2013's Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag became the turning point for future Assassin's Creed games. In particular, Ubisoft used its naval battles as the base mechanic for an entirely new game. Ubisoft later introduced Skull and Bones at E3 2021 with Ubisoft Singapore in the lead. The game, which was originally planned to be a live-service title, would end up being stuck in development limbo.
To date, Skull and Bones remain in development. Unfortunately, it's been revealed that the game will have to move forward without one of its key personnel.
Is Skull and Bones ever going to be released?
Back in May 2021, Ubisoft broke the unfortunate but expected news about Skull and Bones being delayed to 2022. A few months later, Ubisoft confirmed that the game had finally reached the alpha stage after all these years. However, just when you thought that the handful of fans still left rooting for Skull and Bones would start hearing more good news, eagle-eyed observers spot the departure of Antoine Henry.
Henry first confirmed his departure on his Linkedin account before going on Twitter to break the news to a wider audience.
Goodbye Ubisoft! After nearly 15 years, today was my last day.
I'm thankful for the people I've met and what they brought me professionally and personally. Hopefully I was able to give back a little bit.
On to new exciting adventures very soon! pic.twitter.com/XT7PWwhOGB
— Antoine Henry (@bob2356) December 23, 2021
Skull and Bones' development has been rocky at best. Over the years, several reports of lack of direction and budget issues, along with management problems as well as discrimination and misconduct, have all derailed any significant progress. To make matters worse, Ubisoft has been mired in controversy lately, with the latest news being that the publisher is bleeding talent at an alarming rate.
Because of Henry's departure, many now believe that Skull and Bones is dead in the water. If it is true, then it would be a great shame.
If it's any consolation, the naval battles planned for Skull and Bones remain an integral part of current Assassin's Creed games except for Assassin's Creed: Valhalla. The publisher decided to cut ship-to-ship battles from its latest game. But, then again, who knows? Ubisoft has committed to supporting Valhalla beyond its second year. After confirming Dawn of Ragnarok before 2021 ended, Ubisoft might bring back naval battles in the form of a new DLC.
In other Ubisoft news, the big-time publisher is now working together with Microsoft to bring Ubisoft+ to Xbox consoles. Unfortunately, Ubisoft declined to comment about its plans to bring the same subscription service to PlayStation and other consoles.