Ubisoft Finally Decides To Kill Its Online Passes
Just yesterday I was ranting about how bad things had become over at Ubisoft, with the publisher now using its online passes to even lock single-player content in the recently released Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag. And then, out of absolutely nowhere, the publisher decides to make like Microsoft and do a complete 180.
Effective immediately and starting with Black Flag, Ubisoft has decided to abolish their entire Uplay Passport system.
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According to a statement made by the publisher, player feedback has factored heavily in this decision, with unsatisfied customer ultimately forcing the reversal. Communications manager Gary Steinman had this to say on the Ubisoft Blog:
“Assassin’s Creed fans, we heard you loud and clear.
In Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag, Edward’s Fleet is an innovative online feature that allows a single player to interact with multiple players on consoles or via the game’s companion app. Every new copy of Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag includes the Uplay Passport code needed to unlock this online feature.
However, we listen to our community and understand that there are concerns over some players’ ability to access this feature, so we have decided to eliminate the cost of the Uplay Passport for Black Flag. This ensures that everyone will be able to use the companion app, Edward’s Fleet, online multiplayer and available bonus content at no additional cost.
What’s more, Uplay Passport will not be a part of any future Ubisoft games.”
Ubisoft have explained that everyone with a copy of Black Flag will now be able to download an Online Pass off PSN or Xbox LIVE for free, ensuring that everyone has the ability to play online and engage in the previously exclusive single-player mode. If you’ve somehow managed to find a second-hand copy of Black Flag and purchase an online pass for in over the three days it’s been out, you should probably contact Ubisoft to get all your cash money back.
This isn’t the first time this year we’ve seen a major reversal such as this from a major publisher. EA also got rid of their Online Pass system earlier this year, and according to Ubisoft most publishers have realised that it’s no longer an effective way to obtain money from second-hand sales.
It is widely believed that most next0gen titles will not have Online Passes, setting the stage for freer gaming, or opening the door for something worse in the future.
But let’s stay positive, right?