Ubisoft Montreal headquarters
Stadia forged a strong link with Ubisoft when Project Stream used Assassin’s Creed Odyssey to beta test Google’s new streaming service. The link became much stronger when Jade Raymond was named a Google Vice President and Head of Stadia Games and Entertainment. That was just the beginning. Raymond is building a development studio for Stadia and three senior Ubisoft developers have signed on.
Raymond was a producer on the first Assassin’s Creed, an executive producer on AC II, and AC:Bloodlines and the managing director for AC Unity. She was also the managing director and executive producer of Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Blacklist, executive producer for Watch Dogs and the studio head at Ubisoft’s then newly formed Toronto studio. Fellow Ubisoft developers Sébastien Puel, François C. Pelland and Mathieu Leduc have recently joined her at Stadia.
Puel was a producer for Assassin’s Creed II and executive producer on AC Brotherhood, Revelations, Liberation, Black Flag, and Unity. He also held high-level management positions on Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands, Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker and SoulCalibur V.
Pelland was a senior producer for Assassin’s Creed II and AC Syndicate and executive director for development for AC Black Flag, Unity and Rogue along with Watch Dogs and South Park: The Fractured But Whole.
Leduc was assistant art director for the first Assassin’s Creed and the art director for AC II, Watch Dogs and Watch Dogs 2. He has also contributed art and user-interface assets for many other games at Ubisoft.
‘Assassin’s Creed I’
It’s going to be very interesting to see how the strong Ubisoft presence at Stadia works out. Ubisoft’s most successful IP is Assassin’s Creed which is also is the obvious connection among Stadia’s Ubisoft quartet. These are all highly talented individuals who know their way around video game production.
Assassin’s Creed was a new, exciting and influential approach to action/adventure games when it launched the series in 2007. However, it’s worth pointing out that the series had gotten stale before it incorporated more RPG elements along with a beefed-up combat system in AC Origins and Odyssey. It’s noteworthy that all of Stadia’s former Ubisoft personnel were no longer working on Assassin’s Creed games when the series pivoted.
It’s also noteworthy that Ubisoft has a consistent history of embracing innovation and new ideas, working tirelessly to improve games after they launch and making choices that benefit players more than profits. If the Ubisoft quartet bring this culture to Stadia while not being locked into the style and structure of the early Assassin’s Creed games, Stadia’s new development studio could be something special. Stay tuned.