.
  • Eleventh-Hour Superpower: In a Shout-Out to Assassin's Creed I's final battle, Ezio's learned a few tricks from that Golden Apple too.
  • Elite Mooks: Brutes, Agiles and Seekers.
    • The Agiles have a habit of dodging most attacks that you make, but if you can force them to block, they'll eventually tire, opening them up for a One-Hit Kill, and as with the beret-wearing regular guards all counter attacks are fatal to them. There's also several "degrees" of regular sword/bludgeon-wielding guard, proportional to the amount of armor they're wearing and the coverage of their helmets.
    • Brutes wear heavy armor that grants them great health and wield powerful heavy weapons.
    • Seekers use spears to flush Ezio out of hiding places.
  • Enemy Civil War: Archers will attack pickpockets and Borgia Couriers if they get onto roofs near enough, even though the Couriers will try to call for the guards to help them. In Bonfire of the Vanities, you will see guards fighting each other, even though they all appear red in Eagle Vision.
  • Even the Guys Want Him: Come on: listen to some of the things the rooftop thieves say about Ezio when he goes past.
    • How about the Mercenary who presides over the Practice Ring in Monterrggioni?

"Such skill... Such grace..."

  • Evil Old Folks: Some of the Templars.
  • Evil Sorcerer: Pope Alexander VI a.k.a. Rodrigo Borgia, Templar Grand Master can be considered this when he fights Ezio.
  • The Evils of Free Will: To permanently secure their domain over the world, the Templars plan to launch a satellite with a Piece of Eden onboard, which will apparently allow them to mass hypnotize the entire planet. Even better? The date that the satellite will be launched is December 21, 2012 (the end of the Mayan Calender); this was hinted at in emails in the first game and some of the symbols that Subject 16 drew, and it's confirmed in the second game.
  • Exclusive Enemy Equipment: Longswords, axes and polearms.
  • Executive Meddling: Great, so if we want to play the PC version, we need to have an active Internet connection... Nice Job Breaking It, Ubisoft.
    • Whoever was responsible for removing the ability to replay story missions (in Assassin's Creed I) from Assassin's Creed II. Fortunately, this has returned in Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood.
  • Eye Scream: One of the Hidden Blade counter attacks consists of Ezio shoving both of the hidden blades into his enemy's eyes.
    • There is also another one where when you counter a polearm guard while using a polearm, Ezio flourish-twirls the spear right into the guard's eye.
  • Fashionable Asymmetry: Ezio's assassin outfit has several examples, though they're not at Final Fantasy levels of dramatic. One hand gloved, one bare. Half-cape over one shoulder. Once you have the piece, an armored spaulder/pauldron goes over the other. Lastly, and this can be easy to miss, Ezio's left hand hidden blade has a white-silver finish, whereas his right hand blade has a black finish.
  • Fisticuffs Boss: It ends like this. Yes, you and the Pope fight with bare hands.
  • Fling a Light Into the Future: Desmond Miles was the key figure in a scheme by an advanced species that communicated a warning to him through Ezio Auditore as he inhabited the body of his ancestor via the Animus 2.0. Needless to say, this caused Desmond to exclaim "What. The. Fuck?!"
  • Fluorescent Footprints: Available using Eagle Vision.
  • For Doom the Bell Tolls: In the Attract Mode video, after the second target is shot, there is a beat, then a bell sounds as he falls over dead.
  • Foreshadowing: Lots. In particular, plenty of the paintings Ezio can buy and display in Mario's villa foreshadow Human/Those Who Came Before couplings, and the Assassins' true nature.
  • Fourth Wall Psych: In in the final cutscene of the game, Minerva begins her monologue talking to Ezio, but turns to stare into the camera a few sentences in. When Ezio expresses his profound confusion, she tells him that she's not talking to him and continues to talk to the camera, despite his protests that there's no one else there. It isn't until the end of the cutscene that she confirms she's addressing future Desmond and friends.
  • Fragile Speedster: Agiles and thieves.
  • Generation Xerox: Averted, for the most part, but Desmond has a scar on his face that exactly matches Ezio's scar that he receives in the beginning of the game. Whether this is a natural scar, or from the "bleeding effect" of the Animus is unknown.
  • Genre Savvy: Rodrigo Borgia seems to be the only one able to see an Assassin in broad daylight and in his fight with Ezio, after being knocked down, he simply uses his powers to restrain and stab Ezio rather than engage him again.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: Altaïr noted in the Codex that many would-be Assassins could not accept the Badass Creed and broke in the face of it.
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: The Beat-Up missions have you going around getting into fistfights with adulterous husbands. Additionally, attempting to steal from men more than once will provoke them to carry out a little street justice themselves... even the monks want a piece of you! Like the Hidden Blade, unarmed fighting has also been upgraded; Ezio can block, after a fashion - it's more like automatic dodging - and counter in unarmed combat now, as well as disarm enemies.
    • This is Ezio's only combat mode throughout his pre-Assassin life, although it's not til his training at Monteriggioni that he learns to disarm. Later on, during the contests for the Golden Mask, he's supposed to stick to unarmed fighting... though, when the last set of enemies bring weapons into the pit, you're allowed to use your own with no penalty. And of course, the final fight with Pope Alexander VI.
  • Good People Have Good Sex: Ezio is quite the ladies' man. As we later learn, so does Altaïr.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: When Ezio's little brother is hanged, the body ends up below the platform hiding it. His father and older brother don't have the same luck.
  • Gotta Catch Them All: Like the first game, there are a number of collectibles, like feathers, paintings, Assassin Seals, etc. Unlike the first game, collecting all of these will net you actual benefits (the paintings spruce up Monteriggioni, the Seals unlock Altaïr's armor, 50 and 100 Feathers unlock the Condittiero hammer and Auditore Cape respectively... and all of these mean more in-game revenue and a higher uncollected income maximum).
    • In-universe, they're all required for "100% synchronization" with Ezio, as are the DLC Sequences 12 and 13.
  • Gratuitous Italian: Almost every other sentence is Italian. Thankfully, the game gave you a subtitles option to figure out just what the heck the characters are saying. In an optional cutscene, Desmond even thanks Rebecca for the Animus 2.0 having subtitles!
    • Penny Arcade pokes a bit of fun at this in this strip...
