if I had to guess, it's probably because he's afraid that Japan is too cliche. like too obvious.
"oh it's Assassin's
Creed so people expect us to be ninjas and samurai."
but to be honest, what's wrong with that??
it's actually kind of perfect.
they started Assassins Creed with the original Turkish/Arabic influence of the ancient Hashashin.
going to Italy and Istanbul was fine, but in terms of history it was a little bit of a stretch. a little.
with AC3 they tried to bring assassins to America in a way that really didn't work at all. it felt very stretched and pretty dumb at times (personally confiding with George Washington? ok...). and unfortunately, Connor was just not an assassin in the way that Altair and Ezio were true assassins according to the Creed. Colonial America was not a good setting for this kind of game.
the only other major historical faction of assassin's were the ninja masters of Eastern martial arts disciplines from lower Asia.
their legend and their skills were revered throughout China, Mongolia, and Japan. the Japanese Samurai - who evolved their tactics from front-line, heavy cavalry into elite, special operations guerrillas - were heavily influenced by the subtle finesse and graceful fighting style of the ninja assassins. many Samurai became experts at both battlefield warfare and extremely precise subterfuge; contract killings, leaving no witnesses, no evidence.
many of the most powerful warlords in the East used assassin mercenaries to advance their political motivations.
infiltrate, poison, suffocate, steal, kidnap, eavesdrop, plant evidence, frame murders, etc etc.
not to mention that the setting itself is gorgeous.
I mean really.
how is it not the most perfect setting for a game like this?
who cares if it feels cliche.
yes, there's a million ninja movies and there's a lot of good samurai movies, that's true. but you know there's actually no good ninja or samurai games yet. when was the last great ninja/samurai RPG? I certainly don't remember.
I would love for a major studio like Ubisoft to devote some real time or effort into a game like that. third-person RPG based on Samurai/ninja culture of ancient China or Japan. combine all the elements of an outstanding stealth and melee combat experience with the rich history of the Far East.