I’ve played the Assassin’s Creed franchise since I was a child, yet no one has been able to captivate me like Ezio Auditore, Edward Kenway, and recently, Arno Dorian. I recently played Assassin’s Creed Unity when it went free last 2019. I have avoided the game due to the backlash it received upon launch. Despite the game’s lack of positive reception due to bugs, performance, and network issues, I feel that Arno is an interesting character and someone everyone can relate to. Let’s take a deeper look into Arno Dorian’s backstory, equipment, skills, and a few tips on using Arno in Assassin’s Creed Unity.
Arno Dorian’s Journey to Becoming an Assassin
Death at Versailles
After the Persecution of The Templars Prologue, the game puts you in the shoes of a young Arno Dorian, son of the Assassin Charles Dorian. Arno and his father went to Versailles on December 27, 1776. Charles Doran asked Arno to sit in a chair while waiting for the meeting to conclude. Charles provided Arno with his pocket watch and told him to wait until the hand minute hand reaches the top (in about 15 minutes or so). Knowing that Arno is a troublemaker, Charles insists that Arno shouldn’t explore the place while he’s not around. A few minutes pass by and Arno saw a glimpse of a young girl who ran off. Sparking Arno’s curiosity, Arno went after the young woman.
Arno caused a bit of trouble while chasing after the young lass who then dared Arno to steal one of the apples at the table in the courtyard. After grabbing one, Arno alerted several guards and chased him away. This section is a tutorial segment of the game, teaching you the ways of escaping an enemy’s line of sight. Upon escaping the guards, Arno introduced himself to the young woman who happened to be Élise de la Serre. This faithful meeting would seemingly be the start of something romantic as the years’ pass.
A nearby commotion rattled Arno and Élise’s meeting, prompting Arno to confess to the guards that he stole the apple. However, the guards ignored and ran past them, further confusing them. Élise dragged Arno’s arm and followed the guards. Arno and Élise discovered that an unknown man had assassinated Charles Dorian. In the shock of seeing his dead father’s body, Arno suddenly dropped his father’s watch, breaking it in the process.
François de la Serre, Élise’s kept calling Arno to draw his attention away from his father’s corpse. Mister de la Serre kept Arno in custody until he grew up. The game then fast forwards thirteen years later.
Arno the Troublemaker
Arno finds himself looking at his father’s watch. A gentleman bursts through the door disrupts Arno’s moment and reveals that Arno lost the watch to him in a game of cards. Arno was simply stealing the watch back for himself. A fight broke out between him and Victor. Arno slipped up and lost grip of the watch which landed in front of Victor’s brother, Hugo. Arno successfully retrieves the watch from Hugo and runs away as both brothers try to pursue him. Returning back to Mister de la Serre’s mansion, Hugo and Victor confronted Mister de la Serre and told him that Arno stole the watch that he won in the card game. Mister de la Serre handled the situation himself and scolded Arno afterward.
Mister de la Serre told Arno that Élise will be there for the night, however, he denied Arno’s offer to escort Élise. As Mister de la Serre was leaving the mansion, a messenger failed to catch up to him and give him a letter. Arno took the letter and ran after Mister de la Serre. After tracking Mister de la Serre, Arno infiltrated the palace only to be disrupted by Victor and Hugo who has been tailing him. A fight broke up in a room and after defeating the brothers, guards were alerted of their presence and chased Arno off of the palace.
After returning to the mansion, Arno found out that Élise was having a party to which he wasn’t invited. He decided to slip the letter under the door of Mister de la Serre’s office and went of to intrude the palace once again. Upon finding Élise, they’ve had their romantic moment and Élise distracted the guards so Arno can escape. Arno stumbled upon the courtyard to which he found Mister de la Serre seemingly struggling to find his footing. Mister de la Serre then falls to the ground and the true murderers called out to guards to frame Arno for the murder. The guards knocked Arno out and took him to prison.
Arno the Murderer
Arno woke up while the guards were transferring him inside a prison cell. Arno with all hopes lost, decided to once again go back to sleep. Upon waking up, one of the prisoners took his watch. The prisoner challenged Arno to a duel for the watch. After defeating the prisoner, Arno said told the prisoner to leave him be and get back to his crazy drawings. The prisoner was astounded that Arno can see the drawings and introduced himself as Pierre Bellec, a colleague of his late father, Charles Dorian. Pierre revealed that Charles was an Assassin and that he stood for what was right. He even extended an invitation to Arno to join the Brotherhood.