    • The foreign dubs (particularly the French dub) aren't quite as bad about this, but they'll occasionally throw in a word or two of unsubtitled Italian every so often, provided the Italian word is close to the original word.
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy: Different kinds of guards react differently to Ezio when searching for him; polearm-carrying guards ("Seekers") will poke their weapons into stacks of hay looking for him. However, Ezio will relatively early on learn to make kills from hiding spots.
  • Guide Dang It: The answers of Subject 16's glyph puzzles can sometimes cross into this, as Shaun's advice becomes less and less helpful throughout, climaxing with Puzzle 20 where he outright admits to having no clue, even though it's explicitly declared on-screen. Another Guide Dang It comes from the fact that while you get helpful maps showing every one of the hundreds of treasure chests in the city, updated in real-time (each opened treasure chest's icon disappears from the map), there's no such option for the ultimately more important feathers, considering what you get out of collecting them all.
  • Hammerspace Hideaway: The haystacks can apparently hold an unlimited number of corpses, their weapons, and still have room for Ezio to hide in.
  • A Handful for an Eye: One of the combat techniques Ezio can learn from Mario is a special attack for his Fists, where Ezio picks up quite a lot of sand and throws it at his opponent, disorienting them (as with the Smoke Bomb). If he attacks right afterward, he will instantly finish the opponent off.
  • Handsome Lech: Ezio.
  • Healing Potion: The sequel dispenses with the 'sync' thing of the first game and gives us a regular health meter that doesn't fully replenish on its own. Cue little vials of a miraculous healing concoction. The change from the first game is implied to be a result of the Animus 2.0's superiority over the original Animus.
  • Highly-Visible Ninja: Ezio is possibly a bigger offender when it come to this than Altaïr. In Altaïr's time, the bright white assassin robe at least had the perk that it was reminiscent of the one the local scholars wore, which made masquerading as one or hiding amongst a group of them possible. Ezio on the other hand has no such excuse, but unlike Altaïr, he has the option of changing the robe's color to a more camouflage-friendly one. Interestingly, his father Giovanni apparently kept the robe in its white default color, making him qualify for the trope as well. Note that this does tie into gameplay: if Ezio passes into line of sight of a guard in an area he shouldn't be in, they spot him right away. If the guards are on high alert, they'll also spot Ezio if he's walking down the street without using crowds, picking him out based on his flashy clothes.
  • Historical Hero Upgrade: Lorenzo de'Medici was a lot more ambiguous in reality. It says a lot about Renaissance Italy that Lorenzo can be the good guy partly by virtue of only hiring one contract killer. One of the reasons for the in-game database may be to let players know how historically accurate that is.
  • Historical Villain Upgrade:
    • Although Rodrigo Borgia (a.k.a. Pope Alexander VI) was a corrupt, despicable man in real life, his villainy (and, likely, his manipulative skills) are ratcheted up for Assassin's Creed II.
    • Henry Ford goes from the garden-variety anti-Semite that he was in real life to a lunatic who gave Piece of Eden 4 to Hitler specifically to start World War II, and who considered the Holocaust to be a good thing! And he isn't even a character outside of the Backstory!
    • Thomas Edison's... contention with Nikola Tesla is given a Templar flavor when he conspires with J.P. Morgan to prevent Tesla from providing free electricity as well as a worldwide network that would provide free information. Tesla's Assassin-suggested revenge: The Tunguska Event. (though the explosion in this case was from destroying a Piece of Eden).
    • Savonarola in the Bonfire of the Vanities DLC. Granted, having countless Renaissance paintings and sculptures thrown into a fire because you find them indecent is a bit of a dick move. But people forget that Savonarola's denouncements of such priceless artworks were very popular at the time, mainly because the continued patronage of fancy artwork by wealthy Italian families began to seem like a mocking gesture as poverty, plague, and other miseries continued to climb in Italy. He's definitely extreme, but probably had good intentions, and he certainly wasn't the conniving maniacal bastard he is in the game (in fairness, the Assassin's Creed team aren't the first ones to portray him that way).
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Ezio can disarm guards and kill them with their own weapons immediately afterwards.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: The Courtesans work for a brothel whose "mother" is on Ezio's family's side. Ezio can hire them to follow him as a "mobile crowd", and distract guards. The mothers Paola and Theodora are both Assassins.
  • I Call It Vera:
    • Bartolomeo's massive sword Bianca.
    • Meanwhile with the Assassins, Rebecca refers to the Animus 2.0 as Baby.
  • I Know Mortal Kombat: Desmond obtains all the skills of Ezio by playing through a simulation of his memories, leading to a 'bleeding effect' that causes them to be assimilated into his own mind... along with other things.
  • Impossibly Cool Clothes: Assassin's robes became memetic for badassness.
  • Improvised Weapon: When Ezio busts Bartolomeo out of jail, the latter initially uses a broom as a weapon and beats the hell out of a bunch of guards in the process. Ezio himself can pick up brooms, farming implements, fishing poles etc. and use them like bludgeons.
  • In-Universe Game Clock: Includes a day/night cycle which affects things like guards' shift positions. On a more literal note, the game slips surprisingly quickly from 1476 to 1499.
  • Inevitable Tournament: Venice's Carnivale, featuring an unarmed-fighting event, stealing ribbons from pretty ladies, and... um... Capture the Flag. Played with in two ways: first, Ezio willingly enters the tournament as part of a Batman Gambit arranged by the local Hooker with a Heart of Gold to get a pass to a party arranged by his target; and secondly, although Ezio wins the contests the Carnivale organizers are paid off to rig the final results anyway in favor of a guy that Ezio had beaten in public as part of the fighting tournament and defeating a bunch of guards who'd entered with weapons. Fortunately, afterward, you're then given a mission to steal the golden mask from the "winner" while he's distracted.
  • Inexplicable Treasure Chests: Loads of them. You can even buy maps that lead to these treasure chests. In addition, there are guards scattered around with nothing better to do than to protect a chest by a hay pile outside of town all day.
  • Infant Immortality: Averted. Ezio's kid brother Petruccio, who has to be only ten or eleven years old, is hanged alongside his father in the mission "Last Man Standing".
