Gaming News: Wave of Sexual Misconduct Allegations against Ubisoft Employees

Following allegations of engaging in extramarital affairs, Ubisoft creative director Ashraf Ismail announced this week that he is stepping down from his role on Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla. 

Allegations against Ismail were first raised by Dani Porter Bridges on Twitter, who released text messages allegedly showing Ismail lying about his marital status over the course of their 3-year long “on and off” relationship. 

Following Porter Bridges’ accusations, Ashraf Ismail took to Twitter to issue a now-deleted response, announcing he was “stepping down” to “deal with personal issues in [his] life”. Ubisoft subsequently released a statement confirming Ismail’s resignation to “take a leave of absence. The development team is committed to delivering a great game in Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla.”

Image: Joe Parlock

This comes just weeks after sexual misconduct allegations against several Ubisoft employees, including Product and Brand Manager Andrien Gbinigie who has been accused of sexual assault by Kate Johnston, claiming Gbinigie had “forced himself” on her during PAX East 2014. 

In a response to the allegations made against his person, Gbinigie took to Medium to address and “vehemently den[y]” one of the claims made, further stating on Twitter that “[t]his did not happen and I’m not gonna sit idly by as I get accused of shit I didn’t do”. [sic] The post, however, has subsequently been removed. 

In a statement Ubisoft released this week, the company commits to “launching investigations into the allegations” and “to tak[e] any and all appropriate disciplinary action.” Furthermore, they pledge to “audit […] existing policies, processes, and systems to understand where these have broken down, and to ensure we can better prevent, detect, and punish inappropriate behavior”. 

At this time, no criminal charges have been brought and no arrests have occurred.

Words by Samira Rauner

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