By the time Assassin's Creed: Valhalla came out, it was clear that Ubisoft's open-world take on Assassin's Creed franchise had begun to run its course. As fans started clamoring for the series' old-school stealth action, Ubisoft has finally listened.
Smaller, more focused, and yet just as action-packed, Assassin's Creed: Mirage promises a return to form for the once-annual franchise and the gameplay trailer delivers on all fronts.
Just from his slick his movements were, you'd think Basim, the protagonist of the incoming Assassin's Creed game, would be Ezio or Altair.
Assassin's Creed Mirage is clearly a significant departure from recent entries. It promises a thrilling return to Assassin's Creed's more stealth-oriented roots. Set in the grandeur of ninth-century Baghdad, the game follows a younger Basim, way before his appearance in Assassin's Creed Valhalla, as he journeys from street thief to, as the game calls him, "one of the most versatile" Assassins in the order's history.
True to this, the gameplay trailer showcases a robust parkour system that once was a series hallmark. Basim now moves with the kind of agility and grace that mirrors the free-running origins of the older entries in the franchise.
It's a pleasant surprise for fans yearning for a return to the classic gameplay that turned the series into a household name throughout the late 2000s and early 2010s.
For a more accurate depiction of his time, Basim doesn't use the classic wrist blade. Instead, he wields a finger-blade, likely the consequence of him losing his ring finger and possibly his pinky as well, similar to Altair and the older members of the Hidden Ones.
It can be remembered that the classic assassin's blade design wasn't changed until Ezio had Leonardo da Vinci remake it sometime in the late 1400s.
Adding a fresh layer to the gameplay are several new combat features like Basim's pole-vaulting and focus ability, the latter of which allows him to mark and target multiple enemies simultaneously. This promises innovative combat sequences that could potentially rejuvenate the game's stealth-action blend.
In contrast to the sprawling world of Origins, Odyssey, and Valhalla, Mirage opts for a more compact yet equally impressive world, highlighting a character-driven narrative focused on the core pillars of the franchise.
With Mirage, Ubisoft shows that it's committed to listening to its fan base and wants to re-establish Assassin's Creed as a top-tier title.
Only time will tell if Mirage is the breath of fresh air fans has been clamoring for or if it's more of the same old game with minimal changes.
We'll find out more about Assassin's Creed Mirage when it comes out on October 12.