ere I am. Sitting here and wishing I had a second monitor so I could both write this and watch the stream at the same time, ready to give you the run-down of what's been happening at this year's Ubisoft E3 conference.
A glamourous ceremony of the latest games and releases with a star-studded display of this year's affordable B-list celebrity presenters. Without further ado, let's see what's hot, and what's a painful disappointment, in the words of that old guy at the start of the stream; let the games begin!
Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom battle
We start with that curious Rabbid offshoot of Rayman that are apparently Minions level popular in France but a complete flop everywhere else in the world. Ubisoft continues to not realise this but oh well, one must put up with them I guess... and it's a Mario crossover.
That's actually pretty interesting for Nintendo, pretty rare for them to branch out franchises like this [At this point in the stream, Miyamoto comes on stage for a standing ovation and I'm going to soundly class him as one of those affordable celebrities.] so this could be very interesting if they merge the bright colours and beautiful artstyle that the Rayman franchise holds dear with the popular familiarity of Mario.
Mario + Rabbids is a fascinating Switch (third-party moreso) exclusive where Ubisoft merge the innovative gameplay of playing as a sentient Roomva cleaning the mess of coins left around the Mushroom Kingdom by the nefarious Bowser, and a turn based strategy game with some unique twists!
Joking aside, it looks like an interesting new take on both the Mario and Rabbid franchise using the lovely cartoon-esque world of Mario and an inspired turn-based system using lasers, rocket-launchers and Rabbid pipes to crawl through.
Following that snazzy Mario+Rabbids presentation we come to a much more low-key and darker intro for what can perhaps be called Ubisoft's flagship for this E3 - Assassin's Creed.
This new game is a breakaway from it's predecessors; adding new exciting elements of gameplay (popularised in Ubisoft's previous Far Cry: Primal) such as a brand new levelling and crafting system, BirdDrone™ Technology and first-person arrow action!
The setting for this new adventure is Ancient Egypt portrayed on a beautiful and sprawling open-world ripe with adventure, discovery (think about all those places they can hide those damned treasure chests!) and crocodiles (think about all those places they can put these to eat your face while you try to get to the treasure chests!). Sadly nobody famous was dragged on stage to be ritualistically sacrificed to the gods of snark in the Twitch audience.
The Crew 2
At breakneck speed we move on to what looks like a breakneck racing game! It's opening trailer drags us through the world first in an urban sprawl in some kind of American car I don't recognise (I'm sorry!), then through the dusty plains of Western America on some kind of dirt bike (I'm good at this right!?) and finally into the skies themselves with a plane... which has a propeller and is a kind of pale blue colour.
It's The Crew 2! A follow up to 2014's The Crew, an online racing game set in a fantastic open world map of the United States and already this looks better with a far more detailed map thanks to the new upgraded power of the XBoxX and PS4Pro.
The developers stretch their muscles by taking us on a tour of a beautifully realistic swamp and forest jungle, then a highly detailed city with beautiful streets and roads just perfect for those high-octane turns and finally on the open ocean with what looks to be excellent water physics in the wake of their beautifully modelled boat.
South Park: Fractured But Whole
Lightning! Thunder! New Ubisoft Logo! Southpark! The sequel to 2014's (again? Damn Ubisoft is gunning for those 2014 sequels in this, when was the last Assassin's Creed? Bugger! 2015, carry on then) South Park: Stick of Truth. Looks to be carrying on the RPG style of Stick of Truth with it's fantastic sense of humour. It's a short presentation so this is a short paragraph, but it looked good.
I looked away from my screen for literally five seconds and missed the name of this game
Right. VR. I think? Ubisoft have already blended a live-action trailer with Far Cry 5 so it's always hard to tell at first glance with them. Oh, I actually missed the game writing that last sentence, bloody hell that was a fast trailer. This is why I moaned about that lack of second monitor. Anyway moving to the next game that's already started their trailer as I'm typing this. Sounds pirate-y.