    • Shaun, whilst informing you about one of your assassination targets, recounts the time that the man, in order to stop a prominent family's plot against him, invited the entire family, including their children, to an Easter celebration, then had the children shot whilst their parents watched.
  • Infinity+1 Sword:
    • The Sword of Altaïr, which has maxed-out ratings in all three weapon stats. Interestingly, it's one of the least ostentatious-looking weapons you can have (though the eagle's head pommel is a neat touch) and is actually shorter than some of the other longswords, despite its status as top blade. It's also apparently manufactured in large quantities by blacksmiths, since you have to buy the historically ancient blade.
    • Altaïr's armor is also the best in Assassin's Creed II, with only the Missaglias Vambraces having any advantage (3 Health to the Vambraces of Altaïr's 2 Health). While all four pieces have to be worn together, at 8 Resistance they never break (hence saving florins) and grant a whopping 15 Health, three times what Ezio started with.
    • The Hidden Blade is effectively one solely for the guaranteed fatal Counter Kills irrespective of enemy Health.
  • Ink Suit Actor: Thanks to Assassin's Creed: Lineage, which uses some of the VAs to live act their game roles, you can see that a lot of characters are modeled after their live-action actors.
  • Instant Expert: The purpose of letting Desmond relive Ezio's life is to gain the latter's skills. Ezio himself takes to the Hidden Blade very quickly, though he could possibly have had weapons training in the past for the other weapon types and the training with Paola and Mario has a montage flavor to it that Renaissance confirms.
  • Insurmountable Waist High Fence:
    • In The Stinger, Vidic stands in an open semi trailer and mocks you while you fight his Mooks. You can let Lucy handle the mooks and head straight for Vidic, but you can't get onto the truck, and it drives off when the mooks are defeated. Then Lucy tells you to just let him go.
    • While Assassin's Creed II is incredibly open world, there will be areas rendered unavailable during certain memories such as missions, and at points in the story certain districts won't be available to reach yet; staying too long in them will cause desynchronization with Ezio.
    • In the countryside areas of the game: there are hills surrounding all the edges of the map that act as literal versions of this.
    • Considering Ezio can scale sheer walls roughly twice his height with very little effort, insurmountable waist high fences are very rare, but very jarring when they appear. The guardrail on top of the Duomo in Florence is an example, and it comes to bite the player in the Bonfire of the Vanities.
  • Internal Homage: In Bonfire of the Vanities, you have to kill nine subordinates of the current villain who has the Apple before you can vanquish him. Sound familiar?
  • In the Back: If Ezio attacks an enemy from behind while the enemy fighting another opponent, he instantly kills them, usually by grabbing them and cutting their throats, running them through, or by playing Whack-A-Mole with their skulls using a hammer. In fact, the main use of the mercenaries is to provide said distractions.
    • If Ezio uses the Poison Blade on a target from behind, he lightly stabs the target in the back, injecting the poison. The advantage over the Hidden Blade is that no one will notice, and the target's subsequent descent into madness followed by death is a complete mystery to everyone else, who will only watch helplessly.
  • In the Past Everyone Will Be Famous: Taken Up to Eleven. Seriously. Ezio can't go for more than ten minutes without coming face-to-face with some important historical figure.
  • It's Always Mardi Gras in New Orleans: After participating in the Inevitable Tournament missions, a section of Venetia will be constantly celebrating Carnivale for the rest of the game. Even ten years after the plot begins.
    • A straighter version of this trope is when you get the DLC pack that allows you to play through the Bonfire of the Vanities. After you kill the major villain, you can still go into that new section of Florence and people will still be burning stuff.
  • It Will Never Catch On: Ezio suggests to Antonio that he add milk or sugar to his café. Antonio scoffs, suggesting that coffee is simply an acquired taste. In another mission, dock workers complain about the ruling class importing an expensive powder from China, for fireworks.
  • Jerkass: Shaun Hastings, one of your handlers in the sequel.
  • Justified Tutorial: The first third of the game is one big long one for Ezio. We're introduced to him during a street fight; right after we're introduced to looting enemies for pocket change, with which to pay doctors for medicine (another new gameplay mechanic). Climbing rooftops and delivery missions for Ezio's family flesh out Ezio's life as well as refamiliarizing the players with his free-running and climbing abilities. Screwing up at the gallows scene introduces us to the concept of "hide or die," and is shortly afterwards supplanted with the courtesans teaching Ezio and the player with how to hide in plain sight by blending in with the crowd. Killing the Pazzi thugs near Leonardo's studio teaches us how to hide bodies by moving them around. Finally, getting our hidden blade shows us how we can use it to actually perform an assassination mission.
  • Just One Man: Desmond claims that this is the reason he has no chance of fighting back against the Templars, but Lucy hits him back with: "Sometimes that's all you need." You'd think he'd have learned what one man is capable of after what happened in the first game.
  • Karma Houdini: Neither the guard who pulled the lever at the gallows nor those who assaulted Ezio's mother are ever shown as suffering any negative consequences, nor does Ezio target them personally for those acts... though those guards may have been among those he killed along the way.
  • Kick Them While They Are Down
  • Knight Templar: Guess who.
  • Lampshade Hanging:
    • The sequel on the first game, no less! When Ezio kills one of his early targets and demands to know what he is up to before he dies, his target replies: "I'm sorry, were you expecting a confession?" Then he promptly dies, causing Ezio to angrily spout curses at him.
    • Also, in the instruction manual, above the control scheme for swimming is this: Lucy - Make sure to fix that annoying bug in the Animus 1.0 software which prevents ancestors from swimming!
    • There's also the aforementioned conversation with Rebecca where Desmond notes his appreciation for the subtitles; the first game lacked subtitles completely.
    • And there's a mission where Ezio has to assassinate his target, who is in a monastery filled with his personal guards, who are disguised as monks. The name of the mission is "the cowl does not make the monk." Gee, I wonder what that's a reference to?
  • Large Ham: The civilians, especially if you kill a guard nearby them.

