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Did Ubisoft Learn Anything From Gurfus?

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Does anyone here have any indication that any decision maker at Ubisoft even has a clue as to why this game failed on PC so miserably and why it and Ubisoft in the context of this game is held in such low regard now?

Even completely disregarding how far off franchise canon the game's design went; has anyone seen any evidence that Ubisoft made any results oriented effort to resolve the enormous litany of issues that made the multi-player portion of the game literally unplayable by the vast majority of people that bought the game?

To wit:

· a match-making system that mirrors every flaw in Ubisoft prior MMS (and DRM) design
· no server browser alternative to the MMS
· no dedicated server
· primitive networking that functionally can not work on may Windows PCs and/or routers
· crude networking design & configuration that Ubisoft Technical Support clearly did not understand
· technical support that isn't (problems closed as 'solved' that were never even acknowledged)
· pass the buck forum Community Managers and Technical Support personal
· decision makers obviously completely isolated from product reality
· promised fixes and patches that were never delivered
· patches that took months and even over a year to deliver that came with more new issues then fixes
· DLC that broke the game & fragmented an already tiny audience of sometimes playable games

I have corroboration from dozens of friends and acquaintances that bought the game through Steam, Uplay, DVD, and some like me via all three sources just to get it working, not to mention the thousands of forum posts on the Ubisoft and Steam forums that these experiences were not in any way unique.

That Ubisoft's own server tracker software on their Gurfus web portal never showed more then a tiny fraction of a percent of the gross sales of the PC game were EVER on-line and playing even when the game was new at peak play -- should be proof positive that something profound was seriously wrong and acknowledgement from the company should be forthcoming...

It's difficult to even approach the discussion of the MP portion of a game that was technically/functionally unplayable, i.e. never worked well or even at all for most that bought it. But one look at how this game was marketed with creepy 'selfy' and self indulgent marketing that ran the gamut, from Coco Porn Frankentit, to 'look at me' close-up face shot videos that were more like vlogs of amateur Developers and their great ideas then any actual game design or acknowledgement of an audience that might buy the game -- it's not hard to see why even approached with an open mind we got exactly what we paid for.

Still, do you see any sign that Ubisoft has moved forward? Have I missed something important? The new R6 Siege game looks hopeful, but where's your trust level of this company with respect to it's PC 'products'? My impression remains well described by 'products' -- that while Ubisoft may understand effective marketing (as far as game-play trailers advertising), they see their output as 'product' rather then as games that are fun and require acknowledgement, interaction with, and understanding of their audience to get to that objective.

Edited by 101459
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Why are people still bringing this up? Just let it die already, just like Ubisoft did.

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how about noooo blame :P

It's actually a fairly decent topic to bring up.

The long answer:

The same general problems were found in Watchdogs and to a point, Assassin's Creed black flag. The only recent game I know of that was fairly well done by Ubisoft was Farcry 3.

Ubisoft, as a company are very anti-PC and the reason is, is because their market is normally teenage boys with no maturity who play on consoles (not that the latter is a bad thing) but they are console focused, and it's been known since at least Ghost Recon 2. Unfortunately GRFS, just highlighted how out of touch they are with the gaming community.

For instance, their cringe worthy commercial featuring coco, I don't even know where she's from, that's how insignificant she is to me as a gamer and Ghost Recon fan, but I think anyone with a brain would say that was just distasteful and, potentially harmful to their image of how they look at the the male and female sides of the gaming/ghost recon community. not to mention, getting that guy from the future weapons show or whatever it is... a show clearly set up for kids and teenagers who needed their daily dose of gun porn.

Their recent press release of the division, about "immersion" only contained graphical features, their feature list of the PC port of GRFS was primarily based on graphical improvements and not improvements to platform specific functionality. And when we got it, it was broken and poorly optimized.
Their marketing of watchdogs was "ooh look at the pretty graphics, don't they look amazing" yet, again, the PC version of the game was poorly optimized, poorly made, and the actual game, frankly sucked ass.

The more mature audience would know that there is more to a game than graphics...

