We already know that Assassin's Creed 4 aims to build on the impressive naval battles of its predecessor by allowing Edward Kenway to fully submerge himself and probe the bottom of the ocean, but as you'll see in this video interview with producer Arnaud Vaudour, Ubisoft intends for these dives to be much more than throwaway distractions.
Over exclusive underwater gameplay footage, Vaudour explains how the team set out to build beautiful but threatening environments where systems felt consistent with the rest of the game - so just as you hide from guards by lurking in bushes in the open-world on land, so you hide from sharks by mixing with kelp and ducking behind coral under the ocean.
While you're down there, you'll pick up lots of rewards and upgrades for Kenway's ship, and environments will vary in difficulty, with fewer air pockets and more substantial threats as you go deeper beneath the game's surface. Elsewhere in the video, Vaudour also talks about how the game differentiates between self-contained dive sections and the open sea, which you can sail - and swim - across.
Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag is due out on every single format you can think of later this year, and there's a ton more exclusive footage and interview content for it on our YouTube channel.
This article was based on a press trip to Ubisoft's studios in Singapore and Montreal. Ubisoft paid for travel and accommodation.