A recent recurring notion on the Internet is that the upcoming game Assassin’s Creed Mirage will contain elements of real gambling. Ubisoft responded to fans’ speculation in a public announcement that the notion was due to an error and the game would be gambling free. This news may not please some AC fans looking forward to occasionally enjoying gambling in the new version of the game.
The Rise of Gambling in Video Games: A Closer Look
In recent years, the gaming industry has seen a surge in mechanics and features closely resembling gambling, bringing innovation and controversy. For those unfamiliar with the trend, here’s a breakdown.
Loot Boxes and Microtransactions: What Are They?
Loot boxes are virtual items that players can buy or earn in games. When opened, they offer a randomised selection of further virtual items. These can range from simple cosmetic changes, like a new outfit for a character, to gameplay-enhancing items, like powerful weapons or abilities. The catch? Players don’t know what they get until they’ve paid or played to open the box.
Similarly, microtransactions allow players to purchase specific in-game items, advantages, or cosmetic upgrades with real-world money. While these are straightforward transactions (you know what you’re getting), they can sometimes offer players a competitive advantage, leading to a “pay-to-win” dynamic.
It’s easy to see why these features have gained traction. From a financial standpoint, they’ve proven highly profitable for game developers and publishers. Many free-to-play games rely on microtransactions as their primary revenue source, allowing them to offer the base game at no cost. Some try to offer bonuses to gamers, a tactic most businesses incorporate. For instance, casino establishments offer a $200 no deposit bonus 200 free spins real money.
Here is a list of benefits:
- Increased revenue
- Extended player engagement
- The monetisation of free-to-play games
- Funding ongoing development
- Diversification of monetisation strategies
- Enhanced customisation options
- Creation of a secondary market
- An Incentive for exploration and challenges
However, there’s been a significant backlash. Critics argue that the random nature of loot boxes is closely related to gambling and its associated risks. The uncertainty and thrill of “what might be inside” can encourage players, especially younger ones, to spend more than they might have intended, chasing after a particularly rare or coveted item.
The Backstory to the Error
After the Adults only rating was made available on the Xbox store, it received its first criticism. At first, everyone thought it was a mistake, but it was all but verified when the ESRB ratings came out.
This error has a straightforward origin story: The addition of potentially genuine gambling led the US ratings agency for gaming to label the AC’s Mirage as “adults only.” The board claims this differs from simulated gambling, or CS:GO betting, where no real money or wagers are involved. This indicates the possibility for players to wager real money in the game, which is often frowned upon.
The general speculation regarding the error matter is that the game would involve actual gambling; however, it won’t involve “actual currency.” This indicates that players will likely buy “game money,” which can be converted into “in-game currency.” It also implies that any profits from playing the game may only be spent inside the game itself, and there is no way to really “cash out” won money.
Assassin’s Creed Mirage: The Setting
Ubisoft is set to captivate fans with the announcement of “Assassin’s Creed: Mirage.” Unlike its previous open-world mega-releases, such as Valhalla and Odyssey, Mirage aims to offer a more compact and streamlined experience. This doesn’t mean Ubisoft is veering away from grand open-world RPGs; instead, they’re expanding their horizon to include both expansive and smaller, more linear tales in the beloved Assassin’s Creed series. Mirage is the inaugural title reflecting this new direction.
Dialling the timeline back to 861 in the bustling city of Baghdad, “Assassin’s Creed: Mirage” serves as a prequel, set a dozen years before the backdrop of “Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.” Fans will journey through the life of a younger Basim. Recognised from Valhalla’s storyline, players will witness Basim’s evolution from a mere street thief to what Ubisoft describes as “the most versatile Assassin in franchise history.” This transformation unfolds under the guidance of the adept assassin Roshan and the enigmatic Hidden Ones.
While “Mirage” might be more concise than its predecessors, Ubisoft promises an immersive experience. The depiction of Golden Age of Baghdad is said to be “dense and vibrant.” Players can anticipate a living, breathing environment with citizens actively responding to their actions. Diverse areas like Karkh, the industrial hub, will juxtapose with the lush Round City, one of the game’s four significant districts. In an exciting twist, players can venture beyond Baghdad’s walls, travelling to the legendary Alamut. This mythical capital of the Hidden Ones, a citadel untouched in any previous Assassin’s Creed installment, awaits with its secrets.
Recent insights from the Microsoft Store suggest that Mirage might be striding towards an M-rating. If this pans out, it would align it with several other mature-themed titles in the gaming arena. Mirage will steer clear of random microtransactions as a revenue stream. This decision points to a more traditional gaming experience that fans of previous Assassin’s Creed titles will likely appreciate. So, when the game hits the shelves this October, expect a gameplay experience that resonates more with the franchise’s classic releases.