Ubisoft Apologizes for "Controversial" Relationship in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey DLC

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by Megalith, Jan 20, 2019.

  1. Megalith

    Megalith 24-bit/48kHz Staff Member

    Messages:
    13,004
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2006
    Assassin's Creed Odyssey's Creative Director Jonathan Dumon has offered an apology to players who felt betrayed by the game’s latest DLC, “Shadow Heritage,” which traces the foundations of the Assassin mythos. While Ubisoft’s marketing suggested Odyssey fully embraced same-sex relationships, the DLC forces players to undergo a heterosexual relationship (the Assassin’s lineage can’t begin without a baby…), which has made certain groups livid. Dumon admits he “missed the mark” and is shelving the romantics for the next chapter.

    At the end of the DLC, the player’s character decides to enter into a relationship with either the daughter (if they’re playing as Alexios) or son (if they’re playing as Kassandra) of the proto-Assassin Darius. They then have a child. Many Odyssey players were upset by the DLC twist, and a lengthy thread on the game’s subreddit filled with people expressing hurt over a seemingly broken promise. One wrote that she is gay and felt like she was being punched in the stomach. On Twitter, people who saw Kotaku’s coverage complained that a game that had made them feel included now felt like a lie.
     
    captaindiptoad likes this.
  2. vegeta535

    vegeta535 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    3,244
    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2013
  3. Lateralus

    Lateralus More [H]uman than Human

    Messages:
    14,535
    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2004
    I started reading the comments below that article and wow...

    I miss the days when people didn't get outraged over a goddamn video game, and if they did it was because they had spent forever trying to make it through an extremely tough section only to die and have to start over from the beginning.
     
  4. JargonGR

    JargonGR Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    492
    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2006
    Ridiculous behavior for yet another time reminding me of some "......certain..." religious groups that want to have it their way or.....kill them all...
     
    Zuul and Skyblue like this.
  5. HeadRusch

    HeadRusch [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,125
    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    ...meanwhile, the premise of slaughtering 400, 500, 1500 people throughout the course of the game..................fucking crickets chirping... :D
     
  6. scojer

    scojer 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    4,045
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    This was a funny sentence:

    It's a game, why does there need to be a "romantic option" included? I haven't played an AC game since part 2. Is it more of a life simulator now than an, y'know, assassin simulator?
     
    chockomonkey likes this.
  7. bigddybn

    bigddybn [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    6,934
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    I wonder how how many the "many players were upset" really is.

    1%? 2%?

    The point of the story line was to create a baby. There is only 1 way to make a baby and it involves neither Kale or fake protests.
     
  8. dewbak75

    dewbak75 Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    252
    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2012
    And naturally, the only response the developer can give which won't piss someone ELSE off is to say that romance won't be part of the next game.

    The cynic in me wonders why they didn't see this coming, since I'm 100% certain the storyline for the DLC was written before the game was released, so they knew that folks who had chosen a same-sex romance in the main game would have to reverse course.
     
    Vader1975 and captaindiptoad like this.
  9. coynatha

    coynatha Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    297
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    I'm more bothered that this is news.

    That whole culture shift for acceptance is being wasted. They're hated for shit like this now, not sexual preference or lifestyle. Go design your own game and gay it up, Ubisoft should apologize for nothing.
     
  10. dyzophoria

    dyzophoria Gawd

    Messages:
    946
    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2006
    I'm actually wondering if it didn't force you on a heterosexual relationship, what would be options for lineage to continue (I doubt adoption since the bloodline won't continue)? (well common sense says have sex, have a baby). (don't get me wrong, I'm just wondering how it would have played out).
     
    captaindiptoad likes this.
  11. nightanole

    nightanole [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    2,013
    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    You get date raped if you are any gender. Either you get drugged out of your mind and knocked up, or end up drugged out of your mind and knock up someone else.
     
    Aioeyu and captaindiptoad like this.
  12. gxp500

    gxp500 Gawd

    Messages:
    865
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2015
    Did ubisoft ever apologize for controversial graphical downgrades? Everyone gets offended by those...
     
    Geronimo, babochee, GDI Lord and 4 others like this.
  13. Lateralus

    Lateralus More [H]uman than Human

    Messages:
    14,535
    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2004
    Imagine the minds that would explode if Ubi responded with "Don't like it, don't buy it" :whistle:
     
    GDI Lord, cyclone3d, Friday21 and 5 others like this.
  14. DukenukemX

    DukenukemX [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    4,396
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2005
    Cause plot? Relationships and sex are an important part of story telling. The problem with homosexuality in these sort of situations is that it makes it hard to continue a lineage when there's no straight sex. Obviously the creators of Assassin's Creed Odyssey were being so progressive that they didn't think through things thoroughly.

