- "Why do people need the validation? What should matter is what you – as an individual, believe. And why you believe it. What, are we so insecure that we have to find 18th century letters to validate our beliefs?"
- ―Shaun commenting on the state of political affairs to Desmond Miles, 2012.[src]
Shaun Hastings is a member of the Assassin Order who gave tactical guidance to numerous Assassin teams across the globe. His support was often targeted towards Assassins who were out in the field, occasionally offering assistance in the form of messages relayed from higher command.
Within his team, Shaun acted as both historian and analyst, assisting Desmond Miles during his time in the Animus. This help mostly came in the form of creating database entries on the varying people, places, and events Desmond encountered.
- "Most Assassins, Desmond, are like you, yeah? They're "born" into the Brotherhood. Not me, though."
- ―Shaun to Desmond, 2012.[src]
Originating from England, Shaun was interested in conspiracy theories and the unexplained from a very early age. Though initially unaware of the existence of the modern-day Templars and Assassins, when Shaun was around 15, he did some investigations into a company known as Abstergo Industries, and discovered that they were "up to no good".
This eventually inspired him to prevent their wrongful activities in any way he could. While working as a junior professor, Shaun took the pseudonym "Guy Fawkes", after one of the co-conspirators of the 1605 Gunpowder Plot, and began spreading the word.
He published articles detailing Abstergo's inner workings to WikiLeaks and other news groups, searching for people with "stories to tell"; all the while remaining unaware that the Templars would try to silence him.
Rebecca Crane was the first to point out the danger he was putting himself in, and attempted to warn him that he was "messing with the wrong people." However, Shaun did not believe her, and was eventually discovered by Abstergo's CEO Alan Rikkin.
On 10 December 2010, Shaun was kidnapped by Abstergo. Fortunately, he was able to escape from the van that was taking him to the company, with Abstergo only discovering afterwards that the van's computer had been hacked, creating a false alert for a need to stop and refuel; this event was secretly brought about by Rebecca's intervention.
Rebecca then contacted Shaun once more, "rescued" him, and recruited him into the Assassin Order.
- Desmond: "What's all this stuff for?"
- Shaun: "This stuff, Desmond, oh this stuff is nothing special, really, this stuff is just the stuff that keeps our entire operation from falling apart, really."
- ―Desmond and Shaun in the hideout, 2012.[src]
After Lucy Stillman and Desmond Miles had escaped Abstergo and reached an undisclosed hideout, Shaun was the first to greet Desmond, and introduced both himself and Rebecca, before promptly insisting that they all get straight to work.
Desmond then entered the Animus to relive the memories of one of his ancestors, Ezio Auditore da Firenze. While Desmond was inside the Animus, Shaun supplied Desmond with information in the form of database entries, as well as the occasional piece of advice on glyph puzzles.
In his role as historian and analyst of the group, Shaun was constantly working on his computer, and rarely had the opportunity to speak with Desmond – often telling him bluntly to "go away" if ever Desmond tried to bother him while he was busy.
During the assault on the hideout by Warren Vidic and several Abstergo guards, Shaun assisted Rebecca in packing up the Assassins' equipment, and later drove the group to their next hideout at Monteriggioni.
Escape to the Sanctuary
- "Did you miss me? No? Anyone? Hello, am I speaking out loud? Hello? Workaholics."
- ―Shaun returning to the Sanctuary, 2012.[src]
Upon leaving the hideout, Shaun and the others drove north in an attempt to reach a cabin located in the Swiss Alps, where they would continue searching through Desmond's genetic memories. However, Abstergo set up a roadblock in Grosseto, Italy to intercept the group of Assassins. Looking at a map for a different place to hide, Shaun suggested that the team should take a detour that would lead them to Monteriggioni.
After arriving in Monteriggioni, the team set up camp in the Sanctuary, due to its thick walls blocking outside signals. Shaun then assisted the team by hiding the van, and teaching Desmond how to reroute power into the underground chamber.
