Top 10 Reasons Why Ubisoft Receives So Much Hate

Tags: #ubisoft ,   #assassinscreed ,   #videogames ,   #gamingposts

Michael Wendom

Michael Wendom

Last updated:  2023-08-16 07:20:20

Not many gamers have a positive attitude toward gigantic gaming companies. Yet, a few of them bring the worst feeling, with Electronic Arts and Ubisoft taking the lead. Both companies had a much better reputation in their early days but are now solely focused on profit. Therefore, sometimes they make decisions that hurt customers. Luckily, gamers recognize that and put them under pressure, sometimes forcing them to correct their ways. Still, Ubisoft remains among the worst gaming companies for these ten reasons, and it will take a lot for people to see them more positively.

10. The 30 FPS Controversy

Would you really choose 30 fps?

We understand it - console hardware is restricted, and sometimes, developers must make compromises. Thus, they may limit the game to 30 fps instead of lowering the detail level and resolution. However, only Ubisoft claimed that 30 fps is better than 60 fps! According to them, 60 fps is "weird," and all action games should stick to 30 fps. Thus, that would create a more cinematic feel. The trouble is, no one believes that.

A smoother experience is not only about the visuals but also the input lag. While slower-paced games are fine at 30 fps, action-oriented titles demanding quick response suffer. Is 30 fps really more cinematic? Undoubtedly, as movies run at 24 fps. However, games are interactive experiences, so a faster frame rate is essential. Faced with the backlash, Ubisoft stopped promoting this narrative but failed to apologize. Acknowledging your errors is good, but the company may not think so.

9. Lack of Communication and Transparency

Sometimes it takes a lot for Ubisoft to fix crucial problems in their games

The lack of communication and transparency from Ubisoft has been a recurring issue. There have been instances where the company has been criticized for failing to provide timely and comprehensive updates regarding game development, bug fixes, and addressing community concerns. Ubisoft has faced backlash for announcing release dates for games only to delay them repeatedly without providing concrete reasons or updates. 

Furthermore, players have expressed dissatisfaction with the lack of open dialogue between Ubisoft and the community. There have been instances where concerns raised by players regarding gameplay mechanics, bugs, or desired improvements have not been adequately addressed or acknowledged by the company. While progress has been made, it remains an ongoing challenge for Ubisoft to consistently deliver effective communication and transparency to regain and maintain player trust.

8. NFTs 

They did fail, but the company will try again

NFT isn't bad per se, but companies such as Ubisoft tried to abuse it. Thus, in 2021, they announced that Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Breakpoint would be their first title to integrate NFTs. However, that was just the beginning, as the company wanted NFTs in all their AAA titles. As you can imagine, the outrage was massive and resulted in a disaster for the company. Not surprisingly, Ubisoft quietly quit the project, seemingly learning the lesson.

However, they again spiraled into madness, announcing NFTs will come back, just in a different form. Thus, Assassin's Creed Mirage combines real-world assets and NFTs to unlock upgrades on their accounts. Of course, no one asked for this feature, but that didn't stop Ubisoft. In their mind, when gamers say no, it only means they should repackage it and offer it again. Thus, this tone-def logic will only continue to enrage everyone, including the developers.

7. Mistreating Employees

Ubisoft reacted only when things went public

Ubisoft has faced significant scrutiny and criticism for allegations of a toxic workplace culture. Numerous reports and accounts from current and former employees have shed light on various issues within the company. These allegations include harassment, sexism, discrimination, and an overall lack of accountability. Multiple employees have come forward with accounts of experiencing or witnessing inappropriate behavior, including sexual harassment and bullying. 

Accounts have detailed instances where women faced unequal treatment, fewer opportunities for advancement, and a lack of representation in leadership positions. Ubisoft has publicly acknowledged these allegations and expressed a commitment to address and improve the company culture. However, rebuilding trust and fostering a healthier workplace culture will require sustained efforts and ongoing transparency. 

6. Ubisoft Launcher (Ubisoft Connect/UPlay)

There's no doubt that Connect will improve, but it won't ever be nearly as good as Steam

It seems that every major game company wants to create its digital distribution service, which only complicates things for gamers. Of course, Ubisoft jumped onto that train when they launched Ubisoft Play, later rebranded as Ubisoft Connect. The service was troubled from the beginning, as it required a constant internet connection to work. Furthermore, Connect has a limited feature set and can't compete with Steam.

