Episode 416: The Good, The Bad and the “Meh” of Ubisoft Forward 2021


Well, that took be by surprise. It’s E3 again and, truth be told, I sort of forgot we had this yearly event involving video games. It’s kind of like it just dropped out of nowhere because I didn’t get any sort of buildup to the run-up to this year’s E3. The only time I realized it was upon us when I was browsing around YouTube and I saw there was an upcoming live stream for Ubisoft for E3! That’s how out of the loop I was!

Anyway, I was already looking for something to watch at the time and it was going to be broadcasting in just a few minutes at that time. So I hunkered down and a pen and paper and watched the entire Ubisoft Forward keynote for this year’s E3.

Like every E3 keynote, Ubisoft Forward was this huge mixed bag of good, bad and “meh” stuff. Some portions were a little big chunkier than the others, though. So let’s dive right through what Ubisoft had this time around and look at what’s what.

The Good

Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla free updates

It’s always good when a company gives fans free stuff.

I personally haven’t touched an Assassin’s Creed game. I find the entire story a little too pretentious and I’ve grown leery ever since one of the games in the franchise was revealed to be a bug-laden mess. It’s also become an annual thing, with Ubisoft releasing another game in the series each and every year it seems, reducing the epicness of a new entry. I will credit Ubisoft for actually putting a lot of effort into the franchise and I will say Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla looks really good and seems like an already huge game with lots to do. So this is why I’m glad the folks at Ubisoft are easing up a bit and releasing DLC for it… and free DLC at that!

Unfortunately, you do have to temper your expectations as the big ticket items, like the Siege of Paris campaign, are locked behind a paywall. Still, adding new things to do, such as festivals, hunts and new weapons is a good way to keep players happy. This might not be enough to get me to play Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla but I’m happy for the current players who are getting some neat stuff for the game they love.

Ubisoft’s live action projects

Wait, I’m actually excited for a video game company’s live action project? Against my better judgement, I have to say “yes” to that question.

I’m sorry but why hasn’t anyone told me about Mythic Quest? The mere fact it has Daniel Pudi is enough to make me want to watch the show! Add to that, the show actually looks funny? I really must find a way to watch Mythic Quest now!

I also have to mention Ubisoft’s upcoming live-action film, Werewolves Within, also comes off like a good time waster. It’ll never win any awards for Best Picture or anything like that but it does seem like a good mystery movie but with werewolves. It kind of makes me wish they made an Among Us animated movie instead of Ubisoft aping the concept of a killing monster living amongst unsuspecting people.

Werewolves Within could be a total abhorrent bomb as I have no idea if it’s going to be good or not. Mythic Quest, on the other hand, has already lasted for a whole season and is on it’s second season already. I think the odds are good that the sitcom might actually be a hit I’ve never heard of so I’m more excited for Mythic Quest… but I’m willing to give Werewolves Within the benefit of the doubt for now.

The Far Cry 6 package

Far Cry 6 seems like a hoot and a half. You got some crazy weapons, like a backpack which launches missles, and some insane allies to talk to. The villain is charismatic and honestly thinks he’s doing good by his people and his son. I also have to say I’m intrigued by the future DLC package wherein you’ll get the chance to play as the previous villains of the series so you can delve into their minds. Not only that, the gameplay looks really cool!

I’ve never played a game in the Far Cry ever but maybe it’s time to dip my toes into the franchise with Far Cry 6. There’s seems to be a lot to like in the game. Who knows? Maybe it might even convince me to take on the past games if it’s that good.

Mario + Rabbids: Spark of Hope

I did play the first Mario + Rabbids game and I thought it was very cute. I wasn’t clamoring for a sequel but, if it’s more of the same, I’m okay with giving it a whirl. I do think it’s weird their going the Super Mario Galaxy route by having Mario and crew flying around in space but that does leave them room to get a little more creative with the levels, hopefully.

I don’t expect a whole lot of innovation from Mario+Rabbids but maybe add a few more action elements and powers, that should be enough for a sequel.