Once the preparation was complete, Shaun continued with his research, operating similarly to the way he had in the previous hideout. In contrast, though, he was much more respectful and tolerant towards Desmond than he had been previously – however, his attitude remained rude and impatient with Rebecca, which caused Lucy to give him a greater workload than the other Assassins.
During Desmond's breaks outside the Animus, Shaun told him about the history of the events he was experiencing, mentioning things such as the fate of Caterina Sforza, and Cesare Borgia's explicit letter to the Pope about his wedding night.
Journey to the Colosseum
- Desmond: "I wonder if it will change things. Whether it can tip the scales in our favor."
- Shaun: "I'm sure it will. It has to."
- ―Shaun and Desmond discussing the Apple at the Colosseum, 2012.[src]
After Desmond located the Apple of Eden through Ezio Auditore da Firenze's memories, the modern-day Assassins were still left with the mystery of how to access the Apple's Vault. Although Rebecca knew it was opened via a spoken password, the group was unsure of what it could possibly be.
Desmond pointed out the numbers that he had earlier found written on the wall opposite the Sanctuary's bookshelf entrance, as well as the tetractys symbol, of which Shaun correctly deduced its relevance to God, and His 72 names. This number, Shaun also stated, was the same year that Rome's Colosseum was built. Following this, they all concluded that was where the Apple would be found, and began their long road trip.
Upon finding the Apple, Desmond used it to ask where the Temples were located, which resulted in it projecting a series of symbols and images. Shaun, upon identifying the Phrygian cap and the Eye of Providence, said that both objects came together in only "one place."
Lucy and Desmond collapsed to the floor after this, but both Shaun and Rebecca were still visibly conscious, and appeared unaffected by the Apple's power.
After Desmond's collapse
- Rebecca: "Shaun, you feeling okay?"
- Shaun: "Sure, yeah, yeah, I'm fine, yeah. We're Assassins after all, aren't we, eh? Why should we be surprised if one of us dies every now and again?"
- ―Shaun, regarding Lucy's death, 2012.[src]
Following Lucy's death, Desmond fell unconscious, and slipped into a comatose state. Rebecca and William Miles brought Desmond to New York City in an effort to reawaken him, with Shaun staying behind to arrange and attend Lucy's funeral in a cemetery just outside of Rome.
Following a phone call with Rebecca and William, during which Shaun expressed his suspicion that Desmond may be a sleeper agent similar to another former Assassin which William vehemently denied, Shaun boarded a plane to join them in New York.
Eventually, the four of them took a van to the coordinates found by Ezio in the Pythagorean Vault, taking the Apple recovered from the Colosseum Vault with them. As they arrived, Desmond awoke from the coma which had taken hold of him, and stated that he knew what they needed to do.
The Grand Temple
After exiting the van at the entrance of the Grand Temple, Shaun assisted in carrying the supplies inside, as well as setting up his computer network and the Animus. From there, he spent the majority of his time monitoring Desmond and working on the new Database. Eventually, he realized that the team would need power sources to open the door, and began work on locating them.
The first he found was in an office building around New York, for which he had Desmond go to collect it. With Rebecca's input, Shaun provided access to communication for the operations via an earpiece. He also drove the van to the drop-off and pick-up points.
The second source, located in Brazil, belonged to a business tycoon's wife who was watching a mixed martial arts match at the time. Sending Desmond, Shaun helped navigate him through the area so that he could reach the power source. He also assisted Rebecca in keeping the train open for Desmond to escape.
The third source, located when the team returned to the Grand Temple, was in Cairo, Egypt. This time, Shaun gave support to William, who went to retrieve it in Desmond's stead. After William was captured, Shaun helped Desmond with the transport to Rome in order for Desmond to infiltrate Abstergo's headquarters and rescue his father.
When the team returned and the Grand Temple Key was found, Shaun and the group accompanied Desmond through the door. After watching Minerva and Juno speak with Desmond, Shaun, William and Rebecca left upon Desmond's order as he activated the Eye, sacrificing himself to save the world.
