Michel Ancel, dev team protesting Rayman Legends delay

Rayman creator appears in images marching against game's recent delay to September.

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Rayman Legends' recent multi-month delay is not sitting well with creator Michel Ancel or some members of the game's development team. Eurogamer has obtained a series of photos depicting Ancel and other developers protesting the game's recent delay and loss of Wii U exclusivity.

Image credit: Eurogamer

Development on Rayman Legends for the Wii U was reportedly finished, but the game was pushed to September so it could ship simultaneously for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Wii U.

Ubisoft chief marketing and sales office Geoffroy Sardin said in a statement that the company heard from Xbox and PlayStation gamers saying they "really wanted" to play Rayman Legends on their current platform.

"We decided to give the fans what they wanted while at the same time broadening the audience exposed to this innovative and memorable game," Sardin said at the time.

Ancel and other developers appear in the image holding a banner with the words: "Sortez nous Rayman. Soutient a Ubi Montpellier," which translated means, "Release Rayman. Support Ubisoft Montpellier." A crying Rayman is also depicted in the banner, with a speech bubble stating "SVP" or "Please."

Last week, an unspecified former Rayman Legends developer criticized Ubisoft's "men in ties" for delaying the game. This developer maintained that Rayman Legends will be an "excellent" game at release, but lamented that the reported business decision to delay the game is an example of how "this industry is really that shi**y."

Discussion

130 comments
kohle36
kohle36

Ubisoft is being pretty hush about all this, but making the game multiplatform probably meant taking on contractual obligations that are interfering with the release window on WiiU. I'm pretty sure Microsoft demands that any multiplatform title be released simultaneously with 360 (though they're more than willing to pay for their own 'timed exclusivity agreements'). Not entirely sure where Sony stands on this, but they may be exerting similar pressure.

Basically, the 'men in ties' at Ubisoft were probably negotiating a series of contractual obligations that they knew would have sunk the Feb. release date at the same time they were exerting enormous pressure on the dev team to get things finished for that date (in case the deals fell through...?). It's a pretty shitty thing to do to your workers, no wonder they're angry.

ChiefFreeman
ChiefFreeman

 It was nice of Mr. Ancel to show his support here. Why not le Wii U gamers play the game now? At the ery least, let them enjoy the ame first, since it was originally an exclusive. I understand the business decision, but thre's no reason it can't be released now for the Wii U.

mstrchf12
mstrchf12

If they keep protesting like this, we might just see another Infinity Ward style split between Ancel and Ubisoft. No doubt the higher ups in Ubisoft don't like their own employees protesting against their own company.

Mike_Labeckio
Mike_Labeckio

Proof that the Wii U isn't faring all to well in the sales department.  It's just a smart business decision.  I also appreciate the fact they are going to release it on all platforms simultaneously.  I have the Wii U and I see no reason to play it, but my son loves it, so it is getting play time (He's only 4, which is why I got the Wii U in the first place).

jark888
jark888

Just give Wii U exclusively head start. Problem solve.

jer_1
jer_1

 Screw ubisoft in their ass backwards head. A prime example of why i never buy from them.

DJQuickFix
DJQuickFix

This move only makes sense to the marketing suits. One budget for all SKUs.. but do we really believe this title will get any real serious push?.... especially in September with heavy weights like GTA shipping so close. Way to send this title to an early grave guys...

So it doesn't surprise me the team is protesting. I'd also venture to say that knowing game development, I bet this team had a nice six month crunch to get this out for the initial release date. Talk about demoralizing. (not to mention a probable delay in royalties as well).

Another confusing thing is also how the suits don't see the ginat gape in WiiU releases right as a window of opportunity. How can a few million, (not sure of the total user base numbers ATM) title starved WiiU owners not be a good thing for sales.

I just don't get it...

midnightclubx
midnightclubx

I really think Michael Ancel and his team are the only "good" people at Ubisoft; part of me wants him to resign and start a new dev studio with his team, but another  part of me still wants BG&E2. ;-;

marting265
marting265

I bought Rayman Origins a couple  weeks ago, so far enjoying the crap out of the game, its fun

raahsnavj
raahsnavj

This is a pretty stupid move by Ubisoft. The only reason anyone even bought a Rabbids game is it was the only thing on the Wii near release. It made a lot of people follow it for a while on the Wii. They could have done the same thing again on the Wii U. People need to play something, even the 'better than average' turd released early on a new console will make money. 

xcollector
xcollector

Nintendo probably didn't want to pay up for time exclusivity so Ubisoft held it back for the WiiU. Its all about money.

macca366
macca366

Michel Ancel is awesome. I like that he'll protest against his publisher perhaps even more than a Beyond Good and Evil sequel!

