The Maya are an indigenous peoples from Central America and southern Mexico, particularly Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, El Salvador, and the Yucatán Peninsula. Their civilization spanned across most of the region, including several small islands throughout the West Indies, and after their decline many of their temples were left in ruin.
The Maya also constructed a number of stone columns, known as stelae, that revealed the location of hidden keys spread throughout the region. These keys would unlock a door hidden under a temple in the Maya city of Tulum and grant access to a set of armor created from collected pieces of First Civilization metals.
During the Age of Discovery, Hernán Cortés came into contact with two Spaniards, Gonzalo Guerrero and Gerónimo de Aguilar, living with the Maya. The two men spoke a Mayan language, which would allow them to translate, in tangent with a native Nahuatl speaker, what Cortés wished to say.
By 1715, the Aztecs and Maya had come into contact with the Assassins and, thanks in part to a mutual wish for freedom from oppression, formed an alliance of sorts. Such was the unity that a number of natives had joined the Order, including Ah Tabai - a Maya who had obtained the rank of Mentor. At some point before the 1660s, the local Assassin branch had headquartered itself in the old Mayan settlement of Tulum. Another Maya settlement, Chichen Itza, was built on top of First Civilization temples.
During the early 18th century, the pirate Edward Kenway would use Eagle Vision to find keystones buried near Mayan stelae around the Caribbean. After finding all of them, he unlocked a vault at Tulum containing the Mayan Armor, a set of armor crafted from First Civilization materials.
By the later part of the 18th century, the Templars were transporting slaves from Cuba and Louisiana to excavate the site, though their prize, the Prophecy Disk, was ultimately claimed by the Assassin Aveline de Grandpré in 1772.
- The Mesoamerican Long Count calendar was the inspiration for the 21 December 2012 date of the catastrophe that Desmond Miles works to prevent in the games.