In a bad move for fans of digital preservation, the Assassin’s Creed spin-off Liberation has been immediately removed from Steam at short notice. First released for PS Vita in 2012, the game came to consoles and PC in 2014. It has been available on Valve’s digital storefront ever since, until today’s surprising U-turn. Read on to learn more about the fate of Assassin’s Creed Liberation on Steam.
Steam Takes Assassin’s Creed Liberation Off Sale
Yes, if you head over to Steam today and try to purchase a digital copy of Assassin’s Creed Liberation, it won’t be possible. At Ubisoft’s behest, the game is no longer for sale, so new customers can’t try it out. Even more concerning is the fact that those that already own the game will lose access to it come September 1, 2022.
Therefore, even if you purchased the game on Steam when it first released in 2014, you’ll lose access to it this September. It’s a fairly unprecedented move, with few high-profile games such as this ever fully disappearing from online stores. Another problematic detail about this case is that Liberation was on sale during the recent Steam Summer Sale. Understandably, recent buyers are aggrieved that their purchase will soon be totally redundant.
The motivations behind this move aren’t yet clear, as Ubisoft hasn’t spoken publicly. Speaking speculatively, the game could have been removed in order to add it to Ubisoft’s own game subscription service, Ubisoft+, as an exclusive. Other than that, it’s hard to see a benefit for removing a game from sale completely.
The only saving grace is that Assassin’s Creed Liberation is still accessible via other means. Anybody who owns the physical PS Vita cartridge can of course play it. On top of that, Ubisoft included a remaster of the game in the 2019 Assassin’s Creed III re-release for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.
Those versions of Liberation should still remain accessible. Though if we’ve learnt anything from this debacle, it’s that everything is subject to change.
Luke Hinton is a freelance culture journalist living in Cardiff, Wales. He graduated from Cardiff University with a degree in Journalism, Media and Communications, and currently balances his freelancing work with postgraduate studies. He specialises in film, TV and entertainment writing.