The Bad

Rocksmith+ and its paid subscription

I love myself some Rock Band because it makes me feel like some guitar playing guru even though I know I’m just pressing a few buttons on a plastic guitar while readin some flashing lights on a television screen. It even made me consider if I should actually learn how to play guitar in real life. I never pushed through with it though. That’s why I was kind of intrigued by Ubisoft’s Rocksmith+, a game touted to be able to teach someone how to play the instrument. What made it brilliant was you didn’t need to buy any fancy adapter or a proprietary guitar to use Rocksmith+. You could just sync your phone to the service and it’ll act like a microphone to check if you’re playing the chord correctly.

Unfortunately, Rocksmith+ has a huge problem: it’s a subscription service. Now that sucks! Ubisoft did not announce how much it’ll cost per month but the idea I’ll have to shell out something each month irks me. I know video games do this all the time but, usually, that involves a huge multiplayer game like World of Warcraft. I also realize Rocksmith+ will allow people to form communities so subscribers can ask questions or gives tips. It just feels so out of place for something that’s supposed to be educational. I’d rather go to YouTube… because it’s free.

Rainbow Six going sci-fi

I have very limited knowledge on the Rainbow Six franchise. The only concrete knowledge I have on the series is it was the basis for Counterstrike and most people dislike The Division. Oh, I also know it’s based on a series of Tom Clancy books, which are meticulously researched to be as real and true-to-life as it can be.

Well, now that the author’s dead, let’s just turn the entire Rainbow Six franchise into a game where you shoot aliens!

This just feels insulting to me. It’s like Ubisoft kicked out the realism and go with the trend of shooting a bunch of nameless aliens. What’s worse, I don’t think this deserves a full game. I would understand if they attached this as a DLC package to the current game but to charge full price for something that comes off as what would be a horde mode in other shooters just feels wrong. Bad, Ubisoft! Bad, bad!

Rainbow Six: Siege adding a new character

I can appreciate Ubisoft supporting this game with new updates for half a decade. Then again, that just may be milking fans for DLC money. Hey, what do I know? I still gladly pay Capcom for their yearly Street Fighter V Season Passes! They did announce a new character for Rainbow Six: Siege but, as I don’t care for the series, why should I start caring now?

It’s a cool story but, correct me if I’m wrong, but it’s just for a helicopter pilot? I kind of wish the trailer actually showed what this new operator can do besides flying a whirlybird, which would be kind of important for a tactical shooter such as Rainbow Six, right?

The “Meh

Exclusive songs for Just Dance 2022

To be frank, I kind of miss the kitschy dance numbers Ubisoft puts together to promote their yearly Just Dance games. It’s all sort of cringe and hilarious so I find myself looking forward to it because no one wants it there. We didn’t get one this year but we did get a Just Dance announcement and it’s going to be a new song from some person called Todrick Hall.

I don’t think anyone really plays Just Dance to listen to an exclusive song that’s only available in the game. They want to dance to the songs they hear on the radio or Spotify or whatever music streaming service they have. I think it’s just a remix of the song but, honestly, I don’t really care for the game so I don’t care for the song.

Rider’s Republic shredding to Whocaresville

I’m sorry but I’m just not into sports games of any kind. So does it really matter if Rider’s Republic bunches up snowboading, handgliding, bike riding, jetpack-riding and possibly many more into one game? I don’t think so.

I can see a market for this but, simply put, I’m not part of that market. I kind of see it as a “once and done” kind of thing where most players will play it for, at most, a month and then resell it at the store for credit.

Avatar and the return of the movie tie-in

I haven’t seen a video game based on a movie in a while now. Lately, it’s been the other way around. Too bad movies based on video games are still terrible! Anyway, this is why I found it rather silly Ubisoft would announce a game based on Avatar in 2021.

I realize it’s probably based on the upcoming sequel to the 2009 movie, which still needs an official trailer. So why am I supposed to be excited for this again? If they revealed this right when the first trailer came out, I would understand. Releasing on its own just feels empty and makes me want to shrug my shoulders in indifference.

All the upcoming DLC for the games you never play

I never realized how much I don’t play Ubisoft games until I saw all of the upcoming DLC content they’re coming out. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for Brawlhalla is cool if your a TMNT fan (which I’m not). New stuff for For Honor is getting released (and I didn’t even know people still play that game). Aiden Pearce is entering the world of Watchdog: Legion (and I still haven’t played a single Watchdog game).

I like to think of this as me not buying stuff for games I’ll never play.


What did you think of this year’s Ubisoft Forward show? Let me know in the comment section below!

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