Ubisoft: Are you stupid?

In the past, we asked Ubisoft, “Are you stupid?” Well, Ubisoft has turned around and asked you and I, “Are you stupid?”, with the release of Assassin’s Creed 2.

In the past, we asked Ubisoft, “Are you stupid?” Well, Ubisoft has turned around and asked you and I, “Are you stupid?”, with the release of Assassin’s Creed 2.

I wrote a while ago about Prince of Persia for the PC. Ubisoft was trying an “experiment.” This game had no DRM and they were going to see how well it fared. According to metacritic, and user ratings, it didn’t fare so well. It was a pretty mediocre, uninspired game. It looks like ubisoft has their answer on DRM.

And that answer is apparently a resounding approval for more DRM. And this isn’t just run of the mill DRM. This is ridiculously dumb DRM.

So, I have to ask you Ubisoft, “Are you stupid?” But really, Ubisoft’s answer is “Are YOU stupid?”. To get that answer, we’ll just have to see how sales do.

Prince of Persia – The Movie

Ever since Sands of Time this is one game to movie I’ve wanted to see. Here’s the trailer,

Ever since Sands of Time this is one game to movie I’ve wanted to see. Here’s the trailer,

Unfortunately, Sands of Time is the only part of Prince of Persia I ever wanted to see made into a movie.

As fans can tell from the trailer, they’ve managed to miss the obvious and, I hate to say it so early, ruin a golden opportunity to do a game to movie properly, something that’s never been done.

All they had to do was take Sands of Time and ignore its prequels and sequels and they would’ve had a story as classic as any written literature and as hauntingly beautiful a story as there ever was.

Sands of Time has a bittersweet ending. It’s a brutally realistic yet poetic yet satisfying closure to the story. I think of WALL-E, and, while it has a happy ending, there were serious messages. Sands of Time does not have a happy ending, per se, and that just adds to its charm. But it was an impressive, entertaining ride and it also has serious undertones in character development. And, of course the key to all great story, it still manages not to take itself too seriously.

So I wonder what it would’ve been like to watch kids, adults and the general non-gaming public watch a story like Sands of Time. That would’ve been something to experience

I think they lost a golden opportunity to make something respectable, admirable and classic.

The Lord of the Rings movies showed a book could be made into a movie quite adequately. I guess we’re still waiting for a game into a movie.

Prince of Persia Retrospective

I hold up Prince of Persia: Sands of Time as probably the best game of all time. Unfortunately, Ubisoft absolutely destroyed the soul of the game when it released the sequel Warrior Within.

I hold up Prince of Persia: Sands of Time as probably the best game of all time. Unfortunately, Ubisoft absolutely destroyed the soul of the game when it released the sequel Warrior Within. They tried to recover with Two Thrones, and while fans appreciated the attempt, they fell flat on their face in the afterglow of Sands of Time.

I get the idea most people don’t understand just how they screwed up so bad.

Worse, I don’t think Ubisoft gets it.  So, as stubborn and bitter as I am, I won’t let Ubisoft forget it.

Ben Croshaw has probably the most concise, well laid out diatribe against the travesty that occurred with Prince of Persia. Amidst his foul language at times, Ben does point out each and every brutal, horrific choice Ubisoft made developing the sequels.

Now, Two Thrones was supposed to recover what was lost in Sands of Time and it’s unfortunate that Ubisoft didn’t get nailed to the wall with how bad Two Thrones was.

There must be some law out there about the curse of trilogies…hmm a google for “curse of trilogies” returns only one relevant result. Too bad. Movie makers and game developers should be forced to read it.

Hey, Ubisoft, I bought PC Prince of Persia, the one without DRM.

You lost the magic of Sands of Time and you had no idea how to get it back. You deserved what you got.

When Prince of Persia launched, Ubisoft said they were trying it without DRM, and delivered this snarky comment along with it,

Youre right when you say that when people want to pirate the game they will but DRM is there to make it as difficult as possible for pirates to make copies of our games. A lot of people complain that DRM is what forces people to pirate games but as PoP PC has no DRM well see how truthful people actually are. Not very, I imagine. Console piracy is something else entirely and Im sure well see more steps in future to try to combat that.

Community Manager UbiRazz

Perhaps the “Razz” in “UbiRazz” is more indicative of what the “community manager” role is all about. Getting the community up in arms?

Now, this happened a long time ago and I didn’t have anywhere to write about. So I’m writing about it now even though I bought this the day it was released.

Barring UbiSoft’s arrogant behaviour, and yes I will apply the community manager’s behaviour to Ubisoft, they did two good things. First, the lack of DRM. Second, the PC version of Prince of Persia was released at a $29.99 price point. That’s about the maximum I’m going to spend on a game unless it’s an 9+ rating and I know I’m going to like it (I bought the Sands of Time trilogy at full price).

So, I bought it. There. You happy now Ubisoft?

Maybe you shouldn’t be so happy because the game isn’t all that great.

It’s technically sound, which is why industry critics gave it a decent score. Good visuals, new art style, good sound, decent gameplay. But isolated analysis like that isn’t what game are about. Take a look at Metacritic’s user rating.

So, I took your bait, I bought your game, and you did two good things, no drm and price point, but then you released an average game.

What does that say to your users?

It says your no-drm and price-point were gimmicks to sell a poor game.

Nice try, Ubisoft.

You lost the magic of Sands of Time and you had no idea how to get it back.

You deserved what you got.