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Ubisoft fires Assassin's Creed creative director amid misconduct allegations

Ashraf Ismail stepped down from his role on 'Assassin's Creed Valhalla' in June.
Kris Holt, @krisholt
August 14, 2020
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LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 12:  Game Director Ashraf Ismail introduces 'Assassin's Creed Origins' during the Ubisoft E3 conference at the Orpheum Theater on June 12, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. The E3 Game Conference begins on Tuesday June 13.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen via Getty Images

Ubisoft has fired Ashraf Ismail, the former creative director of Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, in the wake of misconduct allegations. Ismail stepped down from his role on the game in June, though he remained with the company. A fan publicly accused him of taking advantage of his position and lying about his marital status while seeking a relationship with her.

“Following an investigation by an external firm, it was determined that Ashraf’s employment with Ubisoft had to be terminated,” the company told employees at its Montreal office, where the latest game in the franchise is in development, according to Kotaku. “We cannot provide any details about this confidential investigation.” Ubisoft confirmed to Bloomberg it has dismissed Ismail.

He had been with Ubisoft Montreal since 2009. In addition his work on Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, he was the game director of Assassin's Creed Origins and creative director on Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag.

A slew of harassment and misconduct allegations were laid against several Ubisoft employees in June, including senior members of the company’s creative teams. The publisher fired some of them and others have resigned, and Ubisoft has pledged to overhaul the toxic culture within its ranks. It has, for instance, appointed a head of workplace culture and is hiring a head of diversity and inclusion.

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