Falco Poiker, Mission Design Director for Assassin’s Creed Revelations, feels that a shorter development time between releases is tough on the team, however it makes them work more effectively and efficiently.
“Yeah, these games, the production cycle is less than a year, which actually for me is about ideal. Most productions – real production is about that length, but because you have the previous game that’s just finishing on production and you start the next game’s production, there’s this very quick ramp-up time where you’re just swallowing resources saying, ‘OK, let’s make this team.’ And from a 20-person team to a 180-people team within a few months, even that is a bit of a nightmare,” he said.
He also revealed that the team seriously feels the pressure the closer they get to deadline day, and some members aren’t happy about it:
“A lot of people complain about that, I mean I’m talking internally – people say there’s not enough time. But it gives an impetus to the team and we find a direction that we say we’re going to run in, and there’s very little of the indecision that comes with teams that spend two, three, four years developing games. Frequently those games will restart completely from the ground-up because they’re like, “We’re not satisfied where we are.” We don’t have that luxury so the time actually kind of works in our favour. We go one direction and we go with it. If there’s problems, oh well, we’ll fix it along the way.”
EGM’s TAKE: Fans love annual releases in heavily story based games like Assassin’s Creed as they want to know what happens next, however there’s always the risk of fatigue which could damage the franchise.
Would you like the team to continue with an annual release schedule? Leave your thoughts below.