Another Reason To Get Pissed Off With Uplay

Having to use multiple digital distribution services to play one game is already annoying enough. Uplay is arguably the worst of everything that's not Steam. But now Ubisoft's platform has given everyone one more reason to get angry.

Update: One of Ubisoft's community managers, Cain Sinopoulos, has gotten in touch to clarify some of the information. The situation described when users attempt to change their legacy username, Sinopoulos says, and doesn't apply when changing your username via your profile on the Uplay website.

Sinopoulos posted on Reddit and contacted me personally to stress that changing legacy usernames are fraught with risks. "As [Ubisoft support] mentioned, it's linked to various different things in older games such as game stats, save games and so on," he wrote.

"The display name (or username) would be the one changed via the method linked in your article. No risk at all with that," Sinopoulos tweeted, adding that free-to-play games, and future ones such as Rainbow Six: Siege, would not be adversely affected if a name was changed through the profile element of the Uplay website.

The earlier story follows below.

In a post on Reddit, user gamemaster257 has reported a surprising restriction within Ubisoft's service: if you have any games in your account that were released before November 2012 — anything before Assassin's Creed 3, in other words — you won't be able to change your Uplay name.

"If you have any older Uplay PC titles (games released prior to Assassin's Creed III in November of 2012) activated to your account, you are not eligible for a username change due to the way that Uplay uses your account's username as the unique identifier when logging in to the service," the post from Ubisoft's support reads.

"Any username changes will result in these games being permanently lost. Uplay has recently been updated to minimize these login issues for newer titles. However, the issue cannot be eliminated for games released before November 2012."

It's curious because the restriction isn't mentioned once in Ubisoft's official FAQ for changing usernames. "Your current Username will now become your ‘Legacy Username’, which cannot be changed, but will be saved permanently on your account," Ubisoft's support page says.

"Your Legacy Username is a personal identifier displayed in your account information page only, and is unique to you. Your Legacy Username will be required for old Ubisoft titles prior to October 14th, 2014."

Even if you have only purchased Ubi titles post-AC3, the name change is still risky: you'll lose all your multiplayer stats and savegame files, the latter of which is probably the more frustrating (since most Ubi titles I can think of would be Splinter Cell: Blacklist, Grow Home, Child of Light, and the Far Cry/Assassin's Creed series, games that trade more heavily on the campaign than the singleplayer).

Oh and if you're one of those who play Ubisoft's free-to-play titles like Duel of Champions: don't change your name either. Ever. "Username changes are also not recommended for customers who play our free-to-play MMOs such as The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot or Duel of Champions as the change can cause various issues (i.e., loss of all card decks, corruption of friend list, connectivity issues)," the email from Ubi support says.

The mere existence of Uplay is already perplexing in this day and age, but issues like this just compound the fury tenfold.


    This sounds just like EA and Origin stuffs.

    I looked at getting two accounts merged and they said it'd cause loss of save games and game data, then they later said they wouldn't do the merge because they found I had some games I'd lose access to.

    Does nobody use GUiDs anymore? Isn't it basic database design, don't link to the effin text field, link to a unique guid or something.
    Is that why I am stuck with my stupid Sony PSN username that is harder to change than my real name.

      Yup appears that a lot of these systems are poorly designed like that.

      At least with psn you can have multiple accounts on the one console and sort of get around this.

      Last edited 28/09/15 6:08 pm

      I work with databases. It's not terribly hard to add a new column, and then populate it with the associated guid. Perhaps they just don't want to go to the effort of changing all associated systems and how they use the new database design.

    uPlay has always had this issue, not sure why this is a 'new' thing.
    There are entire forums of raging, rabid gamers, complaining that they can't change their username and for some it is for pre-ordered games, so their username may have been pre-made by the store.
    Not only is it unwieldy, but in some cases, undesirable, as gamers have found accounts made up in their real name, an especially distasteful restriction for any female gamers who could then look forward to harassment spilling over into real life.

    uPlay is such a heap of shit, that it will allow you to purchase multiple copies of the same game for yourself, without notification. I ended up accidentally buying Far Cry 4 twice on my account through a gift card, because it asked for my login, and then bound it to my account.
    Lobby and matchmaking through Ubisoft is so hilariously bad, I'll often end up being matched up with someone from Pakistan instead of someone locally, like my mate who is waiting patiently to join my game.
    My rant could go on throughout the night, but I'm preaching to the choir.

    TL:DR - Use Steam. Ubisoft has already publicly declared they hate gamers but love their money.

    Who, freaking, cares? Who actually uses Uplay enough to want to change their name on it?

      the stupidity of it annoys me, why even offer username changes if it breaks your account

    What if the oldest PC game on your uPlay account is AC3, but your actual account predates that? I recall that I set mine up to access the stupid extra stuff in AC2 on 360.

    Looks like Ubisoft aren't giving up quite yet on outdoing Konami for the position of "Worst AAA Gaming Company In The Entire World". Mind you, they still have a long way to go, but they have the will, they have the determination, and they have the epic levels of no-fuck-giving to do it.

    Seriously? They cant make a mapping table in the db to map new usernames/id's to old ones? Then make a view?
    Sounds like the database wasnt well designed.

    One, this doesn't really matter.

    Two, how is this related to Uplay. Seems to me like you just attached it to Uplay to garner some ____ (hate, sympathy, clicks, likes?)

    Three, did i just stand up for Ubisoft?

    I'm no fan of uPlay, but thankfully I have one internet handle, and a couple of variations for when someone steals it. I have no need to change my name.

    Also, I can see how this would be annoying for those who do want to change their name, but I can only imagine how many systems Ubisoft linked to the username that would be an absolute nightmare to fix after the fact.

    It's ridiculous to think that if the platform was open source, or allowed customisation in the form of mods or the like, we could have it fixed in less than a few hours; and simply to make other gamers happy.

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