MMX and Uplay

Discussions about the latest news in the Might and Magic community.

Moderators: Moderators, Celestial Heavens Staff

User avatar
Kalah
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 19998
Joined: 24 Nov 2005

MMX and Uplay

Postby Kalah » Nov 28 2013, 19:59

<img src="http://www.celestialheavens.com/images/news/uplay.jpg" align=right>So we know that <i>Might & Magic X</i> will require Uplay, just like all Ubisoft PC games do. Before we go any further, I should say that there is nothing Limbic (the MMX developers) can do about this, it's a decision way above their heads. I will also mention the fact that Ubisoft have changed their old method of using Uplay (where you had to stay connected constantly while playing the games); it is now used only as a one-time activation feature when you install your game. <a target="_blank" href="https://mightandmagicx-legacy.ubi.com/opendev/blog/post/view/uplay-and-m-m-x">This article on the Open Dev Blog</a> explains Uplay implementation in MMX.

With that out of the way, it's time to move on to the <b>critique</b>:
<b>1.</b> We don't like Uplay. We don't like the concept. Why? Basically, the main problem is that you are completely reliant upon someone else's software or hardware. Much like online systems such as Steam, any problems they have will be transferred to you. The Ubisoft servers have <a target="_blank" href="http://www.celestialheavens.com/1342469001">a habit of going down</a>, and this means that for an indeterminate amount of time, all those magnificent "special features" will be unavailable to you. The Dev Blog mentions cloud saves and social features. Good luck getting hold of them if the servers go down. If all game features were local, i.e. on a disc, you'd have full autonomy: whether Ubisoft are having hardware trouble or not, you have access to all features. This is why I believe this route, the online features, to be fundamentally flawed. It sounds good in theory, but the infrastructure is still trying to catch up with the game developers' designs. I'm not even going to get started on the potential <a target="_blank" href="http://www.celestialheavens.com/1343656708">security issues</a>...
<b>2.</b> Autoupdate. In the <a target="_blank" href="https://mightandmagicx-legacy.ubi.com/opendev/blog/post/view/uplay-and-m-m-x">article</a> mentioned above, Limbic say that Uplay will auto-patch the game when an update is released. It sounds great, and very convenient... until you think about it carefully. What it means is that if you want to start the game and be connected to Uplay, in order to connect with your friends, get extra stuff/points etc... the game is automatically updated. What happens if there's a 200MB patch waiting for you, you have a slow DSL line and all you have time for is a quick half-hour game before dinner? You see, I experienced something similar the other day with Steam: I started up XCOM and just wanted a small mission to have some fun before bedtime, but Steam forced me to update the game first... and the update wasn't exactly small - it took more than an hour to download. The bottom line is: I hope the Uplay Download manager can be set to <b>disable auto-patching</b> and let the players choose when to update their games. We also need <b>patches to be released in single-file format</b> (.exe or .zip or whatever) for players with slow/no connections, so they can d/l it at work or some other place, and then take it home on a USB.
<b>3.</b> One-time activation. It's the lesser of two evils, so to speak. Ubisoft had to <a target="_blank" href="http://www.celestialheavens.com/1294168644">back down</a> over their "always on DRM" solution, and this is a way they can keep at least <i>some</i> control over the online system. Most of us can accept the one-time activation policy as a compromise, but some cannot, for obvious reasons: what if the gaming PC is not connected to the Internet? I asked the developers of <i>Heroes VI</i> what they could do to help those players this applied to, and the answer was: "nothing". No wonder they got fired and went bankrupt.
Another inherent flaw in the online activation scheme is: <b>what if Uplay is down when you try to activate the game?</b> This has happened before, causing some fans on the official forum to rename it "Udon'tplay", rather fittingly, and also causing Ubisoft to <a target="_blank" href="http://www.celestialheavens.com/1328190411">perform a much-needed server upgrade</a>. One wonders if this thing will never happen again. With MMX too being dependent upon Uplay for activation, you will be unable to install and play your game if the servers happen to be down at the time.

We hope Limbic (being a fairly smart bunch of people) will make every effort to satisfy the fans in these regards.

For more information about Uplay, check out <a target="_blank" href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uplay">Wikipedia</a>.

If you would like to take a look at the original page visit this link:
http://www.celestialheavens.com/viewpag ... 1385668790
In War: Resolution, In Defeat: Defiance, In Victory: Magnanimity, In Peace: Goodwill.

User avatar
Avonu
Round Table Hero
Round Table Hero
Posts: 3850
Joined: 06 Aug 2006
Location: City of Griffin
Contact:

Postby Avonu » Nov 29 2013, 11:03

Anyone who played HoMM6 with online saves/synchronisation enabled should already know how "great" this feature is. For these of you who doesn't know: search forum for "Why my saves disappeared?" topics.

