When you think about Assassin's Creed you probably think about clambering over rooftops, leaping off perilously high buildings into the protective embrace of a haybale, and also of sliding the cool metal of your hidden blade into countless pesky soldiers. But, there's a question as to whether Assassin's Creed Odyssey will feature the hidden blade. Heck, it may be the first game in the series not feature the hidden blade - although all the other things I've mentioned are definitely included.
Now, that's not just me going slightly mad with early E3 fatigue. There are a few facts and theories behind my ponderings about the whereabouts of an Assassin's Creed Odyssey hidden blade.
First of all, I've played it. And I've not only played it, I've poked and prodded its menus and there's no hidden blade there whatsoever. Not even a glint. Now, it could be a case that our hero or heroine hasn't yet received the blade at the point of the narrative I'm dropped in at (level 18 if you're wondering), and, like Origins, our favourite stealth weapon just hasn't made its appearance yet.
But then, there's the date. Assassin's Creed Odyssey is set in 431BC, which is 400 years before the events of Assassin's Creed Origins. It's only in Assassin's Creed Origins that Bayek gets the very first hidden blade and adds it to the classic Assassin's arsenal. If you've played Origins, you'll know that it's Bayek and Aya that actually set up the Order of the Assassins.
However, the pair don't make the hidden blade themselves. Aya actually gets the hidden blade from Cleopatra and calls it "an ancient blade that killed the tyrant Xerxes". Well, the person that killed King Xerxes was the Persian assassin Darius. As the Assassin's Creed lore goes, it was Xerxes' assassination by Darius that was the first recorded use of the hidden blade, in 465BC. Now, that's actually before the events of Assassin's Creed Odyssey, and it's not known how the hidden blade gets from Darius to Cleopatra in 48BC, 400 years later. That's quite the long adventure for our favourite stealth weapon.
Interestingly enough, there's a connection between Xerxes and Leonidas, the Spartan king Alexios and Kassandre are descendants of. The Battle of Thermopylae was fought between an alliance of Greek city-states, led by King Leonidas of Sparta, and the Persian Empire of Xerxes over the course of three days in 480BC, which draws a strong link between the origins of the blade and the origins of our Odyssey heroes. Intriguing, right?
Of course, this is all just theorising for now, especially as it would be interesting to see an Assassin's title do things without a hidden blade for the first time. At the moment, the focus is on the spear of Leonidas, which our hero and heroine wield. It makes them what Ubisoft calls "heroes of legend", which basically means that they get granted some almost superhuman abilities. Literally anything could happen in this game, but at this stage it's not looking likely that the hidden blade will be part of the story, at least until a later point.