The French publisher behind the 'Assassin’s Creed' series is donating half a million Euros and its detailed research to help rebuild Notre-Dame Cathedral

The rebuilding of Notre-Dame Cathedral is getting help from an unlikely source: A major video game publisher.

In the wake of the fire that ravaged the 800-year-old cathedral on Monday, French video game publisher Ubisoft is donating 500,000 Euros to the rebuilding effort.

Perhaps even more importantly, Ubisoft is offering its expertise – the company built a thoroughly detailed version of Notre-Dame in its 2014 video game “Assassin’s Creed Unity.”

Notre-Dame Cathedral vs Assassin's Creed UnityUbisoft

The company issued the following statement on Wednesday morning:

“It is important to keep in mind that what we did for the game was not a scientific reconstruction but rather an artistic vision. While we wanted to be very precise with details, there are some differences in terms of scale and with some elements. That being said, we would be more than happy to lend our expertise in any way that we can to help with these efforts.”

As detailed in a 2014 feature published in The Verge, Caroline Miousse, a Ubisoft level artist, spent two years poring over details of the cathedral to create as accurate a depiction as possible in the game.

“I made some other stuff in the game, but 80% of my time was spent on the Notre-Dame,” she said at the time.

That’s because the cathedral is a centrepiece in “Unity” that players can explore inside and out. The “Assassin’s Creed” series is known for its lovingly detailed re-creations of historic places, and the Notre-Dame Cathedral in “Unity” is no exception.

Notre-Dame Cathedral in Assassin's Creed UnityUbisoft

In addition to donating money and offering up its expertise, Ubisoft is also offering everyone a free chance to explore its version of French Revolution-era Paris – “Assassin’s Creed Unity” is free for the next week on PC, available right here.

If you’re not looking to go that deep but still want to see the game’s version of Notre-Dame Cathedral, check out the video tour below:

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