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Assassin's Creed Valhalla has only been out for a few months, but fans are already keen to see where the franchise will take us next. A new report suggests that the next instalment in the long-running historical murder sim will feature a medieval European setting, with a particular focus on France and Germany.
Take this rumour with a pinch of salt, as the source - an anonymous post on 4Chan - is hardly the most reliable. What they're saying does line up with some of what we already know about the future of Assassin's Creed Valhalla, however, so there's a good chance there's some truth to these claims.
The alleged leaker suggests that the upcoming game's working title is Assassin's Creed Champions, and that it'll be announced during E3 this year (or a similar presentation, given the very existence of E3 2021 is still up in the air). They claim it's a a classical European fantasy take on the series set in medieval France and Germany, and that it'll release in early 2022.
The release window certainly lines up with claims made earlier this year by French YouTuber and streamer xj0nathan. They suggested that the rest of 2021 will be all about Assassin's Creed Valhalla and its two major expansions, but that Ubisoft Sofia is leading development on a new game along with support from other studios within the company.
What's interesting is that Assassin's Creed Valhalla's second and final major expansion has the potential to lead into - or at least set up - an Assassin's Creed with a medieval European setting. Ubisoft confirmed last year that the summer 2021 expansion is called The Siege Of Paris. In this DLC, players will be able to relive the "most ambitious battle in Viking History" as they attempt to infiltrate the French capital.
Assassin's Creed Odyssey's Atlantis expansion set up a lot of the major elements that came to the fore in Valhalla, so it's not like Ubisoft is against using DLC to move the larger story forward. Perhaps something happens in Paris during the siege that drives our modern day crew of Assassins back to investigate... albeit a few centuries later.
It's an interesting possibility, although one that is rather at odds with the rumours that the next Assassin's Creed will take us to medieval China. Recently resurfaced art from Ubisoft Montreal concept artist John Bigorgne shows off traditional Asian architecture - most likely Chinese - surrounded by guards and a couple of small straw houses. There are also two figures on horses in the foreground wearing robes that bear the insignia of the Assassins.
This led many to believe that the setting for the next game had long been decided, but it's important to remember that concept art isn't always indictive of a final product. This could just as easily have been Ubisoft tossing around some potential ideas, or even just Bigorgne playing around with some concepts on his own time.
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