Ancient Egypt may not seem like a prime candidate to create vast cities with imposing climbable structures in Assassin’s Creed Origins, but that doesn’t mean it’s inferior to previous Assassin’s Creed titles. As discussed in a new video, the city of Memphis is a grand location where they keep the traditions of ancient Egypt alive.
Brand Historian Maxime Durand emphasizes that Memphis is a city of varied cultural influences. As it is over 3,000 years old, there is a mix between older and newer buildings, some in ruins and others pristine. The juxtaposition of these beautiful palaces and run-down temples is important to highlight the diversity of the city.
The Ptah Temple, one of Memphis’ focal points, is a captivating structure meant to feel oppressive against the small mud houses it towers over, according to Raphael Lacoste, Brand Art Director on Assassin’s Creed. He says this kind of contrast was interesting to bring to life and allows players to immerse themselves in the different districts more.
Because Memphis is such an old city and Origins takes place in 49 BC, much of what we know about it comes from archaeology. The team at Ubisoft had to imagine what the city was like during that time and bring it to life. This allows players to witness Egyptian’s worshiping the sacred Apis bull and even mummifying him when he dies. Mummification plays an important role in Egyptian culture and there will be areas around Memphis that players can stumble upon and view the mummification process.
Flatlands and vast fields of crops and wheat surround the city, along with canals winding around the area. Lacoste compares exploring Egypt this way to viewing Venice by boat, which some fans should be familiar with from Assassin’s Creed 2. The mist from the canals at night is meant to affect the mood and atmosphere of Memphis, making it a bit more spooky.
Memphis is also the location of the Royal Palace, where the pharaohs are crowned at. This brought upon generations of artisans, goldsmiths, and potters who make goods for those in the city. These characters have their own agendas and schedules within the game, making for a more dynamic experience.
Origins is shaping up to be an incredible experience. Not only will Memphis be fully explorable, but the city of Alexandria will be as well. We’ll just have to wait until a later date for Ubisoft to provide more information on it.
Assassin’s Creed Origins launches on October 27, 2017 for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.