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30% of games sold are open world, and Ubisoft is making the most of that

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30% of games sold are open world, and Ubisoft is making the most of that

Ubisoft held a pretty interesting investor call this week where they discussed the publisher’s record breaking financial year. During the call, CEO Yves Guillemot stated that in 2014 open world games were responsible for 30% of the total games market share. He went on to demonstrate that in the top ten selling games of 2014, five of them were open world, and three of them were Ubisoft's open world games. 

It looks like, despite Unity’s hiccup, that Ubisoft are still in a rather strong position. 

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More like Long Division — Ubisoft delay post-apocalyptic multiplayer shooter to 2016

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More like Long Division — Ubisoft delay post-apocalyptic multiplayer shooter to 2016

It seems like only yesterday we were watching the first gameplay footage of The Division from E3, aquiver with anticipation and fear that it might never come out on PC. Well, it’s starting to feel like that nightmare is coming true: in Ubisoft’s latest report to investors, the French games giant announced that we won’t be stalking the streets of New York until 2016 at the earliest.

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Keep an eye on Big Ben: Assassin's Creed: Syndicate livestream happening a bit later on

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Keep an eye on Big Ben: Assassin's Creed: Syndicate livestream happening a bit later on

The game once whispered about as Assassin’s Creed: Victory - because, brilliantly, Victorians - is now Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate. It’s the first full game in the series to be built by Ubisoft Quebec, after they impressed with their Black Flag DLC - and quite possibly the first Assassin’s Creed to have swappable protagonists in brother-sister duo Jacob and Evie.

After more leaks than you’d find in a chicken pie, Ubisoft are finally ready to talk to the great unwashed.

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Assassin’s Creed: Victory is actually Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate, will be revealed this Tuesday

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Assassin’s Creed: Victory is actually Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate, will be revealed this Tuesday

Heaven’s above, someone’s aquired marketing ‘materials’ from Ubisoft and passed them on to members of the press, like hooded assassin’s sharing details of the next Templar missions. These materials reveal some interesting tidbits on the next Assassin’s Creed game. Yeah, that London one we all thought was called Victory. Turns out that was just a codename, and the name of our next stab-a-thon is Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate.

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Ubisoft is releasing 3 versions of Might & Magic Heroes VII; here's what's in them

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Ubisoft is releasing 3 versions of Might & Magic Heroes VII; here's what's in them

Ubisoft is selling three versions of Might & Magic Heroes VII, the publisher announced today. There’s a standard edition, which comes in digital and physical flavours, a rather fancy Collector’s Edition, and a Digital Deluxe Edition, which is like the collector’s edition, but digital and not nearly as good. 

Pre-ordering any of them nets you access to the closed beta, kicking off next month, if that’s your thing. 

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Ubisoft reveals Rainbow Six Siege's British Counter Terrorism Unit

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Ubisoft reveals Rainbow Six Siege's British Counter Terrorism Unit

Britain’s a terrifying place. Monstrous facsimiles of humans are fighting over who will tell everyone else what to do for the next few years, gangs of youths prowl the streets saying threatening things like “Afternoon" and “How’s it going?", and with the country no longer being gripped by cold weather, there are lary wasps everywhere. Everywhere. 

It’s no wonder, then, that we need a Counter Terrorism Unit. A British Counter Terrorism Unit, uniquely suited to deal with the scary things that happen here, like the rising price of cigarettes or the weird look I get from some of my neighbours. Sometimes they deal with other problems, though, as you will see below in the first of a new Rainbow Six video series, detailing the different special forces units. 

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Assassin's Creed Chronicles: China releases tomorrow, has an amazing trailer

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Assassin's Creed Chronicles: China releases tomorrow, has an amazing trailer

The first instalment of the side-scrolling, Mark of the Ninja-like Assassin’s Creed Chronicles comes out tomorrow on the PC. It comes with a cool launch trailer that gives us some background on the main character, Shao Jun, and also a taste of the game’s distinctive art style.

Honestly, I don’t think I’ve been this excited about an Assassin’s Creed concept since Black Flag.

