Assassin's Creed Shadows release date, gameplay details, dual protagonists & more explained

Assassin's Creed Shadows release date, gameplay details, dual protagonists & more explained
Images via Ubisoft

Written by 

Hritwik Raj & Joshua Boyles

Last updated 

14th May 2024 10:59

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Assassin's Creed Shadows will launch on November 15, 2024
  • It will feature two protagonists, Yasuke and Naoe
  • Numerous gameplay systems have been overhauled, with a renewed focus on stealth

Almost two years on from its original reveal, the next instalment in the Assassin's Creed series finally has a proper name - Shadows. The studio has given us our first proper look at the upcoming title, with an introduction to our dual protagonists and a closer look at some the gameplay innovations this time around - not to mention a proper release date.

Below, I'll walk you through everything we know so far about Assassin's Creed Shadows, including the release date, all the trailers so far, gameplay details, and more.

When is Assassin's Creed Shadows releasing?

Assassin's Creed Shadows is set to release on November 15, 2024.

This information was leaked shortly before the cinematic trailer for Assassin's Creed Shadows went live, but was later confirmed by Ubisoft.

Meet Naoe and Yasuke, the dual protagonists

Yasuke and Naoe in Assassin's Creed Shadows standing side by side
Click to enlarge

Much like the previous two RPG renditions of Assassin's Creed, there will be two protagonists to play as - Naoe and Yasuke. Naoe is a shinobi from the Iga Province, and will have a much more stealthy playstyle. Meanwhile, Yasuke is a powerful samurai and a genuine historical figure, famous for serving the daimyo Oda Nobunaga during the Warring States period.

Unlike Odyssey and Valhalla, which had two protagonists but only let you play as one for the entire game, both Naoe and Yauke will exist within the world at the same time. Each of them will have their own set of quests to complete, alongside a few shared ones that will let you choose a protagonist to approach them with.

Given their different professions, each protagonist will have a different playstyle. Naoe is much more focused on stealth with her shinobi abilities, and possesses the hidden blade. Meanwhile, Yasuke is much more suited to brute strength, using muscle and excellent swordwork to achieve his goals.

Assassin's Creed Shadows is set in the year 1579, and picks up when Yasuke first arrives in Japan. A press release for the game says, "The country is heading towards a brutal path to unification, where unrest grows as new coalitions appear and corruptive foreign influences infiltrate the land." It will explore the provinces of Iga, Arima, and Omi, and will be similar in size to Assassin's Creed Origins.

New gameplay details for Assassin's Creed Shadows

Yasuke looking stealthy in Assassin's Creed Shadows
Click to enlarge

While the cinematic trailer for Shadows doesn't give too much away in terms of gameplay, there are some key details floating around websites that have had an early gameplay preview.

According to IGN, the stealth systems have seen a huge overhaul this time around, with light and darkness now affecting enemy vision cones and providing more opportunities to complete quests quietly. You can now also incapacitate enemies rather than outright killing them, so pacifist runs are now more viable.

Naoe also possesses a grappling hook, similar to that of Assassin's Creed Syndicate. However, this one is physics-based, so you'll be able to use it to reach new heights and then swing around to execute impressive takedowns.

Shadows will feature a fully simulated weather and season system, which will have a direct impact on gameplay. For example, enemies will look to congregate away from the rain or cold, opening up new paths for the player in certain missions.

Synchronisation points have seen an overhaul, with towers no longer revealing entire map segments filled with icons. Instead, it sounds like the system will be much more akin to Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, where you'll need to spot key locations from a height and then investigate more closely when on foot. They'll still operate as fast travel points, though.

The player can build up a network of spies, akin to how things worked in Brotherhood. They'll be able to complete reconnaissance missions to gather intel on the targets you'll hunt down in missions. You'll also be able to build up a customisable hideout where you and your spies can hang out.

This is just a summarised version of all the new gameplay details we know about Assassin's Creed Shadows so far. We'll likely see gameplay for ourselves at Ubisoft's Forward event in June 2024.

Assassin's Creed Shadows trailers 

The cinematic trailer for Assassin's Creed Shadows debuted on May 15, 2024, giving us our first look at the game's setting and protagonists. You can spot a few of the new gameplay mechanics demonstrated in the CG trailer, but it's mostly a tone-setter for the story and setting.

Prior to this, we only had one thirty-second-long Assassin's Creed Codename Red reveal trailer that aired during Ubisoft Forward 2022. The trailer showed a few significant details like the return of Animus, the game's setting, and a brief cinematic look at the environment.

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As more details are revealed over time we'll update you right here, but in the meantime, check out our rankings of the best Assassin's Creed games. You may also enjoy our review of Assassin's Creed Mirage, the last game in the series.

Hritwik Raj
About the author
Hritwik Raj
Hritwik has been writing about video games, manga, and anime for more than 8 years. Some of his favourite games include The Last of Us Part II, Fallout 76, Apex Legends, Genshin Impact, and the Souls series.
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