Assassin’s Creed Infinity is the newest concept presented in the wildly popular video game franchise. Ubisoft has been slowly releasing information on what fans can expect out of it. For a while now, we’ve been hearing speculation about it being a long-term game service as well as a constantly updating title.
That said, many questions remain.
What is Infinity? What kind of features will it have? How will the player use Infinity? Ubisoft has answered some of these questions… and fans like us are trying to answer the others!
What Is Assassin’s Creed Infinity?
Assassin’s Creed Infinity is more similar to a launcher for Assassin’s Creed games than it is to a new title. In the Assassin’s Creed universe terms, Infinity will act as the Animus in our real world. For fans of the series, this sounds pretty awesome!
According to Ubisoft, the Animus allows characters to see the memories of their direct ancestors. The Animus will hold all past and future Assassin’s Creed games. The player must access the Animus in Infinity in order to access the games.
However, it won’t be necessary for players to own Infinity. At least, not yet. Future games, including Codename Red and Codename Hexe, will continue to be available for box purchase for the foreseeable future.
While it may not be necessary to own, the box version of Codename Red starts by directing the player to the Infinity hub. All future games may open the same way: with the Animus in Infinity. Whether the player owns Infinity themselves or not, they will be greeted with it before they can access the games.
Not Free-To-Play: Implications
Assassin’s Creed Infinity will not be free-to-play. Naturally, some fans are upset about this paywall. As for the cost of Infinity, it’s still up in the air. Currently, Assassin’s Creed games range from $60 to $100 often depending on the player buying a Season Pass or future content.
Many expect Infinity to cost somewhere in that range, but nothing’s been confirmed yet. However, others are encouraged that micro-transactions might not be imposed on players.
Micro-transactions are the bane of many players. For those lucky enough to be unfamiliar with them, micro-transactions are ads that try to sell the players additional content during play. They are everywhere. As a result, they take many players out of the immersion of the games.
Some games, such as several past Electronic Arts titles among others, made them so common that the term “pay to win” became a common concept in gaming. Nothing would need to be earned anymore.
Since Infinity won’t be free-to-play, Ubisoft may not push ads out to try and sell more content for more money. Sure, those ads might be part of the Infinity platform, but outside of the games themselves. This could make all the difference. Of course, this hope hasn’t been confirmed or denied yet.
Assassin’s Creed Infinity: The Story
Ubisoft made it clear that Infinity isn’t just a launcher. The true goal is to connect the stories of Assassin’s Creed together by featuring the main storyline. This story will connect everything as best it can, but what that means is sort of unknown.
In an interview with IGN, Ubisoft said that the player themselves are the main character. Something they sort of did years ago when the present-day figure, Desmond Miles, died in Assassin’s Creed III. Players became the present-day protagonist, yet this model technically failed with most players.
Naturally, this is where questions arise, and where Ubisoft starts to tighten its lips. Fans are used to playing different characters, not being the main character themselves. Clearly, this is a different direction for this universe.
As for other aspects of the story, Infinity plans to feature smaller campaigns in addition to full-length games. These small campaigns can cover shorter or less complicated historical events. They might also take us back to play as some of our favorite assassins that did not get enough time to shine.
In addition, Assassin’s Creed Infinity will feature additional content. Some of this will be free and some paid to access. Fans speculate that some of these small campaigns might be part of the free-to-play features. However, others expect these small campaigns to cost something—presumably less than full-length games.
All of this leaves fans with many unanswered questions! Alas, we may have to wait for the release to get our answers.
Assassin’s Creed Infinity… Is Your Animus
As mentioned earlier, in order to access the games through Infinity, players have to access the Animus.
Assassin’s Creed players are already familiar with the Animus from past titles. This is where the present-day character finds a way to connect with a figure from the past. Initially, that figure had to be connected to their DNA. Yet present-day Abstergo found a way to do it by using the DNA of others.
Of course, the Animus takes DNA from someone to recreate memories of the person’s direct ancestors. Thus, this decision always made sense for Ubisoft to do eventually.
This raises a big question, though. Why is the player the one accessing the Animus? This must somehow fit into the world-building of the universe, and fans are determined to know how.
