Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag release date, news & rumours
We round up the latest Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag release date, news & rumours to find out what's next in store for the franchise
Update: Ubisoft has finally put us all out of our misery by formally announcing the next addition to the Assassin’s Creed franchise – Black Flag
The French firm made the announcement this week and even released a teaser trailer and screenshots (below) to get fans’ juices flowing. Black Flag will revolve around Edward Kenway, a former Royal Navy privateer turned notorious pirate, and will centre around 1715 Caribbean waters.
According to Ubisoft, it will play heavily on the naval elements seen in Assassin’s Creed 3 – although on-land missions will still make up the majority of the story. But what else can we expect from the upcoming title? We round up all the latest announcements, news and rumours to find out.
Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag release date
Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag will be available on 1 November for Xbox 360, PS3, Wii U and PC. It has also been announced for the next-generation of consoles, including the PlayStation 4 and Xbox 720, both of which are rumoured to make an appearence at the annual games expo, E3, in June.
Although an official release date is yet to be given, chances are the next-gen console version of AC4 will arrive on our shores in 2014, as the PS4’s UK release date is rumoured for Q1 2014.
Previously, rumours suggested that Ubisoft was considering skipping a year in the Assassin’s Creed launch cycle to focus on making the franchise bigger. Fortunately for us, that rumour turned out to be false.
Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag features
Although naval-based missions will get a lion’s share of the story, about 60 per cent of missions will still be based on land as there will be over 50 locations to explore. Alas, our favourite hooded hero, Desmond, won’t be making an appearance in AC4 but expect to see a few famous faces floating about including Benjamin Hornigold and the notorious sea devil Black Beard.
Many weapons will return, including hidden blades, swords, spear dart and so on, as well as new additions like a blowpipe and pistols. The game will also bring back more of a focus on stealth, something that the last couple of games have embraced less and less.
Yves Guillemot, chief executive officer at Ubisoft said. “With the new hero and new setting we are creating the boldest and most unique Assassin’s Creed game yet, while still respecting the pillars of the franchise that have made it such a fan favorite.
“Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag is based on a true, harsh and exciting part of a legendary era and will thrill longtime fans and newcomers alike.”
Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag co-op mode
It didn't come directly from the horse's mouth but games site The Gaming Liberty claims the next Assassin’s Creed could come equipped with a co-op mode, giving gamers the opportunity to play online against – or with – their friends (much like Black-Ops, but minus the flesh-eating zombies).
According to the article, Ubisoft released a poll which gauged players for their opinion on whether they’d like their friends to join them in "solving puzzles and missions".
Adding weight to the rumours, Assassin’s Creed mission director Philippe Bergon recently revealed that the 2007 Altair-led Assassin’s Creed once featured an 'ambitious' co-op component but was later shelved to make room for Desmond’s Animus storyline.
Speaking to games site OXM, he said: “Before we knew about the Desmond story and Animus link, we had a huge co-op component in there but it just became too hard to do: the engine couldn't support it, and then the metaphor we had above it didn't support it."
He added: "Co-op was one of those big things at the beginning that just didn't make sense in the end. For us it was really part of the single player experience. To have in-and-out co-op, and in the end we never thought it made sense in the storyline that we had for the Animus."