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Found 9 results

  1. Today it was announced that Michel Ancel had founded a new independent game development studio called Wild Sheep Studios. However, Ancel is still working on a number of projects at Ubisoft Montpellier. “Ubisoft Montpellier is a hotbed for artistic game development, including great games like Rayman, Beyond Good and Evil, and Valiant Hearts,” mentioned Ubisoft Annecy, Paris, and Montpellier managing director Xavier Poix in an email statement on the matter. “We are fortunate to have some of the industry“s finest talents, including Michel Ancel, working with us at our studio. In addition to spending some of his time on this new venture, Michel is leading the creative development of select projects at Ubisoft Montpellier, including an extremely ambitious new title that is very close to his and the team“s heart.” So it appears that Wild Sheep Studios will in fact be an additional side project for Ancel while he stays on and continues his projects at Ubisoft Montpellier. We'll have more on what his new studio is up to in the coming months ahead likely (some reports speculate a Gamescom reveal). Ancel is currently said to be working on the much anticipated Beyond Good & Evil 2 though Ubisoft insists that it's much too early to share details just yet. Source: Venturebeat Are you glad that Michel Ancel is still with Ubisoft despite founding his own indie studio?
  2. The recent news that the Wii U exclusive Rayman Legends would be dropping the "exclusive" label and heading to the PS3 and Xbox 360 disappointed a lot of people wishing for Wii U to have some nice third-party exclusives. However, that's nothing compared to the reaction from Ubisoft's decision to delay the Wii U version, finished and ready for release, for half a year. Following the news was an outraged forum post by an anonymous person who claims to be an ex-developer, blaming the "men in ties" at Ubisoft for the delay and describing the news as having been "hell" to hear after the devs worked so hard to finish the game within the Wii U launch window. Also following this news was a series of fan protests to get the Wii U version back to its original release date. Unexpectedly, one of such protests actually includes Rayman creator Michel Ancel and his development team, according to some recent pictures taken with fans involved in the protest: These pictures show the devs with a banner that reads "Release Rayman. Support Ubisoft Montpelier" in French, along with a sad depiction of Rayman saying "please" and smaller banners drawn on reading "Wii U," "Rayman," "Michel Ancel," and "28/02/13." 28/02/13 (or 2/28/13) is, of course, the original release date for the Wii U version of the game. While the devs weren't the ones who started this protest, them agreeing to stand with the fans who did is a pretty powerful message. Think about it: if they didn't want to show their publisher disagreement with the delay, would these pictures exist? Hopefully Ubisoft gets the message and makes something of this. It would certainly be nice to get Rayman Legends sooner than later... What are your thoughts on this big delay?
  3. Marcus Estrada

