E3 Recap | Ubisoft
Watch Dogs and a watched dog
Ubisoft had a lot to show at their E3 2019 conference with the Watch Dogs Legion reveal, more Ghost Recon and Rainbow Six action, a subscription service and a new game from the AC: Odyssey team.
Oh, and the announcement of a sitcom from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’s Rob McElhenney and an appearance from Jon Bernthal and his chilled-out dog Bam Bam.
The show was light on big new announcements. Notably, Assassin’s Creed only made an appearance in orchestral form, but a break after Odyssey had been announced long ago and its possibly to work on the first next-gen Assassin’s Creed adventure.
Kicking off Ubisoft’s E3 show was the third instalment in the Watch Dogs franchise and its trip across the Atlantic.
Watch Dogs: Legion
Even though it leaked almost a week ago, Watch Dogs Legion was still a big surprise and Ubisoft showed off plenty of gameplay. Legion takes place on the mean streets of a dystopian London. One that has been overrun with drones, organised crime and surveillance.
Unlike previous Watch Dogs games, there is no main protagonist. Legion is all about recruiting the general population into DedSec and your technological resistance against the extremist leaders in London. Any NPC can be recruited and therefore becomes playable as part of your DedSec roster.
Creative director on Watch Dogs Legion Clint Hocking said: “Every Londoner is fully simulated, with a persistent life and relationships.” Each character has a unique story, personality and set of skills that can fit into your resistance. Cinematics will even change depending on who you’re playing as and your actions.
Players will be able to use the profiler to learn about potential recruits and complete an origin mission to get them on board with DedSec. You’ll be able to play as former MI5 agents, retired assassins, young and street-savvy adults, robotics experts, hipsters and gangsters to name a few. Don’t become too attached to your recruits, however, as permadeath will mean any recruits that meet an unfortunate end will be gone forever.
Characters will fit into one of three classes: hacker, infiltrator and assault. Each character can be customised in terms of their outfits and can be levelled up to unlock new perks. Legion also promises to deliver new abilities and combat techniques, such as cloaking, a small spider robot, a new melee system and a whole suite of weapons.
Of course, the usual hacking abilities will still be present. Future London’s drone force can be hacked to help you navigate the world by hopping on top of cargo drones, or to help you take down a gang with attack drones armed with missiles.
Despite the chaos in future London, you’ll still be able to visit some of London’s most famous landmarks, including Big Ben, Trafalgar Square, the London Eye and Piccadilly Circus.
Legion will also have four-player co-op, allowing players and their friends to explore London, take on co-op missions and face endgame challenges together. Watch Dogs Legion will be playable on 6 March 2020 for Xbox One, PS4, PC and Google Stadia.
Ghost Recon Breakpoint
The newly announced Wildlands sequel, Ghost Recon Breakpoint, made an appearance at Ubisoft’s conference, along with the Punisher himself, Jon Bernthal.
Bernthal, along with his adorable dog, Bam Bam, came on stage to talk more about the enemy forces that the Ghosts will face. Bernthal plays Cole D. Walker, a rogue Ghost in command of an army known as the Wolves. Walker and his soldiers have taken control of the island archipelago of Auroa and its resident high-tech company, Skell Technology.
The Ghosts, having had their helicopters shot down, are stranded on Auroa and must use their skills to survive against Skell’s reprogrammed drones. Like Wildlands, Breakpoint can be played solo with AI teammates, or in four-player co-op.
Breakpoint will be supplemented with new content and free updates after its release on 4 October but will also have a beta starting on 5 September which you can now register to join. Ubisoft even teased some Terminator content for Breakpoint which is the second piece of Terminator tie-in content teased at this E3.
Lastly, Ghost Recon will also be getting a new community programme, descriptively named Ghost Recon Delta Company. It will be a place for fans to share and discuss things about the Ghost Recon franchise across five specialised detachments.
Gods & Monsters
One surprise from Ubisoft’s conference was a new title by the team behind AC: Odyssey. Clearly they had such a good time delving into ancient Greek mythology that they’ve made Gods & Monsters. It’s an open world action adventure in which you will play as a forgotten hero who’s on a quest to save the Greek gods.
Quests and battles will have you facing off against mythical evils, such as Typhon. Players will also have their heroism tested in various trials and dungeons found throughout the world. Given the gameplay descriptions and art style, many are already comparing it to Breath of the Wild but grounded in Greek myth.
