Ubisoft may be a little late to the game on this one, what with Valve releasing Steam eight years ago, and EA opening Origin's doors last year. At least with all that time to mull over the decision they've brought something polished to the table, right? Hmm, at least the games are cheap.
So, as a responsible journalist I downloaded and installed Ubisoft's new service and bought a game to check on how well the program ran. That, and H.A.W.X 2 was going for £1. Yes, to draw in the punters for the launch of their new service Ubisoft are discounting a game to a £1 each day until the 19 August. Not bad. If only I could play it.
The problems of purchasing started early.
After selecting H.A.W.X 2 from the shop's Gamescom offers - there's only a few on offer at the moment and it's probably worth avoiding anything that isn't the daily £1 deal because who knows which will be going for 100 pennies tomorrow - I entered my card details and selected the 'Click and Buy' service to handle my transaction. Do Not Select Click And Buy To Handle Your Transaction. It asks you to enter your card details, again. Then when I tried to make my purchase it said to correct the error in my card details. It didn't say which detail, though. I checked. I had made no error. I re-entered them anyway. Same message of condescension from the program. But I had not made any error.
At which point I opened a beer.
I tried PayPal. Old trusting PayPal, you will accept my card details. It did. Though I still had to enter them afresh. Now at least Ubisoft had taken my money. Good times to be had, yes? No. Uplay took me to a screen with a serial number. Odd. Steam just installs the game. Where is the install button? There was none. I copied the serial code into a notepad and went searching.
I found a my games tab on Uplay's home screen. It was empty and said I had no games. Very strange.
Eventually, without announcement, after searching around online for assistance and coming here to write a lengthy post about the problem, it slunk into my games folder. So, Uplay is here but it's having a few teething problems. Still, £1 games.
Ubisoft's Worldwide Director for Online Games, Stephanie Perotti, had this to say to our press release intern “Uplay PC is a great way for customers to discover Ubisoft’s games, connect with their friends and gaming communities, and win achievements and content that’s not available anywhere else.
"For PC gamers that are already fans of Ubisoft’s titles or have been considering trying some of our classics, this promotion is a great deal, and our way of saying thank you for their support.”
Ubisoft is currently only offering its own games for sale and, as far as I can make out, other games you may have bought through Steam which made use of the old Uplay launcher do not update into this new desktop client.