Assassin's Creed Shadows seemingly resurrects a cut assassination animation from a 12-year-old Assassin's Creed 3 demo

Assassin's Creed Shadows
(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Assassin's Creed Shadows looks to be reviving a long-lost stealth takedown from Assassin's Creed 3.

A couple of years ago, YouTuber Kuriatsu managed to get their hands on pre-release footage of Assassin's Creed 3 that had never been shown to the public before. At around the 15 minute mark in the video below, the YouTuber shows off an unused assassination animation, taken from a private demo allegedly showcased at PAX East in 2012.

Assassin's Creed III - Unseen content from Pax-East 2012! [Unused Content] - YouTube Assassin's Creed III - Unseen content from Pax-East 2012! [Unused Content] - YouTube
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The animation itself features Connor taking down an English soldier with a brutal stab to the neck, before rolling forward on the ground to seamlessly transition back into his running animation. Curiously, this animation was never found in Assassin's Creed 3 whatsoever, so it appears Ubisoft apparently decided to scrap the assassination, for some reason.

The Reddit user below has realized that this animation is actually clear and present in the upcoming Assassin's Creed Shadows. In a gameplay trailer for Ubisoft's forthcoming game, Shinobi protagonist Naoe takes down a Japanese soldier while their back is turned, but deftly rolls on the ground afterwards to continue sprinting unimpeded. 

12 years later, an unused takedown from 3 seems to be revived for Shadows. from r/assassinscreed

We're obviously not privy to why Ubisoft seemingly scrapped the animation from Assassin's Creed 3, or why it's apparently resurrecting it for Assassin's Creed Shadows. What it does likely bring to the new game, though, is a sense of urgency for Naoe - if you're really racing to find and eliminate a target, taking down a guard without stopping in your tracks should be vital.

You can also check out our guide on where to pre-order Assassin's Creed Shadows to see what pre-order bonuses are on offer from Ubisoft.

Hirun Cryer

Hirun Cryer is a freelance reporter and writer with Gamesradar+ based out of U.K. After earning a degree in American History specializing in journalism, cinema, literature, and history, he stepped into the games writing world, with a focus on shooters, indie games, and RPGs, and has since been the recipient of the MCV 30 Under 30 award for 2021. In his spare time he freelances with other outlets around the industry, practices Japanese, and enjoys contemporary manga and anime.