They use piracy as an excuse to do a half assed job of bringing their games to the platform I feel every game should start from as a base point, yet they don't actually realise that by porting their game poorly, with little optimization for the platform, not testing it thoroughly before release, not putting in dedicated server and other platform relevant features and by using terrible DRM and UDontPlay launcher... the genuine players suffer, and the result is that people will pirate it, because it's not worth the £40 price tag they slap on it.

Personally I think Ubisoft's repeated mistreatment of it's gaming communities and its constant patronization, lying and poor time management will be it's downfall and if they don't sort it out soon, they're going just as quick as crytek.


Short answer: no, they haven't learned a damn thing!

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Why are people still bringing this up? Just let it die already, just like Ubisoft did.

Why? You honestly don't understand? The simple explanation is because we paid money for a product and service that not only didn't work even remotely as advertised, it didn't work at all for many. The longer answer is; Ubisoft has been making promises and breaking them with this franchise since Ghost Recon 2, and has had broken networking in it's PC games since then as well.

Why would anyone with even a modicum of interest in the genre want to let this subject die? Even in just objective technical terms without any criticism of the actual games created; wouldn't you like to know if Ubisoft is going to employ talent and resources to address the now decade old issue that they have been completely unable to deliver a PC game with functioning network code?

Edited by 101459
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I have and will be forever wary of Ubisoft. As the saying goes you can't get blood out of a turnip.

Makes me wonder about the poor online PC experience. Are they really that incompetent or do they have motivations unseen

for the sorry state of it?

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Why are people still bringing this up? Just let it die already, just like Ubisoft did.

Why? You honestly don't understand? The simple explanation is because we paid money for a product and service that not only didn't work even remotely as advertised, it didn't work at all for many. The longer answer is; Ubisoft has been making promises and breaking them with this franchise since Ghost Recon 2, and has had broken networking in it's PC games since then as well.

Why would anyone with even a modicum of interest in the genre want to let this subject die? Even in just objective technical terms without any criticism of the actual games created; wouldn't you like to know if Ubisoft is going to employ talent and resources to address the now decade old issue that they have been completely unable to deliver a PC game with functioning network code?

You don't expect fast food to look like it does on advertisement pictures, that issue is god knows...6 decades old.

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I have and will be forever wary of Ubisoft. As the saying goes you can't get blood out of a turnip. Makes me wonder about the poor online PC experience. Are they really that incompetent or do they have motivations unseen for the sorry state of it?

It's a good and valid question Wombat; more so now then ever with Steam sales surpassing console sales in many segments of the market. My hunch based on what leaks out of the company is that it's probably down to priority of where the money goes -- in order of importance:

· management & administration

· marketing & advertising

· art development

· technology licensing & development

Which apparently has not changed for a long time, and is not a lot different from what a lot of other businesses do in a lot of other markets with products suffer from this approach...

You don't expect fast food to look like it does on advertisement pictures, that issue is god knows...6 decades old.

Not a very good allegory Blame, as even the worst fast food is not so toxic it will make you vomit or have instant diarrhea, and is at least on some rudimentary level suitable as food. If you were to use your allegory accurately; your fast food purchase would require a click and accept license that separate the franchise from all liability of suitability of their 'products' as food, even in the event of death or crippling outcomes -- guaranteeing nothing, and separating the food franchise of all liability.

We are seeing exactly this sort of thing happening in the U.S. now with the big pharmaceutical industries where the medical insurance you're required to have, also forces you into an agreement that you may never hold any pharmaceutical company liable for any outcome from using their products.

But that's a digression, the questions are valid, whenever they're raised. Does anyone know of any Ubisoft PC games post 2002 that have good networking code?

Edited by 101459
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You don't expect fast food to look like it does on advertisement pictures, that issue is god knows...6 decades old.

No, but I would expect my food to taste okay and satisfy my hunger and/or craving. I would expect to just be able to order something off of the menu, pay for it, get it and eat it in peace.

Does anyone know of any Ubisoft PC games post 2002 that have good networking code?

I can't say I do, GRAW was okay, not brilliant, but it was very unstable in other places.

I have and will be forever wary of Ubisoft. As the saying goes you can't get blood out of a turnip.

