Assassin's Creed Unity
|Assassin's Creed Unity|
Assassin's Creed Unity is an action-adventure video game developed by Ubisoft Montreal and published by Ubisoft. It was released in November 2014 for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One, and in December 2020 for Stadia. It is the eighth major installment in the Assassin's Creed series, and the successor to 2013's Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag. It also has ties to Assassin's Creed Rogue, which was released for the previous generation consoles on the same day as Unity.
The plot is set in a fictional history of real-world events and follows the millennia-old struggle between the Assassins, who fight to preserve peace and free will, and the Templars, who desire peace through control. The framing story is set in the 21st century and features an unidentified and unseen protagonist, who joins the Assassins as an initiate to help them locate the corpse of an 18th century Templar Grand Master. The main story is set in Paris during the French Revolution from 1789 to 1794, and follows Assassin Arno Dorian and his efforts to expose the true powers behind the Revolution, while seeking revenge against those responsible for his adoptive father's murder. Unity retains the series' third-person open world exploration as well as introducing a revamped combat, parkour, and stealth systems. The game also introduces cooperative multiplayer to the Assassin's Creed series, letting up to four players engage in narrative-driven missions and explore the open world map.
Assassin's Creed Unity received mixed reviews upon release. It was praised for its visuals, customization options, setting, and characterization. Critics were more polarized on its narrative, mission design, multiplayer-oriented format, and gameplay, with the latter in particular complimented for its improvements, but criticized for a lack of innovation and for feeling unrefined. The game was also widely panned for its numerous graphical issues and bugs, prompting Ubisoft to issue an apology and offer compensation in the form of a free story expansion, Dead Kings, set after the events of the main campaign. Those who had already bought the game's season pass (which was subsequently made unavailable for purchase in response to the controversy) received, on top of the content included, a free copy of another Ubisoft title of their choice.
In the years since Unity's release, after most of the technical issues were resolved, the game has undergone positive critical re-evaluations, and is retrospectively considered to be an underrated and under-appreciated title in the Assassin's Creed series. Despite the initial critical backlash, the game was a favorable commercial success, selling over 10 million copies worldwide, and saw a resurgence in sales in the early 2020s. Unity was followed in October 2015 by Assassin's Creed Syndicate, which continues the modern-day narrative, but has its main plot set in Victorian era London.
Assassin's Creed Unity is an action-adventure stealth game set in an open world environment. The game's combat system was greatly refined over previous entries in the series, with fencing being used as an inspiration for the new system. In addition to returning weapons from previous games, Assassin's Creed Unity introduces the Phantom Blade. The Phantom Blade uses the mechanics of a crossbow to fire a silent projectile at a great distance, while still serving the same role as the Hidden Blade in previous Assassin's Creed games. In-game navigation was also overhauled: new "Free-run up" and "Free-run down" commands were added to make it easier for the player to scale buildings in either direction, allowing players to make controlled ascents and descents at will. Additionally, Arno learns new moves throughout the game, but the player can also purchase new skills as well. With the updated, larger crowds, new interactions with them are also available. The crowd regularly presents many activities, appearing organically, that the player can then choose to engage in at their leisure. Examples include scaring a group of bullies by pulling out a weapon, "settling" a disagreement between two civilians by killing one of them, which is usually a Templar, or chasing down a thief who has just pick pocketed somebody. Completing a set of these crowd events gives you either a monetary reward or a piece of armor.
For the first time, the series allows players to customize the characters' abilities, adopting a skill tree that enables players to assign points earned through gameplay to improve their skills in stealth, melee, and ranged combat, and health. Players are also able to customise their weapons, armour and equipment to further complement their individual style of play. These weapons and armour have a level out of 5 and a few legendary pieces of armor. The higher quality your weapons and gear are the higher your level is. Players also have a wider selection of weapons available, including swords, axes, spears, rifles, pistols and throwable items, such as smoke bombs. The Dead Kings expansion introduces an additional weapon: the guillotine gun.
Assassin's Creed Unity also introduces cooperative multiplayer to the series. Players can enter taverns, which act as social hubs in the game, where you can see if any friends are playing the game at the current time. If they are currently in a mission, they will appear as a "ghost" version of their player, allowing you to approach it to request to join their mission. If accepted, you are transitioned to their game and both of you reset to the most recent checkpoint, and continue on from there. Up to four players can join together in this fashion. The player will take on the role of Arno, customized within their own game, with other players appearing as their own customized version of Arno in their own sets of equipment, weapons, and armor. Many missions and activities will be available for cooperative play (which the player can also complete on their own), but there are some story missions that are single player only.
