Assassin's Creed Syndicate Has Microtransactions

But Ubisoft stresses that they are entirely optional and content is not locked behind a paywall.

239 Comments

Like other Assassin's Creed games and many AAA titles today, Ubisoft's upcoming Assassin's Creed Syndicate will offer microtransactions, the publisher confirmed on Wednesday.

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Ubisoft Quebec development director Francois Pelland stresses that the microtransactions are entirely optional and are aimed at people who want to speed up their play. In addition, everything in Syndicate can be acquired through normal gameplay.

"Assassin's Creed Syndicate will include paid options to save time and accelerate progress," Pelland told IGN. "The model for Assassin's Creed Syndicate is quite similar to Black Flag, allowing players who do not have time to fully explore our huge game world to still be able to eventually acquire the game’s most powerful gear as well as other items. Rest assured, all of AC Syndicate's content is available without paying anything additional and the game has been balanced such that microtransactions are 100% optional."

Specific pricing details for Syndicate's microtransactions were not announced. For comparison, Black Flag's many microtransaction options started at around $2.

The Syndicate release date is set for October 23 across Xbox One and PlayStation 4, while the PC edition arrives on November 19. The game is not coming to Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3.

GameSpot recently played a few Syndicate missions. You can read our impressions here.

What do you make of Syndicate having micotransactions? Let us know in the comments below.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Avatar image for Fade2black001
Fade2black001

You know gameing has gone down the shitter when you have pay to win single player games. And companies like Ubisoft wonder why people pirate...

Avatar image for hypgnosis
hypgnosis

Cool. The lazy rich people that buy this game day one and shell out cash for microtransactions can make up the price difference for smart people like me that wait for Syndicate to be super cheap or don't buy at all.

Avatar image for G4mBi7
G4mBi7

The review almost made me buy it, then i read this article and went back to boycotting ubi :D

Avatar image for chatphon
chatphon

can't wait for micro-transactions that i can pay and the game can play it self for me.

Avatar image for LE5LO
LE5LO

Headline should have a subtitle reading "The bear still shits in the woods...". with an added metaphor of the Bear being Ubisoft and the woods being the paying customers wallet, that's accurate enough. I won't be buying it for many obvious reasons besides the financial reasons / getting an incomplete experience without paying extra. This series has gone on too long trying to justify full price releases with little additions here and there, adding a rope to the A.C engine is a nice addition, but tweaking all the old events in the missions to make them feel like we haven't done them before is getting really old now. Climb, Sneak, Fight, Repeat 40 more times till you reach credits...zzzz

The formula should be re-invented (not just like Watch-Dogs, taking bits here and there). Ticking off mission after mission that play near identically should not be the way developers continue to craft games, it's so damn lazy for yearly sequels and doesn't justify the price they're asking for more of the same so frequently.

Give it a break and try something new again Ubisoft, or watch your sales start to dwindle as a result of your greed, stagnancy / laziness. You're running your name and brand into the ground.

Avatar image for ChaoticKnuckles
ChaoticKnuckles

This shouldn't be a surprise. Both Black Flag and Rogue had these. They're called time saver packs and they basically just unlock where all of a certain collectible are on your map or give you a bunch of resources so you don't have to earn them.

In Black Flag they didn't increase the grind for people like me who never bought them, I earned more than enough resources in a single afternoon to build everything in the game and I didn't spend a dime on time saver DLC. This really isn't a big deal if it functions the same way that it did in Black Flag.

Avatar image for Kaguya_Kimimaro
Kaguya_Kimimaro

SURPRISING..............Not, Still getting Syndicate, but Screw Microtransactions and any developers who put them in their games, freaking Cancer to the Industry.....

Avatar image for king_jamz
king_jamz

Ha. Well, I had no problem exploring the world in Black Flag to find all the stuff. So as long as it is just the same as that. Then I'll keep my money and explore the game world like your supposed to do in an open world game. Since when did playing games becoming "let's see how fast I can power through it" instead of sitting back and enjoy the experience. And don't even get me started on those "speed play throughs". No body gives a shit how fast you can beat the single player.

Avatar image for HippyTrippy
HippyTrippy

So what's the point then? How do they want their company to look?