As Ubisoft told IGN:
It [the Animus] is your DNA explorer on your desktop. You are the main story character.”
This statement suggests that every game is the memories of your personal in-universe ancestry. This achieves the goal of connecting all of the people and settings in Assassin’s Creed. The player might be the connecting point through the entire franchise.
Does this mean we will just create our own assassin or assassins somewhere in history, rather than use a specific assassin that a story can build around? While it might be nice to do this, somewhat, it also sorta takes people out of the story part too as they know everything will be made to fit any character.
This is a great concept to tie the historical settings of Assassin’s Creed together though. The player is the result of history… exactly like in real life. After all, each one of us is the product of history. This theory adds a relatable and almost nostalgic tone to the franchise.
Lore Problems With Assassin’s Creed Infinity
However, there are a few intricacies that don’t exactly work with the current lore. The biggest one is the idea of direct descendants. Initially in the Assassin’s Creed universe, only DNA from a direct descendant can be used with the Animus as referenced above.
How could one person be a direct descendant of all of the major historical events covered in the games though? This would present a problem, even if you could tie a person’s own make-believe DNA to an animus.
The good news is there are ways around this.
The Animus requires the DNA of a direct descendant for the memories to materialize. What if the Animus technology expanded? What if the DNA of any descendant, not just direct, would work the same way? This could be a way for Ubisoft to continue to explore technological advances in their universe while filling up plot holes.
There is also a possibility that they could do as they did in games like Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag among others. Where Abstergo or another entity has access to a lot of DNA from people with a past connection to the Assassins & Templars.
There were limitations previously, but this expansion could potentially have them take a sample of DNA from everyone who visited a hospital for example. That’ll build up a database!
Is The Player A Researcher In Assassin’s Creed Infinity?
Let’s look at this from the perspective of the real world. There are going to be tons of players accessing the Animus at the same time. Many wonder if Assassin’s Creed is going to acknowledge this or if they will just say that you, the player, are the only one accessing it.
The first theory above assumes that Ubisoft will say that you are the only one accessing it. However, there are theories that acknowledge that everyone is accessing the Animus at the same time.
One such theory is that the player is some sort of researcher. This would explain why so many people are accessing the Animus in the same time period. They are all part of a research group with some sort of common goal. The player is witnessing the Animus retellings of many people’s histories. This opens the possibilities for a new timeline and different gameplay for the player.
For example, the player is a historical researcher. In modern times, misinformation has been spreading about historical events to fit specific political BS. These lies are used to promote hate and violence. It could be the player’s job to find out the truth of what happened.
After countless hours of searching for people, they find the perfect candidate. That candidate then uses the Animus and the player witnesses this journey, finally knowing history’s truth. This could save our modern world!
(Well, in the games at least)
Other Potential Issues
The historian or researcher concept is (admittedly) a less likely option. Still, it has already been explored in games like Black Flag. It also seems to conflict with the statement that the Animus is “your DNA explorer on your desktop.”
However, it would open more possibilities for Assassin’s Creed Infinity. Having players try to piece together historical events themselves and connect all the games together would be fun. Yet it still does present a problem with many potential issues involving history and the present day.
Plus, we also have a lot of open-ended present-day stories involving other assassins and Abstergo agents. It isn’t like that can be overlooked on the Infinity platform.
Since the player is the main character, customization is a big possibility in Assassin’s Creed Infinity. This would especially be true if players are all accessing the Animus as a group of researchers. If interaction with other players is the goal, there is a need for distinctive features for each player.
How far could character customization go? Obviously, general appearance like hair color is easy to implement and won’t disrupt the games too much. However, others might be trickier. What about, say, clothing?
There are a few possibilities. One is that the player could pick an outfit based on the time period that they are in. This would give the option of customization while staying realistic and believable.
The players’ engagement also deepens with this idea. It allows them the freedom to explore class and gender. In real history, these ideas have been heavily influenced by culture and time periods. Players might see themselves represented throughout history, no matter who they are.
Another possibility is that the players could wear things outside of their historical era. This would make for some interesting gameplay! Imagine an assassin that looks like they are from the American Revolution in Renaissance Era Italy.
