Ubisoft is remaking the wrong Assassin's Creed game

Ubisoft is remaking the wrong Assassin's Creed game

Ubisoft remaking Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag was one of the worst kept secrets in the gaming industry for a short while, but the news was still met with a groundswell of positivity. After all, Black Flag is one of the best regarded and well remembered of the Assassin’s Creed games, and considered something of a high point in a series which has lost its way.

And in a sense those voices are correct. Black flag combined traditional Assassin’s Creed gameplay with something very new and different: High-freedom piracy on the open seas. While Assassin’s Creed III introduced ship combat, Black Flag made the whole experience more of a game. But even with that in mind, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag isn’t the right Assassin’s Creed game that needs a radical update. Here’s why.

It’s not that old and it still runs very well

The main reason to remake a game is simple: It’s old, it can’t be found in many storefronts or many current consoles, and it’s a slice of gaming history that new generations deserve to play and older ones deserve to revisit.

Only one of those holds true for Black Flag: If you haven’t played it, and you’re a fan of the recent Assassin’s Creed games, you should play it. Assassin’s Creed games have changed a lot since the origin of the series, and Black Flag is a key part of the evolution of the series, and one you deserve to play.

However, you can still play it, and easily too. It’s available on Steam for PC gamers, through the PS Store for the PS5, and through the Xbox Store on Xbox. Subscribe to Ubisoft Connect and you’ve got access to it. Almost a decade after its original release, Black Flag really is not a difficult game to play.

Combining with that ease of access is ease of playing, too. As someone who is currently still playing Black Flag (I stalled hard on this particular entry) I can assure you it still runs extremely well on modern hardware. This isn’t a game you need to tinker into DOS Box to run properly, and nor should it be. It’s as you should expect a decade old game to run, and that really begs the question of why Ubisoft is bothering to remake it.

Older games are much more deserving of a remake

Of course, little of the points above really apply to the even older entries in Assassin’s Creed. Ubisoft has created a monster of a franchise, and it obviously behooves them to make even the oldest games available to everyone. Want to play the original Assassin’s Creed from 2007? You absolutely can on the PC or Xbox One or Series S/X, though you’re out of luck if you’re trying to play it on the Nintendo Switch or PS5, as Ubisoft hasn’t ported it out over to those consoles.

There’s probably a reason Ubisoft hasn’t bothered moving Assassin’s Creed 2007 over to some consoles, and honestly, it’s because the original game is a little embarrassing. The formula that came to define the series in its early years wasn’t quite there yet, and as a result, AC1 is something of a relic. A remake of this pivotal title would do its legacy justice, and allow a number of people to finally experience the true start of the series.

Another solid option is the collection of Ezio Auditore-fronted games. Assassin’s Creed II was an enormous hit, and very much set the stage for the rest of the games to follow. Ezio Auditore, the main character of Assassin’s Creed II, Brotherhood, and Revelations, is still an Assassin’s Creed icon, and we haven’t since seen another character so charismatic and compelling that they could push Ubisoft into making multiple games with them at the helm.

Ezio Auditore is the best character to come out of the Assassin’s Creed series, bar none, and a remake of the Ezio collection, while large, would be a great way to honor his contribution to the Assassin’s Creed series as a whole.

Why Black Flag is being remade

Ultimately though, Ubisoft is unlikely to do any of these things, especially remaking the first Assassin’s Creed game? Why? It purely comes down to money. Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag is a known factor, and it’s well known as popular within the Assassin’s Creed community. And when a popular game is remade, it means new attention and it means money.

So while other Assassin’s Creed games are more worthy of the attention a remake would garner, they’re certainly riskier prospects. The Ezio Collection is less of a risk, but it would mean a larger focus of resources, since his games comprise a much larger number of games. And heck, I’ve ignored the biggest reason why Black Flag is probably being remade: Pirates. Skull and Bones, a pirate-themed game in very much the same vein as Black Flag, is coming soon, and well, what better game to whet appetites than the last extremely well received pirate-themed game?