Actually, no I don't. I want Beyond Good and Evil 2 /cry

Atombomb1981
Atombomb1981

The decision was probably made in order to guarantee the game will be launched on ALL platforms. (if, for example the game doesn't sell well on WiiU, they could decide to abort the development of the game to the other consoles). On the other hand it is ridiculous to finish a game and keep it stored until the versions for the other consoles are are finished.

Gue1
Gue1

cry moar I love all your tears.  ;)

SavoyPrime
SavoyPrime

No disrespect, but if the game had stayed a Wii U exclusive and just sold 10 copies, then they would have been complaining about it not having released on multiple platforms. But I will say that Ubisoft should have fully discussed this with the developers before making this decision.

Chico86_basic
Chico86_basic

I guess that Rayman Legends would be a great exclusive title now that even its development team members wanted it to be released on the original date. The good news is that I hope they can make it better somehow in the next six months. Just don't end up neglecting the WiiU version in the porting process for other consoles!

Ronaldo27
Ronaldo27

I wonder if the reason why Ubisoft announced the delay so late was not to prevent Nintendo to cancel the deal to release a Wii U's SKU bundled with ZombiU. Right now, they will make a good money with the bundle and will receive free marketing promotion from Nintendo, which should be pissed but incapable of reacting.

The_Last_Ride
The_Last_Ride

they screwed Wii U and Nintendo with this big time

jack00
jack00

I'm pissed too, if the game came out months ago, I could be picking it up today for half the price damnit.

TheAgingGamer
TheAgingGamer

Nice to see they weren't afraid to take a stand. I hope it works out well for them so that other developers have the courage to stand up to their employers. It's a difficult thing to do when they have so much power over you. Respect.

AuronAXE
AuronAXE

Damn it. Consoles need exclusives. Multiplatform is great for publishers but horrible for console makers and game devs.

naryanrobinson
naryanrobinson

The devs should totally get their way on this.

I don't think the multi-platform thing is a big deal, but the suits who sit at the top and grab all the money they can as it moves around them need to learn they can't bully the workers whenever they feel like it.

psuedospike
psuedospike

A strange marketing decision.  Wouldn't releasing it as early as possible on Wii U be better for sales...seeing as how Wii U needs all the games it can get!?

Sorciere_basic
Sorciere_basic

This is what they get for working for Ubi and what gamers get for wanting a Ubi product. No surprises here.

Incubus420
Incubus420

After watching the trailer, how would the Touch screen stuff work on PS3 or Xbox 360?  I can see the PSVita getting involved byt what about M$?


jenovaschilld
jenovaschilld

@mstrchf12 the shit that went down between Activision and IW was way beyond this, into the realm of insanity. I hope a book or movie comes out about the bat chit crazy stuff activision Kotick did to try and hijack IP from the developers. I cannot even believe that BObby Kotick is still even working their. 

TO give you an idea it would be like me hiring you to build me a bridge. Then trying to copyright and steal all the tools, bridge designs from past, present, and ones you may ever have in the future. try to even take the name bridge and then not allow you to make another bridge ever. 

But yeah, that public picture will not set well with Ubisoft who have become the new EA of publishers. Rolling over the developers like they were nothing all in the name of a few % increases in profit. 

DBZ19
DBZ19

@Mike_Labeckio  Hi see I have 2 sons, i was kind of thinking of getting it for them this xmas. I personally won't play it, but you are suggesting it will be great for them? 

cheers

nintendoboy16
nintendoboy16

@Gue1 So you like seeing developers pissed off that their project was delayed for another seven months when it's done?

chronocommander
chronocommander

@TheAgingGamer Ubi has a history of messing with Ancel's releases, I'm surprised he's even still there. Firstly, Beyond Good and Evil was released at the same time as Prince of Persia Sands of Time and had close to no publicity (based on what I've read), a sure death sentence and the game suffered from poor sales which the men in ties used as excuse to block development on a sequel for years! Then, the Rabbids, without Ancel's consent they plugged these into the Rayman universe (or continued making sequels, something was screwed up with how they used Rabbids and Rayman without telling him). Rayman is Ancel's baby, it was one of Ubisoft's major hits which made the company famous so the company owes this guy. Now this stupid delay smells of more corporate nonsense.

