Ubisoft isn’t leaving Xbox 360 and PS3 development behind just yet – it’ll continue to support the consoles for several more years, says its vice president of creative Lionel Raynaud.
Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag was released on 360, Xbox One, PS3 and PS4 and Watch Dogs will repeat the trick of spanning the console generations when it is released on May 27. Though he was speaking to us before the confirmation of Xbox One, PS4, and PC title Assassin’s Creed Unity, Raynaud’s comments could add weight to the rumours suggesting that another new Assassin’s Creed game is in development for 360 and PS3.
“We will have games for PS3 and 360 for this year and probably the years after,” he told us. “We want to be able to provide games to people who are playing on these consoles. Black Flag was the first Assassin’s Creed game of this new generation but it was designed with that in mind, but I wouldn’t say it was a cross-generation game, as it has features that could only be for this generation.”
Raynaud shrugged off the suggestion that developing games for both generations is restrictive for the ‘new gen’ version. “It’s a choice – even when you do a game that has old-gen and new-gen versions, we decide which one is lead,” he told us. ”So if you decide that new gen is lead for all of your games, then you have no restrictions at all – you’re just saying that the other generation will maybe not be able to have everything but still be a better game than we’re used to having on this generation. We never made choices on Assassin’s Creed or Watch Dogs where because we have this other generation we couldn’t put something in the game. It would be a very bad call from a company and brand perspective.”
Raynaud also stated that the audiovisuals in the Ubisoft games to be released at the end of this year are already noticeably superior to the games released at PS4 and Xbox One’s launch. “The team that has been working on PS4 and Xbox One on Black Flag have already learned and they are still learning,” he said. “It’s not only about visuals, it‘s going to be about connectivity and the fact that these consoles are always online. That allows us to create more surprising experiences that exploit that. It’s going to be a long progression, because each generation brings new potential. We will be able to measure that as the dev team master the new technology. This will keep on improving for a very long time, actually.”
Though he could not discuss the new Assassin’s Creed game, Raynaud was able to discuss the pressures of releasing a major new game in Ubisoft’s flagship series every year. “We are able to offer people a new Assassin’s Creed every year because they want Assassin’s Creed every year,” he added. “As long as this is true we would be very stupid to not satisfy this need, but it puts a lot of pressure on us to create something that will never disappoint.
“It needs to keep the series core values and we need to really make sure that we have a good, high level understanding of what it is to be an Assassin. We have to make sure we always deliver a better feel and overall experience every time while still bringing something that they haven’t seen before that’s consistent with being an Assassin in the world we’ve created.”