'Assassin's Creed' Shanks Originality and Credibility With One News Leak

Empty Lighthouse is a reader-supported site. This article may contain affiliate links to Amazon and other sites. We earn a commission on purchases made through these links.

Ubisoft has made headlines with the leak of Assassin's Creed Victory--a title that will bring the historical action franchise to Victorian London. After 2014 was a public relations catastrophe for Ubisoft, this leak will likely worsen their image.

The underwhelming reception to Watch Dogs was the beginning for the gaming company; Ubisoft has since run into controversy about the omission of female assassins from Unity's co-op and their questionable review embargo on the title.

The leak of Victory shows that Ubisoft is ignoring the demand for an Assassin's Creed set outside European-influenced society, and it adds to a year that has been a PR disaster.

With the unintended announcement of Victory, Ubisoft continues their Eurocentric trend. They have acknowledged fan demand for games set in Asia and Africa. Furthermore, they created Shao Jun--a Chinese Assassin--and made her the protagonist of Assassin's Creed Chronicles: China.

Chronicles, however, feels like an appeasement. It's not a fully-fledged Assassin's Creed game, nor is it even a small DLC add-on like Freedom Cry. It's a side-scrolling afterthought.

Egypt has been another often-requested setting.

With the Pyramids of Giza, the Sphinx, and a history so large that it could be fictionalized in epic ways, it's hard to believe that Assassin's Creed III creative director Alex Hutchinson dismissed this setting as "boring."

Feudal Japan headlines the list of often-requested Assassin's Creed settings. And it has inspired the series' gifted fans to create art exploring how an Assassin's Creed set in the time period would look.

Ubisoft has hinted to this idea-- referencing it a few times in the present day story of Black Flag--and it remains one of the most requested settings for the franchise.

Japan and other settings, however, have been cast aside as too "familiar"; Hutchinson stated that Ubisoft wants to explore historical territory that's new to gaming. He told Total Xbox that Feudal Japan has been "well-mined in video games."

Clearly, Ubisoft hasn't played games like: Dishonored, Thief, or Fable III--all of which have settings clearly inspired by London's Victorian era. The Victorian era, however, hasn't had a major release explicitly set in its time period.

And I would believe Ubisoft's ostensible goal for originality if it weren't for the Unity DLC where protagonist Arno goes to Paris during World War II-- one of the most explored settings in video game history.

Call of Duty alone has exhausted it.

In addition, how has Feudal Japan been "well-mined"? There have been an abundance of ninja games. But most of them have fantastic twists that make their setting irrelevant; Tenchu or Way of the Samurai are the two franchises that come closest to recreating Japan's Feudal era.

Both series, however, haven't had a relevant release in years.

The last Tenchu game for consoles was Tenchu Z. It received poor reviews-- currently holding a score of 52 on Metacritic-- and the franchise hasn't had a critically successful game since Wrath of Heaven came out on the PlayStation 2.

Way of the Samurai is, at this point, a series with a cult following. A new installment of the franchise is never released at the industry standard price, and most major gaming sites don't even bother to review them.

With a World War II DLC and a leaked setting that has been the inspiration for recent releases, it's hard to say that Ubisoft is trying to find fresh ideas.

With their annual releases becoming progressively more glitch-laden, they have turned their once-elite franchise into a yearly cash-in.

Wanna read more on this? Check these out: Matt Lauer Net Worth: What Could He Lose From Being Fired Over Alleged Sexual Misconduct (more); What Critics are Saying about Assassin's Creed Unity (more).