Ubisoft Forward | E3 2021

Well the time has come for the Ubisoft conference as they brings us one of their Forward presentations. However, I feel it is important to remind you that Ubisoft is not out of the woods yet when it comes to their history of abusive higher ups and employment practices. It is, of course, up to each individual if you are comfortable giving them your support, though.

Rainbow Six: Extraction

They kicked off talking about a new Rainbow Six game. I’m not all that framiliar with these titles personally, but it appears to be a sort of spin off to Seige, as you are playing the same (and some new) characters in an all new scenario involving an alien threat. Interestingly, there is a mechanic in which your downed character is captured and you can’t play as them until you preform a successful rescue, giving a psuedo-permadeath to the game, which is an interesting touch. They showed off a lengthy cinematic trailer, followed by a segment of gameplay that was intensely scripted, intercut with cinematic elements throughout.

Rocksmith+

Some people might not remember Rocksmith, but it came onto the scene at the same time that Guitar Hero was all the rage, positioning itself from the angle of actually teaching you how to play guitar. Now it’s back and in a more accessible form, it seems. Now, your phone can be what you use for the capture of sound to find out how you are doing. They’re big on no extra gear being needed. It’s also in a subscription model, so if you fall off or need to take a break, that’s an option. They’re touting a lot of big promises on what’s going to be there. I for one am, at least, curious.

Riders Republic

When watching, my thought was “Fortnite, but make it extreme sports”. I mean, one of the first things I saw was a product placement for Clif Bars. There seems to be a lot of modes going on here, the most intriguing to me being a Splatoon-like mode where doing tricks on an element claims it for your team and you’ve got to get the most. There’s also a lot of character customization so we can expect a lot of micro-transactions, I suppose. My biggest worry would be that it seems like it may be trying to do a few too many things, so will it be able to do all of them well? We’ll have to see. It’s angled for September.

Rainbow Six: Siege

There’s more coming for Rainbow Six Siege. I don’t play it and never have, so I don’t feel qualified to talk that much about it. Besides, if this has you excited, you’d already have a good idea what’s going on here. Looks like quality of life updates are coming, though, which I am sure the players will appreciate.

Sizzle Reel

Next up was the quick fire sizzle reel of a bunch of thigs that are getting updates in some form. We’re able to see Ghost Recon Breakpoint, Brawlhala, For Honor, Trackmania, The Crew 2, and Watch Dogs: Legion. So… Good for all of them!

Just Dance 2022

Todrick Hall is the big seller for Just Dance 2022 this year, giving a exclusive arrangement for the game. Pretty nifty. However, what I noticed more was that this is the first Just Dance that won’t be coming to the Wii. The Wii is officially dead.

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla

Looks like we don’t need to expect a new Assassin’s Creed game for a while since they’re promising support not only for this year but into a second year as well. I’m a little surprised but it’s always seemed that letting the series rest for a bit has been beneficial for it and there is some interesting things happening here, even if I’m not playing.

We have to talk TV

The presentation had to grind to a halt in the middle because Ubisoft needed to remind us that they are making tv and movies now too. Mythic Quest is in a second season, that they advertised to us because not everyone is on Apple’s streaming service so it might have flown under the radar. A bit stronger was the Werewolves Within movie, which I was pleased to see isn’t taking itself too seriously and has a more tongue in cheek tone.

Far Cry 6

Far Cry is focusing all their marketing on the villain again, which isn’t a surprise. They seem to like going that route and by all accounts it works. Also, what else are you supposed to do when that’s where your biggest acting get is? That being said, this CG trailer looked kind of rough. Something about the models just looked a little below where we typically expect Ubisoft to be. There’s also a season pass, of course, bringing back old characters in some form, which will excite people, I’m sure.

Mario + Rabbids: Sparks of Hope

This one leaked before the presentation, but it’s good to see it confirmed. The last one was very well received, but there’s changes coming to shake things up, with the grid system being ditched, new characters being brought on, and the battles seeming to be some level of random encounter. I’m curious to see how this one will go, but I find the combination of lumas and rabbids to be absolutely terrifying.

Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora

All cinematic and little information leaves me unsure how to process this one. It’s surely because there are more Avatar films in the pipeline, but without any information and this not being as big of a franchise as they act like it is, it feels like it’s a very strange thing to end on.

However, ending on Avatar may be because this was one of very few games that they had that were not existing properties or expansions. Overall, it ended up feeling very middle of the road and I wasn’t personally wowed by what they had for us. Perhaps a few more surprises could have made things more exciting.

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