Assassin's Creed creator Patrice Desilets has revealed that he hasn't played a Ubisoft game since 2012 because he can't bear to see the publisher's logo on his TV screen.
Desilets left Ubisoft for a second time in 2013 after claiming that he was "terminated" by the company following the acquisition of his former workplace THQ Montreal, and later suing the publisher for $400,000. But despite the two parties' history, he still claims to "love Ubisoft very much".
"I'm not a good person to ask about how I feel about Ubisoft games," he said in the latest issue of EDGE. "I haven't played an Ubisoft game since 2012. I played the first two hours of Assassin's Creed 3, and that was it. With all due respect, I love Ubisoft very much, but I cannot see their logo on my TV screen. It feels too personal. This is my flaw. I'm too personal."
Desilets joined Ubisoft in 1997 before going on to direct 2003 Prince of Persia reboot Sands of Time and 2007 action game Assassin's Creed. He left the firm midway through the development of Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood in 2010, before joining THQ's Montreal studio one year later.
However, he later returned to Ubisoft in 2013 after it acquired THQ Montreal and the rights to his new game 1666: Amsterdam, before leaving again a few months later. At the time, Desilets stated that it was not his decision to leave Ubisoft, claiming that he was "notified of this termination in person, handed a termination notice and was unceremoniously escorted out of the building by two guards without being able to say goodbye to my team or collect my personal belongings." He also said that he intended to "fight Ubisoft vigorously for my rights, for my team and for my game."
Ubisoft, meanwhile, said that since acquiring THQ Montreal, "the good faith discussions between Patrice and Ubisoft aimed at aligning Patrice's and the studio's visions have been inconclusive. As a result, Patrice has left the studio."
Desilets later opened his own studio Panache Digital Games, before earning back the rights to 1666: Amsterdam earlier this year.
"I would say that I had a mental crisis," Desilets told EDGE earlier in the interview, while explaining his decision to leave Ubisoft in 2010. "All of these years coming to the same building with the same people, day after day, had taken its toll. Keep in mind that I'm a guy who studied arts and literature. I wanted to be creative but suddenly I'm working on an office. All that joy of something that was fresh and new was gone. My girlfriend confronted me. I had a family but I never saw them. Deep down I was just unhappy for multiple reasons."
He continued: "So I needed to make that kind of drastic decision, to see if I could change things. I had a non-compete clause, which gave me a year off, essentially. After that I joined THQ. However, even in the midst of the crisis I never asked: 'Would I do something over than videogames?' For me, no. I wouldn't do a movie now. I would miss the interactivity aspect of the work. I love working in a medium in which all of the pioneers are still alive."
Panache Digital's first game, Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey is a third-person survival game that aims to "relive the greatest moments of mankind with a documentary twist". A release date has yet to be announced.