Stating "It's an exciting time for Assassin's Creed," Ubisoft message to fans highlighted how proud it was of Assassin's Creed: Syndicate with its dual heroes of Jacob and Evie Frye. The publisher also discussed its excitement for the upcoming Assassin's Creed movie starring Michael Fassbender.
"We have an outstanding cast and crew that want to honor the rich lore of Assassin's Creed and bring a fresh perspective to the ongoing battle between Assassins and Templars that's fit for the big screen," the team explained.
The big news, though, is there will be no mainline Assassin's Creed game released in 2016. The series took the yearly release route starting with Assassin's Creed II in 2009. The franchise built up criticism over the years due to a mixture of bugs, glitches, stale gameplay, and delayed releases on the PC along the way. Things came to a head in 2014 with the release of Assassin's Creed: Unity. The backlash from from the gaming community due to a large amount of baffling bugs was so severe Ubisoft elected to make all DLC content free, and give Season Pass holders a free game.
Assassin's Creed: Syndicate took the series in a bit of a course correction. The bugs and glitches were greatly reduced, while the game focused on a single-player experience. The cooperative play of Unity and multiplayer modes of previous games in the series were nowhere to be found.
Now, it is time for a breather.
"This year, we also are stepping back and re-examining the Assassin's Creed franchise," Ubisoft announced. "As a result, we've decided that there will not be a new Assassin's Creed game in 2016. Since the release of Assassin's Creed Unity, we've learned a lot based on your feedback. We've also updated our development processes and recommitted to making Assassin's Creed a premier open-world franchise. We're taking this year to evolve the game mechanics and to make sure we're delivering on the promise of Assassin's Creed offering unique and memorable gameplay experiences that make history everyone's playground."
As previously covered, Kotaku sources backed a claim by a 4chan poster (via NeoGAF) that Assassin's Creed will return in 2017 with the Empire sub-title. The game will be set in ancient Egypt prior to the Assassins and Templars even existing. This is claimed to allow Ubisoft the freedom to take the game in whatever direction they want without worrying greatly about historical accuracy.
The main character is claimed to be a slave or an ex-slave with darker skin. Meanwhile, the world is said to be colorful with "blue skies, lush vegetation, and desert sequences where you get mirage[s]."
Meanwhile, the game world is built from scratch. Of course, this was expected, since the game is going so far back in time and to a vastly different location from previous titles. The only thing that will be recycled from previous games is animations.
There was also talk of part of the game taking place in ancient Rome. However, the Kotaku source adds the caveat that it may have since been removed.
That doesn't necessarily mean 2016 will be completely devoid of Assassin's Creed, however. The 2.5D platformers, Assassin's Creed Chronicles Chronicles: India and Russia, were both released for the PS4, Xbox One, PC, and PS Vita recently. Meanwhile, there are additional rumors of an Assassin's Creed Collection release for 2016, which could contain remasters or upgrades of the first handful of Assassin's Creed releases. There is also the December Assassin's Creed movie starring Michael Fassbender.
Do you agree or disagree with Assassin's Creed taking 2016 off? Sound off in the comments below.
[Image via Assassin's Creed]