"The model for Assassin's Creed Syndicate is quite similar to Black Flag, allowing players who do not have time to fully explore our huge game world to still be able to eventually acquire the game’s most powerful gear as well as other items"

By making them pay more? This was already paid for when people buy the game. There's got to be a better solution rather than dig deeper into valued customers pockets, for content they already own. Not a good look, man.

Avatar image for aethle
Aethle

Honestly, while I can't say I like the idea...I'd MUCH rather have a Black Flag style 'show on map, but physically go there to collect the unlocks' microtransaction thing than the Unity system with buying additional unlock tokens and all that. I'm glad they are going that route, it seems, compared to what they did in Unity.

Avatar image for taqo
taqo

lol microtransactions, such a lazy company. Rather watch my money burn in a fire then to give it to ubisoft

Avatar image for T0ny510
T0ny510

There was a good reason why some of the gear in unity cost 2 million+ gold. Just saying.

Avatar image for sofajockey
SofaJockey

It's no different to the 'cheat codes' people used to use in times gone by, just that they charge for it these days. Won't be long to wait, my copy is installing onto my Xbox...

Avatar image for RS13
RS13

@sofajockey: Except that when cheat codes were common, devs didn't make content almost impossible to access in hopes of enticing people to use cheat codes.

Avatar image for blueboxdoctor
blueboxdoctor

I don't know why people see this is a bad thing. As they said, everything is available through playing the game and unlocking it. I have played recent Assassin Creed games and have had no issue with content, and I don't go with micro-transactions. And I can't blame them for having them. After all, if people are willing to buy them then why not make them available? Since it's single-player content it's not like it'll give someone an unfair advantage for competitive gaming.

Avatar image for punksterdaddy
punksterdaddy

@blueboxdoctor:

This is part of the problem, making people think it's not essential to the game. I believe that this IS a bad thing, sorry bud. Please take the time to read this below and inform yourself, but if not I understand, I just wanted to show you why it is bad for all of us, even for us who don't buy into micro-transactions.

The reason for it being a bad thing (isn't a simple one to explain), even if it isn't required to play the game, it's that they have created the game in such a way to make you want to buy them.

How tedious do you find it, as you are going around picking up these Animus Fragments, Chests, Feathers etcetera? Well that is designed that way to frustrate you and ultimately bore you, making some give in and pay for the pack that unlocks all this for you without the legwork.

Now, even if you do not mind picking up every last item available in game, well that takes quite a bit of time and imagine if you didn't do it at all, well then your map looks like you've done virtually nothing and there is something very uniquely human that says to us, is that's somehow an unacceptable state to leave it in, in our sub-conscience.

Even if you think none of this and/or you believe this is all stupid if you or anyone falls for this shady practice, it doesn't matter, you are not who the are creating the game for. They want to sell you a AAA Game and any other guff they can.

The fact that they continue to do this every year, proves to me that it works on at least some level and again even if you think this is all nonsense, where I've personally created this as some sort of conspiracy, then they still win as they have done it such a subtle level, it convinces the average person it does not exist and worst case scenario is that these devs are just lazy at making games. In reality, quite the opposite is true. The are working hard for your money, just not in the areas we would like them to.

By making less actual game play content and then packing the game tight with meaningless content, they are playing tricks with your mind. Even if you buy the game and only the game and play through it all with no in game purchases, the gameplay that is there has been designed to cater to those who will pay.

In short they are not making the best games they can, but the most profitable. So we Gamers are the ones who lose.

Ubisoft, Electronic Arts and Activision have all researched into this area and frequently use these tactics in their current business models.

Don't take my word for it though, Google "Behavioural Game Design." Then see what you can find out for yourself. It's actually quite disturbing how much effort they go into making sure you are spending money on them.

Some money isn't enough for these people, they want ALL the money... Sadly.

All the best.

