Ubisoft wants to improve relationship with PC gamers

Uplay director Stephanie Perotti says publisher is listening closely to consumer feedback.

Ubisoft wants to improve its relationship with PC gamers. Uplay director Stephanie Perotti told MCV that the company's recent addition of third-party games to its virtual store is evidence of this.

“Announcing all these partners for Uplay and a wider choice of PC games, it shows our commitment to PC, and we want to improve our relationship with the PC community,” Perotti said. “We are always seeking to improve. We took a lot of that feedback on board. With every game on PC we are improving."

Ubisoft caught flak from PC games in the past over its always-on digital rights management (DRM) systems. This practice has since been ditched, with users now only prompted to enter an activation code to play new Ubisoft PC titles.

Earlier this week, Ubisoft signed agreements with more than 15 companies to make their games available through the Uplay platform. These include Electronic Arts, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Telltale Games, and Bohemia Interactive, among others.

Written By

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

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Discussion

466 comments
jimchape
jimchape

"Ubisoft wants to improve relationship with PC gamers".  This is a LIE!!!  I just finished getting thru a major game bug in AS3 that Ubi has known about for over 6 months and has not done a DAMN THING to help their customers thru!!!!  The BUG occurs when a PC player hits the game's "Ledger tutorial".  The player CANNOT AVOID THIS TUTORIAL AND CONTINUE TO PLAY THE GAME, SO ANYONE WHO HAS SPENT $50-60 ON THIS GAME AND CANNOT FIND A FIX IS SCREWED!  As noted Ubi has known about it for at least 6 months because that's how far back various forums, INCLUDING UBI'S OWN, have been talking about it.  Has Ubi found a solution and sent out a patch or at least announced one and where to find it?  NO THEY HAVE NOT!!!  It seems since PC gamers are tthe only one's with the bug Ubi could care less as long as their console customers keep buying.  I finally found the fix BURIED in an Ubi Uplay forum after spending almost 9 hours tracking it down and, even then, I almost missed it.  The bug is that once you start the "Ledger" tutorial and start navigating around it, the game locks you in there and you have to use your system's Task Manager to shut the game down to get out.  The fix is to NOT TOUCH YOUR MOUSE DURING THE ENTIRE TUTORIAL!  Use the keyboard ONLY til you get out and you're good to go.  Ubi could have patched this or even announced the fix on the various gaming sites, like the ever-popular 'Gamespot.com', and they could point to it and truthfully claim they care about their PC gaming customers.  That they haven't tells me they don't care as long as we keep dropping the big bucks on the PC versions of their games, after which they would rather we just went away until it's time to drop more big bucks on DLCs and extensions.Thanks Ubi, at least we know where PC gamers really stand with you.  If you really want to "improve relationship with PC gamers", a little actual support would go a long way!

nousernamee
nousernamee

I cant even play the favorite game of all time - chaos theory on windows 7. And after that horrible horrible pc port of conviction i am just going to stay the hell away from your games or better yet download cracked versions of them. SUE ME.

squidbilly22
squidbilly22

doesn't make any difference to me most their games are rehashes been their done that ,EA should be Nuked  for what they done with Madden....enough said

Naktls
Naktls

Thats strange , considering how much they complained and how much DRM ruined games for PC ppl that even forced them to use fking CRACKS on a fking bought game...why coz it fking takes 5seconds to get crack have no fking problems...and top it that they even cry "PC are most pirated etc" blah blah blah , I catually wanna stats who is most pirated PC or a fking xbox360 games...Im 100% xbox would "beat" PC handsdonw


Now on serious notes , why they starting to act like this ? for pc gamers ? dont make me laugh! I think its smth to do with next gen consoles. No otherway around.

telaros
telaros

 A form of drm that at least allows me to play mostly all my games offline at least. You can't do that with Origin and many others. And their weekly and weekend deals are only topped by the holiday events.

Best part is I can register hundreds of pcs to use my steam account (assuming I lost a hundred computers to which I've only suffered 2 due to wear and tear.)

Still, I only get Ubi and EA games that lock me out of playing offline. I'm fine with all digital. I'm not fine with paying full for digital at console level prices as we don't get any of the stuff that would warrant their excuse for extra money due to 25% of packing fees even if the packaging per disc likely doesn't even reach 5% of the costs to produce.

