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The Paucity Of Information


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One thing that continues to surprise and even stun me at times is the almost complete lack of hard information about Ubisoft (finger quotes) "realism" games. Look back to the reports of the Original Ghost Recon on this site, I belive there are still a lot of  good examples still here in the Reconnaissance section to see what I mean; there's actual discussion of game design, game features, and game technology. No one was deluded from thinking Ghost Recon was anything other then 'a game' and a really good one.

Compare that with Ubisoft's approach since Raven Shield where they increasingly, almost exclusively attempt to lather up what they would seem to consider a very simple-minded audience with appallingly sophomoric narrative, worse then 'B grade' action TV drama from the 70's or say GI Joe cartoon/toy advertising; if your honest about this it's really that horrible, or worse considering the demographic this assumes...

This is a level and kind of marketing that even slow-witted Neanderthal knuckle daggers and mentally challenged children will experience some level of cognitive dissonance with, as even they are more attracted to things that are more adult that convey more obvious depth and maturity. That there are Nintendo and Sony PSP games with more adult and sophisticated marketing speaks volumes...

My take away from all of this from 'arch realism' cartoon simplistic game design to the 'B grade' Saturday cartoon toy marketing is that there is there is liberal disdain (and I mean liberal as in copious not politically motivated, though the latter may play a part as well) for the military profession at Ubisoft, or a combined profound lack of interest and understanding in Military Science.

This is  ironic as an awful lot of Ubisoft's non military themed games are some derivative of a mass murder scenario, and unfortunately their games portraying elite military professionals and operators are similarly devolved to killing being the objective rather then the more realistic means (that may or may not be necessary and a game choice) to larger, meaningful tactical or strategic objectives.

Edited by 101459
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Good post, interesting points. At first I read with raven shield not since which almost gave me a heart attack :D

The way they market it 'these days' maybe down to the fact that they can do bombastic, adult (and I'm with you in using that word loosely) things and have them aimed at a younger age range I guess around 8-16yrs could be because those children are able to purchase these games themselves now. Before walking into a store in that age group trying to get a 18+ Ubi title at least in the UK you would get turned away, now digital delivery is the simplest and easiest form to get your games so there is no barrier to entry and lots of kids have bank accounts now so they can buy these games simply by ticking the 'over 18' box.

And we've seen from UBI competitor titles i.e action packed gun-wielding with some stern operator sound bites over the clip that this works COD will sell BF will sell and other action and adventure titles so I guess UBI follow that path toward success and that demographic is financially most fruitful. Also on the tangent we here and other like minded forums for the most part have a keen interest in military history or military science and/or are current or severing so I think we tend to ask and like to ask "How is this scenario achieved" be it the design of the game or indeed the game itself i.e how do we clear this rooms in Rogue spear, the killing of the tango's is neither here no there its the planning and how its executed is the rewarding part. Its personally what has always peaked my interest the why part as I am currently enrolled in Med school doing a biomedicine degree asking how/why is the part which is intriguing to me the most and I think why I have such a keen interest in military history/science. 

Indeed though as you pointed out, lack of interest in military science could be it, and as business I suppose I understand the viability of copy paste sell it to the masses of the demographic your after as it does work. Just my two cents on the matter but that said the games they come out with I have fun with for a while and uninstalled and move on, much as audience they sell it to will, difference is they'll get the next iteration the following year and the year after that whereas from my point of view if I had to stick with 4 games from now onward, Rogue Spear and OGR would be two of them really feel no need for anything else and that is testament to RSE. 

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There seems to be a substantial lack of enthusiasm and interesting discussion about Ubisoft realism games in general -- Wildlands specifically, here, on the Ubisoft forums, anywhere... Even looking at my own posts it's more about trepidation, what the game isn't, and disappointment in past Ubisoft Clancy endeavors since Ghost Recon and Raven Shield. And looking at the thin volume of FanBoy posts we do see it's more about crap that has nothing to with tactical realism, game design, or even FPS gaming in general -- it's about the kind of virtual Barbie & Liberace costumes pined for, Mall Ninja foo-foo, and bickering about low level detail that has little or nothing to do with game-play, or future-forward look at bespoke mod support, emergent game-play, and genera specific essentials...

Compare this with the ArmA forms, or even the Steam forums for indie games or even mods for them, and not just the post volume (which for any one of these games or mods can be more than all current gen Ubisoft realism games combined), but the level of discussion is engaging, interesting and to a degree where even the Developers get involved. Just like these forums circa GRAW/GRIN and prior -- with not just shallow marketing buzz bullet list hype based on talking points of 'FEATURES & BENEFITS' (which more often then not just features with no real benefits), but actual design discussion, constructive criticism that's tested, heard, vetted, garners Developer attention and a results oriented outcomes.  Summarily people are excited about real value, not marketing hype, and what someone else thinks they should be excited about...

Edited by 101459
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I think people are just generally being cautious, Ubi's recent shenannigans have gotten them a reputation, and people really don't know what to expect right now, it seems Ubi's all over the place. 

With devs like bohemia interactive, and CD projekt RED, their reputation is consistent, with Arma, you expect a game that runs like ######, but with a developer that supports the community, with CD Projekt RED, you expect a high quality, game with a mature storyline however quite buggy in places. And you expect with both developers, all of the games within the series will play similarly, many features from OFP are still in Arma 3, many features from The witcher are still in the witcher 3. 

Ubi arent like that, and its especially true with the GR series, most notably FS, it's almost like they're not sure what they want to create. there's no real consistency within the series at all. It's happening as well to assassins's creed now too, now that they'd exhausted the original story they have no idea what to do. 

-In GR1 there were all of these guys and one of the defining features was soul switching, tactical gameplay and a well established atmosphere

-GR2, you suddenly find you're playing as one guy, the only person even mentioned from the original game was Jacobs, you cant soul switch, and the gameplay switches to OTS third person, no PC version despite it being made up on a modified version of the Ike engine. Customizability, over the original game, is heavily limited. 
The PS2 version was different to the Xbox version entirely, playing with a different storyline in an entirely different time period, poorer graphics, and nerfed gameplay. It should really have been a different game, as they were not one and the same with eachother in plot. The same way GR:IT, isn't GR:JS, but both are in the jungles. 

-GRAW, PC development was sourced by GRIN, it was first person and played entirely differently to the console versions, the PS2 and Xbox versions were similar to PC, and was much more linear and restrictive than previous titles. The PC version was heavily lacking in features, assets and atmosphere the same could be said for GRAW 2

-GRAW2, same story, but somehow in 48 hours (according to the game) there's all this new gear and fancy stuff that wasn't in GRAW1, including the CrossCom 2, this isn't explained, at all. 

-GRFS, seemed almost entirely based on fictional gear from the start, unlike it's predecessors, which was heavily based on real researched gear, and then did a U turn, after much outrage, and the most they did about that "back to the roots" promise they made was a name drop on one of the missions. The only re-occuring characters from GRAW and the previous games were ramirez, allen and mitchell, two died and one briefs with that ever so annoying voice. was known mostly for its p*ss poor PC performance, repetitive multiplayer, and bland storyline with very little in the way of freedom and forgettable experience

so with GR:W no one knows where its going, until we see more information than just trailers and marketing, we won't know, and we don't really have much to comment on other than "oooh pretty"
The lack of information makes me suspicious that even they believe they have no idea what to do anymore. It's become apparent that with this paucity of information that they are not marketing to mature audiences with some idea of what to look for in a game, they're marketing to a bunch of kids, it seems. 

Edited by Zeealex
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