It’s been a rough fall season for Ubisoft releases and the trend will either continue, or be broken, with the release of their next title, The Crew. The title is a social racing game that is built around multiplayer, co-op and competitive experiences. That said, they don’t believe that day one reviews will be the best sources of good information.
Ubisoft has decided that The Crew won’t be available to the press until December 2nd, the game’s slated release date. Here’s exactly what they had to say on their Ubiblog yesterday:
“While we totally understand (hey, we read reviews, too!), The Crew was built from the beginning to be a living playground full of driving fans, so it’s only possible to assess our game in its entirety with other real players in the world,” the company writes. “And by other, we mean thousands and thousands and thousands of players – something that can’t be simulated with a handful of devs playing alongside the press. For this very reason, The Crew will be available to media to begin their reviews when the game launches on December 2.
While we fully anticipate that you might see some reviews immediately at launch – largely built around the preview sessions we facilitated during the past months or the limited content of the closed and open betas – they won’t be based on optimal conditions or reflect the finished game…”
Holding off reviews until the day of a game’s release has become (unfortunately) a growing trend. Hopefully The Crew will prove successful and have a smooth release come December 2nd on the PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and PC. It can be assumed that the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One open Beta starting today will help smooth things out.
This tactic has become a concern in the eyes of this editor. It seems like the tactic of a scared, deceitful and altogether skeevy publisher. Not letting writers review your game until the day of means that many won’t see it until later in the day, which also means that many are likely to not see it before picking up the game if they had it pre-ordered. Thus, if your game is getting smashed for bugs, errors or generally just being a bad game, no one knows and you still get paid. It’s dirty. That said, this is the one time where there seems to be a genuine reason behind stalling. The Crew is indeed a very online-oriented game, so just like an MMO it is unfair to play in an empty world and then review the game badly because of this. Hopefully The Crew can live up to what hype it has received (heck, I was VERY excited for the game, and I don’t know jack about cars), but only time will tell.
Myles K Farrington is one of the MONG Senior Editors and has recently been planning to move across the country. By “planning” he means that he has no idea how to do this and is hoping it all kinda falls into place. Keep up with him over on IGN and Twitter as well!