Side missions in ‘Assassin’s Creed’ were added days before release

Side missions in 'Assassin's Creed' were added days before launch

Ubisoft developers revealed that they had to cram in all the side missions of the first Assassin’s Creed title in less than a week before the game’s release.

While the original Assassin’s Creed wasn’t the most spectacular game in the series, its interesting premise and intriguing characters were enough to spark what would later become one of the biggest franchises in gaming history.

The game almost turned out very differently, however, says Charles Randall, the fight system AI lead at Ubisoft.

According to Randall, side missions were never part of the plan, and were only featured in Assassin’s Creed because he was told that “the CEO’s kid played it.”

Blame it on the kid

The thread started when Randall responded to a tweet asking for a horror story from his specialty in five words or less. His response set in motion a series of posts, explaining the entire story in great detail.

According to the AI lead, right before Assassin’s Creed was ready to be shipped, news broke that the CEO’s kid gave the game a test run and complained that it was “boring and there was nothing to do.”

This prompted Randall’s lead to explain how they would now need to add different side activities to the game to make it more interesting.

The kicker is that they would need to make all the last-minute additions in a mere five days’ time, while being “bug-free because the build is going to be burned directly to disc and released to retail.”

Somehow, the handful of people who worked on the additions managed to pull things off in time, while keeping the release relatively bug-free as requested.

Randall also made it explicitly clear that the last-minute changes were necessary ones, and that all the extra work done was completely voluntary for everyone involved.

He also explained that he wasn’t certain the changes were, in fact, due to a kid and that he only knows what he was told.

All’s well that ends well in the land of Assassin’s Creed

Despite the little hiccup towards the end of Assassin’s Creed’s development, the game debuted to favorable reviews from most critics.

The parkour-laden stealth adventure was praised for its stunning visuals, responsive controls, and intriguing setting, though a lot of reviewers agreed that the game’s combat was lackluster and the missions were tedious.

Assassin’s Creed even managed to win quite a few awards, including “Best Action/Adventure Game,” “Best PlayStation 3 Game,” and “Best PlayStation 3 Graphics.”

Image courtesy of Niranjan/Flickr

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