This morning, Naughty Dog published an incredible trailer for their next game, Uncharted 4. Within the next two hours, some developers at Ubisoft noticed something strange: It uses concept art from Assassin’s Creed.
Maybe it’s an homage. Maybe it’s a mistake. Maybe Nathan Drake bought the Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag art book and liked it so much, he decided to frame one of the paintings. Either way, it’s undeniable that AC artwork appears in Naughty Dog’s latest.
Here’s the relevant shot from the trailer:
And here’s the concept art from Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag:
Whoops. At least they edited out the assassin?
Ubisoft’s Aymar Azaizia, whose official title is “Assassin’s Creed Head of Content,” first noticed that Naughty Dog had borrowed their art, posting about it this morning in a tweet that was retweeted by the official Assassin’s Creed account.
Ubisoft veteran Alex Hutchinson, director of Assassin’s Creed III and Far Cry 4, was particularly brutal on Twitter today, calling out former Ubisoft employee Jonathan Cooper, who now works at Naughty Dog. Cooper had called out Ubisoft for comments that creative director Alex Amancio had made about women being too difficult to animate in Assassin’s Creed Unity. [Correction: we originally said those comments were by Hutchinson, but they were in fact said by Amancio.]
We’ve pinged both Ubisoft and Sony in hopes of getting some clarification on just how this happened.
UPDATE - 12:48pm: Ubisoft declined to comment.
UPDATE 2 - 3:21pm: Naughty Dog has swapped out the old trailer and replaced it with a new one that has a different image. On their website, Naughty Dog apologized for the “regrettable mistake”:
In our eagerness to get the story trailer out we made a regrettable mistake and didn’t thoroughly vet the art work used for an in game painting. We’ve already updated the trailer. We hold all artistry in high regard and take full responsibility for having allowed this to happen.
We want to sincerely apologize to everyone at Ubisoft, the Assassin’s Creed team, the original artist, and our fans.
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