When is Assassin's Creed Shadows set?

When is Assassin's Creed Shadows set?
Images via Ubisoft

Written by 

Joshua Boyles


15th May 2024 18:02


  • The story of Assassin's Creed Shadows will begin in 1579
  • This places it between Revelations and Black Flag in the Assassin's Creed timeline

Ubisoft has finally revealed Assassin’s Creed Shadows in full, and in doing so has confirmed exactly when the game will be set - right down to the exact year.

Assassin’s Creed games have always had a historical element to them, exploring the lives of significant figures from our past through the Animus technology. The last few entries in the series have taken us thousands of years into the past, but this newest entry appears to be a much more recent depiction of the series.

What year is Assassin’s Creed Shadows set?

As confirmed in a deep dive video from Ubisoft, the story of Assassin’s Creed Shadows will begin in 1579, towards the end of the 16th Century. This coincides with when Yasuke, one of the two protagonists in the game, arrives in Japan in real history.

“Not a lot is known about [Yasuke], but what we do know is that he arrived in Japan in 1579, right when our game starts, and that he had relationships with some of the most interesting people in our setting like Oda Nobunaga, the Portuguese and Jesuits, which made it very enticing from a narrative perspective to come in and start weaving these facts with story in between,” says Brooke Davies, the Associate Narrative Director on Assassin’s Creed Shadows.

As for how many years the game will cover in terms of its story, we’re not sure yet. Most Assassin’s Creed games focus on a specific couple of years, but some titles have ended up covering decades of a time period. We’ll have to wait until launch to learn more about whether Shadows will teeter into the realm of the 17th century.

Where does Shadows sit in the Assassin’s Creed timeline?

Yasuke in Assassin's Creed Shadows hitting an enemy with a big stick
Click to enlarge

In terms of the Assassin’s Creed timeline, Shadows now sits somewhere between Assassin’s Creed Revelations and Assassin’s Creed 4 Black Flag. Revelations saw the last of Ezio Auditore and wrapped up in 1512. Meanwhile, Black Flag picks up with the pirate Edward Kenway in 1715.

As such, this time period is uncharted territory for Assassin’s Creed, and it’s unlikely we’ll see any cameo appearances from established characters from the canon. That’s not excluding characters from the modern day, though. While Ubisoft hasn’t discussed if the modern-day setting will be present in Shadows, it’s highly likely to continue the arc that left on a cliffhanger in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.

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That’s everything you need to know about when Assassin’s Creed Shadows is set. For more helpful Assassin’s Creed guides, we’ve also covered all of the trailers for the game. You might also enjoy our review of Assassin’s Creed Mirage, the last game in the series to release.

Joshua Boyles
About the author
Joshua Boyles
Joshua is the Guides Editor at GGRecon. After graduating with a BA (Hons) degree in Broadcast Journalism, he previously wrote for publications such as FragHero and GameByte. You can often find him diving deep into fantasy RPGs such as Skyrim and The Witcher, or tearing it up in Call of Duty and Battlefield. He's also often spotted hiking in the wilderness, usually blasting Arctic Monkeys.
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