In Watch Underscore Dogs, you could watch all sorts of grim scenes by hacking into networks. You might see a recently-released convict hold a gun to his face and contemplate suicide, or a divorced single father wank to porn while his baby bawls in another room then mutter “Shoulda washed my hands” when he goes to comfort the bairn. Ha-ha-hilarious! You wacky dudes, Ubisoft. In Watch Dogs 2 [official site], you might find a ‘leaked’ teaser trailer for a new Ubisoft game. Well. An imaginary one, at least. Some sort of sci-fi-y spaceship doodad with a twangly cowboy tune.
Watch Dogs 2 isn’t officially out yet — not even on consoles, which are getting it two weeks before PC — but some shops started selling it early and players have been sharing bits. These include the following video, seen in a side mission where you hack into a virtual version of Ubisoft San Francisco’s offices to yoink and leak an E3 trailer.
‘FlammableAce’ reports that the mission is unlocked by finding a virtual Ubi employee gabbing on their phone about how news of other Ubi games leaked, mentioning Assassins Creed Syndicate, Unity and “Osiris”. Rumour said that the next Assassin’s Creed would be set in Ancient Egypt, remember. But probably consider this trailer ‘leak’ a metafictional gag rather than a cheeky tease, yeah?
Or maybe that’s what Ubisoft want you to think. They know that you know that it’s made-up for a gag so they’ve actually shown an actual game they intend to announce at E3. But what if you’ve anticipated that and do believe this is real? And what if they know that you know that they know that you know?
For what it’s worth, I’d be up for colourful space cowboy antics. Someone who claims to have worked for Ubisoft says they’d “heard rumblings of a big space game” but I’d take that with a hearty pinch of salt even if you know that Ubi know that you know that they know that you know that they know that you know.
I do hope that video is full of ARG-y secrets on a merry dance to nowhere. Run a spectrogram analysis on the cowboy music and you’ll find a page on the dark web with animated gifs of Aiden Pearce dancing. Realising his moves are semaphore gestures, you discover a message in Latin, which translates to a quote from The Hacker’s Manifesto with one subtle mistake, which… hopefully it’ll keep people tied up until E3. That, or it’d end up a disgruntled employee’s malicious prank ultimately directing everyone to turn up shirtless at 3am on the lawn of Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot.
Watch Dogs 2 is due November 29th on PC. It hits PlayBoxes tomorrow.