Ubisoft has put out tons of great games over the years. Here’s what Metacritic singles out as its best.
By Jack Pursey
Published Dec 28, 2020
From the humble beginnings?of selling CD audio to farmers, Ubisoft has gone from strength to strength since 1986 to become one of the gaming industry’s most successful?companies;?exemplified by its eye-watering?1.732 billion ($2.100 billion) revenue in 2018. Furthermore, the company now has multiple offices spanning North American, Europe, and Asia, nearly 20,000 employees, and multiple subsidiaries including?Nadeo and?Trials?developer RedLynx. Like any video gaming company, it’s the strength of Ubisoft’s releases that have spearheaded their rise through the industry.
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Ubisoft doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon, with AAA titles like?Far Cry 6?and?Skull & Bones?in the pipeline, but now seems like as good of a time as any to reflect on the best games that Ubisoft has released up until this point.
Rayman 2: The Great Escape is a fitting way to kick off this list, as the limbless hero was Ubisoft’s mascot throughout the 90s and early 2000s.
The character’s second adventure saw a drastic shift in playstyle from the first, as the linear side-scrolling was ditched in favor of more open levels reminiscent of the revolutionary?Super Mario 64,?which was released three years earlier.
To the disappointment of many,?Rayman’s days as Ubisoft’s mascot seem to be dead and buried. Thankfully, the company has replaced it with numerous other AAA franchises, one of which is?Far Cry.
Far Cry 3?is the most critically acclaimed entry in the series, as well as being the most beloved by fans. Along with the huge, beautiful island map and enjoyable action gameplay, Far Cry 3?was praised for its villains, in particular, the now-iconic?Vaas Montenegro.
The praise for Vaas has inspired Ubisoft to recruit more established actors for their main characters. Coincidentally, the voice of Vaas (Michael Mando) and the voice of the upcoming?Anton Castillo in?Far Cry 6?(Giancarlo Esposito), are both leading characters in the Breaking Bad spin-off Better Call Saul.
When the highly-anticipated?Assassin’s Creed was?released back in 2007, the game was widely viewed as being disappointing but full of potential.?Ubisoft and Ubisoft Montreal wasted very little time in realizing the series’ potential, with the release of the critically acclaimed Assassin’s Creed II.
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Ubisoft clearly listened to the criticisms of the first game, as Assassin’s Creed II improved many of its predecessor’s shortcomings by adding a charismatic protagonist, more interesting and varied objectives, and greatly improving the world design.
The first entry in the?series of the same name,?IL-2 Sturmovik?impressed fans and critics with its realistic and immersive World War II combat flight simulator.
Along with its impressive Metascore,?IL-2 Sturmovik?won multiple accolades upon release. Awards included PC Sim Game of the Year from Gamespy?and Best Simulation from GameSpot.
When Rayman Raving Rabbids?released in November 2006, many people thought that Rayman’s days as a platformer were over and that the adventure hero was starting?early retirement in party games.
This all changed, however, when?Rayman Origins?released in late 2011. Despite returning to the side-scrolling days of?Rayman’s first game,?Rayman Origins?was far from being just a quick nostalgia trip; it was a clear attempt to fire?the platformer back into the limelight. Ubisoft were certainly successful in this, as the game was flooded with praise for its fast yet smooth platforming that took place on wonderfully designed stages.
The success of?Rayman Origins?led to a sequel two years later,?Rayman Legends.?The game picked up where its predecessor left off, adding little innovation, but tweaking?Origins’?shortcomings to create one of the best side-scrolling platformers since the days of?Super Mario World.?
Despite the universal acclaim, there has been little sign of a new?Rayman?game, worrying fans that the hero is set for another spell on the sidelines as?Rayman Legends?fast approaches its tenth birthday.
Released in 2001,?Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time?rebooted the?Prince of Persia series in style; breathing new life into the franchise that began in 1989 on the Apple II.
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time?had an excellent blend of the platforming gameplay that was popular in the 90s and action-adventure gameplay that was starting to dominate the industry. A remake of Sands of Time?is currently in the works, with a planned release date of March 2021.
It may surprise some people that it took this long for a Tom Clancy game to appear on this list, but?Splinter Cell?certainly won’t be the last.
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Inspired by the?Metal Gear Solid?series and of course, Tom Clancy’s novels,?Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell?kicked off the?Splinter Cell?series in style with one of the stealth genre’s most iconic games.
Ubisoft had lofty expectations to live up to with its sequel to 2002’s?Splinter Cell?and they didn’t disappoint with 2004’s?Pandora Tomorrow.?
The game improved on its predecessor with the addition of the laser sight, improvements to the visuals, and a heavier focus on the game’s shadow-based stealth mechanic?by increasing the number of outdoor missions.
Ubisoft caught lightning in a bottle three times in a row with the sequel to?Pandora Tomorrow,?capping off an incredible trilogy of games. As well as adding cooperative play for the first time in the series,?Chaos Theory?leaned heavily into the stealth aspects of its gameplay, hitting home the idea that?getting caught in a gunfight was a punishment for poor stealth.
The?Splinter Cell?series has had many more entries since?Pandora Tomorrow, but none have been able to hold a candle to the 2005 classic.
NEXT:?Every Batman Arkham Game, Ranked From Worst To Best (According To Metacritic)
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About The Author
(262 Articles Published)
A gamer since the age of 3, Jack is knowledgeable about virtually every genre of video game under the sun. He has a soft spot for platformers and collectathons though, and still hasn’t given up hope of them making a serious resurgence!
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