Assassin's Creed Revelations is not the end, nor the beginning of the end, just the end of the beginning, to borrow a phrase from Winston Churchill.
As the first two parts of the series hurtle to an epic conclusion and we see Ezio and Altair's stories all wrapped up, we're finally set to bid a fond and slightly teary farewell to two of the most iconic characters in recent gaming years.
So it was with a slightly heavy heart that we invited Darby McDevitt, scriptwriter and Alexandre Amancio, Creative Director at Ubisoft Montreal to talk about the conclusion to the medieval portion of Assassin's Creed, what the future may hold and learn all about how the final truth will be revealed.
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So this is it, Revelations, the final chapter in the series. Everything's tied up, revealed and finished?
Darby McDevitt: Revelations is not the concluding chapter of the Assassins Creed franchise... it is only the end of Ezio and Altair's stories. Desmond's story will continue at some point, in some fashion.
It must have been quite a challenge to have to build to such a finale after such an epic series of games?
Darby McDevitt: It is no easy task to tell the stories of three incredible characters simultaneously - especially when the timelines and settings are so wildly disparate - but we feel confident and enthusiastic that we have crafted a cohesive, epic tale that honours the tones and themes established by all previous instalments.
Altair is still as stoic and philosophical as ever, even in the face of overwhelming odds against him, while Ezio remains a warm and charismatic presence, full of curiosity and love for all who serve the better side of human nature. The biggest challenge for us from the outset was to shape a story that felt natural and necessary, without resorting to any cheap tricks or flights of fancy. We have faith that we have done this, and that fans - old and new - will be thoroughly satisfied (and a tad misty-eyed) with the conclusion we have planned for our beloved Assassins.
What will we learn about the character of Desmond in Revelations?
Darby McDevitt: Through a series of uniquely surreal gameplay moments, players will have the chance to learn more about the previous 10 years of Desmond's life - how he grew up on an Assassin compound, how he ran away from his parents, and how he found a job as a bartender in a major metropolis...
We've followed Ezio through a long career, how do you think he's grown and evolved throughout the series?
Darby McDevitt: Over the course of his five decades on earth, Ezio has matured from a brash young playboy to a charismatic leader. In AC2 we watched him shed his youthful instincts and learn how to be a proper, masterful Assassin; in ACB we saw him become a leader and ultimately a Mentor to the Assassins in Rome; now in Revelations we will watch our Mentor struggle to find a balance between being an Assassin and leading a normal life.