Assassin's Creed: Black Flag Skull and Bones
Pirates! Called it. This a beautiful trailer I must say, completely pre-rendered but a lovely piece still, a stunning battle between two pirate ships on a choppy sea. Ah, better make that three pirate ships. Ah game title! Skull and Bones! Lovely, here's the presentation now.
Skull and Bones is a spiritual successor to Assassin's Creed: Black Flag, taking what was the most popular feature of that game and turning into its own standalone title. This would appear to be Black Flag, seriously, so far I can't quite tell the difference in the actual engine. Clearly there are some differences, it appears to be a class-based game where your ship is your class; with long-range sniper ships and up-close brawler ships.
Seemingly this lacks the seriousness of World of Warships which looks like a good thing, this game seems to fit a more rapid and high-speed game for a more casual audience. Adam wants me to be impartial, but this really is just a standalone AC: Black Flag, a must-buy if you loved that system but perhaps wait for more gameplay if you're a bit tepid. Oh, and there's a kraken, that looked kind of cool.
Just Dance 2018
Damn, Ubisoft laying down some sweet techno beats. We have Just Dance 2018: Lucio Simulator. There is a pretty good dance-act on stage for this morphing between song genres so perhaps you might want to actually go watch the stream/video for this if you're interested in what Ubisoft is pulling out for its show this year. It's over and well... that happened. Seriously, what do I even write about a dance act?
South Park: Phone Destroyer
Still slightly cross-eyed from the dance number, we have a South Park card game? Oh mobile game - South Park: Phone Destroyer. Sorry, my brain is still funny from that last thing with Just Dance..
Starlink: Battle for Atlas
You know, I'm really glad that No Man's Sky is getting a sequel and this looks like they've learned a lot of the lessons from its first release. It has a story, combat and what even could be gameplay (shock, horror). Okay this isn't No Man's Sky or anything to do with it, just the first 20 seconds of the trailer looked identical to its graphics and ship design.
This game is actually called Starlink: Battle for Atlas (No Man's Skylanders) where you build your custom starship using real physical collectables or digital purchases to fight the nebulous alien invaders. Coming to Switch, XBox and Playstation.
Far Cry 5
I stood up for about 30 seconds and managed to miss the new DLC for Steep. Anyway here's the next game and it looks like Far Cry. Oh! It actually is Far Cry this time, not like the other 5 Far Cry games they've announced this conference.
Far Cry 5 is a new edition to the FPS franchise where you play as (I think he said...) mercenary trying to free an American Mid-West town from the clutches of an insane Christian cult. Oh boy does this player in this teaser give Polygon a run for their money in terms of shooting, saved by the AI sniper and dog from certain death many a time. Looks like we've got everything you'd be expecting in a Far Cry game; a wide variety of weapons, vehicles and locations to explore and destroy!
Beyond Good and Evil 2
You know, it's about time Zootopia got it's own game and boy have Ubisoft put the effort in. Perhaps a bit more swearing than we're used to from our Bunny-Fox duo now reimagined as a chimp and just a woman, a bit more violent too perhaps, but it's still the same old Zootopia we know and love.
I would love to tell you more about this game other than sarcastic remarks about how it's some dystopian Zootopia but this is a pre-rendered trailer with no gameplay so I can literally tell you nothing at this point.
Ah, there we go - Beyond Good and Evil 2. A sequel to 2003 (Ubisoft's making me look the fool for that 2014 comment earlier, I would like to point out it's been 14 years since the last one, so there's a 14 involved at least) game Beyond Good and Evil, a game a long time in the making seemingly.
They're describing is as a massive online playground and I think they just asked people to join a kickstarter by another name, so if you're a fan of the previous game, that's where you need to head to ensure this becomes a reality. They're pre-rendered trailer was absolutely gorgeous I must say!
And thus concludes our Ubisoft E3 Extravaganza. Well, it wasn't really, this was an article written by a bufoon who didn't quite know what to write half the time. Hopefully you enjoyed reading it, writing this provided great me with great comfort... especially when that Just Dance thing was going on in the background, I used the wordpad window to cover the Twitch stream.