Ubisoft’s planned, but as yet unannounced, Assassin’s Creed title for 2017 has had what’s assumed to be its protagonist leaked via t-shirt. Count this among one of the most unique leaks in pre-E3 history. While rumormongers are still arguing over whether the new Assassin’s Creed game will have the subtitle Empire or Origins, new information has rather definitively revealed the game’s hero. Introducing Ba Yek.
The t-shirt was discovered for sale on the rack of your average local GameStop. It’s merchandise for the upcoming Assassin’s Creed game, clearly placed on the shelf early by an unaware employee. Ba Yek was likely meant to remain hidden from the world until Ubisoft’s proper unveiling either this week or during the E3 keynotes next week. Or perhaps Ba Yek’s a well-placed teaser, this t-shirt his calling card to maintain that pre-E3 anticipation for the next Assassin’s Creed.
There’s always the possibility that Ba Yek isn’t actually the protagonist of the new Assassin’s Creed title. He could be a supporting character or even a villain, though it’d be odd to see Ubisoft marketing a non-protagonist so aggressively. And then there’s also that Ba Yek’s appearance just easily be mistaken for Ezio or Altair sporting some different clothing. Ultimately the takeaway is that Ba Yek should still be considered a rumor until proven otherwise.
Putting an eye on the details, it should be clarified that in the right-hand corner of the t-shirt’s art is a big of text that reads 49 BCE. Notable events during this year include the start of the Great Roman Civil War and the death of the current Chinese Emperor. In Egypt, where the new Assassin’s Creed is certain to take place what with the image’s hieroglyphics, a calm before a storm. The Roman civil war will soon find its way to the Egyptian city of Alexandria, precipitating the rise of Cleopatra VII.
Other details worth mentioning include the hieroglyphics above Ba Yek’s name, which could imply his name is actually read as Bayek. Ba Yek’s chosen weapons are of intrigue: a bow, yet no arrows, a small shield typically used with a spear yet no spear, and a curved saber on his hip. Let’s also point out his wrist blade on his shield arm. If you take a close look at that hand, it also seems like Ba Yek is missing a certain finger. Assassin’s Creed is revisiting its roots in more ways than one.
Expect an announcement regarding the new Assassin’s Creed within the next seven days. If GameStop’s already stocking merchandise in preparation for the pre-order tidal wave, then it is clear that Ubisoft’s plans have been well laid out.