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Ubisoft fires creative director Ashraf Ismail due to misconduct

Ubisoft fires creative director Ashraf Ismail due to misconduct

Ubisoft has fired former Assassin's Creed Valhalla creative director Ashraf Ismail.

As reported by Kotaku, Ismail stepped down from his role on the latest AC in June, following accusations of marital affairs and pursuing women under false pretences. The allegations arose at the same time as the wave of sexual abuse and misconduct accusations faced by the French publisher.

Ismail has been investigated, though due to the confidential nature of the investigation, no details were given. Only that his contract had been terminated, thus ending his time at Ubisoft Montreal.

"Following an investigation by an external firm, it was determined that Ashraf's employment with Ubisoft had to be terminated. We cannot provide any details about this confidential investigation," said Ubisoft in a company message.

Toxic culture

Over the past couple of months, much has come to light in regards to culture, abuse and misconduct at Ubisoft. It all started back in June when the #MeToo campaign took social media by storm again. It involved those within the games industry stepping forward, revealing that they had been the victims of misconduct. A majority of allegations were made against men, and an overwhelming amount was aimed at Ubisoft.

Since then, multiple investigations have been held, resulting in numerous high-profile departures. Most recently, editorial VP Tommy François left the company with immediate effect following a month-long suspension.

Moreover, a trio of execs walked out the door in July; Serge Hascoët, Yannis Mallat and Cécile Cornet. However, it is worth noting that the latter left due to believing Ubisoft HR's needs to go in another direction. But, while most have jumped before they could be pushed, the French publisher did fire its head of PR, Stone Chin.

Management lacking

Perhaps what is most concerning is that a report emerged in July, within, it was claimed that Ubisoft told its staff to discuss their issues with their harasser and not HR. To top it off, CEO Yves Guillemot revealed that he has made "tough decisions" in the past, indicating that he was aware of what was going on within his company.

However, the chief exec has taken very little responsibility. Instead, Guillemot has insisted that others betrayed his trust. A shame as multiple employees have stepped forward to explain that management placed no confidence in them, and backed their harassers instead.

Staff Writer

A freelance writer based in Berkshire. Besides PG and PCGI she has written as a guides writer, specialising in RPG's and horror.


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