The future of Ubisoft’s signature franchise Assassin’s Creed seems to be looking gloomier by the day. After a divisive announcement of the franchise taking the live service route, the series’ veteran art director Raphael Lacoste has announced his departure from Ubisoft after working in the company for 16 years.
Good morning all,
It is not without emotions I have to tell you that after 8 assassins, 16 years at Ubisoft I have decided to set sails on new adventures and challenges. 1/3 pic.twitter.com/ZynG1pXoK9
— Raphael Lacoste (@raphaellacoste) July 21, 2021
Lacoste joins a growing list of veteran creatives from the Assassin’s Creed franchise leaving the company. Earlier this year, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla’s narrative director Darby McDevitt also left the company, following the game’s creative director Ashraf Ismail after his controversial exit.
Shortly after news of his departure from Ubisoft, Lacoste announced that he is joining Haven Studios as art director. For the uninformed, Haven Studios is a new game development studio currently working on an unannounced game in partnership with PlayStation. The new studio includes many former creatives who have worked on the Assassin’s Creed series, with franchise co-creator and producer Jade Raymond as its founder.
Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier, who first broke the news of Ubisoft working on Assassin’s Creed Infinity, offered some insight into why many Ubisoft employees have started to leave the company. Among many other reasons listed in his tweet, he also mentions “belief that Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot has not been held accountable for the company’s cultural abuses.”
Ubisoft has an attrition problem. Some of the reasons include money, WFH, feelings of stagnancy, lots of Canadian studios poaching talent, and of course, the belief that Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot has not been held accountable for the company’s cultural abuses https://t.co/LTTK8tuBt0
— Jason Schreier (@jasonschreier) July 21, 2021
The latest departure from the Assassin’s Creed franchise doesn’t bode well for the series, as Ubisoft takes the franchise in a new direction that a large portion of its community isn’t a big fan of. Although many of Assassin’s Creed Valhalla’s creative leads have left the company, the game will continue to receive support well into its second year, a first for the franchise.
Evidently, Ubisoft’s longer than usual post-launch support for Valhalla is them testing the waters for a shift towards a live-service future, as many fans have predicted. The base game’s story wasn’t exactly conclusive, and it has been heavily hinted that it will come to an end through DLC and expansions. However, with two big creative leads leaving the franchise, the future of Valhalla doesn’t look so bright from a lore perspective.
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla is out now on PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S consoles.