Instead of listening to players, Ubisoft is trying to trick and force them to use their service. Therefore, even if a game is available on Steam, once you install it, it will also require Ubisoft Connect. Finally, some games are Connect-exclusive, leaving PC gamers no choice. Thus, no one truly enjoys Ubisoft Connect, and the company needs to do more to change that. 

5. Visual Downgrades

Ubisoft introduced us to visual downgrades, and even admitted them

Ubisoft has faced significant backlash for downgraded graphics compared to their initial reveals and promises. Several high-profile cases, such as Watch Dogs and Tom Clancy's The Division, showcased striking visual downgrades between the early gameplay demonstrations and the final released versions. 

This disparity led to a loss of trust among players who felt deceived by the promotional materials. The controversy sparked debates about the ethics of showcasing misleading visuals to generate hype and preorders.

The perception of broken promises and a disregard for delivering a polished product has eroded confidence in Ubisoft's ability to deliver on its pre-release claims.

4. Ubisoft DRM (Anti-Piracy)

In the end, pirates were thriving, while buyers suffered

žUbisoft loves digital rights management (DRM) systems, such as their own proprietary "Always-On DRM" or "Online Services Platform." This DRM system requires players to have a constant internet connection to authenticate their game copies, even for single-player experiences. The dependency on a stable internet connection can be problematic for players in regions with limited or unreliable internet access and those who prefer to play games offline or on the go.

Moreover, the reliance on DRM systems has led to instances where legitimate players have experienced technical issues and gameplay interruptions due to server outages or connectivity problems. These instances further fuel frustrations and criticisms, as players feel they are being penalized for purchasing legal copies of games. Pirates often find ways to bypass DRM systems, leaving honest players to bear the burden of restrictive measures. This has led to a perception that Ubisoft's protection measures punish loyal customers rather than effectively combat piracy. Luckily, that's a thing of the past now, but only because the company was pressured to make the change.

3. Publishing Unfinished Games

The game was massively improved, but it was too late

Unfortunately, many game developers publish unfinished products. In the best-case scenario, most problems are resolved with day-one patches, but sometimes, the situation is way worse. Thus, games are completely broken and lack promised features, with only a few managing to recover. As you can imagine, that's what happened to Ubisoft games numerous times.

The most famous example is Assassin's Creed Unity, which heavily featured glitches and bugs combined with performance issues. It took a while before the game became fully playable, and these efforts came too late. Yet, the same things kept occurring in Ubisoft games, although not in such a dramatic fashion. Yet, that's what happens when you pressure your employees with unrealistic release dates.

2. Lack of Innovation

There's not enough time between releases to make them more unique

Many players argue that Ubisoft tends to rely heavily on established formulas, resulting in the sense of repetitiveness across their titles. From the open-world design to the gameplay mechanics, certain Ubisoft games can feel similar, leaving fans craving fresh and innovative experiences. The company has been accused of playing it safe rather than taking risks and pushing the boundaries of game design.

Moreover, some critics argue that Ubisoft's focus on annualized releases hampers the creative process. The need to adhere to strict release schedules can lead to rushed development cycles and an overemphasis on quantity rather than quality. This often translates to games that feel formulaic, leading to fatigue among players who desire more unique and groundbreaking experiences. We felt all this with many Assassin's Creed titles, the Far Cry series, and Tom Clancy-branded games.

1. Microtransactions in Full-Priced Games

Ubisoft won't stop with this practice

Ubisoft's implementation of microtransactions and loot boxes in their games has drawn ire from players who view them as exploitative and detrimental to the overall gameplay experience. The inclusion of paid content that can affect gameplay balance, progression, or unlock significant features has been met with resistance. Critics argue that these monetization practices can create an uneven playing field. Thus, they favor those willing to spend additional money.

Moreover, the reliance on microtransactions can impact game design, leading to repetitive and grind-heavy gameplay loops invented to motivate players to spend real money. Thus, titles like For Honor require years of grinding to unlock everything. This emphasis on monetization has led some players to perceive Ubisoft's games as a vehicle for generating revenue. 

Ubisoft changed its business practices in recent years, even resolving some significant issues we mentioned. However, it will take a while before their reputation improves. Yet, without public pressure, none of that would happen. Still, buying and playing Ubisoft games is nothing to be ashamed of. However, before you do, be well-informed about what you can expect. Additionally, be very selective with preordering games, as the full product might differ from what you expected.

What's your biggest problem with Ubisoft? Do you still buy their games?

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