Celsius765
Celsius765

@psuedospike to make it worst gta5 is coming out in the same month and school so who's gonna buy Legends then

Chico86_basic
Chico86_basic

@Bl4KD37H Ubisoft was pure BS towards WiiU with this move. I won't expect anything good from that company for said console ever again. I really thought you were supporting Nintendo Ubisoft. Turns out you're just like most others! Good luck, truthfully.

Atombomb1981
Atombomb1981

@Strider8009 @Atombomb1981 That's the logical thing to do, but when it's about profit, things tend to get restrictive. Of course the game will sell well, cause there's no reason what-so-ever why this game should not be other than fantastic. But I guess, nothing is a safe bet anymore, so they just play it safe, even if this is actually against their customers and the creative team behind it.

chronocommander
chronocommander

@Yuusha09 @AuronAXE Multiplat is great for consumers, what are you saying? As AuronAXE said, it is terrible for console makers who need exclusives to sell their hardware and devs who have to simultaneously develop for multiple systems. But for the consumer? The consumer gets to play the game on any major system they please, how is it bad for consumers???

Incubus420
Incubus420

@MrMisanthrope @Incubus420 Wait so those Rock Levels won't be in the PS3 and Xbox versions?  If this is the case I won't be getting the game. My girlfriend loved those levels in the demo so we were going to get it.  If those are Wii-U exclusives than forget-about-it. 

chronocommander
chronocommander

@williebazerka @chronocommander I already acknowledged that they have other brands which made them famous but Rayman is one of those that put them on the map. Rayman was one of their major PSOne titles back when it was released and its sequel is to date considered one of the best platformers ever made.

Sfr528
Sfr528

@DarkReign2552 @chronocommander @Yuusha09 @AuronAXE I am very much in the same position. I find it kind of sad how consoles are no longer being defined by the games they have.  I almost feel as if there is no point in owning a 360 and a PS3 considering just about every single game is ported to both.

There was a time when developers would create two very different games for the varying consoles.  For example: on SNES you had Contra 3: The Alien Wars and on Sega you got Contra: Hard Corps.  That made a very real difference in the console you owned.  It wasn't a mirror copy of the same game.  You could have very real debates with friends over which had better levels/music/bosses.  Today... you get the same game 3 times. 

 So yeah, I find the laziness and the majority of customers willingness to accept such laziness to be sad

DarkReign2552
DarkReign2552

@chronocommander @Yuusha09 @AuronAXE 

Not quite sure what angle he's getting at, but I have a couple suggestions:

1. Like in this case, it's bad because it means that all of the people anticipating the game have to wait longer since they want to delay it to work on ports for other consoles (In this particular case it's even worse since this title is best suited as a launch window title while there's really nothing else worthwhile to play on the WiiU. Pushing it outside of the launch window just kills the need to buy a game like this since other better games will likely be out by September.)

2. Kind of branching off the last point, it's bad for some consumers like me who own every console. My rule of thumb, and I'm sure others are the same way, is that I'm an Xbox gamer by default. I have my PS3 and WiiU for the sole purpose of being able to play exclusives. Multiplatform games I will always opt for the 360 version unless some crippling flaw demands otherwise. So to take away an exclusive like this makes it all the harder to justify my actually buying a WiiU (I don't own any WiiU games yet. Rayman was going to be my first until they delayed it.)

 Otherwise, I don't see it as being a bad thing for consumers. It allows every gamer an opportunity to play it and it brings more widespread success to the series and guarantees more support for future sequels (I would like to think the success of this title will coerce Ubisoft into letting Ancel push ahead with Beyond Good & Evil 2.)

DarkReign2552
DarkReign2552

@MrMisanthrope @thetravman @Incubus420 Well I don't see why Kinect and PSMove couldn't be used. No mind you I don't think this is a good idea by ANY means since it limits the market accessibility to have optional peripherals as mandatory, but the option is there. 

thetravman
thetravman

@Incubus420 @MrMisanthrope The rock levels will probably be on it. I don't think Murphy (touch screen guy) is required on there. The levels requiring Murphy, like the first level in the demo, won't be in other versions or will probably be tweaked. And obviously,the Ps3/360 versions won't support 5 players.