Portal designer Kim Swift joins Amy Hennig and Jade Raymond on Visceral’s Star Wars game

Portal lead designer Kim Swift has joined Assassin’s Creed executive producer Jade Raymond’s new EA studio, , as a design director.

Swift and Raymond will be collaborating with another EA studio, Visceral Games (Dead Space, Battlefield: Hardline), on the still unrevealed Star Wars game being directed by Uncharted creator Amy Hennig.

“We’ve devoted much of the past year at Motive to building a team of amazingly talented people to work on our new IP and Star Wars projects. I could not be more excited to welcome an all-star like Kim, who shares our enthusiasm for building exceptional games,” Raymond said in the company’s announcement.

Assassin’s Creed film review

Like his shiny set of Assassin blades, Michael Fassbender dual-wields the main roles in Assassin’s Creed – those of present day thug Callum Lynch and Spanish Inquisition ancestor Aguilar. It means Fassbender is always the film’s focus, the sharp end of its blade designed to ensure Ubisoft’s biggest gaming series penetrates ever further into the public consciousness. But what a mess he’s forced to make to try and get its point across.

Fans of the series should expect a whirlwind tour of the Assassin’s Creed greatest hits – splendidly reconstructed historical settings, wall-running and roof-jumping fisticuffs, philosophical meanderings over a shiny Apple of Eden McGuffin – but all of the games’ poorer traits make the leap to the big screen, too: weak characterisation, humourless exposition, and a story which exists simply to string one punch-up to the next.

The film’s highlights are easily found in its lavish historical scenes, its soaring city-spanning camera pans overlooking the dusty streets and polished palaces of Spanish Inquisition-era Andalucia. Fassbender’s introduction as Aguilar bubbles with promise, and the elaborate chase and fight sequences which follow are pure video game on a Hollywood budget. And yet the majority of the film is spent away from these excursions into the past, trapped with Aguilar’s descendant in a corporate basement.

Assassin’s Creed film’s next publicity stunt is an actual stunt

The Assassin’s Creed film’s next publicity stunt involves an actual stunt: a 100 foot freefall to be exact.

To be performed on Channel 4 this Sunday, 18th December at 9.10pm UK time, stuntman Dave Grant will make television history by starring in the world’s first live TV ad, which just so happens to feature a very dangerous stunt.

Grant will mimic the Assassin’s Creed series’ trademark “leap of faith” maneuver of harmlessly plummeting several stories into a giant bale of hay. (Granted the actual stunt won’t use hay, one would hope.)

Assassin’s Creed 3 will be free on PC in December

Ubisoft is for a month beginning on 7th December.

This is the final part of the publisher’s 30th anniversary promotion in which it’s given away a new game every month since June to members. It’s free to sign up.

Previous offerings have included Prince of Persia: Sand of Time, Splinter Cell, Rayman Origins, The Crew, Beyond Good and Evil, and Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon.

Watch: Careless caregivers who shouldn’t be put in charge of kids, probably

Welcome to your weekly sampler of videos from Outside Xbox, where this week we were bemoaning the quality of childcare in video games.

Looking after kids isn’t easy, but it is possible. Millions of people manage it every day. So why do these video game caregivers struggle so much? They’ve got the running, jumping and shooting down pat, but they can’t stop a kid from running off and doing itself a mischief? Consider these designated guardians who think babysitting means sitting on a baby.

Speaking of babies, that’s how you start Assassin’s Creed 2: as a baby Ezio Auditore totally incapable of even basic parkour or air assassinations. Fortunately, the game skips ahead a few years at that point, as you will find out if you play Assassin’s Creed: The Ezio Collection, a remastered bundle bringing to Xbox One and PS4 all the Assassin’s Creed games starring Florence’s favourite son.

Assassin’s Creed will resolve one of its biggest plotlines in a comic

You may not know it, but Assassin’s Creed hosts a detailed modern day storyline which has been building for years.

Many players ignore the present day parts in Ubisoft’s historical action series – after all, they are the bits which hold you up from getting back to whichever time period you’re exploring and stabbing people in the face.

But Assassin’s Creed fans, especially the most hardcore ones, follow and theorise about this story all year long.

Video games remade in cardboard

In the 80s, popular video games such as Asteroids, Pac-Man and Centipede all found themselves recreated in cardboard at a time when board games still ruled the roost back at home. But then their popularity began to fade. What kid in their right mind would ask for Monopoly for Christmas when they could be wishing for a Nintendo 64 and four-player GoldenEye instead?

Board games have recently undergone a renaissance. Blockbuster German titles such as The Settlers of Catan (1995) and Carcassone (2000) began to inspire American game designers, who began to incorporate clever mechanics in their own games. Some credit these games with sparking . Since then, board games have been getting better and better at the same time as rapidly shooting up in popularity (and sales).

And so we find ourselves back where we started in the early 1980s, as more and more video games are being recreated in cardboard. Earlier this year, the proposed Dark Souls board game smashed its Kickstarter goal of $70,000 to smithereens by raising an astonishing $5 million, and in July a fantastic-looking board game version of the new Doom game was announced. Over the past few years, we’ve seen board game versions of Gears of War, Bioshock Infinite, Assassin’s Creed, Resident Evil and Portal, to name a few.

Watch Dogs 2: “There are no towers”

If you’ve ever played a Ubisoft open world game then you’ll know the score. Assassin’s Creed features towers to climb which unlock missions around you. Far Cry features towers which, again, unlock missions around you. And – guess what – Watch Dogs 1 features towers which unlock missions around you.

Watch Dogs 2, on the other hand? It’s going to be a bit different.

Ubisoft’s hackathon sequel was revealed just before E3 via a showy livestream video. The footage introduced us to a bright new San Francisco setting and Marcus Holloway, a new main character. We also saw souped up gadgets and expanded hacking abilities, but how the game actually played, and how different the game’s new progression system is, were left under wraps.

Vivendi has seized control of Guillemot brothers’ mobile publisher Gameloft

UPDATE 01/06/2016 11.55pm: Gameloft SE chairman and CEO Michel Guillemot is allegedly planning to resign, according to a report from .

Sources say Michel Guillemot will join his brother, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot, to protect the Assassin’s Creed publisher from undergoing a similar Vivendi takeover.

Vivendi has already seized control of nearly 18 per cent of Ubisoft’s capital while the Guillemots control 15 per cent of the votes on the publisher’s board.