Poor Ubisoft. They started off the 2000s so well but have been finding themselves the butt of more jokes than the likes of EA or Microsoft. It takes a long series of disappointments to get people to roll their eyes at any announcement that you make but that’s the point we’re at with Ubisoft. However, they’re cycling Assassin’s Creed out of rotation and hoping they can reinvigorate their brands.
The only problem was that all the delays over the last year meant that there seemed to be no room for Ubisoft to unveil new IPs at E3 this year. Instead, new games were the last thing on Ubi’s mind this year as they focused on established franchises and delayed games for this year’s E3. If I didn’t know better, I’d swear this was their 2013 E3 keynote on repeat.
When the Xbox One was unveiled last year and presented again at E3 last June, the focus wasn’t really on the games. Microsoft was more interested in pitching the Xbox One as an all-in-one entertainment unit for the living room by touting the entertainment apps and Kinect integration. Between not worrying about the games, the lingering DRM controversy and a price point $100 higher than the PlayStation 4, Microsoft has been in catch up mode for the last twelve months.
It’s amazing what a difference a year makes. With new Xbox division boss Phil Spencer at the helm, this year’s Microsoft E3 press conference was all about the games. The Kinect was hardly mentioned. Entertainment apps may as well not have existed.