Upcoming Ubisoft Game Unleashes Awful Cover Of ‘Gangsta’s Paradise’ On Unsuspecting Ears

Upcoming Ubisoft Game Unleashes Awful Cover Of ‘Gangsta’s Paradise’ On Unsuspecting Ears
Image: Ubisoft / Kotaku / Frederick M. Brown, Getty Images

Ubisoft’s big new extreme sports game Riders Republic isn’t out yet. But yesterday, Ubisoft opened the beta up to everyone. So I was able to jump in and experience some of its open-world multiplayer action before its release later this year. I went in expecting big jumps and cool tricks. Instead, I found a terrible cover of “Gangsta’s Paradise” that stopped my virtual avatar in their tracks.

Last night, I was focused on riding my bike through the mountains of Riders Republic, still trying to figure out the controls and get a feel for how these virtual bicycles work. I was so focused that I almost didn’t notice that a new song had started to play in the background. That was until a part of my brain recognised the lyrics and made me lose control of my biker, crashing as result. I got up and stood there, shocked, as I listened to a folk acoustic cover of Coolio’s 1995 classic “Gangsta’s Paradise.”

Dear readers, let me tell you I was stunned by what I was hearing. Up until that point, the soundtrack of this game was what you would expect. Fast rock, some EDM, and some generic instrumental tracks. So this cover caught me totally by surprise. I’ve played more of the beta since hearing this track and I haven’t heard it again. Maybe there is a lot of music in this game? Maybe I’m going crazy and this never happened? But you all hear it too, right? So I’m not going mad. This is a thing. It was made and then put into this game for…some reason.

I’ve reached out to Ubisoft about this cover and who performed it as I can’t track down this version online. I did find other folk and acoustic covers of the song that were equally awful but not this particular disaster found in Rider’s Republic. Also, white people (especially white women who own acoustic guitars), please understand that not every song needs to be given the Mumford and Sons treatment. Please.

I give the Weird Al parody a pass because it’s very funny and slaps.

Rider’s Republic’s open beta ends on August 28. The full game releases on October 28, 2021 on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PC, and Stadia. Will “Gangsta’s Paradise” be in the full version? I hope not!


  • Oh Zack…this is your opinion on it. I have no affiliation with these artists, but you’re shitting on the time and effort these people were hired for. It’s easy to be a critic, hard to try and make any form of media art.

    When I read this article. I just thought how the articles that you guys are promoting on your platform just brings people away from your service one after another.

    I don’t want to stoop to your level and go to another persons workplace and tell them how to do their job, but man oh man you need to consider why you are doing this job.

  • This has to be one of the most racist and sexist articles I’ve read on this website in a long time. Zack, it’s not just white people and “white women” who write and enjoy acoustic music. You not having the same tastes in music as other people is not a justification for you writing… whatever this article is meant to be. I really hope you get the details of *all* of the people who contributed to the soundtrack and offer a heartfelt apology, because is almost bordering on an attempt at harassment. Take into account what would’ve happened to these artists if Ubisoft had given you their names in connection with this article and hang your head in shame.

      • “Also, white people (especially white women who own acoustic guitars), please understand that not every song needs to be given the Mumford and Sons treatment. Please.”

        Then maybe Zack should’ve left his racist and sexist remarks out of the article if he wasn’t aiming to harass the artists involved, given that he’s already assumed the sex and race of the people who created the song and soundtrack. Doesn’t sound like he’s giving “criticism” when he’s making bigoted attacks on people while knowing absolutely nothing the creators in question. There’s absolutely no good faith in his “criticism” (read: entitled whining, since Coolio already did an acoustic cover which I linked below and Zack seems to have missed that top result on Youtube while making his bigoted remarks).

        • Yes, but to anyone without an axe to grind it was clear that he was just trying to be funny, regardless of how that paid off. It seems you took it personally, though, and I get that, that’s happened to me before. But there’s a molehill here that you’re trying to make something more out of because you were personally offended.

          • To be a joke or funny it needs to have a punchline and this article has none of that. In what universe is randomly attacking unknown people doing a job for their race and sex funny? How exactly is that funny when Coolio did his own acoustic cover seven years ago? It just makes it come off as being even more racist and ignorant. The entire point of a joke is that it’s funny. “Look at me, I’m a sexist and racist who knows nothing about the actual song or artist” isn’t particularly funny to anyone remotely educated. I suppose you could find it funny in a black comedy manner on account of how badly he screwed up his research on Coolio’s own acoustic cover, but that’s about it.

            If Zack wants to be “funny” in this manner, maybe he should open a personal blog where he can be as racist and sexist as he likes without criticism.

  • Is this a joke? Gangsters Paradise, is itself a cover.

    “Gangsta’s Paradise” is a song by American rapper Coolio, featuring singer L.V. The song was released on Coolio’s album of the same name, as well as the soundtrack for the 1995 film Dangerous Minds. It samples the chorus and instrumentation, and includes some of the lyric, with altered meaning, of Stevie Wonder’s 1976 song “Pastime Paradise”.[3] Stevie Wonder apparently used ‘past-time paradise’ in an ironic reference to squandering of the present on nostalgically ‘living in the past’. Coolio apparently deplores an ostensibly paradisiacal but factually dangerous and time-wasting ‘gangsta’ lifestyle.


  • It’s fine for a folk song. Not my cup of tee, but it’s in the style of folk music.

    Stop wanting to gatekeep.

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