Assassin’s Creed creator regains rights to 1666 Amsterdam from Ubisoft

1666 Amsterdam

Patrice Desilets, the creator of Assassin’s Creed, has finally finished his battle with Ubisoft over the rights to 1666 Amsterdam, a game concept he developed. In an announcement from Desilets’ own studio Panache Digital Games, it has been revealed that rights to the game have been given to Desilets and a $400,000 lawsuit against Ubisoft has been dropped. 

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1666 Amsterdam was originally conceived as “the new Assassin’s Creed” and would have had connections to the painter Rembrandt. Desilets created the idea while at THQ Montreal, but the rights to the IP were acquired by Ubisoft when they bought the studio in 2012 after THQ’s bankruptcy. Since departing Ubisoft in 2013, Desilets has been fighting to take custody of the IP. 

With the rights relinquished by Ubisoft, Desilets now has “all creative and business control over the project.” 

"Putting aside our past differences, Patrice and I are above all interested in the creation of video games and the evolution of this medium of entertainment," said Ubisoft Montreal and Toronto CEO Yannis Mallat in a statement. "This agreement is good news for everyone. As we have always said, Patrice is a talented designer and we wish him all the best in the development of his future endeavors."

Desilets is happy to have reached a conclusion to the situation with Ubisoft without resorting to a court trial, however 1666 will not suddenly go into production now Panache Digital Games have the rights. Instead, the studio will continue work on Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey

"I will now devote myself entirely to the development of Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey," explained Desilets. "This is what matters most to me today: making the best games and showing the world the creative talent of Quebecers. I also wish every success to the Ubisoft teams."

Thanks, Gamespot.

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1 Year ago

I think Assassin's Creed lost much after the first. The only one I could really enjoy was IV. And perhaps then only because it was an obvious 'venting game' for Ubisoft (much in the vein of Blood Dragon).

I preferred the more methodical and vastly more intelligent first of the series. It had potential there, as opposed to being a poor man's The Secret World. It's not awfully written, really, and that's the thing. In fact, the writing can be the strongest aspect.

It's how they've handled the conspiracy, continually simplifying it and removing more and more of the modern day component. And how even directly after the first Assassin's Creed it went more from being a methodical, clever, thinker's game to... Well, a feast of visual spectacle with terrible controls, I suppose.

It's easier to accept that in Black Flag because Kenway is a lazy Welsh bugger, which I can accept (and say, being Welsh myself, and from almost the same place no less). I just sigh, shake my head, and blame the bad controls on Kenway's ineptitude. It's funnier that way, and it fits the story. For any other game, though? Especially for one that has a supposedly more competent protagonist? Well... Let's just say that you need an incompetent protagonist to make Assassin's Creed work because the controls are just that bad now.

They made so much more sense in the first game. Back when it wasn't trying to be a Michael Bay experience mixed with a James Bond film. I wish that had continued. Perhaps 1666 will yield some promise, there.

I never know what to make of Ubisoft. I don't hate them. Back in the day, their name was on many games I loved. They took risks to publish weird and eccentric titles. And they were responsible for some of my favourite weird and eccentric titles themselves (such as Beyond Good & Evil, the photograph-ALL-the-alien-wildlife game).

I just feel that they're stuck trying to figure out whether they want to make silly games, artsy games, or mainstream games. And they're pulling themselves apart in the process as they can never really decide, can they? You'll have titles which have a more serious and artsy edge, like Child of Light, Valiant Hearts, and to a lesser extent even certain things about AC III; Then you'll have much sillier games like AC IV, Blood Dragon, and Rayman Origins; And on top of that there's incredibly mainstream titles like the Far Cry series. They just don't know who they are.

And I don't know who they are, either. I used to love them. Today I just feel neutral for them. And perhaps a little pity, as I feel that they've lost their way and wandered down a path that's taken them to this point of dissociative personality disorder.

Hm.

I don't feel negatively about any group, here, really. People are people. And people can be pretty crap, greedy, and horrible to each other. That's human nature most of the time, right?

So being selfish, with 1666 back in the hands of its original proprietor, I may get more of the intelligent Assassin's Creed that I loved so much with the first. A return to form. Or I may not.

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