Since Ubisoft first unveiled their Assassin's Creed series set within a Middle Eastern world of espionage and supernatural forces, the connections between it and the Prince of Persia franchise were clear. Thanks to a recently unearthed concept video, fans have one of the first looks at Assassin's Creed gameplay, at the time credited as footage of the in-production Prince of Persia: Assassins.
The similarities between the two franchises were explained when Ubisoft released concept artwork a few days ago, revealing the origin of the Assassins as personal bodyguards of the titular Prince. Sadly, fans of the Prince who have spent years dreaming of seeing their favorite quipping royal in his own open-world epic must go on dreaming, since that isn't seeming any more likely.
A video created by a former Ubisoft sound designer shows off some of the earliest footage of the then-titled Prince of Persia: Assassins, unearthed by Twitter super-sleuth 'Superannuation.' Showing what can only be described as extremely early gameplay of what would ultimately become Assassin's Creed, the video still contains cooperative and first-person elements which didn't make the final product.
While tangling with Templars and horseback riding have become par for the course, the fellow assassin joining the player-controlled character for some riding/bow and arrow gameplay is entirely new. It speaks to the concepts at the core of the game's beginnings: playing as one of the several assassins charged with protecting the Prince's life. The video apparently dates all the way back to 2004, so seeing how far Ubisoft has brought the series is impressive.
There are surely fans of Prince of Persia who would rather have seen the successful series developed under that license, without time spent on the larger Desmond-focused plot. Telling a unique story is obviously a major priority for Ubisoft, as even now the team is intent on reinventing the franchise with Assassin's Creed 3.
While we may spend our days now dreaming of the day when Ubisoft reveals the two franchises to be linked - really, in the Assassin's Creed mythology that wouldn't even be a serious twist - it's nice to take a look back at the work that went into the series before its future was secured.
What do you think of the concept footage? Did Ubisoft make the right improvements, or would you like to see elements of all these new Assassin's Creed and Prince of Persia details resurface in a brand new adventure? Leave us your thoughts in the comments.
Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.
Source: Superannuation (via Eurogamer)