Civilian: (Ezio kills a nearby guard) The Lord is my shepherd! THE LORD IS MY SHEPHERD!!!

    • Bartolomeo. Seriously, just listen to his increasingly gruesome and hilarious rants while locked up in the jail cell.

(I swear when I get out of here I will SEVER ALL of your FUCKING heads and SHOVE them up your asses)! And do not think I will be matching heads to asses! It will be glorious, and they will sing of it for YEARS to come!

    • Also Caterina Sforza in the DLC. Try listening to her complete tirade, it involves tempting enemy soldiers to come over to her and try to grab her breasts so she can kick them in their balls so hard they'll fly out of their nostrils.
  • Legacy Character: The second installment adds Ezio to Altaïr's line, along with Desmond. Both of whom are full-fledged Assassins by the end of the game (or at least in Desmond's case, close to getting there).
  • Leitmotif:
    • Take a good listen to that riff that plays when Ezio and Frederico are on top of that church: you'll be hearing it a couple more times throughout the game.
    • There's also a riff that could be considered the "Assassin's leitmotif". Remember the choir that sang in the Masyaf background music for the first game? You hear that same choir singing in the San Gimignano BGM and when Ezio is officially branded.
    • Not to mention the tune sung by the female singer in a lot of the background music. This same tune is played on a cello in the main section of Rome in Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood.
  • Le Parkour: Strangely, the Assassin technique seems to have spread among the young men of Italy: the heralds warn against the Italian youth engaging in Roof Hopping, implying that they're proficient at this to an extent. The thieves are even better.
  • Lethal Joke Item: You see those brooms citizens might occasionally sweep the floor with? Those are apparently made with metal wires because they animate, sound and hit to just like reskinned maces. It becomes hilarious when Ezio walks away from a group of dead guardsmen holding only a bloody broom in one hand.
  • Lighter and Softer: Instead of Altaïr, the serious master assassin from the first game, the player controls Ezio, a happy and playful nobleman in Florence. Well, happy and playful initially, at least.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Ezio wears the same robes for over twenty years, though you can dye it different colors by visiting tailor shops.
  • Living Legend: By the end of the game, Ezio is famous among the assassins, and terrifying to the templars.
  • Losing the Team Spirit: The death of Giovanni, Ezio's father. In terms of gameplay, killing a high ranking guard or lots of guards quickly may cause the other guards to rout. Also, aiming the pistol at someone for long enough will cause this.
  • Lost in a Crowd: Ezio being able to hide in any sufficiently large crowd of people (sufficiently large being about 4 or so). In place of the priests ("Scholars") from Assassin's Creed, Ezio can hire some... Courtesans to follow him as a mobile safepoint directed by him. People not noticing Ezio in that particular crowd is easier explained.
  • Lovable Rogue: Ezio. Especially in his younger years, though he never completely loses the charm.
  • Mama Bear: Caterina Sforza. Her daughter Bianca is a Sister Bear towards Ottaviano, her little brother.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Rodrigo Borgia.
  • Marked Bullet: The bullets Ezio uses for his hidden gun are marked with the Assassin symbol.
  • Master Swordsman: Ezio appears to be this, which is lampshaded by Francesco de' Pazzi while fighting his guards. He's even better by the time he went to the Vatican, though due to the gameplay limitations of Assassin's Creed II combat, this isn't revealed until Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood. While he isn't able to perform "sub-weapon" attacks at the beginning of Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, Ezio had by that time learned to perform kill streaks.
  • Meaningful Name: Aside from many of the characters, the mission names themselves are mostly modern (or at least, younger than the Renaissance) slang that reflect the theme of each mission; for example, "Boys Will Be Boys" for a gang fight between the Auditores and the Pazzis; a mission where you ferry letters from one man to two courtesans is called "Casanova"; a fight against a large group of enemies is called "Last Man Standing"; and another letter-delivery mission is called "Paperboy". And that's just in the first hour or so of the game!
    • "Ezio" is an Italian name that comes from the Greek word for "eagle". Ezio's last name is "Auditore"; an auditor is a bookkeeper; the Auditores are bankers.
  • Mercy Kill: Ezio gets to do this to Jacopo de'Pazzi after Rodrigo gives him severe wounds, as well as to Savonarola who is being burned alive by angry Florentines.

Savonarola: Please, show mercy.
Ezio: I did.

