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Ubisoft E3 2017 press conference rated: The highs and the lows


Ubisoft E3 2017: The Highs

Beyond Good and Evil 2: This ain’t your mother’s Beyond Good and Evil. A foul-mouthed tone began this trailer, and it was quickly apparent that not only was this the long-gestating sequel to the PS2 cult hit Beyond Good and Evil, but it had returned all grown up. It was a highly entertaining trailer, with the only downside being a lack of gameplay. Seeing Michel Ancel close to tears because he could finally show his baby to the world was a great moment too.

The Decision to use devs to promote games: It all started with the presentation for Mario’s Rabbid’s crossover game (which looked fun).Yes this wasn’t for PlayStation, but the overall tone of Ubisoft’s show came from the heartfelt joy seen on display as people involved in making games took centre stage time and again, and the result was something far more sincere than expected. It culminated with a visibly moved Michel Ancel once Beyond Good and Evil 2 had been revealed. More like this please.

Assassin’s Creed Origins: I can’t honestly say it impressed me on initial reveal, but after rewatching the first look, and then seeing this trailer, I’m feeling ready to come back to Assassin’s Creed. The scope and fluidity of this entry bears the hallmarks of a game given time to breathe, and it has crocodiles and lions, in it so that’s at least a couple of extra points on the review score.

The Crew 2: Now this definitely surprised me. I’m not a fan of racing games that aren’t called Burnout, yet seeing The Crew 2’s all-terrain, all-vehicle approach to racing intrigues me. At the very least, it’s doing something different in the genre.

South Park: The Fractured But Whole: Look, I know there wasn’t much new to see beyond a release date, but I got a kick out of the superhero ribbing and Wendy’s ‘Callgirl’ nickname because I’m an unapologetic manchild. 

Transference VR: Not much to see here, but this Elijah Wood-fronted VR title held just the right amount of mystery to make it me curious.

Skull and Bones: A spinoff of Assassin’s Creed’s piratey Back Flag? I wasn’t exactly smitten with the pirate era of the Creed, but the setup for Skull and Bones feels like its own thing. The idea of co-op with your pals aboard a pirate ship, getting into skirmishes with other players sounds marvelous in a way the failed For Honor never did. 

Far Cry 5: A minor hit. It’s still very much Far Cry, and the mechanics of the rest of Ubisoft’s roster of open world titles was more apparent here than anywhere else, but it does look like daft schlocky fun all the same.

The overall show: If you’d told anyone a few days ago that Ubisoft were a genuine best of E3 contender, you’d have been sectioned, yet here we are. The Beyond Good and Evil 2 drop helped, but it was a slew of solid, interesting titles presented by the people involved in their creation that made it. Just skip Just Dance next time eh?

Ubisoft E3 2017: The Lows

Just Dance 2018: I will forever wonder what hard times Mortal Kombat’s Sub Zero and Tekken’s Panda went through to wind up gyrating onstage here.

Steep Olympic expansion: The problem with Steep is that nobody really cares about Steep, so who’s buying an expansion for Steep?

Starlink: Felt a touch No Man’s Sky lite, and probably got the hopes up of many a Beyond Good and Evil fan a little earlier than planned. Not a great impact however you take it.

Skull and Bones trailer’s piano cover of Crazy: Say no to whispery piano covers of old songs for trailers. It destroys lives.

Rabbids: Stop trying to make Rabbids happen.