    97c.gif
     
    lcpiper, Nunu, GDI Lord and 2 others like this.
  15. cjcox

    cjcox [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,288
    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2004
    You'd think people could separate "play acting" from their real lives. I guess not. Maybe the government is right about video games "causing" bad stuff...
     
  16. dark_reign

    dark_reign 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    2,228
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    The romance stuff was added to attract more female players.

    AC has definitely evolved from the copy and paste formula they used from the first game and right up to Syndicate. Origins and Odyssey have a lot more depth and story telling, but I wouldn't say it's all good. OTOH, gameplay is superior to previous games even if it is repetitive.
     
    Maddness and Vader1975 like this.
  17. Tiburon1186

    Tiburon1186 Gawd

    Messages:
    624
    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2007
    I'm so tired of these companies catering to this whiney minority. It's like every time a child throws a tantrum, it's rewarded. That's the sick people that you are feeding into. Slap them upside the head and tell them to get over it or get out.
     
    GDI Lord, Zuul, JoeRChillin and 9 others like this.
  18. Derangel

    Derangel [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    17,745
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2008
    So, people should actually LEARN why people are upset about Ubisoft's decision before getting their panties in a twist and acting all offended. Ubisoft marketed the fuck out of the concept of player choice for AC: O and a ton of that marketing was focused on allowing the player to decide exactly who their character (Alexios or Cassandra) would engage in romantic or sexual relations with. Ubisoft themselves heavily promoted that the player could make Alexios or Cassandra straight, gay, bi, or nonsexual by their own choices. Player choice was one of the primary pillars of the game's marketing and something Ubi talked about from the day the game was announced. So Ubisoft throwing that away for what sounds like a poorly told narrative reason is going to make people angry because Ubisoft specifically designed and marketed the game in a way that goes against removing that kind of agency from the player. If Alexios and Cassandra had been straight from the get go or if the main game didn't have romance options no one would give a damn.
     
  19. Danny Dawg

    Danny Dawg [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,644
    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2008
    Damn, all this publicity fuss . . . it is just a game. You buy it, you go on the ride the creator wants you to go on.
     
  20. NeoNemesis

    NeoNemesis 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    2,385
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Fucking idiots, all of them.
     
    SolarisGuru and Vader1975 like this.
  21. Vader1975

    Vader1975 Gawd

    Messages:
    820
    Joined:
    May 11, 2016
    The response should of just been .. silence. So your buthurt about a plot in a video game.
     
    Tiburon1186 likes this.
  22. ericsmith881

    ericsmith881 n00b

    Messages:
    11
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2019
    Short of some kind of "immaculate conception" stuff and despite what the SJW's would love to believe, you kinda need a male and a female in some way to make a baby. I know, it's tough to accept such a horrific, intolerant conclusion. Grief counselors are standing by. They've been equipped with vagina hats for easy locating.

    Time for reality, folks. Every person that's ever existed had both male and female parents. Wishing otherwise doesn't make it reality.
     
    Tiburon1186, Zuul, Roberty and 4 others like this.
  23. Master_shake_

    Master_shake_ [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    9,357
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2012
    ah the vocal minority.

    surely they know what's best for companies.

    look how it's worked so far.
     
  24. Derangel

    Derangel [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    17,745
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2008
    Haven't played the DLC but it sounds like Ubi did a really bad job of justifying it. There are ways to go that route without making it a full relationship. Sex doesn't have to mean a full on relationship nor does it have to lead to the implication that the character is straight, going against one of the core principals of what Ubisoft promised with the game. On the other hand, maybe Ubisoft shouldn't have devoted so much time and effort into developing and marketing player choice if they just planned to rip that choice away from the player in order to tell this narrative.
     
    Aioeyu, Revdarian and RanceJustice like this.
  25. dark_reign

    dark_reign 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    2,228
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    It would have been a better decision, but game devs are being pressured not to leave anyone out. Battlefield V is a good example and probably more shit like this.
     
  26. Derangel

    Derangel [H]ard as it Gets

    Messages:
    17,745
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2008
    Pressured my ass. Ubisoft did it because they wanted the praise and good press for doing so without having to worry about actually following through with the decision down the line.
     
  27. THRESHIN

    THRESHIN 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    2,964
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2002
    I think they should be forced to recall this dlc and remake it. It should include an option for a gay relationship.

    In fact, I have a solution for the baby problem. It involves rope and a turkey baster.
     
  28. Nafensoriel

    Nafensoriel Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    229
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2015
    I wonder how movies and books would be if the plot elements required all viewpoints, religions, and sexual preferences. Oh, wait it would be a train wreck its why we don't do that.

