Confession: I Always Unlock Ubisoft Club Rewards First

When I start a new Ubisoft game for the first time, I don’t immediately play it. No, I find the Ubisoft Club option in the game’s menu, load it up, and start unlocking rewards. The rewards are rarely good and they sometimes imbalance my game, but I can’t help myself.

What did I do when I started The Crew 2 this week?

Grabbed myself this comically unimpressive legendary exclusive outfit...

Picked up this gold helmet...

At least I had the self control not to snatch this soundtrack that I’d never listen to...

And when I started Far Cry 5 a few months back?

I snagged the baseball gear...

And the Rabbids bobblehead...

Ubisoft Club is, in part, a rewards program, similar to other loyalty programs for companies and products of all types. As I accomplish things in Ubisoft games, I accrue gold Ubisoft points that I can then redeem for virtual stuff.

The things you can get should be neat extras for the game, but inessential for those not in the Club. In addition to new outfits or variations on weapons, there might be a booster pack that contains some crafting materials, or in-game money that I can use to progress through a single-player mode more quickly.

Assassin’s Creed: Origins’ Club Rewards improved throughout the game’s six-month post-release season, with new crossover outfits tied to other AC or Ubisoft games added regularly. That game had dozens of weapons available through regular gameplay, but you could get Club exclusives, too.

I grabbed them and, if I recall correctly, I briefly enjoyed the advantage of having better weapons than I’d found through gameplay. Eventually, what I found in the game topped anything in the Club.

I enjoy the loop Ubisoft provides in which my thorough playing of an Assassin’s Creed game can earn me enough gold to unlock something in a Far Cry. That cross-game potential is neat. But I also sense I’m feeding some bad impulses with all of this.

I should look askance at anything that distracts from the purity of starting a game and just playing it — aside from taking the time to properly invert the Y axis, of course. I should start a game with the desire to interact with its gameplay, not first explore what sort-of-free extras I can grab.

I also don’t think I’m doing the world of game design any favours by supporting a system that encourages developers to make tiny pieces of their games that can be carved out and doled out separately.

Most of the time, Ubisoft seems to handle this program responsibly, though ironically their worst abuse of it is probably what got me hooked.

Go back to 2009's Assassin’s Creed 2, when Ubisoft’s rewards program was the exclusive way to unlock an elaborate parkour-filled, lore-filled Auditore family crypt. Since then, I’ve always worried that something as involved and essential might be locked behind a Club reward.

My worry is unfounded, these days. Some pre-order or retailer-exclusive quests might show up later as a Club bonus, but even that has been rare and has compensated for the more odious holding back of that content for pre-orders and specific retailers.

The whole thing is free, so I try not to feel too bad about it. And now, I’m somewhat relieved to confess that, of all things, Ubisoft Club rewards are my gaming vice.


Comments

    The best thing about Ubi-points is being able to use them for the 20% discount on purchases on the store.

    Especially when, in any case I've seen so far at least, that 20% applies even when the item is already discounted during a sale.

      agreed; great way to get a reasonable price!

    Eh, play it the way you want to play it. Screw this "purity" crap.

    It's kinda cool getting something a little extra for playing through a catalogue from a single publisher. I wish PS trophies did something similar across Sony games for example - get a piece of God of War armor for Atreus for finishing Horizon or something.

    Yeah I'm so guilty of doing this with ubi games.

    For trophy hunters, the rewards can shortcut the effort required, or just make the game "easier".

    I just did this with South Park - TFBW, but I won't always, depends on the game and the rewards offered. Some stuff I couldn't care less about, like most of the Watch Dogs 2 rewards.

    Playing Ubisoft games is ‘reward’ enough.

    I did this with rainbow six, you can get some exclusive weapon skins by having saves from other Ubi games, pretty cool.

    Not much of a 'confession', is it? I mean, it's pretty much what you're supposed to do. What else would you do... unlock them last? "Hooray, I've unlocked a shitty gun that's only slightly better than starter gear but much, much worse than all the other gear I'll have unlocked through gameplay by the time I feel I should be doing club unlocks?" Nah.

    It's mostly skins, anyway. Bit of flair and that's it. Sometimes some crafting/currency shortcuts which if you haven't played other games before, you can obtain enough points to buy after a couple hours play anyway. Really not seeing much in the way of disadvantages for those who haven't built up a bank from other games.

    A modestly 'complete' playthrough of the game will give you more points than you're likely to spend, especially if you don't give a shit about desktop wallpapers and soundtracks. Which means by the time you're done, you'll have built up a bank that covers what you unlocked to start with plus some spare change which will carry over to the next ubigame, giving you more shit to unlock from the get-go.

    Rinse and repeat, only ever falling behind if you decide that a game isn't worth playing through for long enough to recoup your up-front club-point spend. And if you fall behind... you're seriously not missing much.

    Non-issue, IMO.

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