Unity also brought back a steady source of income like the ones in the Ezio games. Arno is introduced to the Cafe Theatre and is given the opportunity to renovate it and receive its profits. The starting income of the Cafe is 20 francs in 20 minutes and you can store 80 francs. After doing all the renovations and Cafe missions your income will be at around 5000 francs and a storage of 15000 francs. Renovating all Social clubs and collecting all mementos will bring your income to around 10,000 francs and a storage of 40,000 francs. The Cafe has Arno's room which after looking from the balcony of it will give you an achievement. Renovating more rooms will unlock secret rooms and ultimately a secret passage to the Assassin's hideout.
There are significant tie-ins with the game's Companion App, a "freemium" click app with limited "direct ties to the overall story of Unity". There are a significant number of chests, assassination targets, and other collectibles that are visible to all players but only accessible to those who have completed certain goals within the app. Following an update in February 2015, this requirement is no longer necessary, meaning players who have downloaded the update, can now collect all the chests in the game without having to play the companion app.
The main character of the game is Arno Dorian (Dan Jeannotte), a native Frenchman who was born in Versailles to an Assassin father. After his father is killed by Shay Patrick Cormac at the end of Assassin's Creed Rogue, Arno is adopted, unaware that his new family holds a senior position within the Templar Order, with his new father figure being the Templar Grandmaster. Arno blames himself when his adoptive father is murdered, and so sets out on a quest of redemption that brings him into the Brotherhood of Assassins, where he slowly rises through the ranks, much like Altaïr Ibn-La'Ahad and Ezio Auditore da Firenze as seen in previous games. Arno's love interest is a Templar named Elise De LaSerre (Catherine Bérubé), the daughter of the Templar Grandmaster who adopted Arno, who also sets out to investigate more about her father's death and its role in a growing ideological change within the Templar Order that threatens its core values. The era also features appearances from several historical figures, such as Marquis de Sade (Alex Ivanovici), Maximilien Robespierre (Bruce Dinsmore), and a young Napoleon Bonaparte (Brent Skagford).
Arno's story starts in Versailles as a child, but for most of the story he is in Paris. His adventure in Paris starts on the eve of the French Revolution in 1789, and extends up to the Thermidorian Reaction in 1794. The modern day setting focuses on the Assassins contacting the player and requesting their help to explore Arno in the past, as well as helping in the present. Co-operative multiplayer missions follow the development of the Brotherhood of Assassins during the French Revolution. In addition, "time anomalies" are introduced during the story. Accessing them takes Arno to various points of Parisian history, such as Paris' Belle Époque, or its occupation by Nazi Germany during World War II.
This article's plot summary may be too long or excessively detailed. (July 2021)
The player character, known as the "Initiate", is a player of Helix, a gaming device produced by Abstergo that allows access to genetic memories. They witness a memory of the Templar Grand Master, Jacques de Molay (Mario Desmarais), who during the sacking of the Paris Temple in 1307, entrusts another Templar with a book and an artifact—the Sword of Eden. The Templar hides them in a crypt before being killed by an Assassin. De Molay is subsequently arrested and executed on the orders of King Phillip IV and Pope Clement V.
A member of the modern-day Assassin Brotherhood, codenamed "Bishop" (Kate Todd), hijacks the memory sequence and implores the Initiate to join them. Bishop provides an Abstergo video memo, in which Abstergo describes the capture of a Sage who contains precursor DNA. Abstergo hope to use the Sage to compile a precursor genome. Bishop directs the Initiate to locate another Sage, whose corpse they hope to recover.
The Initiate relives the memories of Arno Dorian, a French-Austrian nobleman. Orphaned in 1776 after his father Charles was assassinated, Arno is taken in by François de la Serre, Grand Master of the French Templars. In 1789, while François' daughter and Arno's childhood friend Elise is being initiated into the Order, Arno is given a message to deliver to François, but leaves it in his office and sneaks into the party to meet with Elise. Afterwards, Arno finds François murdered, and is mistaken as the killer. He is imprisoned in the Bastille, where he impresses a fellow prisoner, Assassin Pierre Bellec (Anthony Lemke), with his fighting skills. Bellec invites Arno into the Brotherhood after they escape during the Storming of the Bastille.
