Last time it was during the development of Assassin’s Creed 3, they protested that it just wasn’t feasible to make the lead character female. But they did have a female lead character ready to go! They put her into Assassin’s Creed Liberation, where her special ability was playing dress-up. Seriously, she put on different clothes to do stuff. I mean, in a way that’s quite clever, playing more directly with the stealth aspect than, say, Ezio remaining a precise distance behind a target and hiding behind a tree. It’s just… Well, why did you have to give that ability to your first female lead? It’s not something you can handwave away as coincidence, the context is too loaded.
Ironically, of course, Aveline was a far more likeable character than the lead they bumped her out of the way to include in the main Assassin’s Creed. Conor was a huge misstep – a boorish dolt you couldn’t wait to see the end of (a fact tacitly acknowledged by his grave being the final shot of the game – “Yup, he’s not coming back”) – and made AC3 a real slog to play through. Aveline, by comparison, is spoken of almost as fondly as AC2 lead Ezio.
So on to Unity. Enough ranting from me, let’s eavesdrop on the decision-making process over at Ubi headquarters:
Dude 1: Guys! Guys! I’ve had an idea for Assassin’s Creed Unity…
Dude 2: Oh no.
Dude 3: Oh Jeez… not…
Dude 1: …WOMEN!
Dude 3: Shit. Look, we’ve been over this…
Dude 2: Remember? Remember the third game?
Dude 3: You mean Creed 3 or Brotherhood?
Dude 2: Creed 3, man, not BRO’HOOD.
Dude 3: Sweet. Bro’hood. Yes.
Dude 1: Ahem? Yes, I remember the third game. I remember Conor. We bumped Aveline into a shitty PS Vita game for him.
Dude 2: Totally worth it. Everyone loved Conor. Dude was mean, tough and moody. And he was built like a brick shithouse, man!
Dude 3: Gotta love the muscles.
Dude 1: He was whiny, petulant, steroidal dick!
Dude 3: Gotta love the dick.
Dude 2: Dude, gay.
Dude 3: Sorry.
Dude 1: Anyway, fucksake, look, I’ve done some research and women are basically human beings. They are essentially the same as men! Check out these pictures!
Dude 2: PICTURES, BRO!!
Dude 3: Oh, they’ve got clothes on.
Dude 2: Gay.
Dude 1: Seriously, though. They’re literally no harder to animate than men. They walk on their hind legs like people and use their arms to grasp stuff and use tools.
Dude 2: They can use my too-
Dude 1: Stop that.
Dude 3: Listen, bro, it’s not that simple. Look at these women. You notice anything?
Dude 2: TIT-TAYS!!
Dude 3: As my estimable bro points out, titties. They’re not easy to animate. We don’t have the resources. We’re flat out in terms of time and manpower…
Dude 4: DUDES, CHECK IT OUT, I ANIMATED DICKFLOP TO MAKE THE TROUSER ANIMATION MORE ACCURATE!
Dudes 2 & 3: Sweet!!
Dude 1: Can’t we get Ubisoft Sofia to work on the female animations? They did all the female NPCs…
Dude 2: No go, amigo, they’re now working on haystack puff. Gotta make the haystacks 100% accurate.
Dude 3: And besides, have you seen how women walk? All, like, swish sway swish, check out this Hitman trailer…
Dude 1: I have seen women walking. A lot of them seem to walk in a way that’s not really that different to…
Dude 3: Swish sway swish, dude.
Dude 2: Plus the cost of putting a camera at ass height? Not really worth the expense, is it?
Dude 4: DUDES, CHECK THIS YOU CAN NOW GET A POV SHOT FROM A GUILLOTINE VICTIM!
Dudes 2&3: Awesome!
Dude 1: This is ridiculous! We are UBISOFT! We have money to burn! Why can’t we just put a female assassin in the-
Dude 3: We already have four playable assassins! You want us to put in a chick now and break up the sausage-fest?
Dude 2: Think of the scripting costs alone! How do you explain her being treated as an equal to the dudes? That’ll take a lot of extra scenes.
Dude 1: Aren’t all assassins equal in the brotherhood? I mean, this is the story we created! We can do anything we want, we don’t have to explain shit!
Dude 3: Uh, yeah we do if we put a girl in there.
Dude 4: DUDES! UNLOCKABLE CONTENT – PLAY AS EZIO IN REVOLUTIONARY FRANCE!
Dudes 2&3: Amazeballs!
Dude 1: Did… did you just say “Amazeballs”?
Dude 2: OK, I tell you what. We’ll put a female character into a… a…
Dude 3: DLC mission?
Dude 2: Sure, sure.
Dude 1: For real?
Dude 2: Yeah. We’ll have to tweak it a bit. Her special ability can be that she wears different shoes for different jobs…
Dude 3: …and she is a stripper.
Dude 1: A stripper? In revolutionary France?
Dude 2: Always a market for strippers, bro.
Dude 3: I’ll get to work on the jiggle physics.
Dude 2: No way, man, we need Ubisoft Massive on that shit. Get them off the Clancy shit and onto Project Bouncy right away.
So there we have it. There WILL be a playable female character in AC: Unity, once they work out the relative velocity of nipples during air assassinations.