Yeah Ubisoft, you really could have handled this much better.
Ubisoft had a very unexpected blowup in their faces this E3, when they showed off the co-op mode in Assassin’s Creed Unity, with so many different designs for the assassins, and yet, not a single one of them female. This, coupled with the lack of female characters in their other big game for the year, Far Cry 4, alongside some very poor handling of the issue with comments that turned out to be more insensitive and inflammatory than anything else, has led to a massive PR disaster blow up right under their noses.
Alongside all of this debate, many players have decided to take matters into their own hands in an attempt to convince the French publishing giant to include some female characters in their flagship games. A petition has gone up, demanding female characters in Assassin’s Creed unity, and it has nearly 3,000 signatures already.
The petition was established by Jessica Smith, who wrote, “This petition has been created to express the disappointment of Ubisoft fans at the lack of representation of people of colour and females in the four-protagonist line-up of the upcoming Assassin’s Creed: Unity.
“We believe that the Assassin’s Creed series, a franchise with infinite scope, does not reflect the needs of its demographic well enough: the lack of a female character has been referred to as “unfortunate, but…a reality of game development”, and the possibility of an ethnic minority protagonist seems to have not even been breached.
“Representation is important, and in a game which boasts 5000 NPCs, this is not good enough.”
It really doesn’t make sense for Ubisoft to exclude female characters from the game, especially when you consider that, given Assassin’s Creed Liberation and the Aveline missions in Assassin’s Creed III, they already have a full library of female character animations and models ready to go.