  • Mighty Glacier: Brutes and mercenaries.
  • Mind Screw: There's a reason why Desmond's last words in the game are "What... the... fuck?". In addition, the Dream Sequence mentioned in Narm, below, sees you apparently playing as one of Altaïr's sperm.
  • Money for Nothing: Perhaps a lampshaded example. When the game begins, Ezio is Rich in Dollars, Poor In Sense, regularly emptying his wallet on booze and whores. (He'd never call that a waste!) Of course, you jumped into his life less than a day before it went to hell; the local magistrate frames and executes his family, for which he ends up as Ezio's first assassination. After that He Can't Go Home Again, eventually settling in a broken-down slum. Here's the lampshade: keep up that behavior, and you'll spend the rest of the game -- and the next two decades of his life -- in Perpetual Poverty. Invest in turning that slum into something respectable, and you'll soon have cash coming out of your ears. Eventually, revenue goes up way higher than costs, and other than broken armor there are no maintenance costs, meaning that near endgame having over 100,000 florins (when heals cost 50 florins) to Ezio's name is the norm.
  • More Than Mind Control: Experienced by most of Savonarola's lieutenants.
  • Motive Decay:
    • Compared to the Templars of the previous games who (with only a couple of exceptions) were for the most part people who demonstrated (or satisfactorily explained) their intent of working towards the greater good of the people ala transforming the Holy Land into a state straight out of Thomas Hobbes' Leviathan, with many a reference to the "state of nature" and what not, the Templars in Assassin's Creed II for most part tend to come off as selfish dicks who are more interested in their twisted vices than the overall Templar goal of bringing about peace by stripping humanity of their free will and only see allegiance to the Templar order as a means of getting what they want. This is likely intentional on the part of the writers, who probably wanted to show the decaying effect an excess of power has on an organization, even one that has such reputably lofty goals as the Templars. It is worth noting that in the first game, there were also Templars who also used their power primarily for personal gain (i.e. Tamir, Majd Uddin and Abun Nakoud). A couple of the Templars in the second game are also decent people: Ulberto Umberti comes off as a scheming killer out for revenge in Shaun's notes, but his letter to his wife indicates he only betrayed Giovanni because of fears for his family's safety. Dante Moro was little more than a victim of circumstance and the scheming of his superior.
    • The Motive Decay appears to be part of a general theme in the second game; in the first, both factions had very different methodologies but also remained fundamentally noble. In the second, however, while both groups have the outward trappings of nobility, both sides have actually decayed in their own ways. The Assassins' allies range from the corrupt (the Medici) to the brutal (Caterina Sforza) to the inept (the Barbarigo who controls Venice once the Templars are driven out). The Assassins freely utilize and associate with the dregs of Italian society: mercenaries, thieves and prostitutes. Its subtle, but the Assassins over time have decayed much like the Templars.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Ezio, and possibly Leonardo.
  • Munchkin: As noted on that page's quote. Ezio lives in Renaissance Italy, and by the end of the game is armed with: a dozen unblockable throwing knives, two wrist blades that can deflect almost any close-range attack or (with good timing) counter-One-Hit Kill any Mook, a pistol, several doses of poison, armor made of a very light and strong metal that humans wouldn't have invented on our own, and at one point, he ends up flying around on a hang glider, punting guards off of rooftops. Also, he can jump some six feet straight up while hanging from walls... while wearing armor and carrying weapons and coins.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Some of Savonarola's lieutenants say things to this effect when Ezio gets to them. This is Subverted by the Merchant, who asks this very question then uses his last breaths to convince himself he was right anyway.
  • Naughty Nuns: Sister Teodora and her ahem congregation.
  • Nice Hat: Lots of Italians wear hats. The lowest-ranking guards have berets.
  • No-Gear Level: After the execution of Giovanni, Frederico and Petruccio, a Brute disarms Ezio, forcing him to run for it. You don't get the Hidden Blade for a while, and a permanent sword even later.
  • Nostalgia Level The flashback where you play as Altair has you traversing the rooftops of Acre, specifically the citadel where William of Montferrat was assassinated.
  • No Such Thing as Wizard Jesus: Averted. It's heavily implied that numerous prophets throughout history, Jesus included, were in fact the survivors of an advanced race similar or Precursors to humans. Altaïr speculates that such prophets wielded real power, not just illusions from pieces of Eden. It's also explicitly shown that humanity was created as a servant race for these Precursors, forming the basis for most of the world's creation myths, including the Book of Genesis.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Subverted with the Assassins' improved Animus 2.0, as everyone has an Italian accent.
  • Not So Different: Ezio's first mark throws this excuse at him: "You would have done the same, to save those you loved." Ezio's response is "Yes. I would. And I have." Ezio's later marks usually don't bother to defend themselves, likely in response to complaints about the speeches in the first game.
  • Not Worth Killing: Ezio eventually decides this about Borgia.
  • The Obi-Wan: Mario Auditore.
  • Of Corsets Sexy: Caterina.
  • Offhand Backhand: Press the Weapon Hand button when prompted during the cutscene where Ezio faces down Rodrigo Borgia in Venice, and he'll do this to a pair of mooks with his Hidden Blades, without so much as taking an eye off his target. Similarly, this is one of his low-profile double Hidden Blade assassinations, standing between his two targets and stabs them both in the face while staring straight ahead.
  • Offstage Villainy: All of the major villains get a short cutscene detailing who they are and why we should hate them. Then they come onstage and do their best to act as despicably as possible.
  • Older Is Better: Altaïr's Armor and sword.
  • Older Than They Look: Although Ezio appears to age over the course of the game, mostly due to facial hair, his uncle, mother and sister appear and largely act the same even 23 years later.
  • One-Woman Wail: Present in a lot of the soundtrack, most noticeably the title sequence.
  • One Mario Limit: Averted for the most part with Mario Auditore, one of the prinicpal characters of the game who mainly has nothing to do with that other Mario, but the game can't help providing a Shout-Out, as in his first scene, Mario cheerfully introduces himself with "It's-a me, Mario!".
  • Only Smart People May Pass: Subject 16's "The Truth" puzzles, especially the last few.
  • Panty Shot: Given by Caterina Sforza in Sequence 12.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: During Carnevale, Ezio wears a little mask to disguise himself. It works surprisingly well, given that he's wearing it under his hood. That is to say, the hood of his distinctive Assassin's Robes, which he continues to wear. Even during the rest of the game, this applies just because of him being able to be Incognito despite wearing the Assassin's Robes -- a.k.a. the very robes he had been wearing at his father and brothers' execution -- in public.
  • Perfect Poison: Ezio eventually acquires poison that he holds in a hollow section of a Hidden Blade. This likely means he transfers the poison to his target by a cut or prick (the in-game animation is a subtle poke). The poison acts so quickly that the target doesn't even have time to realize that he's been poked with a sharp object before it takes effect.
  • Point of No Return: At the start of Memory Sequence 14, after finding and putting together the Codex, you'll be given a choice to travel to Rome. Once you do, you won't be able to go any other part of the game until after you finish the story by defeating Rodrigo Borgia and entering the Vault.
  • Plot Lock:
    • Throwing knives are disabled for at least one of the catacomb chase sequences.
    • You also can't grab on to Rodrigo Borgia if you enable your sword because doing so would give you the option to kill him way before you're supposed to.
    • You aren't allowed to brandish any weapons in the fighting ring in Venice.
  • Posthumous Character: Technically, all of Those Who Came Before. By the time the very first Assassin's Creed game rolled around, their race was extinct.
  • Power Fist: You can buy a Metal Cestus for Ezio. It only goes on one hand, oddly enough, and can never be unequipped.
  • Practical Taunt: The taunting action makes an opponent attack sooner, so you don't have to wait as long to counter the attack.
  • Precision F-Strike: Although the F-bomb is dropped several times throughout the game, there are several points where it truly serves to accentuate the scene:
    • In the beginning, Lucy yells at Desmond to "Shut the fuck up!" during their escape.
    • Ezio tells the final boss, Pope Alexander VI, the most powerful man in Italy and the entire Catholic religion, to "Go fuck yourself." Talk about balls of steel.
    • The last line in the game before the credits roll and The Stinger occurs is "What. The. Fuck". Desmond adequately sums up what's probably running through the gamer's mind or being spoken at the time.
  • Precursors: The plot reveals them to be a humanoid-like race that created humanity "in their own image" thousands of years in the past. The humanoids fought a war against the early humans, and were defeated thanks to the sheer number of humans there was. Both races, however, were devastated by a apocalyptic event, but humans came up on top. Gods in all world religions are actually distorted historical truth about these humanoids.