Undercover at Abstergo
- Shaun: "All I'm saying is, I think we made the most of what little time we had, and we made a difference. The world lives to turn another day. Isn't that what we should hold on to?"
- Rebecca: "When you put it that way."
- Shaun: "He was a bit annoying at the beginning though, wasn't he?"
- Rebecca: "Ha. Maybe a little. But that's what we said about you, too."
- Shaun: "Oi!"
- —Shaun and Rebecca reflecting on the brief time they spent with Desmond.[src]
Six months later, Shaun and Rebecca met with William's second-in-command Gavin Banks in Peru, informing him that William had left the Order, leaving behind a letter and a codex for Gavin. Shaun was bitter that William left without saying goodbye, but Gavin reminded him that William was mourning for his son.
After sailing north on the Altair II - a trip that often left Shaun nauseous - Gavin dropped Shaun and Rebecca in California to spy for the Assassins in America. Eventually, they decided to honor William by finding what happened to Desmond's body, which was being used for Abstergo's Sample 17 Project to create entertainment products from his ancestors' memories.
As they traveled through South Dakota, Shaun and Rebecca visited the ruins of the Farm where Desmond grew up. Rebecca remarked that they barely knew Desmond, to which Shaun responded that despite that, they had experienced a lot together and made a difference, comforting her.
By late October 2013, Rebecca and Shaun infiltrated the Abstergo Entertainment facility in Montreal. Shaun took a job as the lobby's barista in order to facilitate communication with Rebecca, who was acting as a courier, collecting a number of data files that had been obtained by an Abstergo researcher at the behest of John Standish from the IT department.
When John was killed by Abstergo, Shaun and Rebecca contacted the researcher, apologizing for getting them into trouble and promising to make up for it. Using the information recovered by the analyst, Shaun and Rebecca helped William move on from Desmond's death and rejoin the Order.
Discovering the Initiates
- "With you on our side, we can hope to rebuild the Brotherhood. Otherwise, the Assassins will die, along with our ideals. The Templars will win, and the world will lose."
- ―Shaun appealing for the Initiates to join the Assassins.[src]
By mid-2014, Shaun and Rebecca had reunited with William in a bunker in Norway, and then with the crew of the Altair II. Gavin was angry William had not contacted him since his return, but they soon had more important matters to attend to when Rebecca discovered that the ship was bugged. While William interrogated each of Gavin's crewmates to determine who the spy was, Shaun and Rebecca worked to ascertain where the spy's reports were being sent to.
Eventually, William decided who the spy was and declared that in accordance with the Creed, he was going to have them executed. Shaun objected, preparing to cite moments of leniency from the Order's history, but William responded for him to be silent, and ordered Galina Voronina to kill Dr. Stephanie Chiu, prompting protests from Eric Cooper, who claimed to be the spy.
Shaun expressed surprise that a Scot could be the spy, prompting Chiu to explain she uploaded Cooper's reports to the Initiates. Satisfied with the truth, William and Gavin explained it had been a ruse to flush them out, to which Shaun had William confirmed that none of them would be dying that day.
Afterwards, while Cooper and Chiu were explaining to the Assassins their goals and organization, Shaun protested against the Initiates' neutral stance, arguing they could have helped if they were observing what the Assassins had endured. Subsequently, William appointed Shaun and Rebecca with the task of recruiting the Initiates.
Shaun was present and aided Bishop when guiding an Initiate through the memories of Arno Dorian in the hopes of learning the location of the corpse of a Sage by the name of François-Thomas Germain. In this time, he went by the handle of Deacon.
Personality and characteristics
- Shaun: "I keep trying to understand how men like Washington and Jefferson could dedicate their lives to the pursuit of liberty and equality, yet have no problem owning slaves. It's hypocritical in the extreme. And your history books make only passing mention of the subject. As if... as if it were of little consequence."
- Desmond: "They had a war to win. A country's future to secure. How could they deal with all these issues at the same time?"
