The announcement of a new Chinese-themed Assassin’s Creed manga coming out on August 26 and a relevant twitter poll by Daniel Ahmad have sparked discussion among Chinese gamers on the possibility of a new mainline Assassin’s Creed game set in China.
Currently, the only AC game set in China is Assassin’s Creed Chronicles, a side scroller that was generally poorly received by Chinese gamers upon release in 2015.
In light of the recent Ghost of Tsushima controversy, many users on the Chinese gaming app Heybox (小黑盒) express concern about how political factors might affect a Chinese AC game. One comment with 359 likes reads: A Chinese AC game would be difficult to pull off. After all, there will always be patriotic instigators looking for sensitive content [to complain about].
Another user with 1,343 jokes: If they set it during the Opium Wars, they could have the player justifiably kill British enemies. This tongue-in-cheek observation highlights the reality of media in mainland China, where, for example, depictions of Japanese soldiers (or Eight-Nation Alliance soldiers in this case) being massacred is fine, but depictions of foreign armies killing Chinese people will likely not pass censors.
A slightly more optimistic comment with 136 likes reads: …Look at Ghost of Tsushima. It’s a good game and even though there are lots of historical inaccuracies, everybody likes how it represents Japanese culture. If they make a Chinese AC game, they just have to stay close to basic historical events and include lots of authentic Chinese elements. It’s not like it would be about modern-day China. People should stop always worrying about the game passing censors.
While much of the discussion has revolved around whether or not the game would be banned in China, gamers have also chimed in on which specific eras they would like to see the potential game set in, with most casting their vote for the Tang dynasty, one of ancient China’s most prosperous and culturally active periods.