Clothes outside of the games’ historical eras might also include the styles of modern times. Cowboy hats could pop up in Ancient Rome if Ubisoft allowed it! Yet that might also become game-breaking or history-breaking too.
Immersion In Assassin’s Creed Infinity
While the idea of modern clothes in ancient times is fun to think about, it does threaten the immersion of the games. Some people may not want to see cowboy hats in Ancient Rome. However, character customization could be a choice. If someone prefers continuity and realism, they could still have that. If others prefer cowboy hats in ancient Rome, they can choose that.
We don’t have to think on such a large scale, though. Customization could be as simple as jewelry, hairstyles, and weapon charms.
More options actually align with the use of our new version of the Animus. Since the Animus takes your DNA, the historical person you are experiencing appears as you. This could be an intentional advancement of the Animus, or it could be a faulty characteristic.
After all, Assassin’s Creed has a responsibility to continue to give its fans more content. It is widely regarded as one of the best action and adventure video games ever.
Customization seems like a no-brainer. No matter what happens, character customization items would be great rewards for missions and to have available in the shop. Plenty of other games do this, and it isn’t impossible to think Infinity would try it.
Missions In Assassin’s Creed Infinity
All of the Assassin’s Creed games will be available on Assassin’s Creed Infinity. This will take away the need to buy physical copies of games or keep them if the player so decides. One fan theory is Infinity will offer missions for players to complete with either their own assassin/assassins or previous assassins.
Some think we might be able to use assassins that were NPCs in previous titles too.
Plenty of companies, including Ubisoft, build missions into their games. Daily, weekly, and monthly missions offer a way for players to earn achievements and rewards. It’s a great way for players to be engaged with the content, and also to keep that engagement up. Yet that also means Ubisoft would have to add content constantly, and that is A LOT to ask of a development team
This isn’t a new concept for launchers either. Plenty of launchers offer game-specific missions and rewards. It would make sense for Infinity to offer missions as well.
Crossover Missions: A Possibility
The missions could be general or game-specific since all of the games will be available on Assassin’s Creed Infinity. The missions could even be specific to you and depend on what games you play!
Plus, this allows for the possibility of crossover missions. Certain players may have missions in games they are not originally from. This could add some interesting dynamics: characters could be displaced from their time in history.
Obviously, this isn’t historically accurate. Also, it would introduce human time travel into the universe. Talk about jarring!
Indeed, time travel is highly controversial in the fandom! Some fans wrongly theorized that Assassin’s Creed: Unity was set in the future. They were very angry that human time travel could be a possibility.
However, time travel isn’t actually new to the universe! According to the lore, there is an email from Abstergo Industries that mentions a Piece of Eden capable of time travel. That power may be able to be harnessed. This could explain the crossover missions if they were to happen.
Mission Rewards In Assassin’s Creed Infinity
With missions come rewards. Thankfully, Ubisoft Connect already exists. For those unaware, Ubisoft Connect is the Ubisoft store, and Assassin’s Creed Infinity will likely end up adding Ubisoft Connect to its platform.
They would not have to introduce a new store feature to Infinity. Instead, they’d expand one that already exists.
Multiple games already require players to perform certain actions in-game to collect achievements and rewards. Adding Ubisoft Connect would be an easy way to provide both old and new missions and achievements in one place.
The rewards and purchasable items could be new or old. For example, new items could be sprays, clothes, or name tag banners. These suggestions already exist in other games and launchers, but anything that Ubisoft can think of is possible. It is clear they will add a lot of crazy items to the store too, as we’ve seen in the past.
Assassin’s Creed has developed some pretty complicated lore over the years. This isn’t the first time Assassin’s Creed had some trouble with the world-building. For example, Origins was a great game, but it also served as a soft reboot. Still, Origins was received very well by the community.
Thus, many players are open to reboots. Ubisoft expressed their intentions of having a reboot in Assassin’s Creed Infinity. However, they did not specify what they would reboot. Fans have some ideas, but there is one that sticks out above the others: the Isu lore.