Two months later, a civil uprising rocked the prison. Pierre and Arno took this opportunity to escape the prison. Before saying his goodbye, Pierre once again extended his hand to Arno and tried to convince him to join the Brotherhood. As both of them part ways, Arno’s main goal was to find Élise to which he did. However, upon finding Élise, she raised a gun against Arno. Élise also revealed that she was a Templar, the same as her father, and Arno’s father was an Assassin. She then gave Arno the letter that Mister de la Serre was supposed to receive before his untimely death. It contains a warning about his impending assassination.
Struck with guilt, Arno left Élise and took it upon himself to set things straight.
The Redemption: Joining the Brotherhood
With the locket that Pierre gave him, Arno set out to find the Assassin’s headquarters. Upon finding the Sainte-Chapelle, he raised the medallion against the glass window, revealing a hidden path underneath the church. Pierre welcomed him to the “Sanctuary” and accompanies Arno to the council. Arno proved himself worthy to become an Assassin by undergoing the ceremony known as the Eagle’s Path. The ceremony induced hallucinations in Arno where he would face his deepest regrets and failures. Arno survived the ceremony in which the Council welcomed him to the Brotherhood and awarded Arno with the most well-known weapon for Assassins, the hidden blade.
Arno is a reborn man with the death of his past mistakes and pushes forward toward his true destiny.
Note: These events started Arno’s journey as an Assassin. Arno’s story has only begun at this point; there are still many twists and turns to his story. However, to avoid spoilers, we will not include them in this guide.
Personal Thoughts on Arno’s Character Development and Lore
Arno is one of the most inspiring and most relatable protagonists in the Assassin’s Creed Universe. Many fans consider Assassins in Assassin’s Creed to be nearly superhuman; however, with a backstory of failures and mistakes, the writers were able to portray Arno as a normal human being to which most of us can relate. It’s refreshing to see the motivation and the humility he gained through the tragic events that took place in his childhood and teenage years. For these reasons, I highly am in love with Assassin’s Creed Unity.
The closest story that we got to Assassin’s Creed Unity is Ezio Auditore‘s trilogy. We were able to know Ezio from his teenage years up until he became a Master Assassin, similar to how Assassin’s Creed Unity was presented. If you got the Assassin’s Creed Unity for free and you’re hesitating to play it, I highly recommend that you do since this is one of the truly underrated Assassin’s Creed games in my opinion.
Best Weapon and Armor for Arno Dorian
Ubisoft introduced a new weapon and armor system for Assassin’s Creed Unity. Assassin’s Creed Unity’s equipment system is the beginning of the “RPG” era of Assassin’s Creed as succeeding games followed the same format, with weapons and armors having massive effects on your playthrough. These are what I think to be the best weapon and armor choices for Arno Dorian.
- One-Handed: Eagle of Suger. This weapon has a fast attack speed and a chance to blind enemies whenever you’re striking them. Couple this weapon with smoke bombs and you can quickly clear a herd of enemies. If you have already finished the game, then you can use the Sword of Eden instead.
- Two-Handed: Heavy Falchion. For people who gave up on tackling missions stealthily, this weapon is for you. Once you upgrade this weapon, you can quickly take out small enemies and other large ones with a single strike.
- Rifles: Silver-Plated Musket. Honestly, I don’t like using guns in Assassin’s Creed games, mainly because they aren’t in the “spirit” of being an Assassin. However, there are instances where you need to take out enemy snipers from long-distance hence why I at least picked a rifle for this list. The Silver-Plated Musket is accurate and has a lot of firepower, however, it is only ideal for long-range fights as the rate of fire is not viable for close-quarter combat.
- Hood: Legendary Prowler Hood. Provides a good stealth and health boost which is great for players who have varying playstyles.
- Chest: Legendary Military Coat. Similar to the Legendary Prowler Hood, the Legendary Military Coat provides a decent stat bonus for stealth and brawl. It also has an added bonus for the Disguise co-op skill which is useful when you’re playing co-op missions with your friends.
- Wrist: Legendary Military Bracers. Phantom blades and Berserk blades are overpowered in Assassin’s Creed Unity. For this reason, I favor using these bracers with the additional number of Phantom Blades which you can use in an instant to turn the tide of battle.
- Waist: Legendary Military Belt. The Legendary Military Belt offers a ton of extra slots for your utility items such as smoke bombs, cherry bombs, ammunition, etc. With highly strategic and open-ended missions on Assassin’s Creed Unity, these utility items are your best friends.
