German Mag Claims Ubi Demanded Positive Review On Assassin's Creed II

Computer Bild Spiele of Germany has, on its December cover, a blurb touting an "Assassin's Creed 2 SKANDAL!" It alleges Ubisoft wanted a score of "very good" before it would turn over a review copy of the game.

Says the publication:

Our reviews are tough, but fair. We will not give up our independent scores for the sake of a timely review. This holds true for "Assassin's Creed 2″. The publisher asked us to guarantee the score 'sehr gut' [very good] , otherwise we would not receive a review copy, thus we will publish our review in next month's issue. We'd be more than glad to give the game a 'sehr gut', but only if it deserves it.

I've sent an email over to Ubisoft's PR to give them the courtesy of a response. Any that comes will be printed here.

But despite the fact this behaviour has strong precedent, keep in mind this boils down to he-said Ubi-said. And it boggles the mind, from what we've all seen so far, that Assassin's Creed II would need such strong-arming to get a good score. But who knows. There is a ton of money riding on a game's Metascore, providing motive enough.

Ubisoft Demanding High Scores for Early Assassins Creed 2 Reviews? [wearetheinternetz, thanks Lorand K.]


    i will not be buying assassins creed 2 now, what a bunch of a**holes. not only that the first one sucked anyway.

      So you were going to buy a copy, even though you thought the first game sucked, but now you're not because of an unsubstantiated claim in a German magazine? Oh, you da man.

    I looked at the other two articles, and it's pathetic that their trying so hard to make the game look better than it might actually be, just to get more sales.

    It's kind of sad that their still trying to do it. I hope none of these reviewers give in to whatever temptations they offer.

      "’s pathetic that their trying so hard to make the game look better than it might actually be, just to get more sales."

      That's... every game, car, movie, product ever made- which had any marketing/advertising.

      It's business.

      Look at bread packaging. The color and words imprinted is still a form of marketing. Bread is plain and boring... but better the packaging - the more likely you will pick it up over the competing bread with bland packaging.

      It's life

    Review scores are a joke. I never see anything under 7/10. Everything is amazing! We must go buy it!!

      Dunno what review you read. I often see terrible ratings at fairly often the reviews are pretty on track.

        @ Ben and Troy

        Sorry but I'm with Ben. Even mediocre games get a 6 - average games a 7, and good games 8 and 9.

        If you look at say the film industry, bad movies typical get 1 or 2 out of 5, average 3 out of 5 stars and great movies 4 out of 5. Only a handful of movies get 5 out of 5's.

        Definately game reviews are skewed upwards and possibly this is because the game review sites depend more heavily on advertising revenue from the products they critique than say your newspaper reviews.

          To be honest, I think such score inflation has a lot to do with the scales commonly used amongst games media. Film and music reviewers rarely rate out of anything other than five, or in some cases ten. In games, many publications mark out of 100. It's much easier to give 1 star than it is to give 20%. And ultimately it's more beneficial to the reader when they know a reviewer is prepared to use the full breadth of their chosen scoring system.

          Personally, I like how we don't give scores at all here at Kotaku, but if we had to I'd definitely want to score out of five.

            I'd love to see an industry wide change to a 5-star system, like film/music. I'm sick of seeing scores of "X.7". WTF is .7 of a point anyway?

    You would think the game makers would have enough faith in the products they make so they wouldn't have to resort to such measures.

      I'm sure the game developers have plenty of faith in there game. This wouldn't be a decision made by them but one made by upper management.

        And if your game is "Darkest of Days"?

          I your game was "Darkest of Days", then you'd get your game unfairly critised because it doesn't have the devlopment budget of a Call of Duty title.

    This may just be the excessively hopeful thoughts of an AC/Ubisoft fanboy but we haven't actually seen any substantial evidence supporting this.
    Could it not just be a badly thought out marketing attempt on the magazine's part?
    I'd certainly never heard of them before this and they could have been thinking that 'any publicity is good publicity'.

      The fact that people havent figured this out yet and unquestioningly believe evrything they read in the internet regardless of wheter it has proof or not dissapoints me in people.

    This may or may not be true... from what I've seen online, this game is shaping up to be every bit as good as they say it is.

    I don't really think that a company such as this could continue to release games if they need to strong arm companies into giving positive reviews.

    Just my opinion, for what its worth.

    Test played it at a press meet up.

    Its alright, but honestly, the other games there got more attraction than AC2 did.
    The biggest down-side was that the game felt oddly like the old one.

    If you havnt played AC1, dont play it to catch up with the storyline, play AC2, then go back and play AC1, or otherwise play them one after the other without a break in between.

    I dont know whether it was because the game controls were old, or whether it was because the game was just over hyped, but it certainly didnt feel like an Uncharted, to Uncharted 2 - or a GTA3 to GTA4.

    That sounds sort of stupid given the fact that noone SHOULD be crazy enough to do that in the post Driv3R-scandal world.

    Ahh, then again, Kane & Lynch... (Pity really because it wasn't a bad game, the content got the hate the PR people should have gotten)

    Well, seeing they aren't willing to bring out a demo so gamers can try before they buy, this just seems like the nail in the coffin in terms of them wanting us to buy, buy, buy!

    Obviously they only care about getting the money in their pockets as soon as possible.

    Either way, i have pre-ordered the black edition because i missed out on all the special stuff in the 1st game. Also, i have been looking forward to this game since i completed the 1st one as soon as it came out, so to be honest, it wouldn't bother me in the slightest - only to those "new to the franchise"

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