Michel Ancel, Rayman devs protest game delay

Developers upset with Ubisoft's decision to hold back finished Rayman Legends on Wii U

Rayman fans aren't the only ones irked by Ubisoft's decision to delay the Wii U version of Rayman Legends. Eurogamer reports that the game's developers are similarly upset, as evidenced by a series of photos with Ubisoft Montpellier staff including Rayman creator Michel Ancel.

The pictures show the developers posing with a poster that reads, "Sortez nous Rayman. Soutient a Ubi Montpellier," which translates to "Let's release Rayman. Support Ubi Montpelier." Originally expected as an exclusive launch game for Nintendo's new system, Rayman Legends was first pushed back to this month, and then last week it was delayed until September to launch alongside new Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions of the game.

This is not the first grousing to emerge from the game's developers. A former employee at Ubisoft Montpellier vented on a Spanish forum last week, upset that the team endured crunch only to be told upon finishing that their work wouldn't see the light of day for the better part of a year. The developer left the studio shortly after the completion of Rayman Legends for Wii U.

"For us, this means we've spent six months barely seeing our wives, kids, and friends for nothing because, after all, such a haste wasn't needed," the developer wrote. "Believe it, it was a hell to swallow this news."

As of press time, Ubisoft representatives had not returned requests for comment.

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Latest comments (11)

Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 9 years ago
Ubisoft needs to figure out a way to fix this despite the stuff going on contractually about the game "needing" to be released for all platforms at the same time.

It's pure nonsense for Wii U owners and anyone looking forward to the game since its announcement as an exclusive to now have to wait until the fall, and while I'm betting it will do well across the board at the end of the day, I'd bet it would do even better if the Wii U version ships out and gets some top scores (making its Metacritic target if there is one - I still hate that games need to be aggregated in this manner).

As usual, we shall see...
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Jamie Read 3D Artist, Neon Play Ltd9 years ago
There seems to be a lot of 'being screwed' by the big companies in the games industry. Being a student, it has put me off wanting to work at some of these types of companies in the future.
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Andrew Animator 9 years ago

Don't let a few bad stories put you off. It's a great industry to work in.
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Nicholas Pantazis Senior Editor, VGChartz Ltd9 years ago
This is really sad to me both as a gamer who really wanted to play this in two weeks on Wii U and as a sympathetic fan of Ancel, knowing his work (and his team's work) was delayed only to anger gamers who will probably skip it in a month full of Zelda, GTA, and Pokemon.

As for the claims that this is due to Microsoft's contractual restrictions, Microsoft has made numerous exceptions to the late port rule in the past, including The Witcher 2, Resident Evil: Revelations, Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge, Final Fantasy XI, and Phantasy Star Unlimited... not counting the dozens of late ports for XBLA.
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@Alex - "was" a great industry.

Think 2013 marks the start of a new reality!
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 9 years ago
@Nicholas: True, true... but none of those were made for the Wii U first and meant to be (and marketed as) exclusive (at least for a few months). I just want the problem to be solved so Ancel, the rest of the team and Wii U owners will be happy and get a game they've been waiting for delivered as promised. Ubisoft can't be that tone deaf with so many people angry at them for delaying the Wii U version for a nonsense reason that may end up hurting the game once it finally does ship...
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Andrew Animator 9 years ago
@Alex - "was" a great industry.

Think 2013 marks the start of a new reality!
I'll keep an eye out for the far, looks the same to me.
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Mike Enoch Prototyping Manager, University of Abertay Dundee9 years ago
It's crappy for the team, but they're probably holding back so they don't have to market the game twice for the separate launches (due to the cost, of course).
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Patrick Frost QA Project Monitor 9 years ago
I'm ready to place a bet on the fact that Ubi complain at a later date that the Wii U doesn't have a big enough install base to make it worth their while developing for despite the fact that they are removing reasons for people to buy the machine.

I love 3rd parties sometime...
Good Nintendo 1st party software = Only Nintendo games sell
Poor 3rd party support = 3rd parties complain that user base is too small
Good 3rd party support = ???? Hasn't happened on a Nintendo home console for such a long time that nobody knows any more.
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David Radd Senior Editor, IndustryGamers9 years ago
It could be that the decision was that, if the game missed the holiday launch date, to just delay the whole thing and hit the NEXT holiday release date and get all the marketing in at one time for all platforms. That might seem calculating, and its certainly a bummer for Wii U owners looking for something new and cool to play, but large companies like Ubisoft pay bean counters to make decisions like this.
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 9 years ago
@David: Simple solutions: Market the Wii U version of the game through the Miiverse (DEMO/character appearances on connected consoles as a "guest" Mii) and/or Nintendo's sites only (it WAS an exclusive at one time, right?), Move a few bucks from other games ad budgets to the Wii U version. Figure out the total ad budget for all three Rayman games, cut it by 1/3 and use that part to get the Wii U version out first.

This is Rayman, not Assassin's Creed III (which got an lengthy pre-order cycle and probably {well, definitely} much more money spent on ads), so I don't think Ubisoft needs to ship as many millions of copies of the game, come up with special consoles for it or do anything nutty as far as collector's editions, as the game will sell itself to those fans who need no expensive convincing to buy it...

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