Arno returns home and is turned away by Elise. She reveals that the message Arno failed to deliver was a warning of her father's impending murder. Arno joins the Brotherhood to eliminate Templars involved in François' death. The Assassin Mentor Mirabeau (Harry Standjofski), who is attempting to broker peace between the Orders, agrees. During his investigation, Arno rescues François-Thomas Germain (Julian Casey), a silversmith held hostage by the acting-Templar Grand Master Lafreniere (Noel Burton). Germain convinces Arno to kill Lafreniere, who is revealed to have been the one trying to warn François. Realizing Germain organized François' murder, Arno saves Elise from an ambush. The Brotherhood questions Arno's rash actions.
Elise reveals that her faction of the Templars are being murdered by Germain. Arno convinces Elise to parley with the Brotherhood. Mirabeau agrees, hoping to gain a favor from the potential future Templar Grand Master. Arno and Elise later find Mirabeau dead. Upon investigation, Bellec is discovered to be the killer, who intended to purge the Assassin leadership for attempting peace with the Templars. Arno is forced to kill Bellec.
While searching the Tuileries Palace for potentially damning letters written by Mirabeau to King Louis, Arno crosses paths with Napoleon Bonaparte, who helps him escape the Palace. Arno realizes that Germain plots to spark a mass revolt against the King of France. He targets two central figures: Captain Frederic Rouille (James Loye), an officer organizing a prisoner revolt, and Marie Levesque (Amber Goldfarb), a merchant working to create the impression that the nobility is squandering resources. Bonaparte helps Arno in killing Rouille, who served under him during the September Massacres. After assassinating Levesque, Arno and Elise escape from the food riots via a hot air balloon. Arno professes his love for Elise.
With the Revolution in full swing, Arno tracks Germain to the execution of King Louis XVI, but chooses to protect Elise rather than pursue him. Elise rejects him for this, and Arno is exiled from the Brotherhood for ignoring orders, falling into a drunken depression. Arno languishes for months before he is found in Versailles by Elise. She convinces him to return as Paris is tearing itself apart during the Reign of Terror. Arno returns and, with Elise's help, discredits Maximilien de Robespierre, whom Germain, now Grand Master of the Templars, had placed in charge of maintaining chaos. After Arno and Elise find Robespierre, Elise shoots him in the jaw and makes him write down Germain's location.
Arno confronts Germain at the top of the Temple, finding he now has the Sword of Eden. The fight eventually ends in the Templar crypt in which the game began. Arno strikes Germain, but the Sword blows him backwards and traps him under rubble. Elise attempts to help Arno, but then attacks Germain by herself. As Arno frees himself and runs toward Elise, the Sword explodes, killing Elise and mortally wounding Germain. Arno kills Germain, who confirms he is the Sage and that he wanted to purge the Templars who had forgotten de Molay's teachings.
The game closes with Arno explaining how his understanding of the Creed has changed, and promising to watch over Paris and keep Elise's memory alive. Years later, Arno recovers Germain's skeleton from the Temple and places it in the Catacombs of Paris. Bishop is relieved, confident that Abstergo will not be able to find it.
One week after Elise's death, a devastated Arno finds refuge in Franciade. He is contacted by the Marquis de Sade, who requests his help in finding the manuscript of Nicolas de Condorcet, hidden in the tomb beneath the city, in exchange for a ship to take Arno to Egypt.
During his search, Arno encounters tomb raiders led by Captain Philippe Rose (Taylor Price), a subordinate of Napoleon Bonaparte, who wishes to retrieve an artifact from a Precursor temple under the city's church. Arno finds that the manuscript has been stolen by a child thief, Léon (Eamon Stocks), who was captured by the raiders. Arno rescues Léon and retrieves the manuscript, but declines to help him stop the raiders. After a vision of Elise, and hearing Léon's pleas, he agrees to help.
After discovering the temple's location, and retrieving the key from one of Napoleon's officers, Arno opens the door to the temple. He is ambushed by Rose, who attempts to take the artifact for himself. Arno survives the ambush, and reaches the artifact before Rose. After killing Rose, Arno retrieves the artifact, and uses it to repel the raiders and escape. He later meets de Sade and delivers the manuscript. Arno decides to stay in France, and contacts the Brotherhood to deliver the Piece of Eden to Egypt, far from the reach of Bonaparte, who is arrested for desertion and treason.
