Ubisoft Press conference round up

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Ubisoft

In the beautiful Orpheum theatre in downtown Los Angeles, Ubisoft held its conference a little after EA’s, and even before it began it was more fun to watch. It started off with a Rabbid skit to get people in the mood. From there, they started strong…and then went all over the place.

The show started proper with the first five minutes or so of Far Cry 4, showing the Himalayan Kyrat setting, a naughty monkey and an insane antagonist who could probably give Vaas a run for his money in the insanity stakes.

The rather tall, stalwart host Aisha Tyler took the stage wearing a not-so-subtle “girl-boner” T-shirt, and promised that the show would only get better from there. She lied. From there, Ubisoft jumped to showing off a brand new Just Dance, which is a lot like the old Just Dance, and a new mobile version of the game that magically links up thousands of players who can all dance around like the possessed with their smart phones tracking their demonic gyrations.

Ubisoft then showed The Division off with one of the more intriguing Cg trailers of the whole show – it’s the sort of emotional stuff that Dead Island’s first trailer pulled off, only attached to a probably better game.

Next up was a new trailer for Ubisoft’s open-world cross-country racer, The Crew. They showed a sped up mission that takes players through NYC, The Rocky Mountains, Los Angeles and even Miami. In game missions can last up to two hours, so the thing should appeal to those who do driving for the Zen aspect of it. I though it looked rather dull, myself – but I’m not a fan of any racing game that isn’t Mario Kart.

Ubisoft then impressed with another cinematic trailer, this time for its gorgeous and lush Assassin’s Creed Unity, which like Dead Rising last gen, shows that next-gen advancement with its incredible crowds of NPCs. Though I’m not sure whether or not Lorde butchered this song in her cover. Assassin’s Creed: Unity will support four player co-op, giving you 4 dull protagonist instead of just the one, Hooray!

And then it took a turn for the worse. Ubisoft showed its new Kinect-based fitness game, Shape Up, still trying to cash in on Wii Fit’s popularity.  It looks like the sort of things to come out of Scott Pilgrim’s delusions, but that doesn’t make it interesting, and no amount of 8-bit posturing is going to make exercise fun.

Ubisoft showed the charming, yet grim World War 1 adventure Valiant Hearts, which was a waste of time showing because it’s out so soon and didn’t need stage time.

Then Ubisoft boss Yves Guillemot (That’s YEEEV GWEEEMOH to you) took to the stage to announce one last thing, as Ubisoft is wont to do. I was hoping, with all of my everything, that it would be new information on Beyond Good and Evil 2. Instead, we got to see an awfully scripted multiplayer match of the new Rainbow Six: Siege. People don’t play games like that. Nor do they sound like action movies.

It looks nice enough, and features some of the coolest procedural, unscripted destruction in a game we’ve seen. It uses Realblast, an engine that allows for damage that is done “authentically, distinctively and dynamically.”

It’s coming to PC, Xbox one and PS4 next year.

And that was it. Ubisoft’s conference was uneven, but it was better than EA’s in that it was done with enthusiasm, heart  and a little bit of humanity; it was far less robotic than the others, even if Ubisoft’s upcoming lineup isn’t quite as strong or dynamic as we’re used to seeing.

Last Updated: June 10, 2014

Geoffrey Tim

Editor. I'm old, grumpy and more than just a little cynical. One day, I found myself in possession of a NES, and a copy of Super Mario Bros 3. It was that game that made me realise that games were more than just toys to idly while away time - they were capable of being masterpieces. I'm here now, looking for more of those masterpieces.

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