Assassin’s Creed: A Leap of Faith for the Franchise’s Future

By Kyle Raiman

Assassin’s Creed is one of my favorite series. I’ll go ahead and admit my bias right here and now. My first leap of faith was with Altaïr ibn-La'Ahad and I followed Ezio Auditore De Firenze from birth to death through all of his games. I have played every single major entry to the franchise (with the exception of Rouge) so it is safe to say that I have been with Ubisoft through the ups and the downs. For every Black Flag that did everything right there was a Unity that fell short.

I say these things because I want you to know what qualifies me to speak on the subject. Assassin’s Creed Origins is coming and it is far too soon to say if it will be good or bad; but, as a fan and talking to others who love the series, I have come up with a short list of things that we want the next Assassin’s Creed title to do or be. Now, to preface this, I won’t be talking about mechanics they need to introduce or mini-games they need to do away with but rather pieces of the franchise as a whole that either needs to be addressed, added, or reworked.

Bugs

I love Ubisoft and I hate to drag up the past, but it is almost impossible to talk about the series and forget what happened with the launch of Unity. The title, set during the French Revolution, was a decent entry to the series but was plagued from day one by a plethora of bugs and glitches that made the game practically unplayable regardless of which console you chose. Syndicate arrived the following year and was almost flawless, but all we ask is that we don’t repeat history. If titles are to be released annually, appropriate play-testing is a must on all consoles to ensure a smooth launch. There is nothing more disappointing than launching a game you spent a pretty penny on and then realizing you can’t even play it.

Story

Part of the success of Assassin’s Creed II was the fact that it not only took everything good about the first game and improved on it mechanically, but it also took the story and gave it a layer of depth that truly set it apart from everything else on the market at the time. The problem is, ever since Assassin’s Creed III took some serious turns with the story, the present-day portion of the games have been lackluster to say the least. Without that duality, one must ask why they even bother including the parts of the game that exist outside of the historic other than to stick to the formula. At this point, there isn’t any reason to leave the animus and every time they force you to it’s lackluster and boring compared to the true meat of the game. Either give the present-day sections a point for existing or cut them altogether.

Something New

We’ve spent the last 10 years following more or less the same formula. We delve into the memories of Desmond Miles’ ancestors to track down the mystical artifacts known as the Pieces of Eden, meeting figures from history and taking part in famous events along the way. While this was a novel idea in the beginning, the problem now becomes that Desmond’s story has concluded. Why are we still restricting ourselves to his bloodline when there are countless other stories that could be told? Has nothing of interest ever happened in the Creed’s Japanese branch? Give us a story set in the Meiji era following the establishment of the Templar and Assassin presences that would have undoubtedly come about when Japan opened their borders. How about a Russian story? Or African? What about a Spanish story? There are so many possibilities for interesting directions to take the franchise instead of limiting ourselves to one bloodline. The history of the world is not confined to the continent of Europe.

At the end of the day these are merely the requests of one fan. I am very much in love with Assassin’s Creed and I have no intentions of letting a single entry pass me by. I will even play Origins when it is released regardless of what critics say. However, if Ubisoft plans to keep the games going they need to at least consider some of the points brought up in this article. And perhaps there is more I did not touch on. If you have any suggestions or requests for what could bring the Creed back into the spotlight where it belongs then please, feel free to leave a comment down below. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

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