Ubisoft’s plans for an E3 substitute have been revealed, as Ubisoft Forward will be their online games showcase for exclusive news, game reveals, and maybe even some actual gameplay if we’re lucky! The event will be broadcast on 12th July at 8PM UK time.
— Ubisoft_UK (@Ubisoft_UK) May 11, 2020
Jibes about gameplay aside, this will be Ubisoft’s first fully digital show, with all their previous E3 showcases held at venues in LA and tied to the physical presence at E3 itself. Of course, the company have had to adapt to the realities of the pandemic, just like everyone else, and taken their show online.
12th July will come roughly a month after when E3 would have been held in June, presumably to give their teams more time to work on demos and trailers while working from home.
They tout “exclusive game news, exciting reveals and plenty more” for the showcase, and you have to wonder what that “plenty more” might entail. Perhaps it’s going to feature some Assassin’s Creed Valhalla gameplay? Hmm?
Ubisoft have got a stack of major AAA games to release between now and April 2021, so there should be plenty for them to talk about in July. Not only is there the newly announced AC Valhalla, but after the widely panned Ghost Recon Breakpoint, Ubisoft delayed their entire slate of games from 2019-20 to 2020-21. This included Gods & Monsters, Rainbow Six Quarantine and Watch Dogs Legion, all of which were announced at or in the run up to E3 2019.
The reasoning was to help ensure that these games and all others that Ubisoft would work on in future would have their on identity and avoid formulaic design. Certainly not a problem for Watch Dogs Legion with its innovative character recruitment system and the hook of existing in a dystopian post-Brexit England, but another consideration will have surely been to make sure that these games are well rounded and polished. Covid-19 and the way that Ubisoft’s development sprawls across multiple studios around the globe will have certainly added to that challenge.
We look forward to seeing what Ubisoft have to offer and hope they can pleasantly surprise us once more.
Source: press release