When in Rome.

AREA | Posted 21 December 2010 10:41:03 am

Table of contents

  1. Summary
  2. The Challenge
  3. The Results


  1. Autodesk 3ds Max
  2. Autodesk MotionBuilder
  3. Autodesk HumanIK


  1. Games


Ubisoft uses Autodesk games technology to create Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood.


In 2007, Ubisoft Montreal created a third-person action-adventure game named Assassin’s Creed. The universal success of the top-selling, award-winning game set in both the distant past and the not-so-distant future lead to the creation of Assassin’s Creed II, which saw present-day protagonist Desmond Miles reliving the genetic memories of ancient assassin Ezio Auditore da Firenze, all of which take place in Renaissance-era Florence, Italy. The second installment also proved a huge success.

Now, the Ubisoft team has raised the bar again for Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood, an ambitious new entry in the evolving story of the assassin that is the first to include a multiplayer mode.

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood. Image courtesy of Ubisoft.

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood picks up where the second installment concluded, with players being reintroduced to both Desmond and Ezio, who has now become a Master Assassin and moved to the much larger city of Rome. Ezio’s mission has also grown in scope and responsibility, as he attempts to build a brotherhood of assassins to vanquish the evil Templar Order and a new arch-nemesis, Cesare Borgia.

Ubisoft artists and engineers used the powerful combination of Autodesk® 3ds Max® and Autodesk® MotionBuilder® software, together with Autodesk® HumanIK® animation middleware in the company’s proprietary game engine, to create the biggest Assassin’s Creed title so far.

The Challenge

According to Ubisoft technical art director Danny Oros, the primary challenge from the start of Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood was creating the ancient city of Rome. Nearly double the size of Florence, the scene of Assassin’s Creed II, Rome significantly increased the scope and complexity of Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood.

“Creating such a vast city was definitely a big challenge,” says Oros. “Players have a lot more room to explore, and we had to make sure everything is as realistic as it is interesting. As Ezio and his fellow assassins help to rebuild Rome, players actually have the opportunity to change the city, to see it evolve through several distinct atmospheres. Players are essentially creating a new Roman renaissance through Ezio’s actions and behavior.”

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood. Image courtesy of Ubisoft.

Following hard upon the release of Assassin’s Creed II, the Ubisoft team benefited from their continued use of Autodesk 3ds Max and Autodesk MotionBuilder software, and particularly Autodesk HumanIK middleware, which helped to create realistic character movement through the immense city, whether characters are walking on uneven terrain, scaling walls, jumping across rooftops, or fighting enemies.

“HumanIK middleware has been a part of our game engine for all of the Assassin’s Creed titles,” says Oros. “With it in our corner, we were confident that we’d be able to address all of our inverse kinematics challenges, more quickly and with no compromises in performance or results. That is a good feeling to have going into such a challenging project.”

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood. Image courtesy of Ubisoft.

The Results

As Ezio recruits other assassins to his cause, the brotherhood of the title begins to grow more powerful, and their actions become more benevolent. Helping to free the Roman people from the Templar and Borgia’s rule, the brotherhood goes about restoring the oppressed city to grandeur. As they do, the five districts of Rome clearly evolve through three distinct and compelling atmospheres.

“We created three different looks for each of the districts, pretty much all from scratch,” explains Mohamed Gambouz, art director at Ubisoft. “3ds Max and MotionBuilder give us an efficient workflow that we really trust to help us get the job done. With the help of the Autodesk tools, we were able to create a huge amount of complex original content well within our production timeline.”

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood. Image courtesy of Ubisoft.

Ezio’s evolution into a Master Assassin is also revealed through a slew of ambitious and aggressive fight animations and character moves that are new in Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood. “Combo kills,” for example, enable players to eliminate multiple enemies in a single deadly move. The Ubisoft team shot the new fight concepts using motion capture technology before bringing the data into MotionBuilder. The realistic fighting was then used to create the final animations in 3ds Max.

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood. Image courtesy of Ubisoft.


Chota Rajan

Posted on: 24 December 2010 5:57 pm



Posted on: 10 January 2011 12:25 am

i loved the first two and i will love the third once i start playing it. awesome work from ubisoft as usual


Posted on: 23 January 2011 11:57 pm

it would be great if we had some more Technical information and tips instead of a simple infomercial. Yes it is great that Autodesk products were used, and ofc 3dsmax was naturally the 1st choice for the job and a great one for that matter. the results show it clearly in a job masterfully done!

However it would be beneficial to know with more details HOW they were used. Not just the fact that they were used.


Posted on: 26 January 2011 6:29 pm

this game is dope


Posted on: 8 April 2011 8:11 am

this game was amazing ... all te artwork and storyline were pro ... brotherhood was teh best AC i played


Posted on: 25 April 2011 7:42 am

nice I don't like war game but the last picture is very smooth, soft and very attractive.
the rest are still good and nice


Posted on: 17 January 2013 3:56 am

Everything is sooo perfect

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