What is your take on speculations and allegations that console manufacturers force developers to maintain parity between the PC versions of their AAA games and the console versions? Especially, what would you say if someone is alleging that Microsoft is behind all this?
The allegations made on Microsoft were pretty serious in nature though the source of the news was an individual who has been relaying a Q&A session that was held with certain Ubisoft employees at a gaming conference on October 14.
According to the thread, a Game Architect, an Online Programmer and an HR representative answered questions on behalf of Ubisoft. They were asked what went wrong with Watch Dogs to which they responded by saying that ‘just before they release a game, they have to send a copy to console manufacturers, which then tell them what to keep and what to throw away.’
Moving on, they were questioned about the 30fps and 60fps choice. While they said that they aimed at 60fps, they had ‘limitations’ due to which the developers settled on 30fps. Furthermore it was implied that Ubisoft was being pressurized by console makers to maintain the same frame rates on PC version of the recent games too.
Wait it gets better.
In the answer to another question regarding the locked frame rates of Assassin’s Creed Unity, the game architect said that for console they ‘have to choose between graphical fidelity and smoothness.’ Later in answer he implied that it was Microsoft that forced them into locking the frame rates on the PC version.
Well, I’ll be damned.
Anyhow, the matter was actually taken up with Microsoft’s Xbox head Phil Spencer whose response was an outright denial. The two word answer he gave on his official Twitter account reads ‘Not true.’
We have taken up the matter with Ubisoft itself and asked them to shed some light on the claims made on their behalf. Hopefully, we’ll be able to update you soon!