Long as I can enjoy my favorites like Skyrim and Sleeping Dogs offline, I'm ok with Steam's level of DRM. I own a laptop and pc, same steam account is usable on both and when a friend wants to play a game while I'm on my pc I let him play on the laptop on offline mode.

Apologies for late response, I rarely check my email account used for this site. Not to say Steam games don't occasionally come with extra goodies like music albums in whatever format you want and digital art books, those are becoming ever more common. Just thought I'd clear that up.

doktron
doktron

develope some games that are pc exclusive.Too many games are made for consoles and then badly optimized for thePC.If u want to optimize  for consoles later on, fine, but make them FOR the PC FIRST.(mouse & keyboard control; higher level of graphics taking advantage of the best vid cards).And,most importantly, get rid of intrusive DRM and internet connection "always on" requirment for single player games. Definitly make more good,original,high quality story based games for the PC.(less "some game"pt.I,II,III; and more "something new")

ONE MORE THING...GET RID OF UPLAY.

stev69
stev69

Ubisoft wants to improve relations with Pc gamers yet announces that the next AC title will have exclusive content for the PS3 and a later release date, well cheers for that then, if that's any indication of showing us some love please don't dish out any hate then.

made_u_look
made_u_look

Well, as a PC gamer who hates DRM with a passion. Because while in the Navy I was forced to pirate games just to play on my laptop during deployments. Now that I'm out I'll purchase games that have DRM but because I choose to. But I'm a sucker for redemption, and personally alot of you are being alittle harsh to Ubisoft atleast their going to try and make a effort in appeasing us. Not to many AAA companies can say that. So I'll sit back and give them a chance.

UrbanTracker
UrbanTracker

Regretting those hate words now are ya, well, try all you want buddy boy, we ain't buying unless you fix your $hit and release a PC game for the PC first and then give it to the consoles.
As good as it was , Far Cry 3 still had bugs and framerate issues because it was a port.  
Ahh, who am I kidding, I still did buy FC3 'coz of its SP and all other developers had shitty short SP campaigns. *cough cough* warfighter!

AlexFili
AlexFili

Ubisoft are trying hard to please PC users but they are still getting a lot of bad press for not patching issues quickly enough and not optimising CPU usage as much as they can. But I do admire their attitude. The fact that the delays between Console and PC versions are shortening is proof of this

bloody-hell
bloody-hell

If UbiSoft wants to improve their relationship with me again, then all they need to do is to make their uPlay nonsense OPTIONAL during installation for those that actually want it - also for previous titles.

They do that and I can begin to buy their games again.
They keep that uPlay (and online checks for previous games) as a requirement and I'll gladly continue to ignore them.

It's that easy, really, I don't want to have my PC cluttered with worthless "gimmicky" launchers and applications I don't care about or have to register accounts on X sites for activations - "Buy -> Download -> Install -> Play" and you can have my money, but make it any more complicated than that or include worthless launchers or not allow me to play offline and you won't get my money.

Releasing native PC developed titles (not just bad ports) at the same time as the console version and not milking me with overpriced DLCs is considered a plus, otherwise your games are just up for consideration when the "complete pack" is offered in a sale.

jtthegame316
jtthegame316

PC Gamers are a bunch of graphics whores. all i hear from them is that the games look better on pc but consoles hardly have bad graphics. plus it is gameplay that makes a game good not graphics

dxBIGBOSSxb
dxBIGBOSSxb

Guys, piracy IS a risk, regardless of how "superior" the P.C communty might be. Hell Witcher 2, Hotline Miami and Dark Souls lost a MASSIVE amount of profit due to rampant piracy. Weather you believe it or not, piracy is a significant issue on the P.C and not NEAR an issue on consoles. I'm not denying consoles have piracy, but I am saying it's an actual risk you need to take into consideration when developing a game on P.C and not so much on consoles.

