The 7 least historically accurate videogames

Resurrected Saxon princes in World War II? Hoodies in Renaissance Italy? Harry looks at seven of videogaming’s least historically accurate videogames…

The past! It may have happened ages ago, but we still know a lot about it. Like who won what war, who lost what war, how many wars there have been, how monkeys learnt to use tools because of a giant black obelisk thing. That’s all fact. Videogames hate facts, though – facts are stupid and useless, and get in the way of awesome stories about men struggling against demons and hitting things with big weapons.

Here are a few videogames that refuse to be swayed by annoying things like truth or subtlety, and instead ploughed their own, way more awesome furrows. Hey, if it’s good enough for Hollywood, it’s good enough for them there vidya games. Awesome.

Assassin’s Creed

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Well, aside from the whole Assassins versus Templars, garden of Eden, hidden history of the world, the Illuminati, and a massive global conspiracy, Assassin’s Creed gets a lot of things right. Ha! That was a joke.

Why, in the past, present or future, would people put wanted posters half way up ninety foot sheer walls that only mentalists would try and scale?

Why would knights stand about on rooftops waiting for someone to come along and pick a fight with them? Why would a simple, terrifyingly moon faced boy want enormous feathers? Flags? Don’t get me started on the flags.

As a final point, it should be noted that never in the history of the human race has sitting on a bench been a legitimate way of losing the attention of murderous guards. That is all.

Dante’s Inferno

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Pointing out historical inaccuracies in Dante’s Inferno is like shooting fish in a barrel so full of fish that if you wave a gun in its general direction, you will definitely shoot a fish. Far be it from me to point out the obvious, but Dante Alighieri was a poet and a scholar, he was not a muscle bound, self-harming, lunatic crusader with a huge scythe and a kinda sexy ghost wife.

Dante was a politician, not a sweaty, hallucinating murderer with a guilty conscience after his wrongdoings in the crusades. Crusades that had ended some twenty years before The Divine Comedy, the work on which the game is “based” was written. Also, everything about the game is stupid, but that’s more of a personal opinion than a problem with the chronology of the events.


Where to start? The Timesplitters series doesn’t just ignore historical fact, it shoots it square between the eyes with a terrifying laser cannon beam thing. Don’t get me wrong, the Timesplitters games are the perfect example of a console FPS done well, and it’s a tragedy that the fourth might never see the light of day, but their concept of truth is about as precise as their understanding of primate behaviour.

There was no hunchback in Notre Dame cathedral, there were no zombie mummies in Egyptian tombs, and people in the 1970s didn’t all have amazing moustaches. It’s also highly likely that nobody in the history of anything has ever been called Kitten Celeste. And don’t come after me with your “they’re changing history” nonsense, I’m sick of people using altered chronology as an excuse.

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How I wish it were true. Whilst the Nazis did have a strange interest in the occult, at no point during World War 2 did they create a robot housing for Hitler, enabling him to stomp around and fire glowing balls of death in the direction of any American GI who should stumble upon his diabolical plans.

The 2001 sequel takes things even further, resurrecting evil Saxon princes and other such spectacular nonsense that’s difficult not to enjoy.

After that, it’s all special medallions, extra dimensions and difficult to pronounce crystals.

The problem is, popular culture is in danger of turning the Nazis into zombie bothering cartoon villains, and that’s a dangerous road to be heading down. Maybe it’s time to find someone else to come up with plans to destroy the Earth with undead minions and beams that shoot out of ancient deity’s behind parts.Prince Of Persia

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The original, 2D incarnations of POP can probably be left out of this list, mainly because any inaccuracies they peddle are dwarfed by the monumental liberties taken by Ubisoft’s free running reboot.

For example, a Persian prince using a style of athletic and acrobatic movement, created in modern France, some 2300 years prior to its invention. is a tad anachronistic. Not as bad as his American drawl though, or the undeniable fact that whilst we’ve discovered much about ancient Persia, we’ve never found immense towers that stretch into the sky, designed so only a spry and fearless athlete can reach the top by jumping onto platforms, beams, ropes and other helpful handholds.Dynasty Warriors

Where to begin? I think what riles me most about the Dynasty Warriors series, gameplay aside, is the frankly ridiculous way that more often than not, the minions you’re button mashing to death simply mill around waiting to die. I’ve never been involved in a war in three kingdoms era China, but I’m pretty sure that if I were, I’d at least try and jab the ostentatiously dressed man trying to kill me with a magical sword.

It might get the names right, but other than that, Dynasty Warriors rewrites Chinese history with every play through. Also, archaeological evidence is yet to prove that enormous snow tigers ever existed, let alone that they existed in China 1800 years ago.

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“Stop being churlish,” you may yell, “what matters about a videogame is that it’s fun!” True, but the Dynasty Warriors series is a repugnant pile of arse.

Pretty Much Every Real World Set FPS

Oh, look at me, using a gun that hasn’t been invented yet. Oh, look at me, having my health fully restored by an injection/box of bandages, despite the fact I’m so riddled with bullets that if I even look at a metal detector it would explode. Oh, look at me, respawning after I’ve been sent splattering across some foreign field by heavy artillery fire. Oh, look at me, talking with a generic American accent, even though there were no Americans involved in this assault.

The list goes on and on and on, but I really don’t have time to write it. Suffice to say, shame on you, pretty much every real world set FPS. Read a book once in a while and maybe, just maybe, we can inject a sliver of authenticity into games that recreate the not-at-all-too-distant past.

The same goes for the not-at-all-too distant future, but we’ll save that for a different list.

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