Assassin's Creed III development a 'wreck' of unrealistic expectations and oversized development teams
New information has emerged indicating that the development on Assassin's Creed III was a bit of an unwieldy mess.
The game itself was a bit of a disappointment for fans of the series as it felt rather disjointed and Connor was nowhere near as compelling a character as Ezio had been for the previous three games.
One Reddit user going by the name of PreludesAndNocturnes claims to have worked on the game and shared some of their experiences which seem to be largely negative. They do make a point of stressing that they have enjoyed working at Ubisoft Montreal despite the issues they have detailed. They also note that they worked exclusively on the single-player side of the game.
The story is one that has become quite familiar in recent times with superiors imposing “ridiculously unrealistic expectations” on a development team that stretched across no less than five studios encompassing between 500 and 600 people.
They began, “So why was AC3 a wreck? Without going into too much details, basically because of ridiculously unrealistic expectations and constantly tacked on features by producers / the creative team, it became literally impossible to get everything done with just Ubi Montreal. In order to get everything in the design doc completed in time for the annual release (ugh!), team size was constantly fluctuating. The game was worked on by large majority of the Montreal team, as well as Ubi Quebec, Ubi Annecy, Ubi Bucharest, and Ubi Singapore. Between 500-600 people touched the game before it's release. Contrast that with teams like Naughty Dog or Sony Santa Monica, who operate with 80-100 (maybe 200 during crunch).”
“Almost everybody on the bottom knew that the Desmond missions were a disgrace,” the poster added. “Why? Because a B-team filled with new hires and the least talent handled all production of the Desmond content, and they were rarely in communication with the main gameplay teams. But we couldn't really say anything, and the higher ups basically stuck their fingers in their ears and convinced themselves that they were amazing.”
PreludesAndNocturnes also goes into details about the poor quality of all of the side-attractions from the Homestead and Caravan stuff to the pub board games as well as the lack of communication making many the game's developers unaware of other features that they weren't directly involved in making.
All in all it paints a pretty bleak picture and, even if half-true, gives a cast iron explanation as to why the game felt so dull and indiscriminately overstuffed.