Don't try listing me BS facts about how it's "Just as bad on consoles, herp derp." or "It doesn't stop piracy anyway". How would you know if it does or not? Do you have rough statistics to back it up? Witcher 2 lost an estimated 2 million copies to piracy, and while the game did recover, it was because of it's Xbox port boasting the sales figures up to 5 million, and leveling the loss with added CONSOLE support. I don't deny P.C gaming is superior to console, but what do you expect them to do? I ask you what is a better alternative to DRM. Yes it sucks, but it probably is saving the companies sales, so don't judge too quickl. Give them time, and try to suggest a better alternative to "Turn off all the things!". 

brynhyfryd
brynhyfryd

Ubisoft, you did the right thing by removing Always On DRM and you have done so. Most recent game being settlers 7. One time online activation DRM is sufficient.

The next step is to drop the U-play client. Gamers don't want their PC's cluttered with game clients in order to play their games. As a gamer I just want to pop in a disk/or download and install the game and then play without having to log into a client every time. For online downloads GOG.COM is the best example for providing a digital download store. For online gaming just incorporate the required login process into the game itself.

Ubisoft, you also need to make drastic improvements on all ported games. This should be easy to fix.

Finally, Stop accusing all gamers of being pirates, It only affects your bottom line and p****s of gamers big time.

Skrilla_XS
Skrilla_XS

Get U-Play off my computer and then we'll talk.

amr_5m
amr_5m

assassins creed 3 runs bad on my pc i play all games with ultra G so really if you wanna help us fix the performance issues or bring me my money back cuse until now i cant play the game  

richten71
richten71

It's funny how everyone has misinterpreted Guillemot's quote. He did not say 93 to 95% of PC gamers are pirates, he said 93-95% of their games get pirated. There's a big difference in the meaning. I can understand Ubisoft wanting to add DRM to their games to try to prevent piracy. They are only trying to protect their property. Unfortunately their method ended up not working. The only reason DRM was put into games was because of pirating. It's easy for people to tell them to remove it from their games and never to use it again. Would these same people be willing to remove the locks from the doors and windows of their homes or their cars? Just remove all the locks in the world and hope the people in the world will do what's right and not steal any of your property. Why even have locks because they can be bypassed by anyone anyways, so what's the point? I understand they are only trying to protect their property.

http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2012-08-22-guillemot-as-many-pc-players-pay-for-f2p-as-boxed-product

http://kotaku.com/5936855/ubisoft-says-93+95-of-their-pc-games-get-stolen-by-pirates

TohouAsura
TohouAsura

YOu want to improve our relationship? Stop treating me like shit and delete my saves every time you make an update. Damnit.

cyberarmy
cyberarmy

Its funny most of gamers here still thinking Ubi has always-online DRM and activation limit.

They dropped it before AC3 hit PCs, still there is Uplay and one time(1) activation online but then you dont need to go online ever, if you dont want updates or multiplayer.

Played Ac3 and Farcry 3 full offline without any problem.



Real problem is they need to focus on MP more, their games really need dedicated servers because its really a pain to find and start a match.

TheWatcher000
TheWatcher000

"Listening Closely?"

UPlay Still Exists.

You're fucking Tone Deaf, Ubisoft.

Quite talking to us like we're stupid.  Quit talking to us like we're children.  Quit Calling Us Pirates.

Better Yet, Just Quit.

rarson
rarson

Step 1: Get rid of Uplay.

Atombomb1981
Atombomb1981

Promoting the UPlay platform will not make players...friendlier. The platform yields no real advantage to the us, the players, so why would we want even more titles to run using it?

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

If you want to improve your relationship you'd

1. Put all your games on Steam; close your shitty Steam clone.

2. Stop porting your games to PC late, and make sure the ports don't suck.  Stop blaming piracy for poor sales of aforementioned sucky PC ports.

3. Stop with the retarded DLC, always online DRM, install limits, exclusive preorder idiocy, retailer specific bonuses, season passes, online passes, and other such scams.

hadlee73
hadlee73

Not keen on the whole UPlay thing Ubisoft. I was one of those forced to install Mass Effect 3 from a huge download because it refused to install directly from disc (because of UPlay).

Fursnake
Fursnake

Ubisoft: "WHY UPLAY NO REPAIR OUR DAMAGED REPUTATION WITH PC GAMERS?!?!?!"

forsites
forsites

Well, i'm not sure how authentic this article is, but i dont buy any always on DRM games, so i dont really know if they are still practicing it. However, Uplay is not always online DRM, UPlay is like steam, its the game itself which requires premenant online connection. so dont mix the two of them. however, always online DRM should be dumped for good if its still there for some titles.

