News | Skull and Bones launch trailer released

Ubisoft has published the launch trailer for their pirate adventure Skull and Bones.

Skull and Bones has players sailing the ocean as pirates, where the goal is to build a bigger ship and a fearsome reputation. The emphasis is on multiplayer gameplay. The game was announced in 2017 but has since been postponed several times. The game will be released on February 16 for PC, PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X and S, although people who purchase the special editions can get started three days earlier.

An open beta for the game started last night on the above platforms. “Explore the Red Isle, the coast of Africa, the high seas and the Indies throughout this open beta, and peacefully encounter or attack the various in-game factions.” During the beta, players can complete all campaign contracts up to the mission ‘Exterminate the Rat’. Special rewards can be unlocked in the process. Progress made can be carried over to the full game.


News | Update that adds New Game Plus to Assassin's Creed: Mirage is available now

Update 1.0.6, which adds, among other things, a New Game Plus mode to Assassin's Creed: Mirage, has been released.

The update has been available for download since 1:00 PM Dutch time. This means that players can now start the story again with the progress and equipment they have made.

Furthermore, the update adds improvements to parkouring. Main character Basim can bridge greater distances after the update. Finally, the update fixes several smaller issues, including those affecting the graphics, audio and UI.

A permadeath mode was also initially planned for the game. In it, players have to start the game all over again if they die. However, that option has been postponed to early 2024. There is no exact release date yet.


News | PC version Assassin's Creed Syndicate can be claimed for free

The PC version of Assassin's Creed Syndicate can currently be claimed for free.

Ubisoft is giving away the game via Ubisoft Connect. The game can be claimed until December 6.

Assassin’s Creed Syndicate was released in 2015 and is set during the industrial revolution in London. Players control twins Jacob and Evie Frye, who battle the Templars on the streets (and rooftops) of London.


News | Assassin's Creed Mirage studio continues to work on the franchise

Ubisoft Bordeaux, the studio behind Assassin's Creed Mirage released earlier this year, continues to work on the Assassin's Creed franchise.

This is evident from a tweet from Rik Godwin, who reports that he has completed his first week as head writer at the studio. He specifically mentions that he is working on the Assassin’s Creed franchise.

It is not clear what exactly is in development, but since Mirage has already been released and it is unlikely that DLC will appear for it, it could be a new game – although it is also possible that the studio will support other Ubisoft teams with the development of AC games.

Ubisoft Bordeaux also worked on Assassin’s Creed Valhalla DLC Wrath of the Druids and the live versions of the games Ghost Recon Wildlands, Ghost Recon Breakpoint and Rainbow Six Extraction.


Review | Assassin's Creed Mirage

Since the first Assassin's Creed, we have been more than sixteen years and almost as many main parts in the series. Nevertheless, we have never seen a game like the first part again. The sequels kept getting bigger and bigger, and became less and less about playing an assassin. Assassin's Creed Mirage goes back to the basics of the series.

Assassin’s Creed Mirage is set in Baghdad at the end of the ninth century. This time the leading role is for an old acquaintance: Basim. When we meet him in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, he is already a seasoned assassin with a double agenda. In Mirage he is still a young street rat, who spends his days doing some menial work until something happens that suddenly makes him join the mysterious Hidden Ones.

Yet Ubisoft manages to make the most confusing intro ever in the series. In the first few hours, names and locations are thrown around, and the game jumps from one topic to another.

When the game really starts, Assassin’s Creed Mirage is a piece of cake. The game is built on the same foundation as Valhalla, Odyssey and Origins, but without a lot of baggage. So the same controls and menus, but not a hundred thousand different weapons, skills and question marks on an intimidatingly large map.

Without axes, beards and boat trips, Assassin’s Creed is once again about playing assassin. The extermination of members of The Order was of course still in the more recent parts, but had actually become more of a side issue. Here that system is magnified. You must first track down and unmask each target before you can strike.

That detective work has more meat on the bones in Mirage than in the previous games, although you still don’t have to be called Sherlock Holmes to solve a case. Actually killing your target is a new challenge. There are always a few different approaches to explore, but ultimately they all have the same ending, the end of your target.

Assassin’s Creed Mirage therefore keeps the momentum going, but many murders also feel rather interchangeable due to the relatively high pace. You rush from target to target, without ever really thinking about anything. A longer adventure in a large bazaar stands out in a positive way and brings out the best of Mirage. The mission carefully builds up to taking out your target, and is also set in one of the most authentic locations in the game.

The colorful spices and carpets in the stalls pop from the otherwise sandy brown screen, while chromatic aberration gives the whole a warm, almost dreamy appearance. All this makes Baghdad very attractive.

Other missions felt more routine in comparison, like stabbing a random soldier on the streets of Baghdad. The game could have slowed down the tactical throttle a bit more often, in order to really highlight the atmospheric locations and the actual assassinations.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t help that the targets in question are incredibly interchangeable. From the start of the game, people point very loudly in their direction and shout ’these are the bad guys, they have to die!’, and no one makes a critical comment. As a player you have to get that motivation from previous games. The existence of the Isu/Those Who Came Before is reduced to a trivial fact that no one really notices, and nothing is done with Basim’s double agenda from Valhalla.