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Ubisoft prep more Child of Light projects

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Ubisoft prep more Child of Light projects

The release of Child of Light was a pivotal moment for Ubisoft. It was the baby of Patrick Plourde, who worked his way through the ranks at the publisher’s flagship Montreal studio and cashed in his influence for a shot at an oddball JRPG written wholly in verse.

The results didn’t wow everyone, but the example has rippled through Ubisoft, who have since funded projects like Valiant Hearts in Montpellier and Grow Home in Newcastle. And more is yet to happen in the Child of Light universe.

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Rainbow Six Siege alpha is a brilliant skeleton of a game

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Rainbow Six Siege alpha is a brilliant skeleton of a game

My ears are ringing and every noise I hear is deep and bassy. A dust cloud from a hole in the wall conceals everything in front of me, but as it dissipates there’s a flash of gunfire, then a response from an ally standing next to me. Another explosion, this time from the barricade, heaps chaos on top of chaos. A man starts to sing in French and another swears in English. 

The wall-demolishing vandal is dead, but his cohorts pour through a door, stepping on the splinters and wooden planks that were once our barricade. More gunfire, lighting up the room, piercing the smoke, and then… victory. The Frenchman is singing again. Yes, I think to myself, sing it. It was my first Rainbow Six Siege victory, and it felt great. 

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Heroes of Might & Magic 7 is a slave to its conservative fans

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Heroes of Might & Magic 7 is a slave to its conservative fans

It’s rare for a game developer to be so open about what went wrong. It’s rarer still for a game developer to be so open about a conflict between them and their community. Limbic, the developers responsible for Might and Magic, are doing both. Because they’ve got a problem.

The core of the Heroes of Might & Magic games haven’t changed much in the past 20 years. Since the beginning you’ve commanded your heroes and their attached war bands around the campaign map, battling monster encampments, capturing towns, and collecting conveniently abandoned resources. Each iteration brought better graphics and new armies but the core mechanics remained the same.

There’s a reason why the games haven’t changed much. It’s because the fans don’t want change. They actively campaign against change. That puts Limbic, the team responsible for pushing the series forward, in an awkward position.

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Ubisoft announces the Assassin's Creed Chronicles trilogy, a historical world tour

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Ubisoft announces the Assassin's Creed Chronicles trilogy, a historical world tour

Assassin’s Creed is heading to new, interesting places. Ubisoft has announced the Assassin’s Creed Chronicles trilogy today, where each game will take place in a different time and place, all connected by Assassin’s Creed lore and 2.5D action platforming. 

The first game, Assassin’s Creed Chronicles: China, was revealed last year as part of the now dead Assassin’s Creed Unity season pass and will launch on April 22nd. It will be followed by two more adventures, one in India and the other in Russia, which will launch separately later in the year. 

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Far Cry 4 grows a new survival-focused open world today for Valley of the Yetis

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Far Cry 4 grows a new survival-focused open world today for Valley of the Yetis

After finishing the fantastic (and in places fantastical) Far Cry 4 last week, I felt no need to continue picking up the masks dropped by butter-fingers serial killers. Nor was I compelled to download the mish-mash of competitive modes and odd permadeath excursions that’d formed its DLC to date.

Valley of the Yetis is something different and intriguing, though: a new open world that takes advantage of Ubisoft’s free-rambling mechanics but fits them into a new structure - one that sets echoes of Minecraft and Fortnite bouncing between the peaks of the Himalayas.

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Why Far Cry 4 is wonderful for letting me choose my own subcontinental adventure

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Why Far Cry 4 is wonderful for letting me choose my own subcontinental adventure

There’s been a tendency in the more recent open-world Ubisoft games to track your progress with slightly unnerving precision. And even, after long periods of absence, to email you with the figures - as if you’ve failed to fulfill an obligation.

Any day now I’m expecting a note through the door to inform me that, though I’ve saved Kyrat, some 31% of the country remains technically unliberated. But I don’t think it’ll bother me, or awaken some untended completionist compulsion. Rather it’ll remind me of what an excellent job Far Cry 4 did in letting me play not just how I wanted, but how much I wanted.

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