- "Why do we have these gifts? These abilities? Because it's in our blood!"
- ―Clay Kaczmarek, about Eagle Vision[src]
Eagle Vision was a sixth sense that certain lineages of humans possessed, as a result of being created by the First Civilization. Though every human held the potential for it, bloodlines of humans who had interbred with their creators held a greater concentration of the necessary genes, and were thus more likely to exhibit the ability.
Those who possessed the gift were able to instinctively sense how people and objects related to them, which manifested as a colored glow, much like an aura or other form of glow.
When an individual mastered Eagle Vision, the ability evolved to the more advanced Eagle Sense. This heightened all of the senses of its user, allowing them to detect the heartbeat of a target in the area, or even foresee a target's path.
For this ability, a variety of colored glows was used to mark different people or objects. Red indicated enemies or spilled blood, blue indicated allies, white indicated sources of information or hiding spots, and gold indicated targets or any person of interest.
High Middle Ages
With it, Altaïr found himself able to read the emotions and intentions of all those around him, driving him to perfect the ability in secret. In his later life, he would make use of it during his many assassinations and investigations.
Eagle Vision aided Altaïr in locating targets, and was particularly useful during his duel with Al Mualim, who used the Apple of Eden to create phantoms of himself. With his ability, Altaïr was able to pinpoint the true one from the crowd.
Ezio Auditore, much like Altaïr, possessed Eagle Vision and made use of it to locate hidden passages, as well as to predict the intentions of his allies and enemies. Additionally, he was also able to see the map hidden beneath the pages of the Codex with it.
The Assassins of Constantinople also knew of Ezio's ability, even before they had met him. When Piri Reis instructed him to use it to see through a smoke screen, Ezio pretended not to know what he was talking about, but Piri merely answered that "word gets around." At hearing this, Ezio suggested that he keep the information to himself.
Yusuf Tazim spoke of Ezio's skill as his "legendary senses," and Piri once mentioned that Ezio was a "special sort of man, with strange gifts." Ezio himself also admitted that his senses were "more finely tuned than most."
- "The note told me to use my other eyes. Sometimes I see things that are not there. Drawings or waves."
- ―Giovanni Borgia describing his Eagle Vision[src]
Giovanni Borgia also had Eagle Vision, which he used to locate and tail Francesco Vecellio through a crowd. He was also able to see images or drawings that were not really there, such as waves, arrows, and footprints.
Francesco referred to Giovanni's ability as "using his other eyes."
- "Try using that special sight you learned from Altaïr."
- ―Lucy Stillman to Desmond Miles in the Sanctuary[src]
By using the Animus to follow the memories of his ancestors, Desmond Miles also gained the ability to use Eagle Vision, likely as a result of the Bleeding effect. Through it, he was able to see Lucy Stillman (a fellow Assassin) glowing blue and Warren Vidic (a Templar) glowing red.
Clay also hid a series of Glyphs within the rendered Animus environment, which needed to be scanned with Eagle Vision to be unlocked. Similarly, the Rifts that the Glyph puzzles led to also needed Eagle Vision to be both seen and accessed.
During his escape from Abstergo Industries, Desmond found another application for his newly-acquired power. Much like thermal vision, he used it to discover the code of a keypad, by seeing the heat signature or the fingerprints left upon the correct numbers.
Later, upon reaching Monteriggioni, Desmond was also able to use Eagle Vision to see a message that Ezio had left upon the wall of the Sanctuary stairwell, which bore the password to the Colosseum Vault.
While traveling through the Colosseo to the Santa Maria in Aracoeli, Desmond used Eagle Vision to locate a series of switches to open hidden entrances. He also made use of it to see the proper sequence of levers he needed to activate, in order to access the Apple of Eden hidden within the Colosseum Vault.
The Abstergo recruits who participated in the Animi Training Program were also granted an ability called Templar Vision. This rendered ability mimicked Eagle Vision, and allowed the user approximately 3.5 seconds of the gift.
- "As Ezio matured, so did many of his stranger abilities, not least of which was a rare form of extrasensory perception – you know, what we Assassins call "Eagle Sense" in its most robust form."
- ―Clay Kaczmarek[src]
A more heightened form of Eagle Vision, it allowed one to focus on a target and sense approximately where they had gone, or inversely, where they would go. This was particularly helpful in tailing a target, or detecting the path a guard would take, in order to set up a bomb or lay an ambush.
With Eagle Sense, Ezio was also able to pick up cold trails, or locate disguised enemies. However, for the latter, he was required to concentrate harder and scrutinize people individually, rather than as a crowd.
Ezio also once used his Eagle Sense to follow the scent vapors of datura, and to diagnose an injured mercenary by listening to his heartbeat. As such, the latter technique allowed him to conclude that the man was alive but weak, and likely affected by some form of poison.
- Assassin's Creed
- An Assassin guard could be seen glowing red in Eagle Vision at the Kingdom entrance to Masyaf, but he reacted in normal guard behavior. This guard was Jamal, an Assassin who aided Masun in betraying the Brotherhood, and was originally intended to have been a target. However, the sequence where Altaïr assassinated him was cut, leaving him as a minor Easter egg.
- In the original Assassin's Creed, movement was restricted while using Eagle Vision, and Altaïr was required to be at maximum synchronization. These requirements were removed in succeeding games.
- In Assassin's Creed, Eagle Vision was said to actually be the Animus' visualization of the Assassin's observational skills.
- Assassin's Creed II
- The users of Eagle Vision saw themselves marked with blue.
- At the beginning of the game, while playing as Desmond in the Hideout, he could see equipment shine blue in Eagle Vision. This indicated that they could be used for free-running.
- Lucy made a reference to the ability by saying "Open your eyes, Desmond," when Desmond asked her how to find the sensors for the Hideout's defense system, which she had tasked him to switch on.
- In some memories in both Assassin's Creed II and Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, water was shown to be glowing white like hiding spots when Eagle Vision was activated.
- Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood
- When traveling through Rome, Eagle Vision could be used to mark flags, feathers or treasure chests on the map.
- While using Eagle Vision and roaming Monteriggioni as Desmond, a red trail was visible that led from the fountain with the Assassin insignia to the door of Mario Auditore's study. The trail was colored similarly to the blood glyphs of Subject 16, and appeared to be made up of many footprints.
- When outside of the Animus, there was sometimes a pause that caused allies to glow gold for a few seconds.
- Unlike in Assassins Creed II, enemies and allies did not glow their standard colors after they died, and would appear grey like civilians and inanimate objects.
- When dressed as a Borgia guard captain in the memory "When In Rome," if Eagle Vision was activated, the armor would glow red, though Ezio himself would still be marked with blue.
- Unlike Eagle Vision, Templar Vision marked targets with blue rather than with gold, since they were hunting other Templars and could be considered allies within a contained session.
- In Assassin's Creed: Revelations, during Ezio's pilgrimage to Masyaf and Altaïr's return from exile to Masyaf, ghostly images from Altaïr's past could be seen.
- Unlike normal enemies, the paths of officials and the two guards accompanying him could not be tracked with Eagle Sense.
- A mini-game in the Assassin's Creed room of PlayStation Home featured an Eagle Vision puzzle that, when completed, opened up the Hideout.
- An issue of Nintendo Power stated that the Wii U tablet controller could be used as an alternate view for Eagle Vision in Assassin's Creed III, using the built-in accelerometer to control the camera view.