Turbulent times have plagued Ubisoft over recent months, with many accounts of abuse and toxic leadership coming to light after employees came forward with their experiences. We’ve already seen some major departures from the company, the latest of which happens to be the former creative director of the upcoming Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.
Ashraf Ismail stepped down from his role as creative director of Assassin’s Creed Valhalla back in June after he was accused of lying about his marital status and engaging in a sexual relationship with a fan. Twitch streamer Matronedea came forward in June about her relationship with him, which lasted on and off for a year before she found out that he was married. This is also when Ubisoft launched an investigation into not only Ismail’s conduct, but also the reports of abuse by several other Ubisoft executives.
“Following an investigation by an external firm, it was determined that Ashraf’s employment with Ubisoft had to be terminated,” reads a company-wide email that was obtained by Kotaku. “We cannot provide any details about this confidential investigation.”
Ismail is the latest in line of departures from Ubisoft over reports of abuse and misconduct. Earlier this month, we saw Vice President of Editorial and Creative Services Tommy Francois leave the studio following abuse allegations. They join the departure of former chief creative officer Serge Hascoet, CEO Yannis Mallat, HR’s Cecile Cornet, and VP Maxime Beland. There is still much to be done at Ubisoft, be the recent string of offenders leaving the company or being fired is a good first step. It’s anyone’s guess as to what happens next for Ubisoft, but we can only hope the trend of removing toxicity continues.
As for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, the game is currently in development and expected to launch on November 17th for PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and next-gen hardware. For more on the upcoming title, be sure to check out our official game hub!
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What do you think about all of this? Are you glad to see Ubisoft doing something about the incredibly serious abuse and misconduct allegations that have come to light recently? What else do you believe needs to be done? Sound off with your thoughts over on our Twitter @PrimaGames!