On Saturday as part of Ubisoft Forward, we were privy to a special Assassin’s Creed Showcase.
That showcase not only gave us the world premiere trailer for Assassin’s Creed Mirage, the next game in the series, but revealed four more games coming to the series. Phew. That’s a lot of Assassin’s Creed. And do any of us really want it?
That remains to be seen, quite frankly. Plenty of series fans are excited for Assassin’s Creed Mirage, touted to be a “return to roots” for the series. Set in Baghdad, the trailer looks more like the original game than the giant open worlds of recent Creeds, promising stealth, story-focused missions and, you know, playing as an actual Assassin.
And so, it’s refreshing to know that Ubisoft has listened to fans in that bigger doesn’t always mean better. Sure, we loved Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, but it’s no secret that fatigue starts to creep in for most players way before they’re done with its 100+ hour running time. Sometimes, a tight, focused experience with an excellent story and some killer set pieces can lead to a much more rewarding game.
And so, yes, Ubisoft is taking that feedback on board with Assassin’s Creed Mirage, set to release on PC and consoles in 2023. But it isn’t stopping there. It seems the company is a glutton for punishment, and it can’t just leave open worlds behind it.
The first of three games with codenames is Assassin’s Creed Codename Red, labelled as “the next flagship Assassin’s Creed”. We take that to mean “the next big-ass Assassin’s Creed”, for lack of a better term. The good news? It’s set in feudal Japan, a setting players have longed to explore in the confines of a Creed game. The bad news? The teaser trailer we were privy to was literal seconds long. This is going to be a long way off release: at least 2024.
And it doesn’t stop there. There’s a Netflix-partnered Assassin’s Creed mobile game in development, Assassin’s Creed Codename Jade and Assassin’s Creed Codename Hexe.
We can perhaps put Jade to one side: set in ancient China, this is a made-for-mobile experience. Great if you’re a mobile gamer, but we’d wager most long-term fans of the series will much prefer PC or console experiences. Assassin’s Creed Codename Hexe, on the other hand, could be interesting.
During the livestream, Hexe was described as “a very different type of experience”. And the seconds-long teaser trailer certainly gave us that impression. There’s a pagan, almost horror theme at play; the iconic Assassin’s Creed symbol made out of sticks, like something from The Blair Witch Project.
But that’s all we know. How Hexe will fit into the wider Assassin’s Creed universe, what type of game it’ll be, and when we’ll get to see it are all big question marks for now.
It also begs the question: if Hexe truly is something “very different”, does it need to exist within the Assassin’s Creed universe? Why not a fresh experience that doesn’t alienate players not already entrenched into the 15-year-old franchise?
Maybe there’s a reason for that. It’s entirely possible that Hexe could relate to an existing character within the Creed universe. But it could just as easily be something completely new altogether. Of all the Assassin’s Creed announcements, this is the one we’re most intrigued about. But we have a feeling it’s also the one we’re going to have to wait longest for.
For hardcore series fans who haven’t wavered since the days of Altair and Ezio, multiple Assassin’s Creed projects on the horizon can only be a good thing. But for some of us, we can’t help but sigh as we think about more open world fatigue, more convoluted storylines and, most likely, multiple DLC expansions to make huge worlds even bigger. Perhaps Ubisoft should have got Assassin’s Creed Mirage out of the way first before announcing even more. Because quite frankly, we’re already exhausted just thinking about them all.
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