Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag was pulled from sale on Steam and everyone got excited because they thought a remake was going to be announced, but Ubisoft says no, something's just broken

Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag
(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Very quietly and without warning, Assassin's Creed: 4 Black Flag was recently removed from sale on Steam. It's still listed, and you can still access it if you already own it, but new purchases aren't currently possible. The surprise shutdown sparked hope among some fans that Ubisoft might be working on a Black Flag remake—and maybe even that a surprise release could be in the offing. But Ubisoft says that's not actually the case, and that sales of Black Flag weren't intentionally halted. Something's just gone wrong.

"We are aware that Assassin’s Creed Black Flag is currently unavailable for purchase on Steam," a Ubisoft representative told PC Gamer. "This is due to a technical issue, and our teams are working on a solution to bring it back as soon as possible."

Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag is easily one of the best in the long-running series—we called it "a gorgeous, relentlessly entertaining open-world piracy simulator packed with interesting 18th century rogues" in our 90% review—and so it's understandable why people would want a remake. As good as it is, it's also 10 years old now, and in videogame terms especially, that's an awful lot of time passed.

That hope was bolstered by a Kotaku report in June saying that a remake of Black Flag is already underway at Ubisoft, although if so it was (and presumably still is) very early in development. Incredibly, Ubisoft is also still working on the eternally-delayed (and, frankly, not very impressive-looking) multiplayer piracy game Skull and Bones, which was originally envisioned as a spinoff of Black Flag's ship-to-ship battle bits.

It may yet happen, and it'd be great if it did—but, I'm sorry to say, the current Black Flag situation on Steam is not a sign that a big announcement is imminent.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.