Ubisoft punks people with elaborate Watch Dogs street hack

Elaborate marketing ploy tricks people into believing they can use their smartphones to control the world around them.

Ubisoft today released a new video showing off how the kind of hacking that players can do in Watch Dogs could work in real life. In the video, Ubisoft tricks people into believing that an app on their smartphone can control things like ATMs, street lights, and cars.

The video, filmed in Los Angeles with "real customers," culminates with a staged car accident, which in turn leads police to arrive on the scene to question them about what happened. It's at this point that situation is revealed to be an elaborate prank. Watch Dogs the game takes place in Chicago.

Ubisoft likely had to close the street and pay for stunt drivers and background actors to film the scene, which must have been expensive. But the game likely has a significant marketing budget, as Ubisoft expects Watch Dogs to be a massive success when it's released on May 27.

For more on Watch Dogs, be sure to read GameSpot's previous coverage.

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

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Discussion

39 comments
blackothh
blackothh

"Ubisoft likely had to close the street and pay for stunt drivers and background actors to film the scene, which must have been expensive. But the game likely has a significant marketing budget"

This is why games cost so damn much.

Crush_Project
Crush_Project

just get a tablet and install backtrack 5 and your off to a decent start.

TheWatcher000
TheWatcher000

Completely staged.  I've seen reality shows on Bravo more realistic than this.


Ubifail.

handofkain
handofkain

Let's hope the game deserves all this marketing effort, and doesn't turn out to be just a modern age assassin's creed.

Beasley2K
Beasley2K

Looks pretty fake to me. Not only do I not believe that anyone would truly believe this prank, but the Indian guy's acting was pretty bad/obvious, and the customers themselves seemed to be acting too. Still a cool marketing ad though.

BigDogLuke
BigDogLuke

would have been funny as hell if one of the people being pranked just yelled out "im not going back to prison" and ran for his life

otanikun
otanikun

That was just plain awesome, loved their reactions, priceless.

shidib09
shidib09

Even though its highly unbelievable its still kinda cool and interesting to watch


NoBullet
NoBullet

You have to be batshit stupid if you thought those weren't actors.

hardeddie
hardeddie

I love to know which advertisement agency used by Ubisoft. Well made.

paiom
paiom

That's why I LOVE Ubisoft !!  Amazing!

DrKill09
DrKill09

...this is a PR nightmare waiting to happen.


Yep, let's advocate stealing cars and destroying property.  Great job, Ubisoft.

anaplussetup
anaplussetup

*You've just experienced what you can do in the video game Watch Dogs.*


"Ummm...okay. That's on a gaming machine, right? Gaming? Those are...what, $400? Okay cool, I'll go get one...and learn how to play it...thanks."


Those people don't give a crap about video games.

BelaidKL
BelaidKL

If Ubisoft's financial reports take a dip for this year you'll know where that money went...

remoticons
remoticons

man that chinese guy was quick!! haha best one, what? what? my english not good! 

cherublvl99
cherublvl99

I don't to be fill of information before the game release, but I need to concern that Ubisoft is doing a great marketing around Watch Dogs.

berserker66666
berserker66666

And then one day someone actullay makes a device that'll be able to hack the world and he/she'll revenge hack Ubisoft. lol.

StickyJr1
StickyJr1

Ubisoft using Arthur C. Clarke's third law to prove the saying 'There's a sucker born every minute.'  The average person has no idea what the technology in their daily lives can actually do.

DamnILoveGames
DamnILoveGames

I can't help but have the sneaking suspicion the customers are also actors, but I don't care because regardless that was awesome.

fkguy300
fkguy300

Awesome Video. Creative.  Had me laughing several times. My English is not very Good. ;-0

blackace
blackace

Best marketing prank video ever. The fact that everyone on the streets, in the cars, etc.. were in on this is amazing. I just hope the game is as good as all this hype Ubisoft is doing for it.

freedom01
freedom01 moderator

LOL the customers are so happy at first, then they panic, then happy again

loved this part 

"Dont worry I handle it ok?  Officer this car crashed because of this woman/man/couple"

tomservo51
tomservo51

@3:33 My English Not Good.....LOL

otanikun
otanikun

@NoBullet  And you'd have to be a gigantic killjoy not to get swept up in the fun that this was.

MarcioHuser
MarcioHuser

They may even not be. But for sure they didn't went into the shop just by chance. At least that

sethschroeder07
sethschroeder07

@anaplussetup  because you know the people they pranked don't play video games? Got ya your definition of someone who plays video games is stuck in their room 14 hours a day?????

xcollector
xcollector

@berserker66666 @berserker66666 There already is a device that can hack the world. Its called a computer. You only need to study and learn it to use it to hack. Don't expect an idoit proof iphone app.

tomservo51
tomservo51

@StickyJr1  Or are you the sucker for thinking those people weren't actors as well?

NoBullet
NoBullet

@DamnILoveGames Yeah theyre obvious actors. And I like how they edit them to make them look "normal" by showing them fix their hair or whatever. dumb ad.

MarcioHuser
MarcioHuser

I try to think they were acting up to the point they enter the store with their "broken phone"

DamnILoveGames
DamnILoveGames

@MarcioHuser Yeah it's quite unbelievable that those 3 people would happen to have a broken phone while walking past a dodgy looking phone repair shop, and then choose to go into said run-down looking shop.

MarcioHuser
MarcioHuser

@HelIWithoutSin  correct. That's why I try to believe that they knew they should go to the store with a phone given to them and pretend it has a problem. From that point onward, they had no clue. That's what I think MAY had happened, after watching the Making Of :)

HelIWithoutSin
HelIWithoutSin

@DamnILoveGames @MarcioHuser  And how that guy is a technical wizard and able to fix broken phones in a matter of minutes.  They obviously had to quarden off an entire city block and not allow innocent bystanders into the area.