Home » NEWS » Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate Will Have a Female Protagonist – Don’t Celebrate Just Yet

Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate Will Have a Female Protagonist – Don’t Celebrate Just Yet

Thanks to  Kotaku, we now know that there’s going to be a female assassin playable in Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate. This is, of course, a move that’s coming in response to the backlash over Assassin’s Creed: Unity last year, where Ubisoft claimed that animating women would take too many resources, or would otherwise be too difficult. While many would be quick to congratulate Ubisoft on its decision to add a female playable character, it’s important to note that this is no reason to so quickly give them a pat on the back, or hail them as the reigning feminist champions come to deliver us from an industry stuck in the misogynistic trenches.

It’s absolutely fine to celebrate a woman becoming a playable character in a main entry in the Assassin’s Creed series, but you shouldn’t for a second believe that this is anything more than a stunt meant to appease the malicious echo-chamber that is the internet. The key word in this breaking news is that this female character is “A” main character. Not the only one. If Kotaku’s source is correct, the male main character will still be the primary focus in Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate’s  narrative, and this olive branch to the feminist masses will likely be swept to the side so as to stay out of the way of their true protagonist.

Don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing inherently bad about having male main characters. What’s to be taken issue with here is the fact that after 8 main entries in the Assassin’s Creed series (there was one spin off that had a female leading character, but those are spin-offs and don’t require nearly the same investment required by an assassin from the main Assassin’s Creed titles.) they haven’t gone about creating a female protagonist. There’s no conceivable reason for a company to make this call, other than the fact that they’ve deferred to a focus group that says that men sell better.

Until Ubisoft gets the courage to take the “risk” on a true female protagonist, I won’t be throwing them any parties. Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate is a start, but if we truly want some progress towards representation, we shouldn’t settle for less than a full commitment in an Assassin’s Creed title.

About Michael Cottuli

I'm a college student studying journalism, and when I'm not studying, I'm writing here at LTG. I love indies and AAA's alike - I'm just a lover of this medium in general.

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  1. Ramona Griffin

    I agree as a Female player & a fan of Assassins Creed I believe its is way past due for a Female lead role. There is plenty of source material to pick from & there where a few that you could have used in unity that would have fit in with the time line & done some of the missions from their point of view do to the fact they where the lead in those missions. if you truly need a new researcher to help you with some background information

  2. I completely agree.

  3. It seems to me that the main reason they tend to have male protagonists is that this type of game mostly has a male fanbase. Same way romantic novels tend to have female protagonists. There’s nothing wrong with that at all, it’s just a rational business decision. You really need to avoid throwing around terms like “misogyny” for something as trivial as this. If all of the audience for one of their games was female, they’d go with a female protagonist instead. That’s just typical free market capitalism. It has fairness built into it.

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