In an earnings call to investors, Ubisoft indicated that there will probably not be a new Assassin’s Creed video game released for 2018. The most recent installment of the open world action franchise was Assassin’s Creed Origins, a generally acclaimed title for a series that has thought to be faltering for quite some time. The success of Origins came after the series took a year-long break following the lukewarm/negative reception to some of the most recent Assassin’s Creed games – an approach that seems to have worked for Ubisoft.
The Assassin’s Creed series was once an annual franchise, but that release approach eventually led to diminishing returns for Ubisoft. While earlier titles such as Assassin’s Creed II received much praise, later entries in the series such as Assassin’s Creed Unity were plagued with technical problems and some truly horrifying graphical glitches. After the 2015 release of Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, Ubisoft decided to go back to the drawing board, with the only 2016 Assassin’s Creed we got being the related film starring Michael Fassbender.
Per GamesRadar, comments made by Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot appear to suggest that the franchise will not have a brand new game installment this year. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that there won’t be any new Assassin’s Creed content in 2018. According to the CEO:
“We are concentrating on [sic] the moment on [Assassin’s Creed] Origins for which we are going to launch a few other DLCs. You will be amazed by what will came on [Assassin’s Creed Origins], so that’s the only thing we can say now.”
Unlike previous botched installments of the franchise, Origins isn’t being buried and forgotten. Rather, the critically acclaimed game will serve as a platform for some new Assassin’s Creed content throughout the year. Some of these DLCs that Guillemot referenced include the “Discovery Tour” on February 20, which will transform the game’s Egyptian open world into an interactive museum of sorts, and “The Curse of the Pharaohs” on March 6, which is said to expand the game’s map and the player’s level cap. More is sure to come after these pieces.
This is a financial model that many modern video games have adapted, turning individual video games into long-term online services. Other examples of games-as-a-service include Activision and Bungie’s Destiny games, and Ubisoft’s own The Division, For Honor, Ghost Recon: Wildlands, and especially Rainbow Six: Siege. While these titles have all had their fair share of problems and criticisms, post-game support for these games has been warmly received. Ubisoft earned much goodwill with Origins alone, so extending support for a successful title is likely to go well for the Assassin’s Creed franchise.