- Legs: Legendary Sans-Culottes Trousers. I chose this over the Phantom Breeches because of the added stealth stat. I like to have a well-rounded playstyle while playing Assassin’s Creed Unity, hence I like to balance things out by using these.
Having a well-rounded gear is what made Assassin’s Creed Unity an easy game for me. Being able to switch between stealth and melee combat is something that favors myself since I’m not that good when it comes to stealth games. Hopefully, this recommended list of weapons and armors help you throughout Arno Dorian’s journey.
Arno Dorian’s Skills and Abilities
Arno has a total of 25 skills that you can unlock throughout playing side missions, completing the main storyline, and even cooperative missions. These skills have four categories: Melee, Ranged, Stealth, and Health.
- Long Weapon Master– 4 skill points required; need to complete sequence 5; unlocks the ability to make strong attacks with long weapons.
- One-Handed Weapon Master– 4 skill points required; need to complete sequence 5; gives the player the strong attack for swords and other edged weapons.
- Staggering Strike– 2 skill points required; need to complete sequence 2; can stun the enemy when used during a fight.
- Heavy Weapon Master– 4 skill points required; need to complete sequence 5; similar to long and one-handed weapon master but for heavy weapons.
- Ground Execution– 9 skill points required; need to complete sequence 9; allows players to execute enemies lying on the ground.
- Ranged Weapon– 1 skill point required; need to complete sequence 2; grants Arno the ability to wield pistols and muskets.
- Assassin Cache– 10 skill points required; need to complete sequence 5; Arno will be able to create an Assassin Cache which allows him and his allies to replenish their inventory stocks.
- Money Pouch– 2 skill points required; need to complete sequence 2; grants Arno the ability to throw a coin pouch to attract crowds and cause a distraction.
- Stun Grenades– 2 skill points required; need to complete sequence 2; Arno will be able to craft and equip a flash bomb that stuns enemies. You can use this ability to stun large groups of enemies if they surround you.
- Improved Phantom Blade– 8 skill points required; need to complete sequence 9; upgrades your phantom blade, allowing you to fire twice consecutively and lets you use berserk blades.
- Poison Gas– 8 skill points required; need to complete sequence 9; allows Arno to use a poison bomb that damages anyone within the proximity of the poison cloud.
- Communal Sense– 4 skill points required; need to complete sequence 2; a skill specifically for Co-op gameplay as you can share your Eagle Vision with your allies.
- Disguise– 6 skill points required; need to complete sequence 2; Similar to the famous stealth game Hitman, this skill allows players to disguise yourself as a civilian or even an enemy. The disguise will wear off if you get too close to an enemy.
- Apprentice Locksmith– 2 skill points required; need to complete sequence 2; this ability has three levels: Apprentice, Journeyman, and Master Locksmith. You can pick locks around the city. However, some locks are more complex than others; hence you can upgrade this ability to make lock picking easier.
- Journeyman Locksmith– 6 skill points required; need to complete sequence 5.
- Master Locksmith– 9 skill points required; need to complete sequence 9.
- Roll Recovery– 2 skill points required; need to complete sequence 5; this skill reduces your fall damage and gives you a faster recovery time after jumping.
- Double Air Assassination– 4 skill points required; need to complete sequence 5; this skill provides Arno the ability to instantly take out two enemies while on air at the same time.
- Double Assassination– 4 skill points required; need to complete sequence 2; similar to the Double Air Assassination skill, this allows Arno to kill two enemies simultaneously while walking or running.
- Environmental Blending– 1 skill point required; need to complete sequence 2; this skill allows Arno to blend in with the crowd or environment, bypassing enemies in the process.
- Group Healing– 10 skill points required; need to complete sequence 2; allows Arno to heal his allies when near him; however, the healing is minimal.
- Thick Skin– 2 skill points required; need to complete sequence 2; this skill has four levels: Thick, Thicker, Thickest, and Iron Skin. This ability provides Arno additional defense in combat, and upgrading this skill provides more defense.
- Thicker Skin– 5 skill points required; need to complete sequence 5;
- Thickest Skin– 9 skill points required; need to complete sequence 9;
- Iron Skin– 12 skill points required; need to complete sequence 9;
General Tips for Playing as Arno Dorian
Here are eight tips to help you get started on utilizing Arno Dorian’s skillset and abilities.
- Get the lockpicking skill as early as possible. The lockpicking skill is essential in the game; there are multiple locked windows, doors, and chests throughout the city of Paris. The main point here is unlocking multiple chests so you can get more cash; therefore, you can get more powerful weapons to tackle more difficult enemies.