It is an art to make a good prequel, as the ending point has already been determined. Mirage unfortunately misses the mark in that area and above all adds nothing to the existing canon of Assassin’s Creed. Mirage does add something to your general development: the brief history lessons about certain buildings, the city and local cultures are finally an integral part of the game again.

Assassin’s Creed Mirage is now available for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and PC. The game will also come to iPhone 15 Pro in 2024.

Score:

7,5

+ Tracking down targets provides excellent structure.
+ It’s finally all about assassinations again.
+ Baghdad is very atmospheric.

– Occasional Frame drops in busy areas.
– Negligible story.


News | Tom Clancy's The Division 3 officially announced

Ubisoft has announced that it will be developing Tom Clancy's The Division 3.

The company announced in a message on its website that Julian Gerighty, the current creative director of Star Wars Outlaws, will take on the role of executive producer of The Division series after the release of that game.

The article then mentions that The Division 3 is one of the projects he will be overseeing. Developer Massive Entertainment, which also made the previous The Division games and is currently working on Star Wars Outlaws and Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora, is looking for a team to develop The Division 3.

“As executive producer, Julian Gerighty will oversee all The Division games and products, including Tom Clancy’s The Division 3, development of which is led by Massive Entertainment – they are actively building a team for the game. In his new role, Julian takes the many disconnected elements of The Division brand into a cohesive direction.”

There are no images of The Division 3 yet – given the words Ubisoft is using, it’s likely the game is still in an extremely early stage of development, if development has even begun. Meanwhile, the company is also working on the upcoming free-to-play mobile game Tom Clancy’s The Division Resurgence and the free-to-play spin-off for consoles and PC The Division Heartland.


News | Ubisoft shows first gameplay footage Star Wars Outlaws

Ubisoft has shown the first gameplay footage of Star Wars Outlaws.

The trailer shows a segment in which stealth and combat are central. You can also see how the partner Nix can be used. The video is ten minutes long and can be viewed in full below.

The game is described as the first ever Star Wars open world game. The game takes place between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Players will discover both iconic and new planets and galaxies in the game. They take on the role of Kay Vess and her partner Nix. She must commit a gigantic robbery.

The game is being developed by Massive, in collaboration with LucasFilm Games, and will be released next year on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X and S, and PC. The game runs on Ubisoft’s Snowdrop Engine.


News | Closed beta Ubisoft shooter XDefiant has started

The closed beta of the Ubisoft game XDefiant has started. Players can still sign up for the trial, which runs until April 23.

The beta is available on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X and S, and PC. The main purpose of the beta is to test XDefiant’s cross-play feature. You can register via this link. The game is scheduled to release on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, but the beta is not available on the older consoles.

Developed by Ubisoft San Francisco, the 6v6 first-person shooter features a variety of characters from Tom Clancy games such as Splinter Cell, Ghost Recon, and The Division, including the Wolves, Echelon, Cleaners, and Outcasts.

In the arena shooter, players can use a variety of gadgets to control the match, depending on the type of character they control. Players also select primary and secondary weapons, as well as various attributes for their character.

When the game will be fully released has not yet been announced.


News | Ubisoft unveils Far Cry 6 expansion the day after tomorrow

Ubisoft will unveil a new Lost Between Worlds expansion for Far Cry 6 next week.

Ubisoft  announced this via social media. The unveiling will be done via a special live stream. The stream will air on Ubisoft’s Twitch channel on November 29, starting at 7:00 PM Dutch time. It is not yet clear what content the expansion contains.

Previously, new Special Operations and missions in combination with Rambo, Danny Trejo and Stranger Things were released. There were also three expansions that allowed players to go through unique experiences with villains from previous Far Cry games – Vaas, Pagan and Joseph.


News | First Splinter Cell remake artwork shown

Ubisoft has shown off the first artwork from the upcoming Splinter Cell remake in an in-depth video about the franchise.

The twenty-minute video covers twenty years of franchise history. In addition, four developers who are working on the upcoming remake of the first Splinter Cell are given the opportunity to talk about various aspects of the game.

Artwork from the game is also shown throughout the video, which can be seen below along with the video. For example, you can see how Sam Fisher squats above a kind of lobby and an attractive, rainy building is shown. In any case, the artwork exudes the atmosphere of the classic Splinter Cell series.

The complete video also covers past Splinter Cell games, for example, how Pandora Tomorrow was a part of Xbox Live’s success, but there is occasional talk of the remake as well. For example, Ubisoft’s Snowdrop Engine would help a lot to pull the game into modern times. In addition, the developers emphasize that it will not be a “simple remake”, but that the game will be made from scratch. In addition, the remake should “serve as a good foundation for the future of the franchise”.

Ubisoft announced last December that it is working on a remake of the 2002 stealth game Splinter Cell. The Splinter Cell series revolves around a black ops agent named Sam Fisher. He must stop terrorists and other villains in the Splinter Cell games. The last game in the series, Splinter Cell: Blacklist, was released in 2013. There is no release date for the remake yet, but the developers emphasize in the video that the game is still in early production. “We don’t want to rush anything, but make sure we’re doing everything right and delivering an incredible experience.”