Posts Tagged ‘Ubisoft’

Mont-Martyred: Assassin’s Creed – Unity

By Adam Smith on August 26th, 2014.

Today, I give thanks that there is yet another trailer for Assassin’s Creed: Unity crouching in a corner of my inbox, hidden hype-blades snarling somewhere within. I’m genuinely grateful for this one because it manages to contain all of the reasons I’m excited about a new Assassin’s Creed alongside most of the reasons that I’ll probably stop playing after an hour or two. The good stuff first – Ubisoft’s gargantuan CreedCrafting studios make big budget pop culture history that I’m always delighted to explore. The bad is the cloaked figure leaping from a rooftop, doing the same old things in another city, in another time. Following, jumping, stabbing, killing. Where’s the mystery?

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Paradise Cities: The Crew Has Lots Of Game Modes

By Graham Smith on August 22nd, 2014.

There’s a narrative arc to my interest in most racing games: at first they seem to support my interest in driving and exploration, and then slowly, bit by bit, these racing games reveal themselves to be dependent upon racing. So it is with this trailer for The Crew, Ubi’s looming open world racing game set in a shrunken, greatest-hits compilation of the entire United States. Open world! Exploration! Drive about and stuff! And then comes the missions, the modes, the multiplayer; joyful things for someone, but not for Sunday drivers like me.

Still, the game remains the one I’m most excited about, which is just straight up weird. Come watch the informative trailer.

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Far Cry 4’s Kyrat Has Bad Guys ‘n’ Badgers

By Ben Barrett on August 15th, 2014.

Badgers: like cute land mines

Why did we never think of this before? Attack dogs are SO 2005, it’s all about angry badgers [That’s so 2011 -ed.] attempting to aggressively acquire your watch now. At least that’s what I’m taking away from the latest Far Cry 4 trailer, which gives a quick tour of the fictional Himalayan region where the game’s set. Don’t worry, it’s not all cute animals, there’s plenty of knife-stabs, gun-shoots and elephant-tramples to go along with that little guy.

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Editorial: Assassin’s Creed Is No Longer Critically Relevant

By Graham Smith on August 14th, 2014.

I always think music is a better model for videogames than film: individual series of games can be thought of as performers, reaching a feverish apex of popularity before settling into comfortable grooves and hoping for the rare, Kylie Minogue-like creative resurgence.

What’s unusual about music is that most of its critical discourse revolves around pop. It’s not because pop music is what’s popular – though that helps – but because pop is obsessed with the new. It’s an eclectic, hybrid genre, grabbing new sounds, new ideas, new fashion from wherever it can, subsuming what it needs and discarding the rest. When pop finishes with an idea, that idea either dies or it calcifies as its own genre and people stop talking about it.

In short, Assassin’s Creed is now the adult contemporary of videogames. Assassin’s Creed: Unity is Michael Bolton.

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HOMMage: Might & Magic Heroes VII Announced

By Alice O'Connor on August 13th, 2014.

Not much else in-engine to see.

What would you want in a new Might & Magic Heroes game? (Or a new Heroes of Might & Magic, if you prefer the old name.) When a series is 19 years old, would you rather an exciting new direction, a return to the early days, more of the same, or some sort of mish-mash of two decades’ best bits? Recent games in the fantasy turn-based strategy series have been a bit so-so, but Might & Magic Heroes VII sounds promising. Announced today by Ubisoft, it’s coming from Limbic Entertainment, the folks who did a decent job of channelling The Good Old Days in Might & Magic X: Legacy.

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Kaiser Versus Unicorns – Toy Soldiers: War Chest

By Alice O'Connor on August 12th, 2014.

What's the big deal about unicorns? They're just horses you can cut yourself on.

With a game box bordering the battlefield, dead soldiers toppling over as lifeless plastic, wind-up keys turning in tanks, and glimpses of the bedroom beyond when flying planes, Toy Soldiers charmingly pulled off the idea that it was all just kids mucking about. It went a bit wacky with this idea before in DLC, shaking a bucket of knights and wind-up robots over the World War I battlefield, but the third in the tower defence series was announced yesterday and crumbs, it’s really going for it.

Toy Soldiers: War Chest introduces Starbright and her legions of unicorns, pixies, and non-copyright-infringing Carebears to blow bubbles and rainbows at the German troops.

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Build And Battle: The Settlers – Kingdoms Of Anteria

By Adam Smith on August 7th, 2014.