This might end up being the territory where Ubisoft does not have to reboot as much or anything at all. Rather, they could simply “add” to the lore to help the current concept make sense.
The Isu: The Franchise’s Gods
In the Assassin’s Creed universe, the Isu is an ancient, powerful humanoid species. The Isu were highly advanced and intellectual during their time. They even made the Pieces of Eden. According to the game, every god, goddess, and other spiritual figure was an Isu.
Somehow, the assassins in the games are also related to the Isu. However, it’s not clear exactly how.
Near the end of their reign, two hybrids (Adam and Eve) led a rebellion against the Isu rule. This war ended because of the Great Catastrophe, which is also known as the First Disaster or the Toba Disaster.
This disaster was a coronal mass ejection, which is actually a real scientific occurrence. It involves the plasma from the Sun colliding with the Earth’s magnetosphere. In the game, it killed nearly all of humanity, plus the Isu.
In all honestly, this story has gotten a little too complicated over time. Every question answered makes more unanswered questions. Yet finding a way to clear all of this up, even add to the concept, would be smart. They have already done this somewhat in their comic books. Therefore, it would only make sense to add it to the game universe too.
Having questions left open isn’t inherently a bad thing. In fact, it can be very good. Fans like to theorize, and this engages the community and keeps the fans interested in future installments. After all, people who are invested want answers.
However, too many complications can become a bad thing. You want your fans to be curious, not confused.
The release of Assassin’s Creed Infinity is a good opportunity for Ubisoft to reboot the Isu lore. They could remove part of the lore, or simplify it to make it more digestible. Of course, there’s a balance to be struck here: fans don’t want the lore to be too simple!
Mystery surrounds the Isu. The fans love that mystery. If Ubisoft could clear up the lore while maintaining that mystery, new and old fans would be thrilled.
New Settings Coming Soon
While new games are getting hyped up for their release, fans wonder where Assassin’s Creed will explore next.
The game covers a wide variety of time periods and locations. Early games took place during the time of the Templar Order, in places like Italy and the Holy Land. Then the series spent some time in America during the American Revolution and the French and Indian War.
After that, the games took to the seas: the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean around the mid-18th century to be precise. Other locations include Greece, Russia, Spain, and Egypt. This list is by no means exhaustive. Yet some of the games were mobile exclusives, which most did not play.
The next game is Codename Red. It is confirmed to take place in feudal Japan. Fans are super excited about it, too. This time period intrigues many of them and the concept is interesting for an assassin game.
Shortly after, Hexe will be released. Ubisoft has not released information on Hexe‘s setting yet. However, there are rumors that it will take place during the witch trials in Europe. Fans crafted this theory from visuals released to promote the game. Many also believe it might lean more into the horror genre.
Yet the big title is going to be Assassin’s Creed: Mirage, set to be out sometime in 2023.
Once Upon A Time
Assassin’s Creed is widely popular and shows no signs of slowing down. Fans wonder how Assassin’s Creed Infinity will introduce new historical settings.
They theorize in online discussion forums new game settings based on well-known historical events and time periods. Some include the Aztec Empire, the Sengoku Period of Japan, and the Thirty Years War. These are just a few that some fans would like to see.
Basically, the franchise is not short of options!
Another question arises, though: the games have highlighted some more recent historical events, but not many. Many have been wondering if new games will feature recent history. Some possibilities are the Bosnian War (1992-1995), the Korean War (1950-1953), or the Brunei Revolt (1962-1963).
This fits into the theory the player is the main character and all of the Assassin’s Creed assassins are actually their ancestors. No part of history would be untouchable if this is the case.
Plus, players want to see different parts of history. They want to see their own ancestors’ struggles and achievements represented. Many fans are ecstatic that Assassin’s Creed is spending more time in Asia for now, but there is a lot of history yet to be seen.
Since Infinity is going to feature many small campaigns and adventures, these possible settings don’t have to be in full-length games.
Real Historical Assassins
The Assassin’s Creed universe features both real and fictional historical figures and assassins. The vast majority of assassins in the game never existed in real life. Many fans want this to change.