    Why the heck have video games been excluded from the needs of the plot over the needs of someones private fantasy?
     
    ericsmith881, GoldenTiger and Skyblue like this.
  29. Soulmetzger

    Soulmetzger [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,307
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2004
    We have way too many squeaky wheels in our society now a days.
     
  30. harmattan

    harmattan [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    4,241
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    Exactly. Had this same thought yesterday after having ripped my ax out in slow-mo of an Athenian archer's head, something I'd done for the 5-hundreth time. I just opted to do one of the same-sex love options with Kassandra because it made more sense for the story and was thinking "someone's gonna be triggered by this". Grow up, folks.
     
    Aioeyu likes this.
  31. RanceJustice

    RanceJustice [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    6,002
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2003
    The amount of people who are REALLY sore about this is probably pretty small, but it is a crappy thing to do in the context of the rest of the game. The entire mainline game allows the player to have full control over romance or lack thereof. Both genders have just about all the same options for sexual/romantic relationships etc... so players can play their way - if they want to be an all business Misthios that's one thing, if they want to bang everything that moves, they can do that too, or somewhere in between. This was posed as a major feature of the game and was held aloft as both a gameplay/storyline control dynamic and embraced by all, including those who aren't used to a game either A) letting them have homosexual relationships or encounters or B) is only a part of the game as opposed to some "narrative, this is a gay game walking simulator about someone's gay experience gay gay gay" title - in AC:Od, your sexual or romantic choices were a nice optional tangent, but it didn't reduce the entire character of Alexios or Kassandra down to these encounters. This is pretty rare when you think about it!

    So then here comes the expansion DLC (which by all accounts otherwise, is good and high quality.) that forces the players into one particular type of event for "plot" reasons, after the mainline adventure spent all the time giving you freedom. That in and of itself is enough for people to say "What the hell?" the fact that it is a heterosexual relationship makes all the people who were not playing a heterosexual protagonist, to feel even more disconnected. Lets be honest, there would likely be MORE screeching from a larger group if things were the other way around - that your Alexios that you were playing as a lady's man HAD to take a man into his bed for some plot reasons or whatnot. I don';t even want to think of the amount of people yelling about "forced gay agenda" nonsense - so lets not pretend that objecting to this design in and of itself is unreasonable.

    Ubi has been doing realtively well with "Live service, meaning actual content and expansion" stuff as far as AC:Od goes, so a patch here to "fix" the DLC would help. I haven't played the DLC yet, but they could have easily created a non-sexual progenitor option. If players wanted a heterosexual pairing, one path would turn out as it has so far. If players wanted a homosexual pairing, there could be some sort of First Civilization Device/Magic/ that handled genetic engineering or whatnot, with a surrogate if necessary. There could also be an option for the non-sexual/romantic path where tthe First Civ genetic engineering transfers the players' DNA into a surrogate (ie a NPC friend ) for another reason etc. This could also lead into other choices too (ie cascading choices over who would raise the child, how much interaction the player would have in their life if any, what role they would play etc) , but would overall give the story a similar conclusion to the chapter without requiring one particular sexual/romantic relationship.

    Ubi launched AC:Od with a lot of great features and one of them was the player's ability to play the gender of their wish and completely control the character's sexual proclivities. Going back on that is certainly objectionable, especially when there are possibly interesting opportunities to keep the original promise of choice viable.

    Edit: Its also disappointing that he'd "shelve the romantics for the next chapter' . Even if he didn't make any changes as I describe above, if this and future chapters were designed for that relationship to be important, unless they do things perfectly with a really deep rewrite, future modules will feel disconnected and it will make this one seem even more out of the alignment to be so important with a "forced" relationship that disappears in the next chapter!

    If they are stuck on the minimal work treadmill, then at least do the rest of "this" storyline the best you can! However, the best idea is still to go back and patch the DLC to remove the mandatory heterosexual relationship as I described as above
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2019
    Aioeyu likes this.
  32. Dregan73

    Dregan73 Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    234
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2007
    what are they upset about, u cant make a baby by crossing swords or rubbing snatch together
     
    Zuul and Master_shake_ like this.
  33. Lateralus

    Lateralus More [H]uman than Human

    Messages:
    14,535
    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2004
    Right. But some of them are saying that the game shouldn't have forced the decision to have a baby upon the player. "What if I didn't want my character to have a kid!" or "They could have written the story so that the baby was randomly left on the doorstep."

