Ubisoft apologises for Assassin's Creed issues with free DLC

Discontinues sales of season pass

In an attempt to make reparations for the rather shaky launch of Assassin's Creed Unity Ubisoft is giving away the upcoming Dead Kings downloadable content for free to PS4, Xbox One and PC gamers. It has also discontinued sales of the game's season pass.

"Unfortunately, at launch, the overall quality of the game was diminished by bugs and unexpected technical issues. I want to sincerely apologize on behalf of Ubisoft and the entire Assassin's Creed team. These problems took away from your enjoyment of the game, and kept many of you from experiencing the game at its fullest potential," wrote Ubisoft Montreal & Toronto CEO Yannis Mallat.

"To show our appreciation for your continued support, we're making the upcoming Assassin's Creed Unity Dead Kings DLC free for everyone. For Season Pass holders, we will also offer the choice of one additional game from a selection of Ubisoft titles for free."

Those free games are The Crew, Far Cry 4, Watch Dogs, Assassin's Creed Black Flag, Rayman Legends and Just Dance 2015.

He also asked players to continue submitting feedback about the game to Ubisoft.

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Latest comments (7)

Henrique Taunay Game Developer 5 years ago
I try hard to remember if any games/systems from a non-patchable era (e.g. for NES, SNES, Genesis, PSX) ever were released with this level of bugs, quantity-wise as well as quality-wise, and I can't think of any. Rarely a trivial bug would appear, but practically never anything game-breaking.

Of course, games have grown much more complex, but nevertheless I find it dishonest towards old-school devs to blame complexity. If a new release has thousands of bugs, and is thousands of times more complex than an old cartridge game, one would assume that the old cartridge game would have a handful of problems at least when adapting to scale. And yet, I don't remember one non-patchable game that I would have to skip a part, or simply stop playing, because I found a obvious bug that bypassed QA testing.

It all comes down to: a while ago you only had one chance, if you shipped a broken product it would be broken forever; while today if you ship a broken product, you fix it later, no refunds. Companies like Ubisoft are literally outsourcing QA to their paying customers, and in this specific case with a release so close to holiday (spending) season it only becomes more obvious that quality wasn't a main objective.

What can you do to make it better? Don't pre-order. Wait for professional reviews and bug-reports. Nothing speaks louder than cash, and if AAA publishers start noticing that their "release now, fix later" attitude is hurting their pockets, eventually something will be done about it.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Henrique Taunay on 28th November 2014 4:48pm

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Benn Achilleas CEO and Founder, Playabl5 years ago
Agree Henrique (though dubious mention goes to E.T haha).

The most recent spate of 'broken on launch' is only going to hurt the publishers as I know many gamers who have stopped pre-ordering or even purchasing until they know the game is playable (as expected). Any multi-publishers like Ubisoft will feel it more as a poor ACU experience harms not only that franchise but casts a shadow over the other franchises (Far Cry, Watch Dogs, etc. ).

But props to Ubisoft for a considered response - though a shame that it only applies to people who bought the season pass. Most people got the game and thought there is no way they are buying the season pass (like me). So what about those people and their wasted money? A free future DLC for a game you may not be playing. At least it's better than the (alleged) disgusting approach of Activision by throwing copyright strikes against YouTubers.

My own issue with ACU was more about how 'lazy' it all felt as a concept and implementation. I compare this to my recent play through of Shadow of Mordor which was tremendous fun and felt like it 'out Assassin'd Assassin's Creed'. No bug caused that :(
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Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing 5 years ago
The outlook is grim, considering how eagerly people are throwing money at games, season passes and PSN/XBL subscriptions. The only cure is people learning to stop falling for advertisements and not rushing out to buy games first chance they get. As long as consumers behave like gullible crack addicts, they will find themselves abused over and over.
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Show all comments (7)
Kenny Lynch Community Rep/Moderator 5 years ago
From 2007, an appropriate quote perhaps...
14. Don't use the online capability as an excuse to release broken games

The first time we hear the word "patch" in relation to a PS3 or XBox 360 game, we're taking the console back to the store. Filled with our shit.

But surely the console industry, always more business savvy than their PC counterparts, will avoid making us gamers their unpaid beta testers.

Chances of that happening...

...again depends on how many turd-filled consoles they get stuck with. In other words, the consumer always gets exactly what they'll put up with.
Edit: Arrgh. For someone that works a lot with forums I fail tremendously at inserting any link, image, formatting....

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Kenny Lynch on 27th November 2014 7:57pm

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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 5 years ago
@Henrique: I can think of a SMALL handful of older games that shipped with assorted issues preventing them from being completed (unless one broke out a Game Genie or other cheat device). Some quick examples: pre-battery backup games that used pass codes in hard to read fonts or used numbers and symbols that somehow didn't match up no matter how many times one tried inputting them (Battlemaster on the Genesis springs to mind).

I know a handful of Dreamcast launch titles shipped that were unplayable out of the case including Mortal Kombat Gold (Acclaim reissued it with a HOT NEW sticker on the case to denote the fixed version) and Sonic Adventure (the shop I worked at and other retailers had a bunch of copies that wouldn't play at all and those had to be returned for credit and replaced).

Also, some copies of Warriors of Might & Magic on the PS2 shipped with a game stopping bug where a door to the endgame was forever locked even if you found the key. As far as I know that never got fixed or at least I recall we had some people say they completed the game and others who never got the chance to. My first copy was one that worked, but I gave it to a friend who wanted it and bought another that had the door problem.

However, compared to today's bug-ridden games that guess what, gamers without access to reliable (or any) broadband CAN'T patch (meaning this "small" minority of users is throwing away money every time they buy a new release that needs a day one fix), that's nothing.
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Leigh Pankhurst Studying Animator, Train2Game5 years ago
Having just been doing battle with Far Cry 3 and and Blood Dragon which both exhibit the same awful sound problems on the PC, I had a look at the reviews for AC Unity and it's painfully apparent that it's full of bugs and glitches. It's fundamentally lazy to have a release date and meeting it whether the game is ready or not with the express intention of patching it later on. Were the product a car, legal action would ensue. Were it a house, the builders would be called back. Why are video games no longer subject to the same rules as other retail items? Because you can't get your money back. You try getting your £40 back from Steam or Game based on a complaint that the software just isn't made properly. As long as there is no pressure on companies like Ubisoft to sell properly functional items, it'll just keep happening.
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James Prendergast Research Chemist 5 years ago
Unfortunately, Leigh, there's no pressure because the software companies managed to get governments/lawmakers to sign on to the logic of "click wrap" agreements and that, somehow, software is "special" and cannot be owned - unlike any other copyrightable/trademarkable/patentable item you can buy down the shops.

You can't return what you don't own...
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