Left: Victor ‘r0gue z0mbie’ Vieira (Zombiegamer) Right: Antoine Fortier-Auclair (Ubisoft)

We had the pleasure of chatting to Ubisoft Montreal Realisation Director, Antoine Fortier-Auclair at rAge 2013 this past weekend. Fortier-Auclair has been working on Assassin’s Creed titles since Brotherhood, and seemed particularly jubilant about Black Flag and its ‘Pirate’ theme.

We asked Fortier-Auclair how Assassin’s Creed Black Flag’s gameplay elements would differ from the previous  games in the series. He explained that the game will call for more exploring, the naval aspect plays a more prominant role and that Ubisoft had a somewhat unique oportunity with the theme to offer players the choice of playing through the virtues of both ‘Pirate’ while staying true to the ‘Assassin’ theme.

“The pirate aspect of the gameplay is obviously a massive one, but the beautiful thing about Black Flag as an Assassin’s Creed game is that we (Ubisoft) looked to achieve a balance betweeen the Pirate lifestyle and the Assassin’s appeal,” Fortier-Auclair explained.

“The Assassin’s gameplay is all about free-running, climbing up rooftops, stealth, being tactical and air assasinations; while the pirate lifelstly is a more brash one and violent.

“So an example I can give you is if you are sailing your ship and you destroy the mast of an enemey ship, you sail right next to it and tell your mates to attack the ship. You can use a swing-rope to board the ship or by jumping from platform to platform. You start boarding the ship; which is a very violent, brash ‘piratey ‘ thing to do.

“But the Assassin way is to actually to climb up the mast of your ship while your mates distract the other ship mates, then you’re navigating the planks, jumping from your ship to the next above everyone else. With your hood on as an Assassin, you kill the guys on the balconies, then dive down into an air-assassination. This is the iconic Assassin thing you can do, except this time you’re doing it with two Cutlass Swords in your hands. So this is a symbiotic example of the two themes themes merging well,” he added.

Check back later in the week for the full interview.