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Rumours that Eivor was planned to be an “exclusively” female protagonist first started on Twitter. User Dell’Aria alleged that a source close to the game’s development had revealed that the development team wanted the game to centre around a female Eivor, but was shot down by higher-ups.
“Execs blocked them from doing that and forced the team to include a male version of Eivor, because a woman alone wouldn’t have sold, insisting that the marketing campaign should have focused on male Eivor,” he claimed. “Which it did, we’ve seen Female Eivor only long after ACV’s reveal.”
Check out the Twitter thread below.
Execs blocked them from doing that and forced the team to include a male version of Eivor, because a woman alone wouldn’t have sold, insisting that the marketing campaign should have focused on male Eivor. Which it did, we’ve seen Female Eivor only long after ACV’s reveal.
— “Seiiki” Dell’Aria (@Memento_Gallery) August 4, 2020
Since then, the game’s narrative director Darby McDevitt has responded to the allegations on a Reddit thread about the controversy. “I will say this once: this is not wholly accurate. And I will repeat what I have always said. ACV’s story was conceived from the beginning with both female and male in mind.”
Mc Devitt added that “when you play the game you will understand that there is no way the male could have been added at the last minute, or whatever version of this story you have heard.”
“Obviously there is more nuance to all this, but to go deeper would spoil lots of the mysteries at the heart of the game. But understand this, that we started ACV knowing full well that Ubi wanted to give players the ability to select characters, and we worked hard to make sure that it honored our lore.”
It was previously revealed that during Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla, players will be able to toggle Eivor between the different genders at any time during the game. In addition, a three-issue comic series that will feature the female version of Eivor has also been announced.