Assassin's Creed: Unity is Being Worked on by 10 Studios

Assassin's Creed: Unity is Being Worked on by 10 Studios

AC Unity screen

A total of ten studios are working on Assassin's Creed: Unity -- three more than Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag.

Earlier this March, Ubisoft claims that the reason they release a new Assassin's Creed every year is due to gamers wanting one annually. Now, given that Assassin's Creed games are AAA, high-budget affairs, how can Ubisoft develop and release an entry year after year? As it turns out, the answer is: tap lots and lots of studios to develop it simultaneously. For this year's current-gen (PC, PS4 and Xbox One) only entry, Assassin's Creed: Unity, Ubisoft has ten studios working on the game -- three more studios compared to Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag. This fact was revealed by Ubisoft itself in a slide from its earnings report ending March 31.

The Ubisoft studios working on Assassin's Creed: Unity include Ubisoft teams based in Montreal, Toronto, Quebec, Montpellier, Annecy, Singapore, Shanghai, Chengdu, Kiev, and Bucharest. In total, Ubisoft houses 29 development teams scattered across different projects. This means that over a third of the publishers studio force are working on the Assassin's Creed franchise.

You can check out Assassin's Creed: Unity's debut trailer here, and we also got a tip that the title will, for the first time, feature a four-player narrative co-op mode that's set to be revealed at this year's E3.

Is the studio number surprising to you? What do you predict will happen to these teams once the gaming masses tire of the franchise?

Source: Ubisoft via GameSpot

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I didn't realise Black Flag had 6 studios working on it, but that being the case, it is clear to me that quality does not scale linearly with number of studios. I don't know what the buying habits are in relation to annual instalments, but Black Flag was a one-off for me for the ship combat. It was really good, but the game in general was a wasted opportunity to make an excellent and in-depth ship combat/pirate RPG, and while it was a good game, I'm not going to be buying any more.

MeChaNiZ3D:
I didn't realise Black Flag had 6 studios working on it, but that being the case, it is clear to me that quality does not scale linearly with number of studios.

I believe they said something about 900 people working on it at some point (or some number like that :D) if Unity will have even more it's going to be a mess that needs to sell at least 20 million copies to be profitable. Ubi will butcher themselves to death with that.

Rearrange these words into a common phrase or saying:

Broth. Many. The. Spoil. Cooks. Too.

Nevertheless, I am (perhaps despite my own better judgement) excited for this game. I was down on AC in a big way after 3, but then they came back with 4 which I might just hesitantly call the best game of the series so far; and I have been itching for a French Revolution setting for a while now.

Is this supposed to impress me? The biggest reason why Assassin's Creed 3 was a sub-par game was the fact that teams from various studios couldn't coordinate their work properly. This doesn't impress me. It makes me question Ubisoft's sanity.

Does that mean the entire studio's workforce are assigned to development? Or merely teams within that studio? If the latter, it's not really surprising.

Alex Co:
Assassin's Creed: Unity is Being Worked on by 10 Studios

For this year's current-gen (PS4 and Xbox One) only entry

it's coming out for the PC too....

image

OT, looking forward to this... what? Can't a woman enjoy assassinating her way through history?!?

It'll be interesting to see what happens to say the least. Can't put them down for having ambition am I right?

james.sponge:

MeChaNiZ3D:
I didn't realise Black Flag had 6 studios working on it, but that being the case, it is clear to me that quality does not scale linearly with number of studios.

I believe they said something about 900 people working on it at some point (or some number like that :D) if Unity will have even more it's going to be a mess that needs to sell at least 20 million copies to be profitable. Ubi will butcher themselves to death with that.

Assassin's Creed games seem to be surprisingly cheap to develop, less than $50,000,000 cheap anyway. There's some "crazy ass efficiency" or at least some human-right atrocities going on at Ubisoft, how else can you explain Ubisoft only having 2 games on the "most expensive games to develop" list, with the overall quality of their games.

For reference, those 2 games are Watch_Dogs (68 mil) and for some ghastly reason Ghost Recon: Future Soldier (65 mil).

Screw Unity, i want news on AC Comet. Supposedly its set after AC4 and you play as a templar. I guess we get there side of the story. Just sounds so much more interesting than Unity. Although, jumping around France killing the French sounds like fun also.

NinjaDeathSlap:
Rearrange these words into a common phrase or saying:

Broth. Many. The. Spoil. Cooks. Too.

That's what I was thinking. Because lets be fair; communication in big studies seems pretty shoddy in general, imagine ten studios having to communicate with each other. That whole affair must be a logistical nightmare and I don't trust it. These high-budget projects are really getting out of hand.

Communication must be a nightmare for the studios, especially if need to talk with the ones on the other side of the world. It seems sad that when you think about ubisoft could have each of these studios developing a game but they all the eggs in the Assassins Creed basket. I wonder how much Unity has to sell to cover the costs of all these studios?

Well too many cooks spoil the broth so we now know this upcoming one is going to get wasted.

thats all fine and good but i think they talk out of their behinds for thinking that people want AC to be released every year.
granted, i did enjoy every title that were released for pc, even liberty (since you can play as a woman), and AC4 was a very enjoyable title that i managed to destroy the 4 big ships.
so yes, im kind of exited for this one but at the back of my head i have to expect that it can be bad. but i hope it wont.

