Five reasons why Ubisoft is a brilliant developer
In a world with more game developers than we can shake a stick at, it is hard to pick out one that stands head and shoulders over the rest. Many gamers have a favourite game or two and therefore consider the developer behind said favourite games to be the best developers. However, despite the fact that Ubisoft are usually not behind a year's best game and the fact that only last week I gave them a bit of a hard time for jumping on the annualized franchise bandwagon - they are without question a superb developer.
Ubisoft has a large number of development teams spread out across the world and therefore have all sorts of people working for them. This diversity doesn't just look good to government officials, it also creates rich and diverse gaming experiences for us. Ubisoft have created all manner of games over the years from medieval assassins to futuristic soldiers and just about everything in between.
If you had to limit yourself to one game developer for the rest of time, you would be mad not to choose Ubisoft. Despite having their fingers in so many pies, every experience they create has at least some merit to it, and usually it's actually pretty darn good. Splinter Cell, Assassin's Creed, Prince of Persia, Far Cry and Watchdogs are games you probably all recognise, and they are only from Ubisoft's recent past. There is a taste to suit everyone. Regardless of your gaming background, you will find a Ubisoft title that is a perfect match for you. No other developer is this diverse.
Consistently High Quality
Ok, let's all forget about Assassin's Creed: Unity for a moment. Nobody is perfect, we all are allowed some mistakes. Ubisoft even made up for their mistakes with Unity by gifting us free DLC for it as well as another free game.
Apart from the odd mishap, Ubisoft creates games of consistently high quality. The funny thing is that not many if any Ubisoft games are really game of the year contenders, yet every single one of their franchises would appear in a honors roll call. They have yet to have that incredible "forget every other game for the next few months" smash hit. Yet they release one incredible game after the next. Rather than being a one hit wonder with one superb game, Ubisoft releases numerous good and great games instead.
Everything from the visuals and audio, to the narratology of Ubisoft games is always at a good level, and more often than not of a high quality. It is very rare to see a bad apple come from Ubisoft and when it does happen, they rectify it.
Ubisoft sure has plenty to offer
Yes, I know, Uplay is largely disliked, and it is understandable. It can be annoying. The thing is though, that once you sign in on your system, you are done, and you can start getting points. These points are pretty useless though right? A few cosmetic bits for my avatar maybe. True, but Ubisoft actually uses Uplay points to reward players who play their games.
For just 100 Uplay points which you earn simply by playing Ubisoft games, you can purchase a 20% discount from the Ubisoft online shop. Next time you want to buy a game (or any other product in their store) be it a regular edition or collector's edition, you can get a pretty decent discount just because you played the previous game in the series. No other developer that seems to offer this kind of launcher has this kind of reward scheme for its customers.
There seem to be 100 Uplay points available per game which could in theory translate into an eternal 20% discount on every Ubisoft game after your first purchase. Being rewarded by playing a game with a discount for the next game is quite simply awesome.
Games for Everyone
In the age of platform wars, Ubisoft stands above all the rubbish and generally make their games available on all platforms (often at the same time as well). More often than not, regardless of what system you have, you can play Ubisoft's games.
Ubisoft releases multiple games in multiple genres on just about every platform every single year. Their constant level of effort is admirable and the gaming industry would be a much more sorry place without them.
Where many developers are willing to have exclusivity bought from them, Ubisoft for the most part seem to be happy to stand by themselves as an independent developer and publisher and get their games onto as many platforms as they can.
Whether you agree with them or not, one must admit that they are willing stand up and be counted and prosper on their own independent merits.
It can be annoying, but Uplay has a lot to offer
Fun Fun Fun
Most of this point has already been covered in the others, but it deserves a brief reiteration. Ubisoft just make so many great games. Our beloved hobby is all about having fun, and few developers can always be completely relied on to create fun games each and every year. Ubisoft is certainly one of these few.
Ubisoft seems to remember that games are first and foremost about fun and enjoyment whilst at the same time being able to innovate, experiment and embrace the unique artistic opportunities in video games. Ubisoft games are quite simply brilliant fun, and that is the best thing anyone could say about a developer.
What do you think of Ubisoft? Do you have a favourite game developer? Let us know in the comments below.
The Soapbox LordJuly 22, 2015, 2:12 pmFeatured Contributor6 Major Problems with Ubisoft
1: The rehash of their games (Ubisoft: The Game)
2: Holding games hostage for another game's success.
3: Their DLC
4: Not enough Rayman, Valiant Hearts, and other notable, interesting titles.
5: AC: Unity.
Pierre FouquetJuly 23, 2015, 5:19 amFeatured CorrespondentYep, Ubi don't have diversity, they used to... now all their games are the same. Even a freaking car game has towers... I mean come one!
Watch Dogs was a broken mess as well as Unity, Uplay caused a lot of those issues in both games because you simply couldn't play part of the game (the online side). And Uplay has deleted saves, along with a host of other crap.
Ubi DLC isn't as bad as say WB, EA, Activ or Capcom. But they can do better. At least the 'premium' DLCs anyway, they actually give a good amount of content for not that high a price. Most notable Freedom Cry from AC4.
And yes we need to be more Ubi Art games, they are the only things which are creative an good. I mean... if Uplay is good... when does Grow Home not have it? Oh right, cause Ubi know Uplay is shit.
Ubi are not a bad dev... they are one of the worst publishers. Unfortunately.. when the dev and publisher are the same company, and the publisher is awful the devs suffer more. Because Ubi have some of the best talent. Ubi Art games are proof of that.
OrganisedDinosaurJuly 24, 2015, 5:49 pmCorrespondentI think you are a little harsh. All their games are the same? A slight exaggeration methinks. Watchdogs and Unity had their issues sure, but they were not messes.
People are far too harsh and should enjoy life more.
OrganisedDinosaurJuly 24, 2015, 5:51 pmCorrespondentUplay is great for me. Signed in once ages ago... now I get 20% off every game! Games are rehased I agree, but they rehash a bunch of different games not just the same one over and over again like others we could mention. If you don't like them, don't buy them, but I still enjoy them. They are far better than most.
Pierre FouquetJuly 24, 2015, 6:02 pmFeatured CorrespondentJust look up Jim Sterling and all his Jimquisitions on Ubisoft... they are not a good publisher... no publisher is any good.
And it;s not an exaggeration when a car game as towers you need to get to to unlock parts of the map, when Splinter Cell gets Assassins Creed style climbing (even if I do enjoy Blacklist), when every one of their games follows the same formula. A tower here, an outpost there....
OrganisedDinosaurJuly 25, 2015, 8:02 amCorrespondentThis piece was about them as a developer not a publisher.
To say no publisher is good is silly. You would be sorry if there were none!
As you say, you enjoyed Blacklist. So why moan about it? Ubisoft make enjoyable games. I play games to enjoy my free time. That is why I like them.
Pierre FouquetJuly 25, 2015, 8:58 amFeatured CorrespondentBut the developers didn't make Uplay... I mean... they did... but they never would have without the publishers making them.
Splinter Cell: Blacklist was fun, but it has a lot of issues, which, for the most part, were due to it moving further away from what the core of Splinter Cell is. It was a different type of stealth game, which did things well. But at the same time I will moan about it because Uplay has caused me SOO MANY CONNECTION ERRORS, the game was unoptimised for a long time. And simply it has too many set pieces which were about action.
OrganisedDinosaurJuly 25, 2015, 7:03 pmCorrespondentYou can't complain that all Ubisoft games are the same, and then criticize Splinter Cell for changing over the years.
Contradicting yourself there.