Assassin’s Creed Mirage - Everything You Need to Know
Post by Steve Farrelly @ 06:21am 11/09/22 | Comments
Ahead of Ubisoft Forward we were given a sneak peek at Assassin's Creed Mirage from Ubisoft Bordeaux where we learnt more about the game. Read on for everything you need to know...
In the grand scheme of “grand”, we’ve been spoiled with the past three Assassin’s Creed flagship offerings. From Origins onwards, the series went action-RPG in open-world settings -- design decisions we’ve wholly backed, in real-time at the time, for each -- spanning various regions of Ancient Egypt, archipelagos and islands in Ancient Greece with Odyssey and, in the most recent title, Valhalla, whole continents.
To say we’ve had space, time and the requisite content those things should offer in abundance would be an understatement. But Assassin’s Creed is nothing if not transformative, even in a retroactive sense.
There were murmurings and rumblings that the next game post-Valhalla would take the Assassin’s Creed experience back to its roots, with less emphasis on open-world design and more on parkour and assassination and being a genuine servant of the Brotherhood. This is now confirmed to be the case with Assassin’s Creed Mirage, a throwback stealth-oriented, linear narrative set in Baghdad some 20 years before Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.
"This is the full Assassin’s Creed treatment, but inspired by the series’ origins imagined as if it were made today...”
And while the game’s entire setup is very different to Valhalla or its modern ilk, it is directly linked to Eivor and Layla ’s journey in that our protagonist is a young Basim as we track his journey from common street thief to Master Assassin. This is the full Assassin’s Creed treatment, but inspired by the series’ origins imagined as if it were made today. This means elements of design from Assassin’s Creed One will take place here, but will be managed and handed to the player differently.
We’re yet to see any actual gameplay from Mirage, but even from the CG trailer there’s a fair bit that can be gleaned:
The young Basim might not be immediately capable in parkour, and it’s likely he will also go through actual training after being invited to join the Brotherhood. We’ll get a full Baghdad to play within where you’ll perform important assassinations utilising such new tools as smoke bombs and traps. Your bird companion will be an eagle and will have more functionality in various aspects of gameplay; more so than any previous feathered friends. Fire will also be a new tool through which the dev team will introduce new dangers, perhaps by propagation and environmental destruction.
Mirage will also have an even greater emphasis on stealth, which has been relegated to long grass more recently than anything else, so how deep it goes will be interesting to see.
There will also be something dark lurking in the ‘after’ where each assassin has conversed with their respective targets. Whether this is an Animus glitch or manifestation, or something more fantastical remains to be seen, but all signs point to whatever it is being instrumental in Basim’s fate at the close of Valhalla’s story proper.
And beyond the trailer, here’s a handy breakdown of everything we know about Assassin’s Creed Mirage so far:
Ubisoft Bordeaux, the the game’s lead studio (whose most recent work was the Wrath of the Druids expansion for Valhalla) wanted to homage the first game as part of the 15 years of Assassin’s Creed celebration, but has also promised that “there is a bit of every Assassin’s Creed game in Mirage”.
The Baghdad we play through in the game is a very dense city, inspired by the historical, cosmopolitan Baghdad of the Golden Age. A place for progressive thinking where artists and scientists and philosophers could gather and exchange ideas. Different people of varying backgrounds and cultures made up the lifeblood of the city, and in Mirage this setting comes to life in the year 861 -- 20 years before the events of Valhalla.
Baghdad will be split up into four districts that range from the industrial Karkh to the picturesque Round City.
Alamut from the first game will feature, though it is under construction. Bordeaux has promised a number of important parts of the Mirage experience will take place in and around the fortress.
Basim will feature an ability known as “Assassin’s Focus” which allows him to slow down time and mark several targets, this will then result in him being able to kill them all in swift succession. He is also described as one of the most agile and capable Assassins in the franchise’s history.
Part of his journey will be about seeking answers to a tragic past that will frame his ascent into the ranks of the Hidden Ones, kicking off with a chance encounter with Roshan.
Roshan will become Basim’s mentor (voiced by the unmistakable Shohreh Aghdashloo) and is herself a senior Hidden One with a mysterious past. She is of Persian origin.
Basim has a close relationship with his eagle -- an Aquila Heliaca (otherwise known as an Imperial Eagle) that is native to the region. Its name in Mirage is Enkidu.
There will be new tools at Basim’s disposal such as traps and a blowdart, but he will also be able to manipulate parts of the environment to his advantage, such as sending scaffolding down upon the enemy.
As mentioned, stealth is a greater emphasis in Mirage than in more recent games, but it is derived more specifically from earlier experiences. Level design reflects this in how players can use the environment to remain hidden while being able to more accurately track who is paying attention to you or even looking for you will help in how stealth has been expanded upon.
As part of the expanded level design, classic parkour moves such as the corner swing return, though with newer tech and animations driving them. Bordeaux has also said that Basim moves more quickly to add to the character’s reputation as one of the more agile Assassins on the Hidden Ones’ roster.
The main assassinations in the game are referred to as “Black Box” missions where the events and environment will drive how the player approaches them. New animations for key assassinations are also in Mirage and have been made to reflect Basim’s agile nature.
While Baghdad is a dense and fully explorable sandbox, the game’s story is very much a linear affair. There are no narrative choices with branching consequences, instead Mirage will feature a defined beginning and end with the middle being largely the game’s missions. Players will have a chance to choose which order much of the game’s missions take place in, but on the whole Mirage will be a more strict and linear experience.
There will be a “40 Thieves” side quest as a pre-order bonus, which should give an indication of some of the other stories or influences riddled throughout the narrative journey.
The game will be released in three tiers: Standard Edition, Deluxe Edition and Collector’s Case.
There’s more yet to play out, and we also have a forthcoming interview with the game’s narrative director, Sarah Beaulieu. So be sure to check back for more on Assassin’s Creed Mirage right here on AusGamers.