Assassin’s Creed Mirage is supposed to be a return to classic AC gameplay, but it’s going to need a lot of work if it wants to win over old fans.
Assassin’s Creed Mirage will be the next chapter in the Assassin’s Creed series, and it will return to the classic gameplay that many players miss. The game will follow Basim before the events of Assassin’s Creed Valhalla in a story that is at the core of the Assassin-Templar confrontation. Many players were excited to see the series return to its roots, but Ubisoft has a lot to do with Assassin’s Creed Mirage if they want to pull back fans who have been abandoned by the recent trilogy.
The Assassin’s Creed franchise has gone through a rather ambiguous development period as Ubisoft tried to figure out what the future vision of the franchise would look like. Assassin’s Creed Origins started this beta, and then Odyssey and Valhalla took it to the next level. These games have received much criticism for moving away from what makes Assassin’s Creed so special, and for removing some of the players who have been with the series since its early days. While Assassin’s Creed Mirage will obviously deliver that classic feel, it remains to be seen if Ubisoft can pull it off.
Assassin’s Creed has strayed from the core of the franchise
Before Assassin’s Creed Origins, Ubisoft released an Assassin’s Creed title almost every year. These games have taken players through historical periods and role-playing in the shoes of all sorts of different assassins. Gamers have controlled Ezio in the Italian Renaissance, Connor in the American Revolution, the Frye twins in London’s Industrial Revolution, and even got a taste of the pirate life with Edward Kenway. While all the stories are different, they are all bound together by the war between the fictional Assassin and the Templar that has raged throughout history.
At the time of Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, many people were feeling exhausted and bored with the franchise. The games all take place in different time periods, but they all offer a relatively similar experience, just with a different coat of paint. Ubisoft chose to address this by taking the franchise in a whole new direction with Assassin’s Creed Origins. It took the series further than it’s ever been before and completely revamped the core gameplay of the series from an action-adventure title to an open-world RPG.
This new direction has proven to be a huge success for Ubisoft, and they have chosen to continue this path. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey and Valhalla took the series to a new age and expanded the RPG gameplay. The titles are big games that can take someone hundreds of hours to get through, and both have been remarkably well received. In particular, Valhalla has become one of the best-selling Assassin’s Creed titles and the most successful launch of any Ubisoft PC game.
While the last two Assassin’s Creed titles offer a decent amount of interesting content, something is still missing. In Ubisoft’s quest to revive the AC franchise, they chose to ignore the core Assassin and Templar conflict that drove the series. Odyssey puts the player in control of a Greek mercenary with little interest in the Hidden One’s conflict, and Valhalla puts the player in control of a Viking fighting for a place in England while the Hidden Ones start their own journey. Both games offer a pretty interesting historical RPG, but don’t have much to do with Assassin’s Creed.
Deviating from the core Assassin’s Creed storyline has already annoyed some fans of the series, but so does the gameplay. The early games were action-adventure titles that focused on stealth. A lot of early games were built around the concept of sneaking around big cities to assassinate targets with hidden blades. Newer games are more focused on traversing large open worlds to level up in classic RPG style.
Stealth still plays an important role in new titles, but that’s no longer the focus. Assassinations still exist, but players can no longer sneak in the dark to kill their target with a single stab of their iconic Assassin’s Creed hidden blade. Instead, the player will have to be aware of the target’s level and make sure their level is strong enough if they want to stand a chance of winning. This is a feature of the new RPG route Ubisoft has chosen to take, and it has caused some players to fall out of love with the series.
Assassin’s Creed Mirage is facing a tough battle
Assassin’s Creed Mirage is clearly going to be an identity return for the franchise, and that looks to be great news for fans. The game will see the return of action-adventure gameplay and a greater focus on stealth stealth. Players will also explore a single city like the older games instead of a large open world like the new games, and it will also see the return of Assassin’s conflict with the Templars.
Ubisoft has yet to share any gameplay footage, but if they get it right it could be the Assassin’s Creed game fans have been waiting for. However, the game needs to be at its best if it is to really make an impact. The last two titles are interesting, but they also deviate greatly from what drew people to the series in the first place. Assassin’s Creed Mirage needs to emphasize what makes Assassin’s Creed great and it needs to be good enough for gamers.
The last time the Assassin conflict was central to the series’ plot was with Assassin’s Creed Origins. That title shows off the beginnings of the Brotherhood and their war with the Templars, but the game has since faded that storyline quite a bit. Assassin’s Creed Mirage will mark a return to conflict, and Ubisoft needs to make sure they get it right. If Basim’s story matches the great stories of Ezio or Edward, old fans will probably love it, but if it’s written like the new games those old fans will will want to stay away.
Assassin’s Creed Mirage is Ubisoft’s chance to pull fans back into the series, and it needs to be done carefully so as not to mess things up. The title needs to represent all that made the series so good in the first place, because it could kick off a new era for this 15-year-old franchise.
See also: Assassin’s Creed Infinity will be the place of modern-day stories with the player as the main character