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There's been one constant thread running through every Assassin's Creed console game: the frame-story of Desmond Miles in the present day. AC3 creative lead Alex Hutchinson said that they eventually need to wrap up his story.
"I think Desmond needs to end," Hutchinson said at a Ubisoft press event (via Polygon). "At some point. You know what I mean? Things that go on too long lack resonance. We're asking people to remember seven years' worth of story. Which is like saying you were in junior high and now you're finishing college. And you need to remember what you were doing in junior high."
In the Assassin's Creed games, the player takes on the role of Assassins from different historical periods. The Assassins are waging a secret war against the Templars, a mysterious order that wants to rule the world. Desmond is the descendant of these Assassins and is reliving their memories through a device known as an Animus.
Ever since the first game came out, I've expected Ubisoft to release a sequel starring Desmond in some present-day city. However, that was when I assumed he was the center of the storyline. The truth is, though, the centuries-old conflict between the Assassins and Templars is the primary focus. The war has outlasted so many Assassins throughout history, so why not Desmond too? It never seemed like he was close to stopping the Templars for good. The series really doesn't need him.
Ubisoft has already made stories without Desmond. The AC comic book series focuses on Daniel Cross, a man living in 1998 with Assassin ancestors of his own. Furthermore, the Assassin for the upcoming Vita game AC3 Liberation isn't related to Desmond.
Will the storyline of Desmond end within AC3? This could end up being the last game in the series on current-gen systems. It's the end of an era so why not take the opportunity to move on to a new protagonist?