By now you’ve heard, WOW is going free to play (at least the first twenty levels..). Love it or hate it, World of Warcraft was (and still is) undoubtedly the most popular MMO in history. World of Warcraft was so popular at one point that it boasted an insane 12 million subscribers. That’s 12 million people paying a MONTHLY fee of $15.00. Blizzard and Activison were making so much money that they could probably feed a hungry 3rd world nation sloppy joes on a regular basis (yum).
The internet is abuzz today with information regarding the new AC:III location and protagonist. In case you’ve been at work or something (actually working), Assassin’s Creed III will take place during the American Revolution, and will star an all new Native American anti-hero. While none of us know much about the plot of this adventure, Ubisoft did reveal this delicious morsel “Set in the latter half of the 18th century, we’ll see the war between the Templars and the Assassins escalate as it crosses over to the New World of America, and witness firsthand the events of the American Revolution. Caught in the conflict is a daring new hero in the Assassin’s Creed franchise.”
So who is this Baron?: While the geography of 18th century North America may lack tall buildings, you will not find a historical time period filled with a more colorful cast of characters, one of whom is the lesser known Baron Von Steuben.
Give Us the Baron: While most of you have heard of General George Washington (I sure hope), I would venture to say that very few Americans actually recognize the name Baron Von Steuben *crickets*. What If I went out on a limb and told you that without von Steuben we’d all still be speaking with thick British accents? The Baron was a military drill instructor from Prussia (don’t try and find it on a map), that worked alongside Washington to help train the Continental Army during the brutal winter at Valley Forge. What a lot of people don’t realize is that prior to Von Steuben’s aid, the Continental Army was in pretty bad shape and lost almost every battle that they fought. Von Steuben was a bit of a military genius, and was one of 13 military commanders trained by the King of Prussia himself. When Prussia found itself in debt and in need of a smaller military, von Steuben became a mercenary general for hire. Sure, he was a bit of a fibber and actually wasn’t a Baron at all, but I think that makes him even more interesting.
Worlds Collide: Eventually von Steuben would be introduced to Benjamin Franklin who was so impressed with the man that he suggested that the Prussian general would be a great assest to Washington in the Revolution. Following that fateful meeting the Baron (and his Italian Greyhound Azor) arrived at Valley Forge to help Washington whip the Continental Army into shape. The Baron spoke very little English and would constantly swear at the troops in German. Oddly enough, it was a young Alexander Hamilton that would serve as one of his translators… You can’t make this shit up folks. Due to his implementation of the Prussian “art of war”, the Continental Army actually started to win. Thanks Prussia!
Keeping my fingers crossed that Ubi decides to include this reletively obsucure and incredibly interesting historical figure in their next tale of assassination!
Von Steuben’s Letter to Congress –
My only ambition is to serve you as a Volunteer, to deserve the confidence of your General in Chief, and to follow him in all his operations, as I have done during seven campaigns with the King of Prussia. Two and a twenty years past at such a school seem to give me a right of thinking myself in the number of experienced Officers; and if I am Possessor of some talents in the Art of War, they should be much dearer to me, if I could employ them in the service of a Republick, such as I hope soon to see America. I should willingly purchase at my whole Blood’s Experience the honor of seeing one Day my Name after those of the defenders of your Liberty. Your gracious acceptance will be sufficient for me, and I ask no other favour than to be received among your Officers. I dare hope you will agree to my Request, that you will be so good as to send me your Order to Boston, where I shall expect them and accordingly take convenient Measures.
I have the honor to be, with respect, honorable Gentlemen
Your most obedient and very humble servant