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Screenshot: Ubisoft/Axios

Eric Baptizat, game director for "Assassin's Creed Valhalla," has joined EA's Motive studio as a game director on an unannounced project, after 16 years at Ubisoft.

  • Baptizat started at Motive in April, but the move hadn't been covered in the press.

Why it matters: No one person is responsible for the excellence of any game, but the movement of top people from one big studio to another can signal the ambitions at play.

Baptizat had third billing on the massively successful "Valhalla," and previously worked in senior roles on "Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag" and "Assassin's Creed Origins."

  • Those three "AC" games are some of the best-received titles in that franchise.

Neither EA nor Baptizat are commenting on the move, though it's sure to drive further interest in Motive.

  • The Montreal-based EA studio drew notice with its well-reviewed 2020 "Star Wars Squadrons" game and is now subject of rumors involving a possible reboot of a classic EA franchise.

Go deeper

Marvel is now taking over video games, too

Image: Marvel, Take-Two Interactive

The rumored Marvel superhero game "Midnight Suns," from the acclaimed makers of “XCOM,” was officially revealed on Wednesday.

Why it matters: New games from Firaxis are always a big deal, but “Midnight Suns” also may serve as confirmation that video games, like movies before them, are now (and forever?) going to be a conveyor belt of major Marvel releases.

Biden sinks in swing districts

Photo: Biden speaks about wild fires and climate change in Sacramento on September 13, 2021. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/ AFP via Getty Images

Sudden doubts about President Biden's competence — on Afghanistan, immigration and COVID — are driving double-digit drops in his approval in private polling in swing House seats, The Cook Political Report's Amy Walter writes.

Why it matters: "[T]hese early mistakes go directly to the very rationale of his presidency; that it would be low drama and high competence."

Ina Fried, author of Login
19 mins ago - Technology
Column / Signal Boost

How COVID slowed 5G

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Two years into the 5G era, expensive new cellular networks have blanketed much of the country, but they have yet to change our lives.

Between the lines: It was always going to take some time for 5G's full impact — from faster service to new uses — to arrive. But the pandemic has slowed even some of the initial benefits.