Avatar image for blueboxdoctor
blueboxdoctor

@punksterdaddy: Like I said, I can't blame them for doing it. It's easy money that people are willing to spend. Is it the most respectable? No. But it makes sense on their part. I recall many games in the past requiring a certain amount of tedious items to be collected, so this is nothing overly new, just now they can charge you to not do that part. Would I ever pay for this? No, but people will. But the fact is, if people will continue to buy these things then they will continue to sell them. Clearly there is a market for this. Who would be part of that market I do not know, as I don't know anyone who has bought one of these type of content packs for a game. As for not making high quality games and games just for profit as you said, well, I've had plenty of enjoyment out of recent EA, Ubisoft, and Capcom games (Activison just hasn't made anything recently that interests me and Destiny just didn't do it for me as a game).

I understand how, as a consumer it can be seen as wrong (basically what you wrote out), however, from the point of a the companies, it does make sense and again, I can't fault them for it considering I have not felt like I missed out on anything in any recent games I have played. Now, maybe I got lucky and avoided games that have had more obvious issues with these sort of DLC practices, but so far I have not felt cheated.

Avatar image for blokk
blokk

Here we go again.i know why i dont buy ubisoft games anymore.their dlc and pay to win policies are criminal and disgusting. Its too Bad people are that dumb and pay for these things and buy every shitty already in disc dlc publishers push out.if that wasnt the case this politics would have died long time ago. My Motto for these publishers is that their games wont hit my harddrive unless they are pirated/cracked or them are complete editions second hand.

Avatar image for sofajockey
SofaJockey

@blokk: Doesn't seem to be anything 'pay to win' about this, it's like needing to find schematics to make stuff and the payment is 'here, have the schematics for a price'. I find using them lessens the game so I'll go and fetch them myself.

Avatar image for peekaboo0
peekaboo0

@sofajockey: I hate people like you. People who thinks that microtransactions are okay. It's NEVER OKAY in a 60$ game. What if your precious DA:I (I know you from BSN) has micro transactions in SP? Oh, I assume you would be okay for this, because you'd rather grind through those horrible, repetitive areas. You're easy person to please, really.

Avatar image for Flyin3lvl
Flyin3lvl

Lmao and the mass of dumbasses will buy them. Hence why micro is so commom.

The more people pay the more games will do this. If it wasnt populer this trend would have died out years ago.

Avatar image for MacrossSpecial
MacrossSpecial

@Flyin3lvl: A couple years from now you'll probably have to pay $60 for the free world and all the missions will be paid DLC.

Who knows what will happen in the future? People seem to be okay with the lack of QA departments on projects these days, broken games shipping and having to wait for patches. These companies are just going to keep pushing to see what they can get away with, and I really do think that the answer will be that they can do whatever they want.

Avatar image for S0LIDUS311
S0LIDUS311

Thankfully I quit playing this franchise after Assassin's Creed II.

Avatar image for Roach
Roach

I wonder now that more games are including entirely 'optional' microtransactions, if the time to get all these items or skills in games now take longer to get than they ever have? Saying something is optional but making it take 2000 hours to obtain is another thing entirely.

These are full priced games where the price of an in-game item has been changed (as an example) from 30 gold coins to 300 gold coins just to incentivise the player to pay even more money because it now takes you 10 times longer to obtain. What right does a Publisher have to charge me for something when they are giving you nothing extra in return, where the model to encourage you to spend money has been artificially created by the game creators themselves.

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streamline

Too bad it doesn't mean paying using the in game currency my character can pilfer from unsuspecting NPCs in the game.

Avatar image for Fursnake
Fursnake

Meh, I'll be skipping this one like I skipped Unity, just not feeling it.

Avatar image for spielchen-maker
Spielchen-maker

Its hard for me to belive, that transactions are 100% optional. I think that there will be nasty trick. Maybe they add also a trophy, which say "Optional merchant"?:) Another developers can make big games without transactions. One of them is CI Games and new Sniper Ghost Warrior 3, which will be released next year. We can see how it can be done without any stupid ideas for our money.

Avatar image for biggamerdude
BigGamerDude

You want no glitches? 2 dollars! You wanna play the game? 7 dollars! Oh, you want money to HACK your weapon instead of pay 1,000,000 in game money? 10 dollars!

Avatar image for starjay009
starjay009

YAAAAWWWWWNNNN UbiSHAFT doing it again. Shafting us with their big shlongs right in the a$$. I ain't falling for this crap after what happened with Unity. Never !