Development for the game began shortly after the completion of 2010's Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, with the core development team splitting off during the early stages of development on Assassin's Creed III. On March 19, 2014, early screenshots of the game were leaked, as well as its title Unity. The leak revealed that Unity would feature a new location and time period, Paris during the French Revolution, a new assassin, and that it would be released in late 2014 on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. On March 21, Ubisoft confirmed the game's existence, having been in development for more than three years, by releasing pre-alpha game footage. They also confirmed the game's release date of Q4 2014, and that it would also see a release on Windows. Ubisoft writer Jeffrey Yohalem revealed that the French Revolution setting for the game was deliberately teased, along with Assassin's Creed III's American Revolution setting, in symbols seen at the end of Brotherhood. Ubisoft Montreal is the lead developer for the project, with contributing work from the Ubisoft studios in Toronto, Kyiv, Singapore, Shanghai, Annecy, Montpellier, Bucharest, Quebec, and Chengdu.
At E3 2014, trailers were released for the game, demonstrating the game's cooperative multiplayer mode for up to four players, a first for the series. The trailer featured Lorde's cover of Everybody Wants to Rule the World, which was produced by Michael A. Levine and Lucas Cantor. The development team was able to use the new power of the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One to improve the NPC crowds. Up to 1000 individual AI characters can appear in a crowd, each acting independently and reacting to each other as well as the player's actions. The PC version of the game uses Nvidia's GameWorks technology such as TXAA anti-aliasing, advanced DX11 tessellation and Nvidia PhysX technology, due to a partnership between Ubisoft and Nvidia.
Lead game designer Benjamin Plich has said this game will be more difficult than previous entries thanks to the removal of the counter button and more aggressive guards. Plich also said that the game will feature synchronized Double Assassinations.
On October 6, 2014, Ubisoft announced that they had enlisted the help of academic historians such as Laurent Turcot, professor at Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières for daily life of 18th-century Paris and Jean Clement Martin professor at the Sorbonne, to revise the script.
Like other games in the series, Unity portrays a large number of real world Parisian landmarks, including the Tuileries Palace and Notre-Dame Cathedral and, through the time anomalies feature, it also includes the Eiffel Tower and the Statue of Liberty, neither of which existed at the time of the French Revolution. Notre-Dame Cathedral was modeled down to the brick, a process that took Ubisoft artist Caroline Miousse two years to complete. Because of the detail that went into the recreation of the Notre-Dame Cathedral for the game, some believe the game may help in the reconstruction of the Cathedral following the April 2019 fire that destroyed some of the building. Ubisoft donated €500,000 to the reconstruction of the cathedral and also provided Unity as a free download for the week following the event so as to give everyone a chance to explore the cathedral as they had modeled it in game.
The game was originally intended to be released worldwide on October 28, 2014. However, on August 28, 2014, it was delayed until November 11, 2014, in North America; November 13, 2014, in Europe and Australasia; and November 14, 2014, in the United Kingdom. On the delay, Vincent Pontbriand, senior producer at Ubisoft, said, "As we got close to the finish, we realized we were near the target but still needed a bit more time to hone some of the details to make sure Assassin's Creed Unity is exceptional." Additionally, the game received a day one patch with further updates to the game.
|PC Gamer (US)||65/100|
Matt Miller from Game Informer gave the game 8/10, praising the detailed environment and architecture, decent voice acting, strategy-required missions, challenging gameplay and well-paced story missions, but criticizing the controls and balance, as well as game-breaking technical issues. He also stated that both the navigation system and the combat system still needed to be improved. Louise Blain from GamesRadar gave the game 4/5, praising the dense and atmospheric game world, character-focused mission design, overhauled free-running mechanics, in-depth character customization and satisfying combat. However, she criticized the game's framerate and poor enemy AI design.
Chris Carter from Destructoid gave the game 7/10, praising the new movement system, likable lead characters, iconic setting, smooth animation and improved draw distance. New additions such as character customization and huge crowds were also praised. However, he criticized the predictable story, technical issues, and the mission design of co-op multiplayer, as it is impossible to play some missions solo. He stated that "Unity feels like a step back. ... It lacks that grand sense of roaming the uncharted seas in Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, or even the open-ended feel of the wilderness in Assassin's Creed III, but it's a journey worth taking if you're already into the series." Tom Bramwell from Eurogamer gave the game 7/10, praised the setting, rich content, inspiring story and interesting side-missions. However, he criticized the over-familiar and unimaginative mission-design, overzealous auto-correct system in the free-running mechanics and the lack of weapon customization. He described the game as a "missed opportunity".
Marty Silva from IGN gave the game 7.8/10, praising the recreation of Paris and ambitious ideas presented in the multiplayer, but criticizing the unrefined stealth, weak story and lack of a strong lead character. He stated that "the true new-gen Assassin's Creed game is a gorgeous, entertaining, and successful proof of concept for what lies ahead for the series, though it isn't what I'd call revolutionary."