Gods & Monsters will be out on Xbox One, PS4, PC and Nintendo Switch on 25 February next year.
Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet
Mythic Quest sounds like a bit of cheesy early 2000s name for an MMORPG. Luckily, it’s not real and instead belongs in a new Apple TV+ sitcom helmed by Always Sunny star Rob McElhenney. He plays the egotistical Ian Grimm who is creative director at a studio working on the first major expansion for their wildly successful MMO, Mythic Quest.
In the first of two celebrity appearances at Ubisoft’s conference, McElhenney came out to talk about the show. In order to be as “authentic as possible”, McElhenney, along with Always Sunny executive producers Charlie Day, Megan Ganz and David Hornsby, partnered with Ubisoft for inspiration in writing their game developer sitcom.
Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet also stars David Hornsby, Ashly Burch, F. Murry Abraham, Imani Hakim, Danny Pudi, Charlotte Nicdao and Jessie Ennis.
Rainbow Six Quarantine
A new Rainbow Six experience will be arriving in early 2020 and it’s three-player co-op. Rainbow Six Quarantine will use the foundations of Rainbow Six Siege to deliver new PvE missions to test your squad’s survival and tactical skills against an unknown alien parasite. Quarantine will be available on Xbox One, PS4 and PC.
Ubisoft enters the subscription service game with Uplay+. It’s a PC-only service that will include earliest available access to new games, and their premium editions, and unlimited access to over 100 games in Ubisoft’s PC catalogue.
New releases, like Watch Dogs Legion and Ghost Recon Breakpoint, will be on the service as well as previous big releases, such as Rainbow Six Siege, AC: Odyssey and Far Cry 5. Uplay+ will launch in September at $14.99 (no UK pricing has been announced but it’ll likely be £14.99 or just under) and will become available on Google Stadia in 2020.
The Division 2
The Division 2’s year one roadmap of updates and content was revealed, and it includes three episodes of major content updates. Episode 1, coming in July, will include several new missions that take place across the woodlands outside Washington D.C and the National Zoo. Another location, Kenly College, will provide an entirely new experience that will take “exploration, investigation and logic”.
This autumn will see the release of Episode 2 and the Pentagon, now under the control of the Black Tusks. Episode 2 will also include The Division 2’s second eight-player raid. Finally, Episode 3 will be coming in early 2020. Just before E3, it was also revealed that The Division 2 will be available on Google Stadia.
That’s not quite all the Division news though as more details on the upcoming film were announced too. Netflix will be making the film and will star Jessica Chastain and Jake Gyllenhaal and will be directed by Deadpool 2 director David Leitch.
Ubisoft had plenty of small updates, extras and new things to show too. It unveiled a new rollerblading sports game: Roller Champions. Two teams of three compete on a track that’s like a velodrome-halfpipe hybrid to throw a ball through a ring. Players who hold the ball can score more points by completing laps of the track without getting intercepted. It’s sort of a rollerblading Rocket League, and Ubisoft wants people to try out the demo from now until the 14 June.
Unsurprisingly, Just Dance will be back with Just Dance 2020 to spread more party game joy. That funky panda made yet another appearance at the conference in Ubisoft’s annual dance number. Incredibly, Just Dance 2020 will be available on five platforms on 5 November. That’s Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch, Google Stadia and the Nintendo Wii. Yes, the motion control powerhouse that’s almost 13 years old is still getting new games.
For Honor has a spooky limited event running called Shadows of the Hitokiri which includes a new mode, Soul Rush. This mode pits teams of players against each other in the dark village of Kaidan to collect and hold souls from defeating other players. A plethora of in-game items and loot rewards will also be available to earn during the event which runs until 27 June.
Free-to-play fighting game Brawlhalla has Adventure Time DLC in the form of Finn, Jake and Princess Bubblegum as playable characters, a new buddy game mode and a new tree fort stage. It’s available now too.
Finally, Tom Clancy is contributing to even more games from beyond the grave, this time its mobile strategy game, Tom Clancy’s Elite Squad. Players will be able to form their own elite squads from a roster of characters from all the most popular Tom Clancy franchises. Nomad from Ghost Recon, the Rainbow Six Siege operators and even Splinter Cell’s Sam Fisher all make an appearance. Your squad will be able to battle in a story mode and against other players’ squads in online PvP. Pre-registering is active now.
Phew! That’s everything Ubisoft had to offer at their E3 2019 conference. Be sure to check out the rest of startmenu’s E3 coverage too.