Real assassins have existed throughout all of history. It would be engaging and interesting for the player if they experienced more lives of these people. For example, fans have been begging to go back to the Roman Empire. After all, plenty of Roman emperors met their ends at the hands of real assassins.
Fans have referenced wanting those historical people to be playable characters.
Another great era to find real-life assassins to play is that of the Mongolian Empire. Assassin’s Creed has already dipped its feet into the Mongols. It isn’t impossible to think they would return.
The Order Of Assassins
The Order of Assassins highlighted in the franchise was a very real organization, but not quite how the games portrayed them. This was a group of people who were all part of a sect of Shi’a Islam. The entire universe is based around this real-life assassins group originally started and led by Hasan-i Sabbāh.
This group had heavy ties to China and even real-life explorers like Marco Polo! When that sect came to power, they didn’t have an army. Yet they did have Assassins!
Eventually, they became known as “Hassan/Hasan Assassins” and were contracted out by several nations to take out specific enemies. This is potentially why the group was able to have their own territory of land in a specific area where rulers would normally have conquered them (modern-day Syria & Iran).
Assassin’s Creed loosely based their Order of Assassins on this group. They even based Al Mualim on a real assassin ruler: Rashid ad-Din Sinan. However, the historical accuracy of the Order ends there.
Return Of Multiplayer: Invictus
Some games have multiplayer elements in them. Assassin’s Creed: Unity is a great example of one of these games. Ubisoft announced that Infinity will hold another multiplayer title: Invictus.
As of now, no one has announced a release date. Players don’t even know if Invictus will be free-to-play or not. However, it will be available in Assassin’s Creed Infinity.
Many loved this element in Unity, as it was far more advanced and immersive compared to the previous multi-player/online options from previous games. Therefore, we’d like it if they went back to the idea Unity presented. It does make sense AC stayed away from anything related to that game after the numerous problems they had with it.
However, not everything was bad here.
Co-op Vs Competitive
Fan theories are based on previous Assassin’s Creed games. Unity had a more co-op setup while some previous titles allowed for competitive play.
Invictus could have either one of these approaches or both. A co-op approach could be very engaging for players. They could potentially complete entire campaigns as a pre-made group or with strangers.
Another idea is that there could be elements of co-op throughout the game. Players can choose to do specific quests with the help of strangers. This is a common option in MMORPGs and similar genres. Invictus could take this approach as well.
Competitive play is another possibility. Other well-known franchises have competitive play options, after all. Assassin’s Creed may want to reinsert themselves into that scene! Invictus will be an online title, too, which makes this even more possible.
Multiplayer options also open the door for crossovers. Different characters from other time periods and games may appear in places they aren’t “supposed” to be. This complicates the timeline and the storyline. However, this may work as a strategy for all of the Assassin’s Creed titles to be part of one storyline.
Anyone can be anywhere and do anything. This supports the previous theory on crossover missions for Infinity.
Meet And Greet
Since Infinity is going to be a live service platform, there could be a specific hub or feature for players to interact with each other.
This especially fits in with the original researcher theory. The hub would act as the meeting place for all of the players to come together to discuss their research. Of course, the actual execution of the hub wouldn’t just be talking about the games. That would just be the lore excuse.
A hub would be an even greater engagement tool for players. They could meet new people with similar interests. They may even find new people to play multiplayer games with while they are there.
Community is an important part of any video game, especially one with a large player base. Hopefully, Ubisoft will encourage this kind of community engagement. They have the means to do so, and many players would love that opportunity.
Right now, players are playing everyone’s least favorite game: the Waiting Game.
The earliest release date for Assassin’s Creed Infinity is rumored to be the summer of 2023. However, it is likely that players will have to wait until 2024 or even 2025.
To be fair sooner isn’t always better. Hopefully, the 2023 date gives Ubisoft enough time to create something great for their players.
There is a lot of promise for new and engaging features if Ubisoft takes advantage of this opportunity. Even if all of these theories end up being wrong, hopefully, Ubisoft has even better ideas for Infinity.
Of course, a lot of these theories are things the fans want to see based on the games they already love. Ubisoft has been very successful with Assassin’s Creed in the past. They have a lot to live up to!