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Those Crazy Kings Hiding Their Loot

Playing games like Uncharted and Tomb Raider (or imagining playing, as I haven't played any of the latter), I often wonder as I'm jumping from ledge to ledge, trying to keep from that fatal plunge to my death 200 feet below: why is this here?

No, not why am *I* here. I'm here because I'm after the treasure or the jewel that will give me the ultimate power. Or to keep that jewel out of the hands of the bad guys.

(Yeah, that one!)

One of those things.

The question is: why is *this* here? Why is there a hidden room buried deep within a mountain, with one passage from Point A to Point B. With death-defying leaps that have convenient hand holds for me to latch on to. Who designed this thing? And who asked for it to be designed?

If you're an old and evil king hiding such a jewel, wouldn't you want either:

a) easy access to it so I can lord it over my people and bend them to your whim

b) hide it away and make sure *nobody* can ever find it? Throw it down a volcano, bury it at sea with a 2-ton weight attached to it, or any number of other ways.

If you're going to throw something down a deep pit, supposedly never to be seen again, why include handholds for any wearisome adventurer who might come calling to look for it? Gee, that rope that's hanging there, attached to the wall sconce (and why are you keeping this secret passage well-lit in the first place?) is *just* long enough so I can jump to another ledge that will keep me going. I wonder why that was put there?

It just seems counter-intuitive, doesn't it? Why make it hard but not impossible to find it? Either make it easy or make it impossible. Don't just make it hard.

Not to mention the cost! How much would it cost to hire all the laborers to cut all of that stone? How about the architect(s) who have to design the things? Those catacombs beneath the various Italian cities (not to mention probably Rome, but I haven't played Brotherhood yet) must have cost a fortune.

And how do you keep them secret? Kill all the laborers and designers? That would go over well.

"King executes 20,000 people today" would read the headline on the Lexor Times papyrus scroll. And for what reason? "They know too much?"

The pundits would be furious, demanding investigations, hearings...how could any king put up with all that?

And for heaven's sake, man, don't write down instructions on how to get to the room where that jewel resides!

Too late.

Yes, I know this is all thinking too much. "It's just a game" and all of that.

But sometimes I just wonder...

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