    ZombiU Screenshot 3

    From the album: Review Images

  4. Marcus Estrada

    ZombiU Screenshot 2

    From the album: Review Images

  5. Marcus Estrada

    ZombiU Screenshot 1

    From the album: Review Images

  6. Christopher Haygood

    Rayman Origins Review

    Developer: Ubisoft Montpellier Publisher: Ubisoft Platform: Xbox 360, Playstation 3, Wii, PS Vita, Nintendo 3DS Release Date: November 15, 2011 (consoles), February 22, 2012 (Vita), February 20, 2012 (3DS) ESRB: E for Everyone This review is based on the Wii version of the game. The Rayman series started in 1995 and introduced Rayman, a blonde, limbless monstrosity, as a two-dimensional platforming hero (younger readers: before there was 3D, there was something called 2D. It all gets rather complicated and it's best just to ask your grandparents about it). It“s been a while since we“ve experienced an original side-scrolling Rayman game — what with the nauseating amount of Raving Rabbids entries plaguing the series over the years — but now, finally, we have one. Oh boy, do we ever. On the surface, this is a game that doesn“t take itself seriously in the slightest. The main conflict revolves around an old granny from the underworld being so annoyed by the afternoon snoring of Rayman and his friends that she sends an army of unholy minions to show them what for. In the retaliation, these minions — the Darktoons — imprison the Electoons inhabiting the land, capture the magic Nymphs, and plunge the Glade of Dreams into chaos. This ends up so disturbing the Bubble Dreamer that he accidentally allows Rayman's arch-nemesis to escape the Land of the Livid Dead. Without so much as one word of dialogue, Rayman, his pal Globox, and the Teensies embark on a slap-happy quest throughout the Glade of Dreams to stop the evil, aptly-named Mr. Dark from wreaking havoc on the Glade. (Yes, it felt just as silly to type that as it did for you to read it.) With a ridiculous premise, cartoonish graphics, buxom fairies, and the absurdest of foes, this seems like some concoction Ubisoft threw together on a lark. But if you believe this for even one second, you're the butt of one of 2011's greatest jokes. The gameplay is standard for a platformer — Rayman and friends can jump, dash, and, later in the game, swim, hover, run up walls and slap things senseless. Whenever an enemy is defeated it becomes "bubblized," and attacking it a second time before it floats off screen garners you additional Lums: bug-like creatures whose adamant collection leads to the rescue of Electoons. Each level contains a number of Electoons to free, either by collecting Lums or finding hidden areas within the stages, and saving them allows one to progress further into the game as well as unlock bonus stages. Despite some slight awkwardness in areas where the platforms are smaller, the controls are tight, fluid and responsive. The game gets difficult later on, but never frustratingly so: rather, it“s that pleasant, Castlevania style of difficulty that requires trial-and-error to get through a section, and causes the player immense satisfaction upon doing so. Multiplayer feels a lot like it does in Super Mario Bros. Wii, a game that perfected four-player platforming co-op. When one player gets hit and is on the ropes, the others can burst their bubblized comrade in order to keep them within the realm of the living. Multiple players on the screen at once, all racing to defeat enemies and collect Lums and possibly slap each other stupid, creates a scene of madcap hilarity that can bring a whole living room of people to hysterical tears faster than any comedy film. The graphics are mouth-watering, and I don“t mean that strictly figuratively; there's a good chance your controller will be covered in saliva by the end of World 1. This is the first game to incorporate Ubisoft's UbiArt Framework graphics engine, and the luscious hand-drawn visuals of Origins can act as a testament to its efficacy. Every stage is full of vibrant enemies, colorful, eye-popping backgrounds, dazzling effects, and a style that would tickle even the most callous observer. Gliding listlessly through abyssal seas full of luminous creatures and dark crevices, frantically climbing the debris of a collapsing steampunk-style sky palace, and leaping over boiling vats of chicken tortilla soup in a Mexican kitchen have never looked this good. As with nearly everything else in this game, the music is strange, ridiculous, and outstanding. Every track fits like a detached, floating glove, from the bizarre mariachi belting during a tour through a dragon's fire-coated intestinal tract, to the endearing, hillbilly-like forest music, fully equipped with Jew's harps and dueling banjos, to the lethargic, ambient crooning during some of the most enchanting underwater stages in the history of the platforming genre. Aside from being unforgettable, the soundtrack is as fun as anything else in the game, and it's impossible to overstate the positive impact this has on the work as a whole. After maybe an hour or two into the game, I started to feel something I don't feel often. I think the word is "giddiness." It dawned on me that I had been having more fun every minute than I had the minute before, and that I was nowhere near ready for even the shortest break. Although the stages can be lengthy, some indomitable urge pushed me to begin the next stage as soon as I completed the previous one. This, it turns out, is largely due to the level design, which is so perfect that some stages must have been crafted on a golden computer by Nobel Prize-winning physicists using constructive criticism from Zeus. The way everything in a particular section is interconnected in just the right way to fully utilize the complete repertoire of your moves is astounding. Perhaps no levels demonstrate the expertise of the designers more effectively than those that have you chasing down a fleeing treasure chest, where halting for even one second can lead to a lost life, and jumps and platforms and vines go together so tightly that merely running through the course is like watching thousands of dominoes fall in an elaborate pattern. I literally laughed out loud dozens of times throughout the course of this adventure, but rarely were they laughs of humor: rather, they were laughs of pure delight. And those are the deepest and most satisfying laughs of all. There's no way around it: Rayman Origins is a masterpiece, a rare platforming gem as masterful in level design as Super Mario Bros. 3, as aesthetically pleasing as Limbo, and containing all the whimsical, unapologetic fun of...well, a Rayman game. This is not only one of the best games of 2011, but one of the greatest platformers I've ever played. It helped me remember why I love video games. I think it cured my cold and put money in my wallet while I wasn't looking. I don't think I need to go on with this nonsense: check out Rayman Origins and remember what it feels like to experience pure, unadulterated fun at once. Pros: + Level design as tight and elegant as a unified theory + Tear-jerking art style + Excellent soundtrack + Solid controls + A direct focus on fun, something many of today's games seem to lack Cons: - The controls feel a bit clumsy when the platforms are smaller Overall Score: 9.5 (Out of 10) Fantastic Are you still here? Go out and play this game already!
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