Ubisoft Making VR Firefighting Game Based on Notre Dame Fire

Ubisoft VR experience lets players become part of the Parisian fire department as it tries to save the famed Notre Dame Cathedral.

A new VR escape game from Ubisoft will put players on the Parisian fire department as it fights the blaze that tore through the famed Notre Dame Cathedral on April 15, 2019.

This one-hour VR experience will be a direct tie-in with Jean-Jacques Annaud’s upcoming IMAX docudrama, Notre-Dame on Fire, set to release in March.

Ubisoft is the French video-game company behind the Assassin’s Creed, Far Cry, and Watch Dogs franchises. This will be the third time Ubisoft’s in-depth knowledge of Notre Dame will be used. Set in 18th Century France, Assassin’s Creed Unity first featured a fully rendered 3D model of Notre Dame that took over 5000 hours to create. That same model was used again in the company’s short VR experience Notre Dame de Paris: Journey Back in Time, released in September 2020.


A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Notre-Dame de Paris (meaning “Our Lady of Paris” in French) is a medieval Catholic cathedral that is regarded as one of the greatest examples of French Gothic architecture in the world.

Taking almost 100 years to build, construction on Notre Dame began in 1163 under Bishop Maurice de Sully and was mostly finished by 1260, with frequent modifications taking place over the ensuing centuries. During the French Revolution of the 1790s, the famed cathedral was repeatedly ransacked and desecrated with much of its religious iconography damaged or destroyed.

According to Deborah Papiernik, Ubisoft, senior VP of new business and strategic alliances, director Jean-Jacques Annaud reached out to the studio during the production of his upcoming film saying, “He knew that we had a special attachment to Notre Dame.”

Ubisoft game designers worked closely with Annaud’s movie team by using the film’s screenplay to begin their development journey. It sounds like the escape game will have puzzles and make players co-operate with their teammates. Papiernik explains, “The idea is to make your way through the cathedral to find relics and to fight the fire, because you have to save Notre Dame [before the clock runs out].”

The 2019 fire that raged through Notre Dame burned for approximately 15 hours, destroying most of the roof and causing the main spires to collapse. Fortunately, the iconic towers were saved. After the fire, Ubisoft gave away Assassin’s Creed Unity for free on PC and then donated money towards the restoration of the historical landmark.

Reconstruction work is ongoing, and the 2,000-year-old cathedral is tentatively scheduled to reopen sometime in 2024, the same year Paris is scheduled to host the Summer Olympics. Many experts have gone on record stating that full restoration may take decades, perhaps as many as 40 years. It will be interesting to see if Ubisoft is ever called on to help with restorations considering its depth of knowledge of the site.

Source: IGN

Source: Gamerant

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