- "...the legacy of Subject 17 will continue uninhibited as Sample 17."
- ―Case Fisher, Recovery Unit #3 Lead.
The Sample 17 Project is an Abstergo Industries initiative run via Abstergo Entertainment, aiming to explore the genetic memory of the ancestors of the late Desmond Miles, formerly Subject 17 of the Animus Project.
The main goal of this project for the employees of Abstergo Entertainment is to examine the lives of Desmond Miles' ancestors for suitable material for Animus Omega programs, feature films and other related material. However, from the point of view of Abstergo Industries, the project is aimed at locating and acquiring new Pieces of Eden and other First Civilization technology, and draws heavily from the research made with the Surrogate Initiative conducted by Abstergo in 1980 and 1981.
The project received its genetic material directly from the technicians that collected samples of blood and saliva from Desmond's body while it was still in the Grand Temple following his death on December 21, 2012. With minimal decoding, the project was able to isolate at least four different ancestors - Altaïr Ibn-La'Ahad, Ezio Auditore da Firenze, Edward Kenway, and Ratonhnhaké:ton - from the collected DNA. Using the Surrogate Initiative's methods, the project's analysts could explore the memories of Miles' ancestors without needing a direct biological link to the subject in question.
The project is headed by Melanie Lemay, and, formerly, her overseer, Olivier Garneau. Its first success came in October of 2013, when it finalized the memories of Miles' ancestor Edward Kenway. The other three ancestors, after thorough analysis, were eventually considered risky or weak investments to develop and were dropped from the project.
In 2014, Abstergo Entertainment released a film based on Kenway's memories, named Devils of the Caribbean.