However, if they want to improve their relationship with PC gamers, then:

1. Start by giving us all Games/DLCs same release date as consoles.

2. Work to optimize their games on PC as they are crappy quality in terms of performance and not even utilizing 50% of PC hardware with the crappy console ports they are throwing to us.

3. Listen to our comments on the forum about bugs, crashes, glitches,... reply back not leaving us hanging not knowing whats going on, and then say we read your comments carefully and working on them while nothing is being addressed nor done.

4. Early and Quick patches to fix and address issues that are raised by community and not ditch the game after 2 months of release to work on next titles or DLCs, then have those implemented there to milk us and let us buy the new one.

5. Get better support without scripted answers that wont solve anything.

6. Better implementation for DLCs downloading without the need to use download links stupid implementation, where the one should go and search for the content to download while he has season pass or bought it. while consoles players just go to Extras and select what they want without the silly approach they practice on PC.

Majkic666
Majkic666

improve relations with PC gamers? i dont really belive you...

First of all you are so arrogant and dont know "How" to listen to gamers at all the first thing you do when you meet a PC Gamer is yelling PIRATE! instead of being nice....

Second of all get rid of your crap called UPLAY its the worst DRM ever and the biggest reason why i reject to buy your games for my PC....

Proof of you being arrogant and stupid is your actions, adding more Companies and Games to Uplay instead of removing it.... People scream remove while you do the opposite

Renegade__angel
Renegade__angel

They don't care. Delayed releases, annoying DRM, poor quality, etc. They only care about the money, and it shows in their games. Ignore this apology, it is nothing but lies.

made_u_look
made_u_look

@jtthegame316 Yep all I hear from console gamers are hey can I install mods on my game? LOL. Consoles are for children who have zero perspective on how big the gaming world is, no imagination, no creativity, zero lack of understanding on how purchase and build. All console gamers get are loud mouth children screaming over Xbox Live and PSN trolling other gamers. Sort of what your doing here, screaming nonsense on a PC gaming article.

doktron
doktron

@dxBIGBOSSxb I believe most people who pirate games wouldnt buy the game anyways.A lot of them are teenagers who dont have access to the money to buy these games.Most adult gamers buy most of their games legally.I have over 200 games bought and paid for totally legally, and I know I am not the only one.I would also gladly pay 10.00$ extra(or some other arbitrary amount) for my PC games to help fight/pay for pirated games. (Console games are about 20.00$ more than pc games anyways)

rarson
rarson

@dxBIGBOSSxb

"Hell Witcher 2, Hotline Miami and Dark Souls lost a MASSIVE amount of profit due to rampant piracy."

That's simply not true. This same old tired argument has been pitched by the industry for years: "downloaded copies equals lost sales." For starters, as I mentioned below, there are legitimate paying customers who are downloading pirated copies out of necessity. There are also potential customers who simply want to evaluate a game beyond a small demo before they buy (perhaps if shareware made a comeback, piracy would decrease). Finally, there are also those people who never had any intention of buying the product anyway. Only one of those groups equates to lost sales, and that's only if the game sucks.,

"I ask you what is a better alternative to DRM."

Steam, DRM-free games, education of the gaming community on the benefits of supporting developers, not treating your customers like criminals, not crippling your software and wasting money on DRM. GOG is a service that THRIVES on DRM-free games. So just because you see no alternatives doesn't mean there aren't any.

dxBIGBOSSxb
dxBIGBOSSxb

A solution that works exclusively to YOU may not work for them. Take into account these people have jobs, they have families, and they need income, regardless of player feedback, and the stress of worrying about their game selling or not. Giving games away practicaly for free isn't exactly a great alternative. I'm not saying they wouldn't make money, but the sure as heck will LOSE SOME money.

doktron
doktron

@richten71 thing is, I dont believe their numbers.And DRM dosent work and only punishes legal gamers.

rarson
rarson

@richten71  

Unfortunately, one of the direct results of adding DRM to a game is MORE piracy. In some extreme cases, DRM outright cripples the product, and the legitimate buyer has to choose between not playing a game they paid money for or downloading a pirated copy. This also tends to alienate those customers, destroying the very market they're intending to protect. And it costs money and resources to add this junk to the software, too.

