[UPDATED] Ubisoft Apologizes for Events in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey: Legacy of the First Blade Episode 2
It seems like people aren't happy with the way Assassin’s Creed Odyssey: Legacy of the First Blade's second episode ended.
While the backlash for Assassin’s Creed Odyssey: Legacy of the First Blade DLC continued, a public statement went up yesterday on the game’s forums and also on Reddit. The statement was made by Creative Director Jonathan Dumont and you can read it below.
“Reading through player responses of our new DLC for Legacy of the First Blade, Shadow Heritage, we want to extend an apology to players disappointed by a relationship your character partakes in. The intention of this story was to explain how your character’s bloodline has a lasting impact on the Assassins, but looking through your responses it is clear that we missed the mark.
Alexios/Kassandra realizing their own mortality and the sacrifice Leonidas and Myrrine made before them to keep their legacy alive, felt the desire and duty to preserve their important lineage. Our goal was to let players choose between a utilitarian view of ensuring your bloodline lived on or forming a romantic relationship. We attempted to distinguish between the two but could have done this more carefully as we were walking a narrow line between role-play choices and story, and the clarity and motivation for this decision was poorly executed. As you continue the adventure in next episode Bloodline, please know that you will not have to engage in a lasting romantic relationship if you do not desire to.
We have read your responses online and taken them to heart. This has been a learning experience for us. Understanding how attached you feel to your Kassandra and your Alexios is humbling and knowing we let you down is not something we take lightly. We’ll work to do better and make sure the element of player choice in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey carries through our DLC content so you can stay true to the character you have embodied throughout.”
It certainly seems like the Ubisoft has taken notice of the situation, and admit that the plot was handled poorly. However, it doesn’t seem like they have plans to undo the plot, instead they ensure that the next episode does not have any need to engage in a romantic relationship. While it makes sense for the character’s bloodline to continue on, I don’t see why more mystical ways couldn’t have been included. After all, you fight Medusa and can disintegrate bodies with the Death Veil ability for example, so it’s not like the game is hanging onto realism.
Original Post 01/16/2019
Yesterday saw the launch of Shadow Heritage, the second episode for Assassin’s Creed Odyssey: Legacy of the First Blade DLC. A lot of fans were left far from impressed when they found themselves locked to a specific story outcome. Eurogamer reached out to Ubisoft for their take on the outrage. This post is going to contain spoilers below related to the episode.
In 2018 we interviewed Creative Director Jonathan Dumont about Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, and asked about the storylines for each character which resulted in us learning, “your personal story will change.” Additionally, back in June 2018 the official Twitter responded to questions being asked at the time, and a lot of these answers resulted in responses such as, “your actions and choices will lead to different endings.” and “In the game, you decide your path.”
Obviously, these were all referencing the base game, but the fact is, players have invested hours and utilized many choices to create their character. The game has been marketed to them in a way that indicates their choices matter in the world of the game. More specifically players are able to make romantic choices, enabling them to have Alexios as a gay character, or Kassandra as a lesbian character, or even have their sexual preference as bi-sexual or straight.
Shadow Heritage forces the players to end up locked into a story arc that results in your character having a baby, regardless of your sexual preference. According to Eurogamer, players had already suspected a straight romance option was taking shape.
The second episode offers players the choice to either romance Darius’ offspring and have a child together, or you can say farewell but still end up having a baby anyway when they turn up and lead you to settle down. You can watch this video from Anty0 that shows you both outcomes.
A Reddit mega thread details some fans annoyances about the forced romance option and there are many other threads I’ve stumbled onto through Twitter and Reddit itself.
Ubisoft provided Eurogamer with a “couple of general statements” that reads,
“We strive to give players choice whenever possible in Odyssey and apologise to those surprised by the events in this episode,” a company spokesperson told Eurogamer. “Without spoiling it, you will engage in an important relationship as part of a set story. The motivation behind this relationship is yours to explore in game and will be reflected in your character’s story arc. There is one episode left in Legacy of the First Blade which will tie your character’s actions together.”
“We don’t want to reveal too much right now, but we have always tried to keep the story inclusive of people of all sexual orientations, and players will be able to choose their motivations behind this particular narrative depending on their sexual preferences,”
“Assassin’s Creed Odyssey was developed by people of all sexual orientations, backgrounds, genders and beliefs, and we have tried to reflect that within the game.”
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is available for Xbox One, PS4, and PC.