When it began back in 2007, the “Assassin’s Creed” franchise had titles that ran around the standard length of an AAA game at that time – taking about 15 hours to complete.
Short of the expansion packs, all the main games in the series stuck not too far from that mark through to 2015 – the shortest being “Assassin’s Creed Rogue” at 10.5 hours and the longest for years was “Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag” at 22.5 hours, with most hovering around the 16-hour mark.
Then the franchise switched to a biennial release format and shifted the time period to more ancient settings, the gameplay shifting with them and playing up more of a traditional RPG angle. Subsequently, the game time to completion shot upwards with the most recent “Assassin’s Creed Valhalla” clocking in at 47 hours.
The upcoming 13th-century Baghdad-set “Assassin’s Creed Mirage” releasing this year comes as a response to those inflated playtimes. Speaking to GamesRadarthe game’s creative director Stéphane Boudon said they are responding to the game’s community, and fans request to change things up again:
“Amongst our fans, we started hearing the desire for a character-driven story, focused on the core pillars of the first ACs in a more intimate scale. It resonates with us as well, as developers, and this was the starting point of the project.”
The result, according to IGNis a title expected to last somewhere in the region of 15 to 20 hours and much “closer to our original games” executive producer Marc-Alexis Cote tells IGN. He says to the outlet:
“It is a smaller Assassin’s Creed project. This was conceived [and] built to celebrate the 15th anniversary. So that’s why we’re using our modern Valhalla engine to build a smaller game that pays tribute to our original game by focusing more on stealth, on close-quarter combat, on parkour, and a denser city that goes back to our roots in the Middle East with Baghdad as the centerpiece.”
Because it’s a smaller game, “Assassin’s Creed Mirage” is also priced cheaper at launch too, with a $49.99 RRP. The company is continuing to develop its upcoming “Assassin’s Creed Infinity” platform, which will reportedly allow them to make different experiences of varying sizes available.