Assassin's Creed won't be getting its stealth spin-off for a while yet

Ubisoft has reportedly pushed back the release of Assassin’s Creed Rift, the next stealth-oriented installment in the time-hopping action series.

The publisher announced Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora and a “smaller unannounced premium game” have been delayed during its latest quarterly earnings report. Both games are now expected to release sometime during the company’s next fiscal year beginning April 2023.

A follow-up report by Bloomberg suggests that the unnamed premium game is, in fact, the next Assassin’s Creed title. Ubisoft has reportedly pushed back the release of Rift from February next year to sometime between May and June. According to Bloomberg, someone familiar with the game said its development is “running far behind schedule”.

We can expect to hear more details this September when Ubisoft says it will reveal "the future of Assassin's Creed". As of now, we’ve only heard rumors that Rift will place a greater focus on stealth and return to the Middle East

Looking thin

Assassin's Creed Infinity lineup of characters

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

The delay of both games is quite the blow to Ubisoft’s upcoming line-up. The last mainline entry in the Assassin’s Creed series is Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, which released in 2020. This latest delay means fans will be left to wait nearly three years before they can get their hands on the series’ next installment.

While chunky gaps between triple-A sequels is usually par for the course among publishers, it’s something that Ubisoft has tended to avoid. The Assassin’s Creed series broadly stuck to an annual release schedule. That Ubisoft is bucking that expectation this time around might point to the faith it's placing in Assassin’s Creed Infinity – an upcoming live-service platform that will tie together future entries in the franchise.

But wider Ubisoft fans will also likely be disappointed by the delays. Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora was originally expected to release later this year, most likely in December to tie in with Avatar: The Way of The Water. Without it, this year’s slate of major Ubisoft titles is looking rather thin.

Mario + Rabbids: Sparks of Hope is currently expected to launch on October 20, while new seafaring multiplayer brawler Skull and Bones will hit shelves on November 8. That’s only two blockbuster games, one of which is a Nintendo Switch exclusive, while the other has gone through nearly a decade of development hell. With neither set to release this summer, Ubisoft isn’t offering players much to get excited about.

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