Tom Senior from PC Gamer gave the game 65/100, saying that "Unity could become a perfectly enjoyable part of the Assassin's Creed canon. It's a solid campaign elevated by quality assassination missions and an extraordinary setting that might just push the big number at the bottom of this review into the 80s, but with a big selling point out of operation, a raft of technical issues, performance problems, microtransactions and stilted combat and free-running systems, Unity—in its current state—can only be considered a failed revolution." Sam Prell from Joystiq gave the game 2.5/5, saying that "It's hard not to appreciate everything that it [Unity] gets right, and you'll have a good time if you can wrangle some friends for co-op, but it's impossible to ignore where Unity falls tragically short." PC World stated that the game "is a new low for the Assassin's Creed series." The review also criticized Assassin's Creed Unity for its small scale, poor gameplay, and high minimum system requirements. Similarly, CNET stated that "[w]hile it will likely suffice for Assassin's Creed core fans, Unity stumbles throughout and never really finds its footing."
Technical issues and developer response
Upon release, Assassin's Creed Unity was subject to widespread bugs and glitches, as well as performance and online connectivity issues. Ubisoft Montreal CEO Yannis Mallat apologized on behalf of the studio with regard to the poor launch of Unity, stating that the "overall quality of the game was diminished by bugs and unexpected technical issues", and prevented users from "experiencing the game at its fullest potential". In response to the issues, Ubisoft announced that it would halt sales of the game's season pass and Gold Edition, and offer the first downloadable content (DLC) pack, Dead Kings, for free. As compensation, those who bought the season pass received a free digital download of one of six Ubisoft games (Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, The Crew, Far Cry 4, Just Dance 2015, Rayman Legends, or Watch Dogs), and would also "continue to have access to a variety of additional content [for Unity], including Assassin's Creed Chronicles: China". To claim the game, however, users had to forfeit their right to sue Ubisoft with regard to the game and the devaluation of the season pass.
In February 2016 Ubisoft announced that it would not be announcing any additional Assassin's Creed games for the rest of the year, citing the many issues of Unity and stating that, "we've learned a lot based on your feedback." In this statement, Ubisoft pledged its commitment to evolve the game's mechanics in order to create "more enjoyable games". This news has possible connections to Ubisoft's third quarter financial report, which was released on the same day, and states that Assassin's Creed Syndicate had a "slower launch than expected."
Criticism by French Left Party
The French Left Party and its frontman Jean-Luc Mélenchon criticized the historical interpretation the game was conveying about the French Revolution, depicting Robespierre as "a blood-thirsty monster" and Marie Antoinette as "a poor little girl". He has described Ubisoft's version of the historical period as "propaganda" that builds upon the growing sense of self-hatred spreading throughout France. Mélenchon has expressed his criticisms in multiple media appearances, telling the New York Times that, "Smearing the great revolution is dirty work that aims to instill the French with even more self-loathing and talk of decline. If we continue like this, no common identity will remain possible for the French besides religion and skin color."
Alexis Corbière, national secretary of the Left Party, said that "the game was conveying all the counter-revolutionary clichés that have been forged for two centuries". He added "To everyone who's gonna buy Assassin's Creed Unity, I wish you a nice time. But I also tell you that having fun doesn't prevent you from thinking. Just play it, but don't let yourself be manipulated by the propaganda".
Without mentioning the criticism specifically, in an interview published on October 6, 2014, by Time, the game's creative director Alex Amancio said "What we actually try to do, and I think this is just a personal belief that we have, is to avoid reducing history... We try very hard to portray things as factually as possible." Despite this, game producer Antoine Vimal du Monteil answered that, ultimately, "Assassin's Creed Unity is a mainstream video game, not a history lesson."
As of December 31, 2014[update], Ubisoft has shipped a combined 10 million copies of Assassin's Creed Unity and Assassin's Creed Rogue. From April 17 to 25, 2019, Ubisoft made the PC version available free of charge with a message encouraging donations to restore Notre Dame de Paris following the fire there on April 15, 2019. Thanks to this, Ubisoft donated €500,000 to help with the restoration and reconstruction of Paris' historic landmark.