  • Press X to Not Die: Present, but much more merciful than most: the windows are not as tiny as normal and failure is not critical. They also tend to show up not just as a means of ensuring that the player is paying attention to not being dead, but to accomplish more mundane actions. Like taking off a young lady's dress. "Free Hand" indeed.
  • Prodigal Hero: Ezio must flee Florence when his father and brothers are killed. He goes to his uncle's villa, learns to be an Assassin, and returns to Florence to investigate the conspiracy.
  • Public Domain Artifact: A number of them, including the Shroud of Turin, Excalibur and the Papal Staff, are actually Pieces of Eden.
  • Punch Clock Villain: The game sometimes shows guards to be normal people whose only offence is being on the wrong side. Ezio notes this in the mission where you track down Jacopo de'Pazzi.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!:
  • Random Encounters: Pickpockets and Borgia couriers. There are also several guards scattered throughout the various cities, who will attack you if you're infamous enough.
  • Rape as Drama: It's heavily implied that the men who came to arrest Ezio's father and brothers tried to rape Ezio's mother, who fought back. When Ezio finds her again, she is unable to speak and in a state of shock.
  • Rasputinian Death:
    • The elderly, apparently physically frail Jacopo de' Pazzi is stabbed four times: twice in the chest, once through the neck, and once more in the neck/head by Ezio to "finish him off". He is still alive as Ezio administers final rites.
    • Francesco de' Pazzi and Bernardo di Bandino Baroncelli stab Giuliano de Medici 19 times. Which actually happened, according to The Other Wiki.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: When including Assassin's Creed II on its list on the top 10 games of 2009, TIME criticized how the voice acting was a cheesy attempt at sounding Italian. Many of the game's voice actors actually are Italian, and the ones who weren't were coached by Italians to ensure authenticity (and unlike other North American games that may have only English, French and Spanish voice options, there's an Italian voice language option).
  • Rearing Horse
  • Red Herring: Forlì pre-/without DLC. With feathers and side-missions, it looks to be important, but nothing comes of it.
  • Regenerating Health: Ezio can only regenerate his last health square. Luckily, the player can buy medicine from doctors around Italy.
  • The Renaissance
  • Ridiculously-Fast Construction: As soon as you buy the property in the village, it's instantly upgraded by the time you walk out the door.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Take a guess. Though he starts to roar less as time goes on, having spent most of his fury on the guy who directly executed his family. He's actually tired of revenge by the end of things.
  • Rule of Cool: In addition to stabbing guards in the back of the face still being fun, Ezio's hidden blades don't seem to have any mechanism to deploy them. They just magically come out when he flicks his wrists (while a Hidden Blade prop was made for the Assassin's Creed: Lineage short movie, there's no official word as to how the prop blade was actually deployed, and there are varying designs on YouTube).
    • If employing the bonus Altaïr costume, the second hidden blade is there without even being visible at all.
  • Running Gag:
    • Duccio de Luca recieving a beating from Ezio for badmouthing his sister in both Assassin's Creed II and Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood.
    • In Assassin's Creed: Revelations, after being interrupted during his attempts to hit on Sofia, his reaction to discovering Ezio is standing right behind him is to freak out and run for his life while screaming that Ezio is the devil.
  • Scenery Porn: The view of Italian Renaissance cities from viewpoints is to die for.
  • Second-Hour Superpower:
    • You don't actually gain the Hidden Blade for Ezio until some way in.
    • Ezio doesn't get some of his best combat moves, like disarming, until training with Mario during Sequence 3.
  • Second Love: Maria for Altaïr.
  • Sequel Episode: To Assassin's Creed.
  • Sequel Hook: The second game ends with Desmond and the other Assassins on the run from the Templars, trying to digest what they learned from the Vault.
  • Sexy Discretion Shot: When Desmond experiences one of Altaïr's memories as a result of the "bleeding effect", it shows Altaïr meeting the Templar Maria on a tower. Rather than him trying to kill her like Desmond thought (since Templars and Assassins are enemies), Maria instead makes a "come here, you" motion to Altaïr, who walks right up to her and kisses her straight on the mouth with her embracing it, revealing they had been in a relationship. The scene then fades away and the next one we see, is of Altaïr and Maria cuddling in the hay (clothed), after having "done the deed". Not long after it is revealed that this was actually the conception of one of Altaïr's descendants.
    • Near the beginning of the game, Ezio pays a visit to his girlfriend at the time. After some kissing, Ezio begins to slip her dress off (or not, if you miss the quicktime event) and they fall over onto the bed. The last action you perform is blowing out a candle.
  • Shout-Out:
    • A little bit into the game, Ezio's uncle Mario cheerfully introduces himself with "It's-a me! Mario!".
    • Also, sometimes, a civilian who sees you free-running will remark, "Another capering crusader. Che idiota." in a bored tone, apparently referencing the fact that many fans 'felt like Batman' playing the first game. On top of that, Rosa comes up to Ezio in one cinematic and asks him: "Why so serious?"
    • On top of that, if you knock an Italian man onto the ground, he may go "Oh no! Dinner is a-ruined-a!", a reference to the "Thumb" series of films by Steve Oedekerk (otherwise known for Kung Pow and, to a lesser extent, Jimmy Neutron), several of which feature a random Italian man who gets knocked down and laments the loss of dinner.
    • After you complete the first catacomb, wherein you are shown a series of platforms/ledges/jumps in a cinematic and then expected to travel the demonstrated pathway, you find the first Assassin tomb. It happens to be Darius, who assassinated the King of Persia.
    • Due to the nature of Shout Outs, you rarely see one that's a reference to a later work, but... There's an assassination contract in Forlì called "Mark and Execute". This game, released in November 2009, was developed by Ubisoft Montreal: the same company that developed Splinter Cell: Conviction, which was released just 5 months later.
    • There's at least one Venetian during Carnevale who's dressed uncannily similar to Superman.
    • To get the Achievement called "Perfect Harmony", you must first dye your outfit with the Wetlands Ebony style, then dye it with the Wetlands Ivory style - a reference to the Paul McCartney/Stevie Wonder duet "Ebony and Ivory", which contains the chorus "Ebony, Ivory, living in perfect harmony".
  • Shown Their Work: The sequel contains a "database" of sorts, with blurbs of information on important people in Ezio's life and noteworthy places in the various cities. It's not necessary to know or view these tidbits. It looks like the game developers almost went out of their way to research and include them. The database is a cool feature with more than a few funny and/or snarky anecdotes.
    • The layouts of the city are also well researched and are practically identical to their real-life counterparts, albeit with changes that occurred afterward which are sometimes noted (for example, the Sistine Chapel doesn't look like its modern incarnation because you get there before it took on its iconic appearance).
    • A few oddities still pop up (such as the schiavona, which is indeed an Italian sword... from the 17th century), but many of the weapons are period-correct. Weaponry in the late 1400s was much the same as it was in the medieval period, just with a bit more ornamentation. Not just the schiavonna, but all of the swords with swept hilts are anachronistic for the 15th century, as compound hilts became fully developed during the Baroque period. The falchions in the game represent a better example of what fully developed hilts looked like in Ezio's time, with improvements like finger rings and knuckle guards.
    • The plot itself, while obviously taking liberties on historical events of the era, nevertheless faithfully recreates many important events of Renaissance Italy's history, such as the Bonfire of the Vanities. It also effectively captures the cloak-and-dagger politics of the era: assassination and conspiracy were very much a part of Italy's political system during the era.
    • One of the few acceptable roles for a woman of Claudia's age during the Renaissance was to maintain the books of their home.
  • Shrouded in Myth: La Volpe.
  • Sigil Spam: Not only is the Assassin's logo prominently displayed on Ezio's belt and bracers and bullets, but there's a giant version of it etched in stone on Mario's villa. After you pay for repairs, it appears on the flags around town. An enormous version also appears in a couple of Assassin's Tombs. The Templars show more restraint, typically limiting themselves to a pendant or ring, though modern-day Abstergo has a thing for crosses in their architecture.
  • Sinister Minister: Savonarola.
  • Slap Slap Kiss: Ezio and Rosa show elements of this, though there's no on-screen evidence of them going farther than snarky flirting.
  • Slut Shaming: The courtesans all wear a certain style of dress and have their hair up in points by law. This was to define and constrain them because Sex Is Evil.
  • Soft Water: In addition to the Soft Hay from the first game, the trope is played perfectly straight. Ezio's ability to swim is added to the Assassin repertoire.
  • Somebody Else's Problem:

