Ubisoft: Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag

Swashbucklers Gonna Swashbuckle

In a game where the raw, brutal and rum-soaked world of piracy is brought to visceral reality, the key art needs to be just as vivid. We were asked to create images that let gamers practically smell the gun smoke and feel the violence of a Caribbean storm. So we went full scallywag and got inside the mind of a pirate, researching and creating realistic stories that have us rethinking that summer cruise idea.

An assassin fires his pistol with anger, using his knife for steady support.

Ready to take the helm, Captain?


An assassin, with weapons at the ready, sits on the deck between cannons, stormy clouds above.

Our driving challenge was to keep our look and feel away from the kitschy and silly pirates we sometimes see in the movies. We went with more of a Game of Thrones-at-sea feel—gritty and emotive. We wanted to really shiver their timbers. 

The logo for Black Flag, a pirate flag burning on the surface of the ocean.

Need more time swabbing the deck? Grab a bucket and join our “Inspired Distractions” list.