Ubisoft is one of the leaders in software in the gaming industry. They frequently release high quality games and have one of the deepest pools of IP to go with it. The firm hosts an annual E3 press conference and this year was no different. Yesterday, Ubisoft hosted its E3 briefing and it was everything EA and Bethesda weren’t and so much more.
Quite frankly, Ubisoft’s E3 2017 press conference had it all. The briefing featured major games we expected to see like Assassin’s, Far Cry, The Crew and South Park. It also was filled with plenty of surprises like Skull & Bones and Beyond Good & Evil 2. Seriously though, it had Beyond Good & Evil 2!
This was a major surprise to see Beyond Good & Evil 2, as many were not expecting the game to show up. While it was just a trailer and not actual gameplay, it is still so good to finally see this game. It is a thing that’s coming. It’s not just something people talk about. Hopefully this won’t endure a lengthy reveal-to-launch period, and we actually see it launch in 2018.
From one triumph to the next, Skull & Bones is one of the new IPs Ubisoft revealed. The game takes inspiration from 2013’s Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag. Open sea sailing and naval combat returns in this new adventure. Gamers will be able to take part in single player as well as co-op. They have even figured out PvP and will feature multiplayer seasons, similar to For Honor.
It is absolute brilliance to see Ubisoft take advantage of one of the most popular features that came to their biggest franchise. The water physics and overall looks of Skull & Bones are absolutely breathtaking. It’ll be interesting to see how this game opens up in regards to land-based gameplay and more.
Ubisoft showed off The Crew 2 for the first time. It takes a lot of what we saw in the first game and embellishes upon it in other motorsports. This is a logic step for the franchise, though it is a bit expected. I’m intrigued to find out more about this world because it takes place in the U.S. Funny thing is the first game took place in the U.S. as well. Hopefully Ubisoft added more specificity to unillustrated regions of the country. It will need to feel new and not just some copied and pasted version of the first game’s world.
Finally, Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle received a major reveal during Ubisoft’s event. Nintendo’s Mr. Miyamoto showed up alongside Yves Guillemot and the two put on an adorable back and forth encounter. After explaining what went into the collaboration, it was the gameplay that sold me. The tactical elements shown in combat is very interesting. What’s more is the level of dynamic gameplay that opens up when the Rabbids work with Mario.
The game will be coming to Nintendo Switch and I absolutely can’t wait for it. Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle really makes me want to pick up a Switch. What makes me feel that way even more is the fact that it launches on Aug. 29. It is very unusual for a console exclusive to be announced and launched within three months. This makes everything we saw all the more exciting, assuming no delays occur.
Ubisoft also revealed Just Dance 2018 and Transference as new upcoming games. That latter is a new VR project and Elijah Wood was the pitch man in the ad. The new VR game looks intriguing from the concept of it. That said, Ubisoft did not show much else about the project, leaving a lot to uncertainty.
Ubisoft then announced a new expansion for their winter sports title, Steep. The game will receive a PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics-centric expansion. This is dubbed Steep: Road to the Olympics and it’ll launch on Dec. 5. Steep‘s upcoming expansion is a very exciting one and will deliver a number of winter events. Competition is at the heart of Steep, so this move makes all the sense in the world.
From there, Ubisoft showed off new trailers for South Park: The Fractured But Whole, Assassin’s Creed Origins and Far Cry 5. Each of these games are looking outstanding. The first, in addition to the second two, is one of my most anticipated simply because The Stick of Truth was so hilarious. Ubisoft is one of the few publishers to actual nail a licensed game, and I’m glad they’re running with this sequel.
South Park also got another surprise announcement in the form of a mobile game. Ubisoft is bringing South Park: Phone Destroyer to mobile devices later this year. It is a free-to-play title that blends “real-time combat with traditional trading card collecting,” and looks awesome. My first impression is Ubisoft, yet again, showing their intelligence with the South Park brand.
Starlink: Battle for Atlas was revealed and boy was it a surprise. This game looks to combine the toys-to-life concept Skylanders previously embraced. Apparently, that game is no longer a thing, and Starlink looks like it’ll take great advantage of that. What a time to introduce a game like this. This is quite the strategic move by Ubisoft since there is pretty much no competition in that category anymore. Activision’s Skylanders and Disney Infinity are both on hiatus, so Starlink is swooping in at the right time.
When you look at the breadth of upcoming games from Ubisoft, there is great diversity and frequency. They are not stuffing all of their launches into the fall 2017 time period like in years past either. This fall has South Park, Assassin’s Creed, Mario + Rabbids and Just Dance.
Looking beyond this year and into next, Ubisoft is lining up Far Cry 5, The Crew 2, Transference, Starlink and Skull & Bones. That’s an 18-month lineup of software that is pretty damn tough to rival, first and third parties included. When you take a step back and consider the press conferences of all companies thus far, it is clear Ubisoft had one of the best showings.
As far as third parties go, Ubisoft’s E3 2017 showing is the most impressive. I wasn’t expecting as much depth in Ubisoft’s E3 lineup as this, but they showed up and showed up in a big way. We’ll have lots more on E3 2017 in the days ahead. Stick around here at We Write Things for more on Ubisoft.