If you aren't familiar with the tradition, named victims in Assassin's Creed titles have each been based on real people in history. And as they live, so they die in a (kind of) historically accurate setting. Assassin's Creed 3 will continue this tradition of historically accurate deaths, including year of death and location of death.
Creative director Alex Hutchinson does into detail:
“We have a rule: Everyone dies in the right year, at the right place. They have to be real people. We don’t get enough mileage out of it, I think it’s kind of magical, and yet no one knows. I don’t know how we make it more obvious.”
The setting of the game, the American Revolution, is significantly different than the timeline the series has previously explored. More specifically, it was not so long ago, and it's a well recorded event in history. Considering the victims you'll be assassinating, as Hutchinson says, "this is someone's great-grandfather." So how does the franchise capitalize on the series' theme of battling Templars, an order openly nefarious, without portraying people's grandparents are terrible people?
"For us they’re not villains, they’re misguided. Everyone is trying to save the world, they’re just doing it a different way. For this script we worked on it, and we really got [the Templar] perspective."
How well Ubisoft manages to paint Templar motives in grey is yet to be seen. In my experience it was always very clear the Templar were terrible people, but the American Revolution is a whole different ballgame. And judging from the gratuitous amounts of American flags shown in trailers and screenshots, I'm a bit skeptical a line between good and evil is already drawn.
Expect Assassin's Creed 3 to release October 30 for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC.