Ubisoft News | PCGamesN

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Heroes of Might & Magic III is getting an HD makeover and launches next month

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Heroes of Might & Magic III is getting an HD makeover and launches next month

I was grounded several times thanks to Heroes of Might & Magic III as a wayward youth. I could hardly be blamed for ignoring trigonometry or yet another bloody Shakespeare play when such a monumentally addictive strategy game was just sitting their, in my PC. But now, almost 30, I’m gleefully anticipating spending however much time I want with the recently announced HD remake.

Fifteen years after it first came out, HoMM 3 is getting a new coat of paint and Steamworks support. Along with the PC release, you’ll be able to grab it on tablet if fighting fantastical turn-based battles is the sort of thing you long for when stuck on the bus or sprawled on the sofa. 

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Ghost Recon Phantoms pulls off unlikely infiltration of Steam's most-played list

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Ghost Recon Phantoms pulls off unlikely infiltration of Steam's most-played list

You’re a PC gamer, so you’ll know that even a mediocre launch can decimate the population of a decent multiplayer game. But there’s nothing in the hurriedly-scribbled rulebook for online games to prevent publishers from simply trying again.

Final Fantasy XIV was redeveloped practically from scratch to become one of the best MMOs on PC the second time around. And the half-remembered Ghost Recon Online, miserly and malfunctioning upon its first release in 2012, has now been successfully rechristened as Phantoms. It’s currently one of the most-played free-to-play games on Steam.

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The making of Watch_Dogs: money, manpower and Ubi Montreal

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The making of Watch_Dogs: money, manpower and Ubi Montreal

Pick any two Ubisoft earnings calls from the past couple of years - they’re all public record - and you’ll notice a familiar refrain emerge. Every three months, the publisher’s investors would call on Yves Guillemot to slash Watch_Dogs’ R&D costs. And every three months, the mild-mannered but steely CEO would politely refuse.

Those R&D figures represented the cost of doing something new at the bonkers scale Ubisoft routinely work at. Between 2009 and 2014, Watch_Dogs wasn’t just about NPC manipulation - it was a hardcore numbers game.

Try 98 motion capture sessions with 64 cameras - at a rate of two working days a month for five years. Or two new consoles with 150-200 MB of memory - more than enough to dislodge the last generation’s cap on animations, and bring in ballooning team sizes and spiralling budgets to match.

And in the face of it all, Ubisoft Montreal. A Canadian studio with a headcount of over 3000 and the audacity to make the maths work.

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Assassin’s Creed Unity patch fixes more than 300 bugs

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Assassin’s Creed Unity patch fixes more than 300 bugs

Assassin’s Creed Unity has more than its fair share of bugs - Arno was getting stuck in hay bales, falling through the floor, objectives weren’t completing, framerate issues. Heck, there’s a lot.

Ubisoft’s been working round the clock since release to get on top of the problems players are discovering and their next patch will be fixing more than 300 of them.

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Assassin’s Creed Unity patch will improve framerate while leaving crowd size the same

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Assassin’s Creed Unity patch will improve framerate while leaving crowd size the same

Assassin’s Creed Unity launched with a host of bugs. Two patches have already been released and a third is currently in development. One of Ubisoft's technical teams are racing to get framerate fixes into the next patch, providing players with a more consistent experience while playing.

Ubisoft have detailed the areas they think are causing the problem for players and thankfully they won’t be touching the size of crowds.

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Far Cry 4 pirates accidentally reveal themselves to Ubisoft

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Far Cry 4 pirates accidentally reveal themselves to Ubisoft

Far Cry 4 has an FOV slider, which is lucky - an iffy aspect ratio can cause nausea and leave PC shooters completely unplayable. But the option was added in a launch day patch, and you know who doesn’t download launch day patches? A pirate.

Ne’er-do-wells hammered Ubisoft’s Twitter accounts complaining about the missing feature - an act tantamount to admitting in public that they hadn’t bought the game.

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Assassin’s Creed Unity patch will stop Arno getting stuck in hay carts

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Assassin’s Creed Unity patch will stop Arno getting stuck in hay carts

Assassin’s Creed Unity launched with its fair share of bugs: NPCs were missing faces, Arno would get stuck in hay carts, and the game would crash frequently for some players. There was such a public backlash that Ubisoft’s stock fell.

Ubisoft announced that they were hard at work on a patch to resolve difficulties, particularly those affecting AMD users. They’ve released details of what the next patch will be addressing and it should make a significant improvement for a lot of players.

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Ubisoft stock price falls significantly following troubled Assassin’s Creed Unity launch

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Ubisoft stock price falls significantly following troubled Assassin’s Creed Unity launch

Ubisoft’s stock fell by 12.8% following Assassin’s Creed Unity’s release. While reviews have been largely positive, a great many bugs were discovered after the game launched - this ranges from animation glitches, to the player falling through the floor, to the online co-op failing to connect players.

Ubisoft also received a backlash from fans for withholding review copies from publications until the release day in the US and embargoing the reviews written from review events attended the week before.

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Assassin's Creed Unity AMD performance issues provoke prompt Ubisoft response

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Assassin's Creed Unity AMD performance issues provoke prompt Ubisoft response

Fraser had a fiddle with Assassin’s Creed Unity PC port yesterday, and came away with a number of technical reservations about Ubisoft’s Parisian playground.

While the most dramatic framerate troughs have been reserved for consoles, PC players have discovered performance problems across a range of rigs. In fact, the only point of consistency seems to be that AMD users have had the worst of it.

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The Crew: Everything We Know

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The Crew: Everything We Know

In The Crew Ubisoft want to create a racing game with real ambition: a simulation of the best bits of the United States for you to race through at over 100mph. They know their stuff in building cities and worlds, either in the Far Cry or Assassin’s Creed games, but The Crew’s ambition is ludicrous: the game's New York alone is the size of GTA IV’s Liberty City.

We've been hands-on with The Crew beta, and it's looking good. Here’s everything we know.

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Assassin’s Creed Unity launch trailer shows more running, jumping, and stabbing people

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Assassin’s Creed Unity launch trailer shows more running, jumping, and stabbing people

Ubisoft puts out more trailers for their games than most studios combined. Thankfully, the release of the Assassin’s Creed Unity launch trailer means we should be safe from videos for a short while.

The trailer has assassin’s doing what they do best, jumping across rooftops, stabbing aristocrats, and supporting social change at the end of a blade.

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Ubisoft’s new games aren't available on Steam in the UK. "UK customers wishing to purchase the game digitally can do so by visiting the Uplay store..."

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Ubisoft’s new games aren't available on Steam in the UK. "UK customers wishing to purchase the game digitally can do so by visiting the Uplay store..."

The Crew. Far Cry 4. Assassin’s Creed Unity. Ubisoft’s three-pronged Christmas assault will be happening everywhere but on Steam’s UK store. 

Steam versions of all three games are missing from the publisher’s UK listings for November and December, when they’ll be available to buy in shops.

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Ubisoft reveals what you'll need to drive around in The Crew

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Ubisoft reveals what you'll need to drive around in The Crew

With The Crew, Ubisoft continues to be best buds with Nvidia and - just like in Assassin’s Creed Unity (and most Ubisoft games for the last year or so), Nvidia GPU owners will be able to get a few more bells and whistles. 

When fiddling around with the ambient occlusion, you’ll be able to select HBAO+ for all your sexy shadow needs, while you’ll also get an extra anti-aliasing option in the form of TXAA. 

Ubisoft’s also revealed the system requirements for the game, which are a lot more reasonable than Unity’s. You’ll only need a GTX 670 or its equivalent to get the optimal experience, but the recommended requirements are actually lower. 

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Watch Dogs sold 9m copies. Ubisoft expect to make €1.4bn by end of financial year

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Watch Dogs sold 9m copies. Ubisoft expect to make €1.4bn by end of financial year

Ubisoft are sitting pretty on a big pile of money and it’s thanks, in large part, to Watch Dogs. The company’s published it’s earning report of the first half of their financial year, stating they’ve made €484 million in sales and that Watch Dogs has sold 9 million copies since launch.

More than that, they predict they’ll make a further €1 billion by the end of the financial year.

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Assassin’s Creed Unity trailer shows off Nvidia Gameworks enhancements

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Assassin’s Creed Unity trailer shows off Nvidia Gameworks enhancements

With Assassin’s Creed Unity seeing the series make the jump to the new generation of consoles we’re finally getting a game that makes better use of our humongous PCs. Ubisoft’s released a trailer that details the graphical lovelies we’ll see on PC.

I warn you now it’s all HBAO+ this and PCSS that. It looks well good, though.

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