After leaving Ubisoft in June 2010, Assassin’s Creed creator Patrice Désilets joined newly formed studio, THQ Montreal, seeking more creative independence. The product of that independence was a game called 1666 Amsterdam.
Unfortunately for Désilets, THQ filed for bankruptcy in December 2012, with THQ Montreal getting sold to Ubisoft in January of 2013, meaning Mr Assassin’s Creed was back at the company he once sought to get away from. In May of that year Désilets was let go from Ubisoft and escorted out of the building.
Fast forward 3 years to April 2016 and Désilets was finally able to come to an agreement with Ubisoft for the rights of 1666 Amsterdam, but development on his new studio’s game, Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey, had already begun. I recently got the chance to chat to Désilets, and asked him about whether he’d revisit 1666 Amsterdam. He was very forthcoming.
'Oh yeah,' a jubilant Désilets said. 'Yeah, I got the rights back and it's not just to say "I won!," it's because I want to make the game.'
Désilets went on give a little more information on the relatively unknown title.
'It's a game about the devil and about our demons. I want to do it eventually. And now, I think I've got a toolbox... Because climbing up a tree or climbing up a mast, it's the same core mechanic, climbing a facade of a house or rock, it's pretty much the same.'
Désilets is looking even further into the future though, telling VideoGamer that it’s not just 1666 Amsterdam he has his sights set upon.
'I've got 15 to 20 games in my portfolio of ideas,' said Désilets. '[Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey] is my first one with Panache, 1666, I got the rights... Eventually, you never know, maybe I'll do a real sci-fi game. I don't want to always be the historical guy.'
'So, a little bit more fiction, like making up a future?' we asked Désilets.
'Yeah, or now,' he responded. 'I would find it interesting to do a game about now, today, with everything that I know [about] how to make a game. I think it would be interesting also to be really close to reality. That's something I never actually did.'
When asked whether Ancestors was a new vision, Désilets said, 'No. I'm always doing the same game, so you take from one and you transport to the other one, you know?'
'The crowd of Assassin's Creed is the crowd I couldn't do in Prince of Persia, right? The running on rooftops, same thing. So, there's a notion of the control scheme that I had in 1666 that I'm reusing here [with] the intelligence and the senses. But the rest, I would say, I'm preparing [for future games] with this one. I say it as a joke but you put the cape on the ape and you have another game.'
Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey is scheduled for a 2019 release on Xbox, PlayStation and PC. You can check our first impressions with the game here.