Makes me wonder about the poor online PC experience. Are they really that incompetent or do they have motivations unseen

for the sorry state of it?

Check my comment above Wombat, you'll get my opinion on it all there.

Edited by Zeealex

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a couple examples before my thoughts on Ubisoft.

Bohemia makes horribly optimized games that run semi ok in MP. I mean who hasn't seen warping players in ArmA 2? or AI walking through walls? or Ai killing you from across the map with a AK style weapon (ArmA 3) And why do people keep buying their titles? because they are the only ones making such games and realistically more people play DayZ than ArmA as a milsim. Arma 2 was about dead until the DayZ mod. Prior to that you could search the server list to find 100 servers 2000 players , 2 full, 99 open with 4 guys in them and all running different mods so you couldn't join anyways. DayZ hits and BOOM 100,000 servers with 1/2 a million players lol.

Codemasters is another completely dumped OFP to work on racing titles which is smart because they make awesome racing games. Not that I play them but I have friends who do. And the list goes on. Anyone remember SOF Payback?

EA is having problems with BF4.

Ubisoft is no different than other devs.

Splinter Cell has been a good series. I haven't heard people complaining about it. It got great Meta scores

I think they will find a title that will be a blockbuster for them and all this will be forgotten. Only we will remember how ######ty they were because everyone else will love the new title.

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More and more people nowadays find drinking and partying more interesting/fun than playing games, I wouldn't say that would be a fault of any game company.

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Hey Zeealex I agree that compared to other games published and developed by Ubisoft, GRAW was quite good for its net-code, but GRIN was not a wholly owned subsidiary of Ubisoft, or an Ubisoft studio. The PC editions of GRAW were built on Diesel which was a fairly mature independent engine before GRIN even contracted with Ubisoft to do the PC version of the game.

Most of Ubisoft's PC development since 2002 appears to be by wholly owned subsidiaries that appear to be: top-down, micro-managed, console derivative, with production focused on creating marketing content, enhancing Ubisoft management and administrative employees project portfolios and social media pages -- rather then actually creating a compelling games (no less games with working PC net-code).

It appears there isn't anyone at Ubisoft that's a decision maker (if anyone even operates at that level of accountability at Ubisoft) that even has the remotest clue (or concern) about the multiple epic failings in just basic lack of functionality in Ubisoft PC games.


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Not going into details about their abysmal development execution, I believe it's no secret that most, if not all of Ubisoft's games lately suffer from a myriad of (not only technical) problems and continue to display an overall disheartening level of increasing negligence, if not incompetence.

Explaining this boils down to the following oversimplification.

There are two fundamentally different developer philosophies. Let's call the first "The Artist" - primarily driven by creative ambition and striving to create a great gaming experience with your blood, sweat, and tears. The second is "The Salesman" - primarily chasing after money and aiming to maximize corporate profit with the least amount of effort... and by any means.

Anyone even remotely interested in the subject knows which of the two dominates at Ubisoft.

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It looks Ubisoft's 'issues' are finally being acknowledged in the main stream press; in an article published yesterday: Congratulations Ubisoft, You're The New EA a Forbes tech writer tears Ubisoft a new one over recent issues. It has surprised me for some time that it has taken this long for the press to acknowledge how this company operates...

By way of example a friend of mine wrote an excellent post on the failings of of GR:FS networking and offered a recitation of some work-arounds that helped a lot of people connect to games and also mentioned that Ubisoft had demonstrated eligibility for the Golden Poo Award -- as if to prove his point that was politely and humorously made the entire thread was deleted.

This example is the tip of the iceberg of the roiling mess that is Ubisoft's complete disconnect with its audience, but was one that left me more appalled by the company then any over-reacting Fan histrionics.

Edited by 101459
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Forbes is by far a SUPER biased so what they write about needs to be taken with a grain of salt. I am sure there is truth somewhere within that article but I am sure there are a ton of made up facts.

One fact is that they don't tell you the hiccups with the PC version of Unity is AMD APU/GPU based which they are addressing. That is the only combo that is suffering that issue. Not Intel based PC's

Also I have watched some extensive gameplay video and I think it looks and runs fine. Here is an example:

Edited by twcrash

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