Constantinople is a free-running metropolis
HEXUS: How does the new setting of Constantinople lends itself to Ezio's free-running acrobatics?
Falko: Any urban space lends itself to free-running acrobatic navigation, but what's interesting about this place is it's a hilly area; they call it the "Seven Hills." That has allowed us to implement some new features, particularly the zip-lines that allow you to move quickly across the city.
You've also got this really iconic skyline above the city. I travelled to Istanbul on a research trip in February and went to the top of one of the towers that features in the game, and it really does look like that in-game. There's only so much research you can do online, through books and movies, though.
There are certain details that a tourist wouldn't take a photo of, but we look at all the fine details, from the brickwork to the ceilings. We took 6,000 photos and 600 hours of video footage and that became the basis of creating Constantinople. If you play the game and ever go to the place, you'll see how incredibly accurate it is.
HEXUS: Assassin's Creed games have always featured a lot of collectibles, whether it be feathers, glyphs or Borgia flags. What can we expect in Revelations, and will there be anything to replace the Truth Puzzles that we enjoyed in Brotherhood?
Falko: There won't be Truth Puzzles because Desmond will be meeting Subject 16 and the truth puzzles don't work in the context of him being trapped in the Animus. Instead, we decided to play on the fact that Desmond is trapped in his head so collectibles take the form of Animus glitches.
*Assassin's Creed: Revelations spoilers ahead
At the end of Brotherhood, Desmond falls into a coma and in order to keep him alive they put him in the Animus which takes his consciousness. The Animus is not working quite perfectly so in Revelations you'll see the white room has now become a black room. This has allowed us to tie-in collectible with animus glitches.
We can put them anywhere; they don't have to be on a surface. They can float in the middle of the air so you have to think more about how to get them. We also have book pages to search for which unlock optional missions.
The glyph puzzles now take the form of levels in Desmond's space, and they're an exploration of the subconscious, very strange platform-based passages of gameplay. While playing these missions you'll learn a huge amount about Desmond.
HEXUS: As well as Desmond, we also understand we'll get to play as Altair in the game? How does that work?
Falko: This is first and foremost an Ezio game, but we have six missions with Altair, each mission consisting of approximately 20-to-40 minutes play. It's Ezio's story, assuredly, but he occasionally finds reason to live an Altair memory.
HEXUS: Has the fact that Brotherhood and Revelations launched so closely together set precedence for the series moving forward? Are we going see regular Assassin's Creed installments?
Falko: Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot has announced that there will be an Assassin's Creed every year. For a little while we'll probably try that, but I think every now and then it would be good to take a year off. So far we've been able to deliver quality Assassin's Creed games in a short period of time.
The teams we have for Assassin's Creed II, Brotherhood, and Revelations have been creative juggernauts that were able to put together an insanely in-depth in such a short period of time. It's quite incredible, really.
We'd like to thank Falko for taking time out to speak with us. Assassin's Creed: Revelations is set to launch on November 15th, 2011.