I like Guillemot, but he's clearly wrong here. DRM is not just ineffective, it's damaging. If Ubisoft can't figure out how to deliver PC games without DRM, then they don't understand the platform.

Hurvl
Hurvl

@angelyoteYou want the bigger evil to be evil to the (compared to EA) lesser evil? That's a funny way of expressing dislike. I don't own any Ubisoft published games except for Dark Messiah of Might and Magic (2006) and don't own many modern games thanks to my backlog, so I'm not bothered personally by them. I do like that they're trying to make things better for PC gamers, with the online activation instead of always-online DRM, being a good first step. We'll see what this desire to improve relationship with PC gamers is worth in the future.

2bitSmOkEy
2bitSmOkEy

@Thanatos2k To be fair, Ubisoft doesn't abuse DLC on the same level like say, Activision or Capcom.  They generally release big chunks of paid content, which is fine so long as it's high quality. 


The biggest offenders are uplay (we already have Steam) and the long delayed ports.  They make really good games, I hope they will continue to bring them to us PC gamers.

rarson
rarson

@Thanatos2k  

 The main reason to pirate is convenience. Publishers have made playing legitimate copies less convenient than playing pirated copies. They're wasting money on DRM that doesn't prevent anyone from pirating and alienating their legitimate users in the process. It amazes me that any software company hasn't figured this out yet.

Some games you have to pirate even if you buy a legit copy. I never played it, but Spore was a good example. Steam has largely eliminated my need to pirate anything, but it sure is annoying when I log into Steam, only to have Uplay prompt me to log in when I try to play a game. Ubisoft doesn't seem to understand this.

eric_neo3
eric_neo3

@Thanatos2k ^This.

Will they do any of it? No, they just realized that when they called 95% of PC gamers pirates a while back that it was bad for business and now they want to feign being friendly to the customers they've been screwing over for years.

rarson
rarson

@forsites  

Yeah, it's like Steam except it's completely unnecessary and unwanted. Like when I buy a game on Steam, load it up, and I'm asked to log into another account that I never use. Uplay doesn't require being online to play the game, just like Steam doesn't. However, it's yet another hindrance between me and my game.

The thing that really pisses me off is that they shut down their DRM servers, but they didn't remove the DRM from the software. So if you buy Assassin's Creed 2, for instance, the game freezes for about 5 seconds every time you achieve something in the game as it attempts to connect to a server that doesn't exist. You have to firewall the program just to get the game to play properly. On top of that, I'm still prompted to log into Uplay, even though I'm not letting the game connect.

I love many of the games they publish, but I dislike the overall experience of running many of them on my PC. They don't seem to get that the whole experience matters, not just the part when the game is playing. Shoving Uplay into more games is a step in the wrong direction.

CP2077
CP2077

@Renegade__angel its funny you know the art director and crew of artists they have had working for them on assassins creed games are some of the best, but the games still ended up turning into complete trash.

the worst thing Ubisoft ever did tho was their DRM and they back it up saying something along the lines off all PC gamers are pirates. I still remember reading this in PC gamer or something, it was such arrogance.

They are also one of the forerunners of DLC, mind you everyone is doing that now, so sad.

X-RS
X-RS

@dxBIGBOSSxb  

 Well, food for thought

-a pirated copy is not always played/enjoyed. Some people just demo them actually

-While I don't disagree with loss on making a game for PC you can neither prove there would NOT be a profit, as neither of us have numbers.

-The issue for devs not amking $ for the fam is stability. Right now it's hire>80% done>fire. Piracy can't save this. Few companies get this right (Valve, Bungie)


-Takes money to make money. Not sure if your aware but the net profit for the xbox as a whole FINALLY turned black this gen. Sometimes having your game get high dls can really be an investment if its a franchise as lastly, NOT EVERYONE IS A GREEDY SOB!!!!

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

@2bitSmOkEy @Thanatos2k The only thing Ubisoft hasn't really done much of is on-disk DLC.  They've done EVERYTHING else.

Assassin's Creed 2 being the prime example - parts of the MAIN GAME ARE MISSING and were sold as DLC later.

Ubisoft is just as bad as EA and Capcom.