Assassin’s Creed Black Flag And Origins Director Leaves Ubisoft

Bayek from Assassin's Creed Origins slides down a pyramid.

Picture: Ubisoft

veteran Assassin’s Creed Developer Jean Guesdon announced Thursday that he is leaving Ubisoft after 17 years. A creative director for some of the most popular entries in the franchise, including Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flagthis is the latest high-profile departure from a publisher currently struggling with delays and cancellations.

“Hi everyone, 2023 begins for me as the end of just over 17 amazing years at Ubisoft Montreal,” Guesdon posted on LinkedIn today. “I cannot express how much I owe to this unique company. So many people have met, learned so many skills and implemented so many projects. And Assassin’s Creed, of course Assassin’s Creed.”

He thanked the company and signed the note with a smiling emoji, but didn’t indicate where he might go next. Previously, Guesdon had worked as creative director on an unknown game at Ubisoft Montreal for the past five years. kotaku sees it as codename Renaissance, a collaborative voxel-based game with shading of Minecraft. Three former Ubisoft developers with knowledge of the project told kotaku They viewed it as one of the more promising in the company’s pipeline, although it’s unclear how Guesdon’s departure might affect that.

Ubisoft recently canceled several unannounced projects alongside broader cost-cutting measures to focus attention and resources on some of its larger and more established franchises. Guesdon declined to comment.

We Thanks to Jean for his strong creative vision, openness, ideas and above all his ability to ‘in the shoes ours player in his contributions to Ubisoft“, a spokesman for company tells kotaku in an opinion. “We wish him all the best for his next chapter.”

Started at Ubisoft as project coordinator for the original Assassin’s CreedGuesdon rose to game designer Assassin’s Creed 2 and later Head of Content for the franchise. Above all, he worked as a creative director Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag And Assassin’s Creed Origins alongside Ashraf Ismail (who now works at Tencent after fired from Ubisoft over misconduct allegations).

Back in 2018, Guesdon given an overview kotaku how Ubisoft managed to produce a massive new one Assassin’s Creed Play almost every year, a process involving multiple lead studios and a vast network of support bureaus. More recently, the franchise has lasted longer between new entries, with Ubisoft instead extending the lifespan of each through tons of DLC and seasonal updates.

Guesdon’s departure, while seemingly amicable, comes at a time when some within Ubisoft are concerned about the publisher’s ability to attract and retain veteran talent. axios reported about an excerpt” of developers in 2021, including “AC life people” like game director Eric Baptizat and franchise art director Raphael Lacoste. Baptizat is now at EA Motive, while Lacoste is now at Haven, newer Montreal-based game studios both founded by fellow Ubisoft veteran Jade Raymond.

Not all are leaving the company, however, and at a recent in-house All-Hands CEO Anika Grant told employees that turnover among the company’s senior developers has been steadily declining in recent months. Some developers like longtime Assassin’s Creed Narrative director Darby McDevitt have even returned. Ubisoft revealed this last fall several times new Assassin’s Creed Games are in sightalongside mobile spinoffs and a Netflix adaptation.

Update 2/9/23 4:18 PM ET: Added Ubisoft’s comment.


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