- Shaun: "Spoken like a true apologist. We hear it today too. That matters of civil rights and equality must wait. There are conflicts to settle. Economies to salvage. What do any of these things matter if the people are not free and equal? All of them."
- —Shaun and Desmond discussing the political stance on slavery and equal rights throughout history, 2012.[src]
When Shaun and Desmond first met, Shaun would often have too little patience to talk with him, though their conversations grew longer over time. He also insulted Rebecca often, once insinuating that she was immature with the phrase, "the grown-ups are talking", neglectful of the fact that she had saved his life multiple times.
Shaun was desperate to enter the Animus, and even resorted to begging Lucy through her e-mail, which she declined by not replying. However, when confronted about it, he said that "the job behind the desk" was much better.
His cynical attitude is evident in many instances, such as when he pointed out that the Assassins were still killers whatever their motives, making them no more the "good guys" than the Templars. Shaun is also skeptical of most institutions, such as the church and government. He noted in one description of Venice that the city's past "followed the historical norm: the people got screwed."
Despite his attitude towards Rebecca, Shaun still holds her in higher regard than he cares to admit, most likely because of the numerous occasions on which she has saved his life. Only Lucy seemed to tolerate his snide remarks, even trusting him to a great extent, as he was the only one to whom she revealed her feelings for Desmond.
Shaun's interest in history is shown through his extensive database entries, and also in an e-mail from William, who claimed that Shaun would enjoy the area in which the Assassin leadership was based, as it had "lots of history."
Shaun is quite confident in his own abilities, once calling himself a "master at decryption." He also claims to have a gift for "seeing things and making connections", an ability he claimed was even more useful than Desmond's Eagle Vision. Despite his attitude, these claims are shown to have merit, such as when he was able to determine the password to Juno's temple by analyzing the symbol and numbers in the Monteriggioni sanctuary.
- Shaun was named after Sean Hastings, a cult hero in the computer industry.
- Danny Wallace, the voice and model of Shaun, was contacted by Ubisoft when he attended the BAFTA video game awards with a friend. After the event, he was e-mailed and asked if he would like to be a character in an unknown video game, which he accepted. This game turned out to be Assassin's Creed II.
- In Wallace's autobiographical book Awkward Situations for Men, he reveals that the audition script notes described Shaun as "awkward, nerdy, lonely, intense, and contrary".
- In Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, Shaun had several images of note near his desk, including a portrait of Cesare Borgia; pictures of famous landmarks in Rome, such as the Pantheon; and some of Leonardo da Vinci's designs, such as the crossbow.
- The password for Shaun's e-mail account was GuyFawkes23.
- It was hinted that Shaun was an altar boy at some stage in his childhood, due to his mention of his priest once saying "You know too much for your own good."
- Shaun was mentioned in Ezio Auditore da Firenze's backstory in Soulcalibur V as the one who noticed the irregularities in the Animus readings that resulted from Ezio's jump to the latter half of the 16th century, the time period of Soulcalibur V. When looking at the readings of the Animus, Shaun commented that it appeared like a readout from the Richter scale, which is used to measure the magnitude of an earthquake.
- In Assassin's Creed III, Shaun wrote a database entry on himself, though he refused to provide his date of birth, merely commenting "nice try". His entry is largely self-praising and satirical, and he refers to himself as "the most intelligent person in the order".
- In Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, shortly after eliminating John, Abstergo Entertainment posted images of Shaun and Rebecca on electric displays, naming them as hacker suspects. However, Shaun can still be seen at the coffee counter in the lobby.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 Assassin's Creed II
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 James Morse's emails
- ↑ 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 3.12 Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood
- ↑ Assassin's Creed: Initiates - The Desmond Files
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Assassin's Creed: Revelations
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Assassin's Creed III
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 7.7 Assassin's Creed: Initiates - Surveillance
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag
- ↑ Assassin's Creed: Unity
- ↑ Assassin's Creed: Rogue
- ↑ The Guardian: Interview: Danny Wallace - Assassin's Creed II