Random NPC: Isn't that illegal? Eh, not my problem...

  • Spam Attack: One of the animations you can get if an enemy is killed with Hidden Blade normal attacks is Ezio stabbing him in the gut many times.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: In Carlo Grimaldi's backstory, we are told about how he became a confidante to a noble's daughter who was in love with a servant's son and wanted to run away with him. Grimaldi quickly rewarded the couple's trust by selling them out to the girl's father, to further his own political aspirations.
  • Stealth Mentor:
    • Giovanni Auditore. Under his secret tutelage, his sons Ezio and Frederico learned fighting skills and Le Parkour while remaining unaware of the existence of the assassins and that their father was one of them.
    • It turns out the leaders of the mercenaries, courtesans and thieves that Ezio met over the years are Assassins as well, having teaching him the necessary skills to become one and observing him all this years.
  • The Stinger: Desmond battling the Templars during the end credit sequence.
  • Story-Driven Invulnerability: If the plot doesn't call for Ezio to kill his target yet, even if the mission objective is "assassinate suchandsuch", then the target will be Immune to Bullets, Smoke Bombs, Throwing Knives, Counter Kills and practically everything else you could use to kill them without having to wear them down.
    • Vieri de' Pazzi has the above in his first two appearances... but when it comes time to assassinate him, he's impossible to sneak up on and One-Hit Kill, even if you're literally right behind him clinging to the topmost ledge of his tower; as soon as you climb up, he and his guards all react and and draw their swords. He also seems to preternaturally sense your location, making it impossible to double back to assassinate him from behind (as long as you can find a high enough spot with a line of sight to him, you can actually kill him with a pair of throwing knives without ever getting close).
    • Dante Moro is can be encountered several times before he is an actual assassination target, but he cannot be killed (which makes sense if he did not historically die at that time). Knocking him in the water is a way of weaseling around this trope, though; he is eliminated as a threat for the time being, but of course he is not dead plotwise.
  • Suit-Up of Destiny: Ezio continues his legacy when he puts on his Assassin's Robes for the first time. He doesn't take them off for the next twenty years.
  • Super Drowning Skills: Ezio can swim. The guards, even Venetian ones? Not so much. Civilian NPCs can't swim. When you climb onto a boat and the owner leaps off in fear? He's committing suicide.
    • Particularly egregious since Ezio is wearing a small armoury and likely, by Venice at least, the same amount of weight in metal armour. Those civilians, on the other hand, wear simple cloth shirts, or robes/dresses of the same length (And probably composition) as his.
  • Surprisingly-Sudden Death: You're supposed to be doing this, as with the first. It's particularly visible in the Attract Mode video.
  • Surprisingly Easy Mini Quest: When Desmond relives Altaïr's memories without the Animus he gets into a place crawling with knights and almost nowhere to hide... except that said knights seem completely oblivious to his presence, even when he starts doing High Profile stuff.
  • Sword Lines: With an appropriate digital flavor.
  • Sword of Plot Advancement: The Hidden Blade, and the dual blade, poison blade and pistol upgrades.
  • Take That: Someone in the development team (or just Shaun) might have a thing against travel agents.

Guides called Vetturini were sometimes hired to help plot the route of the caravans and book rooms at local ins, but those carriers were often working with the bandits, just like travel agents today.

    • A (perhaps unintentional) example: Leonardo's explanation for being able to buy poison from a doctor makes sense on its own, but if you know anything about 15th-century medicine...
    • In the database entry on Carnival Performers, it describes the general festivities before describing some of the more extreme festivities. This leads Shaun to conclude that Carnival was an important step on the path to Reality TV.
  • Taking You with Me: Checco Orsi tries to do this.
  • Talk to the Fist: Ezio does this with Duccio, Claudia's unfaithful lover, provided you hit the attack button at the right moment.
  • The Tape Knew You Would Say That: Minerva knows what someone would say, after her death. The hologram knew what Desmond's name would be, and that he would be watching through a distant ancestor's memories.
  • Tempting Fate: Very early in the game, Ezio and his brother Federico take a quiet moment on top of a tower in Firenze to reflect on how good they have it and how lucky they are. It doesn't take long for the opposite of those reflections to be become true.

"It is a good life we lead, brother." "The best! May it never change." "...and may it never change us."

