|Developer(s): Ubisoft Montreal, Ubisoft Annecy (multiplayer)
Platform(s): Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
Release date(s): November 16, 2010
Genre(s): Third-person action-adventure, open world
Mode(s): Single-player, multiplayer
Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood is the continuing story set in 2012. After escaping the Templars’ attack at the end of Assassin’s Creed II, Desmond Miles and other modern-day Assassins flee to Monteriggioni, establishing a new hideout in the ruins of the Villa Auditore. After restoring the electricity in the old tunnels under the villa, the player once again takes control of Ezio Auditore through the genetic memory of Desmond Miles using the Animus 2.0 (which is the game’s memory interface).
Ezio’s story continues in 1499 as he exits the vault, still confused by what he saw inside. He escapes Rome with his uncle Mario Auditore and arrives at Monteriggioni. Once home, Ezio is comforted by the prospect that his personal vendetta is over and that his days as an Assassin are done. Machiavelli challenges Ezio’s decision to leave Rodrigo Borgia, the Pope, alive. The following morning Monteriggioni is besieged by Cesare Borgia, son of Rodrigo Borgia. The Assassins are overpowered by this attack and retreat, leaving the entire city in ruins. Mario is killed in the attack, after being shot by Cesare, and the Apple of Eden, the mysterious artifact of great power, is lost to Cesare Borgia and the Templars. Ezio escapes with his family and travels to Rome, the center of the Templar Order in Italy, once again seeking vengeance against the Borgias. There, he discovers that the Assassins are failing in the fight against corruption. Determined to redeem the Guild, Ezio convinces the current head of the Assassins, Machiavelli, that he has what it takes to lead, while assembling a Brotherhood powerful enough to destroy the Templars and Ezio’s new arch-nemesis, Cesare Borgia.
During the attack on the Villa, Ezio’s ally Caterina Sforza was taken away by Cesare’s army. While trying to rescue Caterina from the Castel Sant Angelo, Ezio witnesses Cesare passionately kissing his sister, Lucrezia Borgia. Once Cesare has left, Ezio sneaks into the Castel, holding Lucrezia hostage, and uses her to free Caterina from her cell. Ezio reintroduced the mysterious thief, La Volpe, the condottiere Bartolomeo d’Alviano and his sister, Claudia into the guild, recruiting the city’s underground of thieves, courtesans and mercenaries to his cause. He then attacks each of Cesare’s resources. He kills Cesare’s Banker, Juan Borgia, withdrawing Cesare’s battle funds. He kills the leader of the French troops helping Cesare, the Baron de Valois, leaving the troops in disarray. After proving to all that he can lead, Ezio is made head of the Assassin’s guild, and promoted to the rank of Il Mentore.
During all of the previous missions, as in Assassin’s Creed II, Subject 16 has placed hidden file fragments inside the Animus landscape in Brotherhood. Once all of the fragments have been found and deciphered, the consolidated file loads a framework-like level in the Animus. Desmond makes his way through it and at the end encounters a virtual copy of Subject 16, whose body is made up of code. His speech is scattered and vague, but he tries to warn Desmond that there is little time left. He says that “it is too late to save them” and that “she is not who you think she is.” He tells Desmond to find Eve in Eden and that her DNA is the key. He then suddenly says, “The sun. Your son,” and trails off. Desmond tells him not to go, to which 16 replies, “I am with you till the end. Find me in the darkness.” He then disappears and the framework world collapses.
Towards the end of the game, Rodrigo becomes suspicious of his son’s activities. Cesare returns to Rome to ask his father for more money and the use of the Apple of Eden artifact after Ezio cuts his funding. His father refuses to give him more funds and, instead, attempts to murder him using a poisoned apple. Cesare, saved from death by his sister’s warning, turns the tables on his father by shoving the poisoned apple in his mouth when Rodrigo refuses to reveal the location of the Apple of Eden. When Cesare storms off to look for the artifact – destroying his relationship with his sister in the process – Ezio races ahead and uses the Apple to destroy Cesare’s army and to make his supporters withdraw their backing from his campaign to become King of Italy. When all of his “friends” have abandoned him, Cesare is arrested by the new Pope: Julius ii’s Papal Army for murder and incest, finally leaving Rome in chains.
Ezio, however, is not convinced, and so uses the Apple to locate Cesare. He discovers that the Borgia Captain General escaped from his prison and launched an attack on a small city in Navarre, Spain. Ezio arrives and corners Cesare on the battlements of a crumbling castle. Ezio and Cesare engage in a sword fight, but Ezio overpowers his enemy. Cesare, however, claims he cannot be killed by the hand of man, and so Ezio decides to “let fate decide”. He drops Cesare off the castle battlements, therefore not directly killing him. Ezio then takes the apple and hides it in a place in which no one will find it – another temple, this one built underneath Santa Maria in Aracoeli, within The Temple of Juno.
Using the co-ordinates taken from Ezio’s memories, Desmond, Lucy, Shaun and Rebecca open the temple, intending to use the Apple to locate the remaining temples in order to keep the other Pieces of Eden out of the Templars’ hands. As Desmond makes his way into the temple, he is confronted with holographic apparitions of a being called Juno, who appears to be of the same race as Minerva in Assassin’s Creed II; however, she is neither audible nor visible to Lucy, Shaun, or Rebecca. Most of her comments center around humanity’s lack of knowledge. She states that humanity is “innocent and ignorant”: that people were not built to be wise, having been given only five of the six senses, sight, smell, taste, touch, and hearing, but lacking knowledge. However, Juno says that when the initial disaster that wiped out the first people came to pass, they tried to “pass it on through the blood”; it is implied that this sense is Desmond’s “eagle vision”, which is passed on through the Assassin blood lines. Her careful cadence then drops as she suddenly becomes angry, yelling “We should have left you as you were!”
A staircase leading to the Apple is activated and Desmond and the others ascend it. Desmond approaches the Apple and glowing symbols begin to appear in the air. As Shaun starts to explain what they are, Desmond touches the Apple. His DNA activates it and suddenly they are all frozen, although Desmond can still speak. Juno cryptically says that Desmond is descended from her race and their enemy. She then says that there is a woman who is supposed to accompany him through “the gate”, but she is not with him. She says, “The cross darkens the horizon,” a possible reference to the Templars, and takes control of Desmond’s body, forcing him to draw his hidden blade saying, “The Path must be opened,” and that “the scales must be balanced”. She then begins to force Desmond to walk towards Lucy. Desmond pleads with Juno to stop, but she replies, “You know so very little. We must guide you!” and he is forced to stab Lucy in the abdomen. Both fall to the ground unconscious, with Desmond going into a coma (resulting from the shock of stabbing Lucy) and Lucy’s fate left uncertain.  Then, as the credits roll Juno can be heard saying “It is done”. ‘William M.’ (a high-ranking Assassin who emails both Lucy and Shaun during the game) is heard during the credits, ordering another Assassin to put Desmond back into the Animus.