Assassin's Creed Mirage looks to fix my biggest problem with Valhalla

Basim climbing a wall
(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Ubisoft has revealed that the upcoming Assassin’s Creed Mirage will return to its roots to deliver a more focused experience that pays homage to the original games.  

In an interview with GamesRadar about Assassin’s Creed Mirage, creative director Stephane Boudon explained that the developer has been listening to series fans who want to see the series return to a more streamlined experience. "Mirage’s creation has been the convergence of several inputs," said Boundon. “We started hearing the desire for a character-driven story, focused on the core pillars of the first ACs on a more intimate scale. It resonates with us as well as developers, and this was the starting point of the project." 

After a handful of bigger-scale, larger-than-life Assassin’s Creed games – looking at you, Valhalla – it’s nice to hear that Mirage will be slightly more intimate. 

Golden Era 

Basim looking over Baghdad

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Set in the 9th century, Mirage gives us a chance to see the first footsteps of Basim, the antagonist from Valhalla, and his journey from a young man to a Master Assassin. After losing his mother at a young age, Basim lived on the streets of Baghdad. It was here where he first began to dream of joining the Hidden Ones, a secret group of assassins. 

With Basim on a journey to become the most versatile Assassin in the franchise's history, parkour and stealth are set to take center stage, as they did in the original games. 

Mirage will also offer plenty of opportunities for exploration. Set in the vibrant city streets of Baghdad during the Golden era, there will offer four unique districts to investigate. And while it will certainly be fun to scour the rooftops of the industrial Karkh or stealth through the lush gardens into the Round City, I can’t wait to search for all the secrets hidden within this bustling metropolis. Here’s hoping that the map is on the smaller end of the scale. 

Smaller is better  

Basim looking over people

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

As a fan of Norse mythology, I was initially very excited to play Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. Unfortunately, what began as a treat ended up being a chore as I felt like I had to complete every single side quest in order to progress in the game. In a world where open-world RPGs are part and parcel of the experience, I’m beginning to find the relentlessly massive expanses of open-world games exhausting.

Each time I logged on, I was greeted by the menacing sight of a cluttered map full of various quests in every shade of the rainbow. As someone who likes to eat vegetables first, I felt the strange need to complete all the different and potentially useless quests before getting onto the main story. 

Having to chase floating leaflets of paper or finding cats for some old lady wasn’t exactly what I imagined when thinking about a Viking-themed Assassin’s Creed game. While a few of these extra tasks can be a fun way to lighten the mood, to me, the lack of seriousness lost what made the original games so enticing. 

I can try to find cats or chase leaflets any time, but getting to roleplay as a secret assassin in the 9th century Baghdad isn’t a chance I get regularly. With this in mind, I’m happy to see that Ubisoft is going back to the drawing board to make a more intimate game that stays true to the core of the franchise. 

Elie Gould
Features Writer

Elie is a Features Writer for TechRadar Gaming, here to write about anything new or slightly weird. Before writing for TRG, Elie studied for a Masters at Cardiff University JOMEC in International Journalism and Documentaries – spending their free time filming short docs or editing the gaming section for their student publications. 

Elie’s first step into gaming was through Pokémon but they've taken the natural next step in the horror genre. Any and every game that would keep you up at night is on their list to play - despite the fact that one of Elie’s biggest fears is being chased.