  • The Tetris Effect: The Animus' effect on Desmond has many similarities with this trope.
  • There Are No Therapists: You father and two brothers are killed, your mother is raped and now mute and unresponsive, your sister is scared out of her wits, and you've got The Knights Templar out for your blood? Time to murder half of the Italian nobility.
  • Thieves' Guild: In Venice. Its leader Antonio is an Assassin.
  • Timed Mission:
    • The races and courier missions are all timed. The former is obviously beating someone else's record and the latter are urgent deliveries for one reason or another.
    • Tailing missions in both the main story and the assassination contracts all require Ezio to keep his target within his sight or a timer will start until Ezio losses track of them. This timer doesn't show up if he has Eagle Vision activated; in that case, the target leaves a trail for him to follow.
    • Some assassination contracts have the requirement "kill X targets within y time limit" with the reasoning that the targets are about to make their move or before they can call for reinforcements. The timer doesn't start until one of the targets dies or Ezio is detected.
  • Time Skip: As mentioned, the game leaps several years over the course of the story: Ezio is 40 by the endgame.
  • Took a Level in Badass:
    • By the end of the game, the previously wimpy Desmond has absorbed enough knowledge from the Animus to allow him to mow down an army of Templar soldiers without breaking a sweat. In fact, Desmond has absorbed so much of Ezio's badassery that he is fully capable of wielding one of the Abstergo goons' dropped telescopic batons as Ezio would wield a sword. This includes sheathing it in extended state on his hip (despite the fact that he's wearing blue jeans and no sword scabbard), and slitting their throats with it.
    • At the beginning of the game too, regarding the fact Lucy pwns two guards, to which Desmond exclaims "Holy shit!". Desmond can also get a few kudos here as well, considering the fact he does assist Lucy in fighting despite the fact he sucks at it, and the fact he saves them from being trapped in a Labyrinth Laboratory by figuring out the keypad code.
    • Ezio himself was an ordinary Italian youth at the start, but started levelling after the Bad Stuff went down. The Hidden Blade and fistfighting have also been much improved from Assassin's Creed I.
  • Training Montage: The combat tutorial is a playable montage, taking place over the course of a year as Ezio's uncle gives him Assassin training.
  • Truth in Television: The armors you can buy include a "Helmschmied" Armor Set. The Helmschmied Family was, in fact, a renowned maker of armor. It is also ironic that the Helmschmied Armor is weaker then the Metal Armor Set, a type of light plate armor, considering that the Helschmied Family was renowned specifically FOR its plate armor and was famous across Europe.
  • Turned Against Their Masters: The early humans fought against the Precursors in prehistory. Because of humanity's sheer advantage in numbers (and the possibility they got a hold of some of their technology, as implied by a secret video obtained when you get all the glyphs), the Precursors were mostly overcome by them.
  • Unexpected Inheritance: According to a family history recorded in the Auditore tomb in Monteriggioni (in a DLC), the Auditores aren't really nobles. They were founded by a fisherman who was a junior Assassin who ended up being the last person to have the information needed to access the accounts of an Assassin-run trading company after all the others were killed by Templars. He used the identity to create a new identity for himself in Romagna and started the Auditore family.
  • Unstoppable Rage: According to the Codex pages, the Templars murdered Altaïr's love Adha, and he went on a psychotic rampage killing the Templars responsible.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Ezio, though in this case the gambit is organized by Those Who Came Before.
  • Upgrade Artifact: The Animus 2.0 which the modern Assassins used on Desmond to relieve Ezio's life as Assassin training for Desmond.
  • Uplay: It's either to buy this game straight from the official store or needing Uplay to also launch it alongside another client/launcher.
  • Useless Useful Stealth: The introduction of Seekers, combined with the increased paranoia and searching ability of existing guards, and the vast improvements of combat mechanics (while stealth mechanics are altered only a little) means it might actually be more efficient to become anonymous by killing all the guards than it is to run away and hide.
    • Add to the fact that Heavies and Seekers aside, pretty much all guards are very easily killable, so it makes little sense to run from them anyway. Even those two aren't that hard to kill if you know how to counter and/or combo kill using the hidden blades or if you use smoke bombs.
    • Subverted in missions that REQUIRE you to remain undetected, which might cause a Difficulty Spike for those more use to this method.
  • Video Game Caring Potential:
    • Thieves will compliment you on how well you climb, courtesans will compliment you on your good looks - sometimes while you climb! -, and mercenaries will compliment how badass you are when you take down a small army of guards all by yourself. It's very rewarding to hear something other than "That idiot will hurt himself!" or "Must be a drunken wager or something!" from EVERY SINGLE PERSON ON THE DAMN STREET. As if they have nothing better to do than stick their nose into your business.
    • A quick-time event lets you hug Leonardo da Vinci in one instance.
    • The first half hour you spend in the game with Ezio's family makes you care about them. The snarky banter with his older brother and protectiveness of his younger siblings, as well as his relationship with his parents clearly demonstrate the loving upbringing he's had. Which makes it all the more wrenching when his brothers and father are hanged... and makes it all the more satisfying when you get your revenge.
    • Feel sorry for the beggars who slump against the wall, holding their hands out, and are polite enough to not get in your face? Toss them some coins.
    • Collecting all the feathers to help Ezio's mother mourn will cause her to finally speak to the family for the first time in decades.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential:
    • The game goes even further than its predecessor with the brutality. Some of Ezio's finishing attacks make one wonder why there isn't an announcer shouting "FATALITY!" as he performs them.
    • Countering an attack while holding a spear occasionally results in Ezio shoving the spear right into his enemies' spines. The sounds do not help. Not to mention bringing down an axe into a guard's head, then letting him fall and leaving it there. In another polearm finisher, he impales the victim through the stomach and jams the weapon into the ground, and after a moment the body begins sliding down the pole. There were no psychiatrists in Renaissance Italy.
    • You can poison a guard and cause him to go slightly berserk before he dies. He will draw his weapon and swing it around wildly. At this point, many civilians will be watching him. Ezio can use his ability to throw coins on the ground to send greedy people into the mad guard's rampage and laugh gleefully as they are cut down.
    • Walk up with a hammer behind a guard fighting your mercenaries. The resulting instant kill is.... crunchy.
    • One of the ending counter-kills when using the dagger is to knee your oppenent in the stomach. Then as he falls over, writhing in pain, you grab him by the throat from underneath and then snap his neck your bare hands... with the accompanying neck-snapping sound effect, no less.
    • While Ezio is explicitly said to not kill civilians if you do it, you can cheat the system in Venice or other water levels by simply knocking into someone next to a body of water which is an instant kill. Particularly satisfying against the Bards. You can knock over whole crowds into the water in the Romagna wetlands by riding your horse through them. The few who are not knocked into the water will beg for mercy. If you want to be really cruel, you can knock them in as well.
    • The crowning moment of brutal for unarmed counters is probably the one-two punch that, on the second hit connecting, releases an audible cracking effect. Add that the victim falls while clutching his throat and, well, draw your own conclusions.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment: You do not lose health for killing civilians any more, but killing three within a short time still automatically desynchronises you and this time the "punishment" remains even after completing the game. The game also introduces "Notoriety", which goes up every time you perform a dazzling, dangerous, or otherwise just illegal action in broad daylight. Once fully notorious, the guards attack you much more quickly.
  • Video Game Historical Revisionism: Ezio becomes chummy with a number of important Renaissance figures, like Leonardo da Vinci, Niccolò Machiavelli, Caterina Sforza and Lorenzo de' Medici, and is enemies with a whole bunch of other important figures, like the Pazzi family and Rodrigo Borgia, who becomes Pope Alexander VI later in life. It's like a Renaissance version of Ocean's Eleven.
  • Voice with an Internet Connection: Shaun and Rebecca fill in this role. Lucy can even join in too.
  • Wallet of Holding: Mixed usage. The amount of money that can be stored in the Villa's strongbox is finite. The amount that can be stored in Ezio's purse is not.
    • Claudia suggests to Ezio that he take the Villa's funds to the bank, but this isn't actually possible. Presumably, the canon explanation for his endless pockets is the existence of banks, but the designers probably realized that filling out deposit slips doesn't make for compelling gameplay. When they first set up shop in the Villa, Claudia tells Ezio in no uncertain terms that once the chest is full, she'll skim the rest off the top.
  • Warrior Poet: Altaïr becomes one of these while writing his Codex.
  • "Well Done, Son" Guy: After you assassinate Vieri, Ezio acquires a letter where Vieri is diagnosed as this. Pity about the way he seeks attention.
  • Well, This Is Not That Trope: In describing the tragic life of Bianca Riario (Caterina Sforza's daughter), Simon opens this way: "Some people live in a dream, Bianca Riario... was not one of those people."
  • Where Does He Get All Those Wonderful Toys?: Blacksmiths provide simple equipment. Leonardo provides the advanced stuff.
  • White Mask of Doom: The Doctors.
  • Wife-Basher Basher: Ezio in the Beat-Up missions, though rather than beating them up for domestic abuse, he beats them for cheating on their girlfriends.
  • World of Cardboard Speech: Ezio delivers one of these at the end of the Bonfire of the Vanities DLC, stating that he was almost consumed by his hatred and desire for revenge, but that his family and fellow Assassins showed him a better path.
  • A Worldwide Punomenon: Buying both the Swamp Ebony and Swamp Ivory dyes from Forli/Romagna tailors nets you the "Together in Harmony" achievement/trophy.
  • Worthy Opponent: Vieri gives the we-could-have-been-friends line when he dies (at least in Renaissance). Ezio disagrees strongly.
  • You ALL Share My Story: It turns out virtually everyone Ezio encounters on his journey has a closer connection to him than he realized.
  • You Are Not Alone: Invoked by name when Mario, and many of your previously-met allies and a newly-met Machiavelli show up to assist you in fighting Rodrigo.
  • You Are Too Late: save the Doge.
  • You Cannot Kill an Idea: Altaïr's notes reveal that he mused on this subject more than once, noting that the Templars sought to conquer people not with swords and arrows, but with concepts and ideas. This makes it rather difficult for the Assassins to fight back... But it also makes it rather difficult for the Templars to exterminate them.

Altaïr Ibn-La'Ahad does one wage war against a concept? It is the perfect weapon. It lacks a physical form yet can alter the world around us in numerous, often violent ways. You cannot kill a creed. Even if you kill all of its adherents, destroy all of its writings – these are a reprieve at best. Some one, some day, will rediscover it. Reinvent it. I believe that even we, the Assassins, have simply re-discovered an Order that predates the Old Man himself...

  1. Together we will be victorious!