Wednesday 21 October 2015

Trying out the new Ubisoft Club!

So, you might have heard.. Ubisoft is releasing Ubisoft Club!

Honestly.. My first impression.. Oh no.. Not another platform! Ubisoft seems to have several of these and they don't seem to be working very well.

The biggest culprit is AC Initiates. Granted, that is only for the AC franchise and not for Ubisoft as a whole. Started in late 2012, it has been down more often than it has worked. There's some amazing lore in there for the hardcore Assassin's Creed fan which I started reading some time back.

McFarlane Toys' Assassin's Creed figures also came with codes that unlocked some content on the platform. Mostly avatars but there were some in-game content as well. While most of them worked, my voucher codes for the Series 2 figures are still waiting for the servers to work..

It has been down so much that I have given up even trying to get back in. I thought I shouldn't start this post on a bad note so I gave it 1 more try..

Ok nevermind..

Then there's UPlay.. UPlay admittedly has been a rather decent platform, which has been around for quite a while. UPlay rewards players with bonuses for completing certain actions in the game via UPlay Points.

They recently improved the system by allowing you to use earned UPlay Points in their Official Store (100 UPlay Points gives you a 20% off discount). This is actually pretty cool and probably even under-appreciated. For a collector like myself, that is a substantial discount!

The in-game UPlay feature tends to be a bit wonky at times though, but still usable.

My initial impression was that Ubisoft Club is going to be a separate platform to UPlay but my friend, Math, has told me it's just a new UPlay and has urged me to try it..

Alright then, let's give it a go..

Since I'm an existing member, I just had to login using my UPlay account details. No hassle of linking, verification or anything like that.. and tada!

Level 25? Not too shabby I suppose but I have several Ubisoft games untouched. 

Badges are a new feature I think.

There's 3 for each game. These have been awarded automatically based on your game stats.
Welcome - First play the game.
Show me the money! - Obtain all Club Rewards
Completionist - Complete all Club Actions

Hopefully, we will see some more interesting ones for future games, after the launch of Ubisoft Club.

The Actions/Rewards Tabs just show you a list of your games' completed Actions & Rewards. The interesting one will be the Challenges. There's nothing in there yet but I'm expecting some for this week's AC Syndicate, perhaps to earn more UPlay points.

You will also be able to compare stats with friends, see your entire game collection. Nothing really amazing but the interface has been improved. Definitely looks better and neater now, from the last time I remember it. 

It still doesn't look like anything I will use regularly. I will still login to check what are the 'Actions' I need to complete for a game and then at the end, come back to redeem the 'Rewards'. 

However, moving forward, I'm excited to see what's in store for us, especially under Challenges.

I know a lot of gamers will be annoyed with an additional platform and ask why can't companies just leave unlocking rewards in-game. Fair enough, but this is a way for companies to reward players for staying 'loyal' to them. 

There's plenty of companies and games that do this. They require you to sign up for an additional service, and provide them with your contact details so that they can spam you with newsletters but at the same time.. They give you some rewards. Some examples below..

Borderlands' Shift Club? (Can't remember what they call it). Everytime you get a new Borderlands game and link it to their Shift Club, they throw dozens of in-game rewards at you; Badass Points, Exclusive Outfits etc..

Rockstar Games' Social Club - A very in-depth platform for you to check out stats from your games and more importantly, create Crews to link up with friends and make new ones. Of course, they have some in-game rewards as well.

So, I'm hoping Ubisoft Club follows in this direction.

It will be interesting to see weekly Community Challenges or tougher Individual Challenges with worthwhile rewards. Probably in-game Customization Options that stand out, giving us bragging rights among our friends. 

It will be also great to see this platform being used to build a community around their games, with the inclusion of Social Media components. 

Or else, I'll be satisfied using Ubisoft Club every now & then to unlock rewards and buy some collectibles at a 20% discount! With AC Syndicate just around the corner, we might see some updates in the next few days.

Looking forward to it! Don't forget to try it out for yourself and you can add me as a friend with my username, DrJengo