Ubisoft: bigger isn’t always better in game design

Some of Ubisoft’s games, like the later entries in the Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry franchises, have been criticized for being too big, so much so that people feel intimidated to get started. So when Ubisoft announced a new game development technology, Scalar, which can help games get even bigger with “unlimited” worlds, some may have wondered if Ubisoft thought bigger was better. general rule.

That’s not the case, according to Ubisoft’s Patrick Bach, who leads the team in Stockholm working on Scalar and a new IP using it. “Do we need games to be bigger? No,” Bach said GI.biz. “Are some games going to benefit from being bigger? Absolutely. It depends on that game, and the goal of that game and its creators.”

Bach said he thinks Scalar technology will give developers the ability to make bigger games – and some may benefit – but not all of them will.

“No part of a game should be driven by ‘bigger is better.’ bigger, more detailed, able to scale and be bigger than they are today,” he said. “I don’t think there’s a real connection between whether games are bigger and whether they’re better or worse. It depends on the creators and how they want to spend their energy to achieve their vision. “

Ubisoft’s new Scalar technology is a cloud-based production tool that allows developers to build games faster, more efficiently, and at a scale previously impossible, according to Ubisoft. But what does this look like in practice? We still don’t know, and the Ubisoft team in Stockholm isn’t ready to show the fruits of their labor on their new IP using the technology.

“We wish we could show it to you, but we can’t at the moment. I don’t want you to take our word for it that we have it and others don’t,” Bach said.

The developer added that Scalar is not a new engine that Ubisoft will license to other studios like Epic does with its Unreal Engine. “We’re not trying to sell you anything, we’re just talking about what we want to do. Ubisoft doesn’t want players or other companies to buy this technology, we’re just hinting at what the game will be. future,” he said.

Ubisoft teams in Malmö (Ubisoft Massive), Helsinki (Ubisoft Redlynx), Bucharest and Kyiv are also working on new projects with Scalar technology which will be announced later.

With Scalar, Ubisoft is trying to create a “development framework focused on designing the ideal game design and experience, rather than circumventing traditional production constraints”.

For more on Scalar, watch the video above and GameSpot’s extensive Scalar coverage.