‘Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag’ Won’t Feature Multiplayer Naval Battles

As you’ve likely noticed from the Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag footage we’ve seen so far, naval battles play a major part in the game. Sadly, however, it looks like naval battles won’t be playing a role at all in the game’s multiplayer component.

VG247 recently spoke with lead multiplayer game designer Tim Browne at Ubisoft’s Annecy studio, and the site was told that while the team would have liked to include naval battles in multiplayer, it just isn’t possible at this point for technical reasons.

“You have to take into consideration that it took a very big dedicated team in Singapore about two-and-a-half years to do it for the solo [play],” Browne told the site.

“In Black Flag it’s even better, but for solo. We’ve looked at it and we’ve considered it. We seriously considered it. We think it would be cool, but at the same time we tried it, and for technical reasons it’s impossible.”

Director Damien Kieken offered a more technical explanation. Speaking to VG247, he explained that in solo play, the ocean has to be simulated; in choppy waters, for example, your cannon volley may be partially blocked by a rising wave. In order to replicate that for multiplayer, Kieken went on to explain, the team would have to “perfectly” replicate the ocean.

Another reason, and perhaps the biggest reason, is that the team just didn’t have enough time to accomplish that level of simulation in a multiplayer environment. Perhaps another time.

In the core game, however, you can expect plenty of naval combat. In the recently released 13-minute video showing off a sampling of the game’s singleplayer, we’re shown how protagonist Edward Kenway relies on his ship to explore new areas, which players can then fast travel to.

If you missed the 13-minute gameplay demo of Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, you can check it out in the video below.