- Always restock on smoke bombs and other Assassin-related items. The most essential thing about being an Assassin is always being prepared to take on complex tasks at hand. Once several strong enemies surround you, it’s ideal to disappear into the wind and try to take them out one by one instead. The smoke bomb is generally an undo button for your mistake of alerting enemies. Not only that, other items in your inventory, such as phantom blades or berserk blades, aid you in combat. Utility items are your best friend during missions, so don’t forget to stock up on your items before each mission.
- Try different approaches for each mission. Every story mission in Assassin’s Creed Unity is an open-ended and situation-based task. You need to either devise a strategy while replaying the mission or make a quick decision to adapt to the situation, as sometimes the A.I. can be unpredictable in this buggy game.
- Don’t spam the defense/counter button during combat. Unlike previous Assassin’s Creed games, you can not spam the counter button in Assassin’s Creed Unity. This change means you need to time the button correctly so that enemies will not damage you. Some enemies in the game deal massive damage, so be prepared to deal with them by assassinating them or engaging them head-to-head.
- Upgrade your cafe as you can get so much cash out of it. Throughout the game, you’ll be able to purchase and upgrade your cafe. These cafes earn you passive money as you play the game. Upgrading them allows you to earn more money as you do different missions. Money is everything in Assassin’s Creed Unity, so don’t miss out on the opportunity to continuously upgrade your cafe.
- Take out snipers first during missions. In Assassin’s Creed Unity, you can’t use an enemy as a shield, and the aiming indicator is pretty much useless in this game. Make sure to take them out of their vantage points. Eliminating them will allow you to free up your movement space, creating more opportunities for you to infiltrate enemy fortresses.
- Unlock the skills Staggering Strike and the Ground Finish immediately. Getting a perfect parry then immediately using Staggering Strike will instantly knock enemies to the ground, which you can then finish off with the Ground Finish ability. This combo works on every enemy if you engage them head-to-head in combat. Sometimes, high-level enemies will roll away or dodge-roll your Ground Finish; what you can do as an alternative is to tap your quick shot button if you have a ranged weapon equipped to instantly kill them while on the ground.
- Use your Berserk Blades. Berserk Blades are a fun addition to the game. You can have enemies fight one another, and once you inflict them with berserk, they have a seemingly new A.I. that demolishes the enemy’s A.I. Also, if you find yourself in a pickle, you can quickly use your Berserk Blades, then assassinate them during the “turning berserk” animation. If you’re not confident about the succession of button presses, you can use two Berserk Blades in succession, which will automatically kill them.
Arno Dorian is honestly one of the most tragic assassins in the series. Unfortunately, the cold reception that Assassin’s Creed Unity got from critics and players due to bugs and poor performance overshadows the game’s brilliance. Nonetheless, Arno is one of the best protagonists in the franchise, and hopefully, we get to experience his story better if ever Ubisoft decides to remaster/remake Assassin’s Creed Unity.
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: Is Arno Dorian An Ancestor Of Desmond Miles?
Answer: Since Desmond Miles died in Assassin’s Creed 3, many people have been asking if Arno Dorian is an ancestor of his. Unfortunately, Arno is not an ancestor of Desmond Miles. In fact, there are four assassins who are not related to Desmond.
• Aveline de Grandpre
• Arno Dorian
• Shay Cormac
Question: Did Arno Dorian Have A Child?
Answer: Yes, Arno and Elise did end up together and conceived two children, one on October 7, 1799, and another on March 16, 1808. Their names are François Charles Dorian and Juliette Marie Dorian. François became a Master Assassin of the French Assassin’s Brotherhood, while Juliette became a Master Assassin of the British Assassin’s Brotherhood. Both of them are highly skilled assassins that became pioneers for their respective brotherhood branches.
Question: Will Arno Be Able To Beat Ezio Auditore?
Answer: Many fans consider Ezio Auditore to be the most skilled of all the Assassin’s Creed franchise protagonists. It goes to show with all of his achievements, such as finding the true nature of the Pieces of Eden, halting the Templars’ plans all around the continent, and forming the modern Assassin Order. His unique fighting style would certainly overpower Arno if they were to have head-to-head combat. However, Arno could make a case for this due to him becoming a Master Assassin by his mid-20s. Arno also favored his array of tools that were not present during Ezio’s time. It is safe to say that on an “anything goes” combat, it could most likely go either way.