Gender options in cooperative mode
We recognize the valid concern around diversity in video game narrative. Assassin's Creed is developed by a multicultural team of various faiths and beliefs and we hope this attention to diversity is reflected in the settings of our games and our characters. Assassin's Creed Unity is focused on the story of the lead character, Arno. Whether playing by yourself or with the co-op Shared Experiences, you the gamer will always be playing as Arno, complete with his broad range of gear and skill sets that will make you feel unique. With regard to diversity in our playable Assassins, we've featured Aveline, Connor, Adewale and Altaïr in Assassin's Creed games and we continue to look at showcasing diverse characters. We look forward to introducing you to some of the strong female characters in Assassin's Creed Unity.
—Ubisoft's response to the all-male character models for the cooperative mode.
After the cooperative multiplayer mode was revealed at E3 2014, additional information about the mode was revealed by creative director Alex Amancio and technical director James Therien. Amancio stated that the mode did not include the ability to play as a female avatar, due to "the reality of production". Amancio added by saying, "It's double the animations, it's double the voices, all that stuff and double the visual assets. Especially because we have customizable assassins. It was really a lot of extra production work," which was echoed by Therien. Level designer Bruno St-André expanded on this by stating that an estimated 8,000 additional animations would have had to be recreated for a female avatar.
This caused dissatisfaction in some video game community outlets. Brenna Hillier of VG247 noted how there were nine development teams working on the game, and said "Ubisoft has here trotted out a tired, stupid, constantly refuted excuse for why it has perpetuated the cycle of sexism and under-representation in the games industry." Tim Clark of PC Gamer made note "that previous Assassin's Creed games have had playable women as part of the multiplayer component, and that Brotherhood had you supported by on-call assassins, many of whom were female, so it's hardly like it can't be done." Clark also looked to the way Amancio and Therien answered the question and felt how they referenced "how much the team wanted to include playable female characters suggests... that this is probably a decision which hasn't gone down well internally." Former Assassin's Creed designer Jonathan Cooper responded by saying, "In my educated opinion, I would estimate this to be a day or two's work. Not a replacement of 8,000 animations." He also revealed that Aveline de Grandpré, the female protagonist of Assassin's Creed III: Liberation, "shares more of Connor Kenway's animations than Edward Kenway does." Fans also created petitions urging Ubisoft to change their stance. Additionally, former Assassin's Creed game designer Patrice Désilets commented that Amancio's reasoning was valid, but that Ubisoft should put in the effort to let players have gender options.
Amancio attempted to clear up any confusion, by stating, "I understand the issue, I understand the cause, and it is a noble one, but I don't think it's relevant in the case of Unity. In Unity you play this character called Arno, and when you're playing co-op you're also playing Arno – everybody is. It's like Aiden Pearce in Watch Dogs... Arno has different skills - you select skill points in the game, there are gear elements that have an impact and all these weapons that make the character you make your own. But you're always playing Arno... The reason we're just changing the face and keeping the bodies is we want people to show off the gear that they pick up in the game through exploration. That's why we kept that."
On July 5, 2020 Tommy François the Vice President for Editorial & Creative Services was put on disciplinary leave and later let go amid allegations of sexual misconduct. He was the right hand man of Chief Creative Officer Serge Hascoët. The next day Maxime Béland Vice President Editorial resigned. Both had been accused of sexual misconduct but were promoted after complaints to HR. Béland had been accused of choking a female employee in 2014 a week after Unity was launched.
A week later, in a press release, Ubisoft stated that three more of the top executives had chosen to resign from the company. This included Hascoët, Yannis Mallat Managing Director of Ubisoft Canada and Cécile Cornet the head of Global HR. The allegations from current and former staffers claimed that complaints to the HR had been ignored for several years. It allegedly described Ubisoft as a boy's club with the business meetings happening at strip clubs. The staff openly made misogynist comments and were encouraged by the senior leaders through their behavior.
In a report by Jason Schreier in Bloomberg News the issues with Hascoët had gone back several years and had affected the creative development on the Assassin's Creed series and the use of female protagonists. Per the report later games that did feature female protagonists at the release, were later altered to diminish the female protagonists in online play. This was due to an ingrained belief by Hascoët that female characters did not sell video games.
In October 2014, Ubisoft's senior producer Vincent Pontbriand made a statement that all console versions of the game would be locked at the same resolution of 900p. This was done "... to avoid all the debates and stuff." Many readers took this in reference to how the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One are constantly compared in the media for raw power, presuming that the PlayStation 4 version of the game's resolution was lowered to reach parity with the Xbox One's, but Ubisoft later denied that this was the reason.
Instead, Pontbriand stated that the decision for parity came from the limitations of the consoles' CPUs. The number of NPCs and general amount of AI was paramount to keeping the game locked at 30 frames per second.
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