Assassin’s Creed Mirage Will Mark The Series’ Return To Classic 15-20 Hour Campaigns

Assassin’s Creed Mirage Will Mark The Series’ Return To Classic 15-20 Hour Campaigns

For those who’ve come to cower in the shadow of Assassin’s Creed’s ballooning time-to-beat, some welcome news: they could be about to get a lot shorter.

That’s according to Executive Producer Marc-Alexis Côté, who sat for an interview with IGN after last weekend’s Ubisoft Forward broadcast. Amongst a few interesting pieces of information about the future of Assassin’s Creed, Côté said that the length of future series entries would vary from game to game. Likewise, the sprawling RPG genre that has defined the last three mainline titles since Assassin’s Creed Origins should also be considered subject to change.

The news of shorter, more old-school stealth-action Assassin’s Creed games developed alongside larger, latter-day RPG entries came as Ubisoft announced a pile of new games over the weekend. The crown jewel: Assassin’s Creed Mirage, news of which leaked last week. Mirage follows Basim, a character from AC Valhalla, from his youth on the streets of Baghdad to his first days among The Hidden Ones. According to Ubisoft, it will be much smaller in scale and scope than a game like Valhalla.

“It is a smaller Assassin’s Creed project,” Côté told IGN. “This was conceived, built to celebrate the fifteenth anniversary. So, that’s why we’re using our modern Valhalla engine to build a smaller game that pays tribute to our original game by focusing more on stealth, close-quarter combat, parkour, and a denser city that goes back to our roots in the Middle East with Baghdad as the centrepiece.”

When pressed on the game’s length, Côté replied, “yes, you should expect something that’s closer to our original games.” The expectation, then, is that the Assassin’s Creed Mirage campaign will clock in somewhere between 15 and 20 hours. It will be among the first titles to debut on Assassin’s Creed Infinity, a new platform Ubisoft wants to make the franchise’s new home. AC games of different sizes and scales will come to Infinity over time, like Codename Red, another epic-scale RPG. Conversely, Codename Hexe, Côté says, will be something entirely different again. According to Côté, free experiences will also factor into the platform in the hope of tempting users to check Infinity out.

In terms of total playtime, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey and Valhalla both dwarfed previous entries in the series, with either game requiring players to invest up to 200 hours or more to fully complete. This has tested the friendship for fans of the earlier games, which typically had campaigns that clocked in at a comfortable 20 hours. As a result, a schism has developed within the franchise’s fandom about which era of Assassin’s Creed was superior.

That argument has found us even here at Kotaku Australia. I, personally, prefer the older AC games. The content bloat and half-hearted attempt at recreating Souls combat across the Ancient History trilogy just hasn’t worked for me. I don’t feel I have the time or energy to chew through that much content. Zac Kelly, writer at Gizmodo Australia, feels the opposite. Zac loves AC‘s epic RPG era. He’s even 100%ed Valhalla because he is a madman who, I assume, does nothing else but play that game. Like me, Lauren Rouse, writer at Lifehacker Australia, has her complaints about the new trilogy. For example, Odyssey’s propensity for level-gating content drove us both out of our minds. But, Lauren says she will be pretty happy to have both the old and the new school designs launching alongside each other. Assassin’s Creed Infinity has its first satisfied customer. She also says she’d like to play Assassin’s Creed Codename Hexe immediately, and fair enough. The spooky witchcraft angle is very cool.

I’m also keen to know your thoughts as well — do you miss the old AC, or are you happy with the new one? Do you want both? Neither? Let me know in the comments.

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