    I'll agree that it seems weird to offer the player a choice to go exclusively gay or lesbian in the main game only to force them into a hetero encounter in the DLC (if that's what's happening here) but the real turnoff for me is the manner in which many of those commenters reacted when people tried stating any opinions that didn't align 100% with the outrage. Some of the comments were so hostile and over-dramatic that it made me lose any sympathy that I might've otherwise had for those folks.
     
    scojer likes this.
  34. RanceJustice

    RanceJustice [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    6,002
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2003
    Its dangerous to let the reactions of the worst of ANY group (especially online) change or significantly affect your views on the subject. One of the big societal problems we have today is because of this, where people ignore actual policies or decision positions that they'd otherwise agree with, because there is someone "annoying" who also agrees. Thus, they turn to support the alternate side simply to "get back at the annoying people", which makes little sense... but is being used masterfully by certain groups in order to manipulate the discourse, often to getting people to work against their own best interest. Don't fall into the same pit!
     
    Lateralus and harmattan like this.
  35. Colonel Sanders

    Colonel Sanders 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    3,885
    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2001
    Wow, this isn't an article designed to rile up right-wing gamers or anything.
     
    steakman1971 and scojer like this.
  36. filip

    filip [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,782
    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2012
    Can we have a census done to see how many people are actually offended and use that data instead of how loud they can be. The complaining noise levels are to high for virtual things and any pandering is just to make more money.
    Out with ethics in with diver$ity.
     
    The Mad Atheist likes this.
  37. The Mad Atheist

    The Mad Atheist Gawd

    Messages:
    927
    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2018
    Never played any of those games so I don't know the plot. I guess Ubi did something like the Mass Effect games and went down the "choose your own preference" route?
    Gays are upset because the characters want to continue the line forcing a hetero relationship.....
    Guess they don't like it when their kind can go to the straight-side.

    Just like to say I tried to read your comment but got distracted w/ the Gif multiple times, THANKS!
    And thanks for reminding me to finish the books and watch the anime. :)
     
    DukenukemX likes this.
  38. harmattan

    harmattan [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    4,241
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    I know we're going down a rabbit hole, but yes, this is one of the main tenets of the enlightment... which inspired the American and French republican (in the classical sense of the word) foundations of government two+ centuries ago. Folks need to read a bit more Voltaire and Paine nowadays.
     
    Aioeyu and RanceJustice like this.
  39. Smashing Young Man

    Smashing Young Man [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,537
    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2009
    I'm beyond tired of those whose whole identity revolves around their race, gender, or sexual orientation. To me it's the same as basing your very existence on your hair color or love of Skittles.

    I was fine with gay folk for years. I never gave them a second thought, either those I knew personally or in the greater context of society as a whole. Apparently they're not happy with such passive acceptance, yet shouldn't such passive acceptance be the goal, where people don't even care what your sexual preferences are? But nooooo . . . they want special treatment and unearned adulation based solely on the fact that they sleep with their own sex. To hell with that. It makes me want to see them forcibly shoved back into the closet.

    The above also applies to pussy-hat wearers and race hustlers.

    These days, being a part of some ostensibly disadvantaged or oppressed minority is seen as a badge of honor and point of pride. You have white people pretending to be Native American or even black, people claiming mental illnesses they either don't have or overstate (it seems like everyone claims to sit somewhere on the autism spectrum these days). Innate masculine traits are being called pathological, while a child thinking they're the opposite gender and having their neither regions mutilated to support that delusion is considered normal.

    Modern society is a basketcase.
     
  40. RanceJustice

    RanceJustice [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    6,002
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2003
    It seems to have the feeling here that many of those who are either "supporting" Ubi's narrative decision or spending more of their time not commenting on that fact but instead specifically focusing on the "gay" aspect or the "complainers identity/SJW etc.." stuff, seem to be ignoring the crux of the issue and just trying to paint this along certain...talking points (ie unreasonable non-heteros, various annoying type etc..) rather than the issue itself people are complaining about - narrative consistency and agency.

    Just above someone mentioned Mass Effect. Does anyone remember the outcry that came when people felt that the first (and some say, the Extended Cut) ending to Mass Effect 3 changed the choice and thematic build/path of the rest of the game to forcing things into a end-of-the-road mostly single path (ie the whole Red/Blue/Green debate?). Similar issue. Likewise, consider the following. Imagine an Asssassin's Creed title like Odyssey where choice was a major feature, but the choice as over "Assassin vs Templar" paths for everything. You could join either side, support either side, go back and forth from mission to mission, go fully to one side or the other as you liked. Then comes a DLC expansion that has a forced story where it is basically settled that you HAVE to formally join the Templars as the canon choice. So all along you could waver, support a middle road, choose the opposite, be a hardliner and then BAM - gone. Clearly the people who were playing a hardcore Assassin would be the most upset, as the story tossing them hard Templar side after they spent the whole core game only making Assassin choices, is disappointing - doubly so if the choice was how the game was marketed/focused! It would be even worse if there were plenty of canon-friendly ways to allow choice of either side to proceed in the DLC, but they devs seemed to for whatever reason not do so.

    This is essentially the same thing.