God all these new AC's is really killing any desire to finish the second. I hate having to catch up to the storyline by playing older games whenever I get into a series (I'd skip it but my OCD HATES it whenever I do things out of order).

See Valve? Ubisoft managed to hammer down episodic gaming without having to even call it that. What about you?

All in all, I'm not surprised that they are utilizing so many studios to crank out these games. My guess is that the management has really done their logistical homework on this one and managed to focus each studio on a particular task. It would not surprise me greatly if each studio was working on one particular element of the game (writing, modeling, etc.) with one whole studio devoted to play testing and another for debugging. The separate teams can more heavily focus on their individual tasks while the central studio managing it all insures it combines well.

And there's nothing in here that says they're all working simultaneously, rather that 10 different studios will have worked on it by the time it is done. It would not be unreasonable if they take the Pixar route and have the creative team one or two games ahead by the time the programming team finishes up and hands it off for debugging.

Man, Ubisoft has turned game design into an automotive factory. I actually praise their ability to have the writer/director say what's up, and have 10 studios around the entire fucking planet put that vision into one cohesive thing. I think 3 was the one where it was pretty obvious while playing that suddenly you were playing something developed by a different team. Also, I can't imagine how much of a pain it would be to squash bugs that relate to each studio's section tying into the others.

Since that was just 3 separate thoughts in a paragraph, I'll say that there's no chance I'm playing this anytime soon. I'm with OCD guy above me, I can't stand playing subsequent entries if I haven't beaten the prior ones. Even bought and beat Demon's Souls because I heard good things about Dark. With AC, I've managed to finally beat 1 (what a fucking chore) and a chunk of 2, so at this rate they'll be churning them out faster than I can beat them.

And chances are, it'll still turn out to be the same boring sludge as the previous Ass games. And it's in France even, urgh.

As soon as I read the title I thought: Surely this is no marketing blurb?
Since I think having TEN cooks in the kitchen can't be a good thing, to paraphrase some proverb.

Remember how in the last Deus Ex: Human Revolution the boss fights stood out like a billion foot tall sore toe?
Made by another developer than the rest of the game, and it suuuuuucked so much that I now rest my case.

Uhg this will be a case of to many chefs....then again like the last few were any good.

It is apparent to me that Ubisoft has gone deaf and can't hear the feedback from its consumers anymore. They BS'd their way into justifying a yearly Assassin's Creed, they BS'd the graphics of Watch_Dogs and then pretended that gamers are entitled fucks, and they ignored the criticism about the disjointed feel of AC III (a game which was definitely hampered by having too many studios working on it). Clearly, they needed more studios.

Let me help you out a little bit, Ubisoft; if the thing that people enjoyed the most in ACIV was the parts that had nothing to do with the Assassin's Creed formula, its time to rethink the yearly Assassin's Creed releases.

Oh, what's that? You're trying to turn Far Cry into a bi-yearly release? Yeah, fuck you Ubisoft.

DrunkOnEstus:
Man, Ubisoft has turned game design into an automotive factory. I actually praise their ability to have the writer/director say what's up, and have 10 studios around the entire fucking planet put that vision into one cohesive thing. I think 3 was the one where it was pretty obvious while playing that suddenly you were playing something developed by a different team. Also, I can't imagine how much of a pain it would be to squash bugs that relate to each studio's section tying into the others.

Agreed, although to be fair, the creative director for ACIII, Alex Hutchinson was apparently a massive cunt sandwich, I've heard workers from Ubisoft actively call him out on his bullshit. If you did a quick Google search on the guy, you'll probably get an entire page of "fuck that guy!".

Excuse the language.

EDIT: apparently the producers weren't much better.

http://www.reddit.com/r/truegaming/comments/1vrude/so_what_really_happened_with_assassins_creed_3
(ignore the OP, read first "TOP" post.)

EDIT 2: I just discovered Alex Hutchinson is the creative director for Far Cry 4. Fuuuuuuuck.

Seems like a lot of various negativity here, so perhaps i should break the chain with some rebellious faith!
Wait...only current gen and pc?? Well that pissed all over my fireworks. Still avoiding those crowds cos they want more lunch money than i can spare.

Yearly releases? Who has been asking for that? Not me or anyone i know. Maybe a few groups of fanboys, but im sure Rockstar would get more of that pre-pubescent pressure for GTA installments, but they probably have figured the fine art of telling them to fuck off.

Oh, positive stuff.. right.
Free climbing, parkour! Stabbing! Beautiful Architecture to gaze and drag your murderous loins over!
These are activities that help me forget crippling mental states. Pity wont be able to do them for a while without risking life imprisonment and public shaming.

10 studios? You better damn well find a well to recuperate all the money put into it and not just bullshit DLC and other petty things.

What about Far Cry 4, the other game you're shoveling out later this year?

The bigger they are, the harder they fall. It is a true test of management.

Yeaaah! Add more studios for an hour-long credits to a less than average game, SO GOOD! Let's hope they over stretch this thing to another "worse with every entry" trilogy again, that wud make it the BESTEST!


I kinda wanted this setup to be a thing after it was hinted along "Mayan/Aztech" and Japanese/Chinese, but a hadnful of years ago, when I played the first game. But considering that I couldn't care less about the series after playing Brotherhood, I doubt I'll even try it.

 

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