Ubisoft Australia Responds Over NineMSN Bomb Squad Bungle

Ubisoft Australia Responds Over NineMSN Bomb Squad Bungle

Someone’s in trouble. But we’re not sure if it’s someone at Ubisoft, or someone at a third party PR agency. The bomb squad was called to NineMSN offices yesterday after a suspicious looking safe was delivered but not signed for. Inside the safe? Watch Dogs promotional material.

There may have been one or two red faces after opening the small black box and finding a game disc, beanie, and baseball cap. Staff was sent home for the bomb squad to force open the safe.

As far as I’m aware, Ubisoft doesn’t employ an outside PR agency on a regular basis, but it’s possible its brought one on to help with the load of Watch Dogs. It’s also possible this all played well into their hands, because here we are with another post about Watch Dogs.

Here’s the confusing part: While there was a note with the safe saying “Check your voicemail”, the journalist addressed didn’t actually have a voicemail.

The punchline is that after all that, there was still a note in the safe saying the game was embargoed until 5pm that day. Mind you, the game was already released at that point, but that’s a different discussion…


Ubisoft have responded with a statement:

“As part of a themed promotion for Watch Dogs, our team in Australia sent voicemail messages to some local media alerting them that they’d receive a special package related to the game. Unfortunately, the delivery to Ninemsn didn’t go as planned, and we unreservedly apologise to Ninemsn’s staff for the mistake and for any problems caused as a result. We will take additional precautions in the future to ensure this kind of situation doesn’t happen again.”



  • I thought the game is only a bomb if it fails to sell upwards of five million copies straightaway?

    That’s the prevailing logic nowadays right?

  • It’s crap they can get away with that. They say oops and get a bunch of free marketing. Meanwhile a business has had to shut down and a police presence is suddenly required costing everyone a heap of money. If a normal person had done that they’d be facing possible criminal charges and civil suits.

    • I agree but in this case there’s not really anything to say this was their intent and it wasn’t just a paranoid reaction to a delivery. It could be argued either way. I’m guessing they sent these out to a few places that just opened them like normal.
      A lot of the time when I read this stuff I find myself asking if these people seriously think Batman style rogues are out to get them. You look at things like the Aqua Teen Hunger Force lite-bright incident and wonder how actual, trained police officers looked at a toy and came to the conclusion that the Riddler was on the loose. Not getting the reference is one thing but thinking it was more than just graffiti/street art is a bit much.

      • I don’t think there was any ill intentions. Just idiotic. If we take the example of the ATHF you’d probably find the police would have been 95% certain they were nothing but the consequences on that 5% far outweigh everything else. The “it’s probably nothing” thought is what most of the bombers rely on.

        • A friend of mine had a routine of going to Israel a bit. Watched someone lose their luggage in a park. Not because it was stolen or they forgot it or anything… but because after they put their luggage down and ran off to go do something, the bomb squad came and blew it up. Socks’n’jocks everywhere. Abandoned suitcases in public spaces? That shit does not fly in some places.

    • Well, it was a bit out of the norm. What kind of journalist, let alone working person in the city, doesn’t have voicemail? I have at least 3 that I know of, between work phones, and personal phones. I’d actually count that is pretty damned unprofessional not to have one.

      Clearly they left a voicemail for someone.

    • You need to relax man, mistakes happen and it wasn’t intentional. ubisoft apologised and have learned from this mistake.

  • If I was delivered a safe, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t assume it’s a bomb. Things of value are usually in a safe. Have terrorists or crazies ever sent a bomb in a safe?

    • I’m no expert, but I’m pretty sure detonating something inside a reinforced metal box would pretty much nullify most small explosions. Of course, it could have always been triggered to go off when the safe is opened, but then again, it again nullifies the explosion in five out of six directions.

      On the funnier side, maybe it was because the safe’s code was on the journalist’s non-existent voicemail.

      • It would have to he a very small explosion. In all probability any decent sized explosive packet would fragment the walls of the safe into slivers of varying weights (depending on the properties of the material you might get large, slow moving fragments or high velocity small ones that saturate an area).

        If it detonated on being opened, the blast would be channelled directly out and at whoever was opening it, but the safe would still probably experience partial fragmentation.

    • I’d post a picture of it to imgur and reddit and watch the people shit themselves in anticipation of its opening…

    • Well, the thing the article misses is that after entering the combination, the safe gave off a series of beeps which was probably just the unlock signal, but could be misconstrued as an arming noise to those that weren’t expecting an unidentified black box to show up that day.

  • The campaign was under embargo for review until US release wasn’t it? None of the reviewers on twitch running it the morning of release could play the campaign publically until then.

Log in to comment on this story!