Avatar image for Shinobi120
Shinobi120

Whatever, Ubisoft. I'm done buying your crap.

You & the rest of the AAA publishers are making it more easy for me to save my money.

Avatar image for Alexk91
Alexk91

Just stop Ubisoft... please. I get that you're a 21st-century publisher and your utter lack of self-awareness isn't that unique today, but I can confirm with absolute certainty that doing this crap is a sure-fire way to lose customers. What you see as "optional" micro-payments that are allegedly harmless to the experience, actually do hurt the experience, and their presence in the game already has me predisposed to pass on your game and play the one that doesn't have micro-payments.

Avatar image for sofajockey
SofaJockey

@Alexk91: You are right that this give a bad impression. These transaction are in my opinion completely unnecessary. If they were not there, people would have to actually play the game to get their stuff.

Avatar image for dalepickstock
dalepickstock

Saw the headline felt compelled to comment with my grievance's but couldn't be bothered to explore my large keyboard what I need is Gamespot to add microtransactions for expletive laden rants to speed up my disgust

Avatar image for eternaldragoonx
eternaldragoonx

LOLZ good luck w that. Happy I passed on Unity and it looks like I'm doing the same for Syndicate.

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snugglebear

"Would you like for your blades to actually be sharp? $2.50!"

Avatar image for morzen9214
Morzen9214

@snugglebear: lol. How much for shiny armor?

Avatar image for snugglebear
snugglebear

@morzen9214:

"Imma need about tree fiddy."

Avatar image for Richardthe3rd
Richardthe3rd

I think ubi has done enough to damage their name that people will think twice before buying this.

This is just fleecing already loyal customers and is stupid from a marketing standpoint. Creates bad will and encourages the developer to make gametime feel less valuable.

Avatar image for waynethejones
WayneTheJones

@Richardthe3rd: The bar is sow low for game publishers, it's like we have to chose the game that is the least money grubbing.

Avatar image for HonorOfGod
HonorOfGod

Cheat codes ..... what ever happened to them.

Avatar image for sofajockey
SofaJockey

@HonorOfGod: They are now micro transactions...

Avatar image for the_crap_of_us
The_Crap_Of_Us

Wii U MasterRace, bitches!!!XD

Avatar image for johncas89
johncas89

Ubi should make sure their game works first, should be priority.

Avatar image for punksterdaddy
punksterdaddy

Talk about Double Think.

Who wants a game so bad that they pay full price for it, with their hard earned money and then in order to help beat the game, pay again for the privilege? It's a contradiction.

I know Ubisoft has done this before but I still find it ridiculous that this actually exists.

This industry really has gone to shit.

Avatar image for Flyin3lvl
Flyin3lvl

@punksterdaddy: its not the industry gone to shit itz the mass of dumbasses who buy this shit making it popualer for the devs to think well we suckered them and they brought it lets see bow far we can push this oh look they brought again and now its the norm - giving the public what they want pay to win not play to win

Avatar image for punksterdaddy
punksterdaddy

@Flyin3lvl:

Your comment doesn't disprove the industry having gone to shit, it reinforces it.

After all, who started these tactics in the first place? Who are the ones who focused and researched in this area? The industry HAS gone to shit friend.

It really isn't fair to blame people who fall for these shady practices, as the MTs are designed that way, by manipulating people who know no better.

All we can do is inform and educate those who do not see the harm in buying games such as these. I am not infallible either, as I loved AC IV despite it's dodgy dealings and it's padded map of useless collectables.

Calling people "Dumbasses," helps no one but the very people who are doing this shite in the first place.

Avatar image for jeffreybernabe
jeffreybernabe

In order for this trend to stop.. Don't Support/Buy that game...

Avatar image for Flyin3lvl
Flyin3lvl

@jeffreybernabe: and we both know that wont happen

Avatar image for BabeNewelll
BabeNewelll

fUbisoft selling cheats now

Avatar image for JustPlainLucas
JustPlainLucas

I remember back when there was a way to speed up progress in games if you didn't have time to explore them. That way was called CHEAT CODES! Honestly, if you don't have the time to play open world games, don't buy them...