The most important game in the series right now is Assassin’s Creed Mirage. It's going to be the next installment for the series and feature a stealthy, more action-adventure gameplay similar to the first Assassin’s Creed game.
However, there's been some confusion regarding the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) rating for the upcoming game following an Xbox store listing for Mirage that initially carried an Adults Only rating.
An ESRB Adults Only (AO) rating means that a game will feature one or more of intense violence, blood and gore, sexual themes, partial nudity, and real gambling in the game. Ubisoft clarified that the rating for Assassin’s Creed Mirage was a mistake and that the game’s rating is still pending.
Following the announcement of Assassin's Creed Mirage, some store pages displayed the game for preorders with an Adults Only ESRB rating.
While the game is still pending rating, we want to reassure players that no real gambling or lootboxes are present in the game.
— Assassin's Creed (@assassinscreed) September 12, 2022
Ubisoft assured players that there will be no gambling or loot boxes in Assassin’s Creed Mirage and said that the listing carried an AO rating by mistake. Microsoft has corrected the game listing and now states that the game is “Rating Pending – Likely Mature 17+” in the Xbox store.
The ESRB rarely gives out an AO rating for games. Titles that receive an AO rating struggle in terms of sales, as distribution channels can be severely limited. Marketing games with the AO rating can also be a challenge as the advertisements for the game cannot be shown to minors.
For comparison, Grand Theft Auto V, a title known to contain violence, sexual themes, and partial nudity, received a Mature 17+ rating. The game even has a casino where players can gamble in-game currency. Assassin’s Creed Mirage will likely also be receiving the Mature rating from the ESRB similar to previous titles in the series.
Loot boxes have been a concern in the Assassin’s Creed franchise after Ubisoft revamped the leveling system in Assassin’s Creed Origins. The move became controversial since the company started selling boosts for players to level up faster via microtransactions in the game.
While something like a level boost can be a cause for concern for some players, it is not a loot box or close to any form of “real gambling.” Ubisoft’s clarifying statement should settle the matter and fans can likely purchase the game in any of their favorite retail stores.
Ubisoft has not yet announced a release date for Assassin’s Creed Mirage but the game is expected to come out next year. We already have a trailer revealing some plot elements and showcasing Basim as the protagonist of the game.
Assassin’s Creed Mirage is already available for pre-order at the Ubisoft Stor where it retails for a "lower" price of $50.