I would settle for this

The new Settlers game, Kingdoms of Anteria, is about ‘persitent city building’. Hurrah! The news arrives in the form of a press release from Ubisoft, who will be presenting Kingdoms at Gamescom next week. There are other elements alongside that city building though.

Players will work to build up, control and optimise their production chains and economy to unlock building upgrades and new sectors, resulting in kingdoms growing larger than ever before. They will also have the opportunity to face-off against fierce enemies and frightening bosses in tactical battles to earn resources and special loot as they level up. Players can choose the champion class and skill set that best suits their play style from the thousands of different combinations possible.

So what am I? A town planner or a champion?

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Beyond Good & Evil 2 Continues As Ancel Goes A Bit Indie

By Alice O'Connor on August 1st, 2014.

Still waiting.

It’s nice to have a reminder that Ubisoft really do intend to release Beyond Good & Evil 2, isn’t it? After six years, I don’t really think of it as an actual game I might play one day, more a pleasant idea I’m glad Ubisoft still share. The latest of many casual statements that yeah, they’re thinkin’ about it too comes to assuage concerns after news that BG&E head honcho Michel Ancel (of Rayman fame too) is going indie. Sort of.

Ancel has joined a new small indie outfit, named Wild Sheep, but will continue to work at Ubi too.

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Shootmania Platform: Free Speedrun Mode For New Players

By Graham Smith on July 29th, 2014.

Shootmania is to shooty games as Trackmania is to racing games: streamlined, almost austere, a platform for user creativity, and French. But though Trackmania cut away chaff to focus on the fundamentals of completing tracks quickly, Shootmania’s own abstractions – unusual laser-y weapons and unique modes and so on – made it hard to comprehend to people trained on other multiplayer shooters.

Shootmania Platform might help. It’s purposes are two-fold: to act as a showcase for the suite of creative tools and marketplace of Maniaplanet, and to introduce new players to the fundamentals of movement in Shootmania. There’s a trailer and more detail below.

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The Creed Of Speed: The Crew’s Closed Beta

By Adam Smith on July 23rd, 2014.

I’m not cruising around inside The Crew’s closed beta so I’m going to analyse the content based entirely on the video below. It’s the video that has finally pulled back the curtain for me, revealing the man yanking the levers that create the illusion of ‘open world driving’. What I’ve learned is that The Crew is very much in the Ubisoft open world mould, which means lots of icons scattered across a map, a thousand different tasks jostling for attention, and what looks like just enough connective tissue to tie focal points together. But is it a grander take on Burnout Paradise or something more akin to Assetto’s Creed?

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Unscripted Sieging: 6 Rounds of Rainbow Six Siege

By Alice O'Connor on July 21st, 2014.

He's upside-down.

We were quite excited about the defence-building, wall-exploding, hostage-rescuing, man-shooting action of Rainbow Six Siege during E3, but the demo Ubisoft showed was ever-scripted and poorly-acted silliness. We’ve been waiting to see actual gameplay since, and last week Ubisoft showed it off with six supposedly live rounds during a livestream. You may be surprised to learn that unscripted Siege contains fewer dramatic twists and less emoting than the demo. Come watch the games yourself and see what you make of it now.

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Ubisoft On Far Cry 4’s Story, Box Art, Team Diversity

By Nathan Grayson on July 1st, 2014.

Far Cry 3 was a lot of things, but a narrative tour de force wasn’t exactly one of them. To hear Far Cry 3 writer Jeffrey Yohalem tell it, there were good intentions putting the wind beneath its hang gliders, the komodo (and/or blood) in its dragons, but the end result was rather… misguided. When Far Cry 4 was first announced, it seemed like it might be off to a similarly shaky start with box art that left some feeling uncomfortable, but the E3 game demo ended up telling a different tale.

That said, we still don’t know much about this one is about, so I sat down with Far Cry 4 narrative director┬áMark Thompson to talk premise, plot, controversy, the inherent problems of videogame info hype cycles, and heaps more. Machete your way past the break for the full thing.

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Watch Dogs’ Multiplayer Is Great, Broken, Great

By Graham Smith on June 25th, 2014.

I wrote a long list of reasons why I didn’t like Watch_Dogs very much, and then at the end wrote briefly with caveats about why I liked its multiplayer mode. I thought that would be the end of it, but then a couple of times a week ever since – and it’s been a month now – I boot the game back up to have another couple hours of hacking into other people’s games. How am I going to explain this, I keep thinking. I can’t, I can’t, I can’t, I’ll try.

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