User avatar
prichindel
Leprechaun
Leprechaun
Posts: 13
Joined: 06 Jan 2006

MMX and Uplay

Postby prichindel » Nov 29 2013, 21:59

What happens when the online support for a game is dropped? You're basically left with a game that you can't enjoy to the fullest in the years to come.

User avatar
Kalah
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 19998
Joined: 24 Nov 2005

Postby Kalah » Nov 29 2013, 23:30

That is also a good question.
In War: Resolution, In Defeat: Defiance, In Victory: Magnanimity, In Peace: Goodwill.

User avatar
jeff
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 3713
Joined: 06 Jan 2006

Postby jeff » Nov 30 2013, 1:52

One would hope there would be a final patch to release the game from any uplay requirement, but to be honest UBI's track record has not been good. ;|
Mala Ipsa Nova :bugsquash:

User avatar
hellegennes
D'oh
D'oh
Posts: 842
Joined: 04 May 2009

MMX and Uplay

Postby hellegennes » Nov 30 2013, 11:57

Theoretically, this is of some concern. However, it is most likely that these companies and their systems will be there long enough that the question becomes irrelevant. It is more likely that before the online support is dropped for these games, your system will run a different OS and even your hardware may not be compatible with the game anymore. Of course, someone will find a solution, like the ones we have for older games (DOSbox, unofficial patches, etc). These solutions will take care of the online nuisance, as well.

User avatar
Kalah
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 19998
Joined: 24 Nov 2005

Postby Kalah » Nov 30 2013, 14:59

We can currently see that Sony (not exactly a small firm) are having big problems with the recent release of their new flagship, the PlayStation 4, as PSN are experiencing network issues. In a nutshell, they have underestimated the requirements of their own infrastructure, and have to turn off features (the 'redeem voucher') in order to lighten the load.

What happens to MMX when (!) these things happen to the Ubisoft networks?
In War: Resolution, In Defeat: Defiance, In Victory: Magnanimity, In Peace: Goodwill.

User avatar
hellegennes
D'oh
D'oh
Posts: 842
Joined: 04 May 2009

MMX and Uplay

Postby hellegennes » Nov 30 2013, 16:12

It's not exactly the same, Ubisoft does not need to support 100 million users. PSN is a case of really bad planning. How could they not see it coming?

User avatar
jeff
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 3713
Joined: 06 Jan 2006

Re: MMX and Uplay

Postby jeff » Nov 30 2013, 19:49

hellegennes wrote: However, it is most likely that these companies and their systems will be there long enough that the question becomes irrelevant.


True but many games that were designed to run on Dos are still available on GOG. Some of the games are fully 'patched' and no longer need outside support. It would not be a major investment on UBI's side to make H6 uplay free and it is likely if it is ever offered on GOG as all the other editions that those modifications will be made. I'm guessing it already has been planned though it might be some time (years) before it is sold.
Mala Ipsa Nova :bugsquash:

User avatar
Pol
Admin
Admin
Posts: 8981
Joined: 29 Nov 2005
Location: IN SOMNIS VERITAS
Contact:

Postby Pol » Nov 30 2013, 19:52

It's not exactly the same, Ubisoft does not need to support 100 million users. PSN is a case of really bad planning. How could they not see it coming?


A possible explanation is, that they seen is coming. But waited until money from recent sales didn't motivated them enough.

In other words, there was some cheapskate manager saying. We could be prepared well enough but there will not be a demand, so why to invest the money? At worst it will be a little overloaded, no big deal, we will reinforce as needed.

That is sloppiness!

Notice this is one of differences between successful company and looser - if they don't have monopoly.

Steve Job once said something about a successful launch, these are good words to keep.
"We made it!"
The Archives | Collection of H3&WoG files | Older albeit still useful | CH Downloads
PC Specs: A10-7850K, FM2A88X+K, 16GB-1600, SSD-MLC-G3, 1TB-HDD-G3, MAYA44, SP10 500W Be Quiet

User avatar
Fuddelbaerentatze
Peasant
Peasant
Posts: 91
Joined: 13 Jul 2008

MMX and Uplay

Postby Fuddelbaerentatze » Dec 2 2013, 0:01

Jeff: "Some of the games are fully 'patched' and no longer need outside support. It would not be a major investment on UBI's side to make H6 uplay free and it is likely if it is ever offered on GOG as all the other editions that those modifications will be made. I'm guessing it already has been planned though it might be some time (years) before it is sold."

I hope everything will happen just the way you described it. I can wait.

Gog-like Retro gaming is the way to go. No more inserting discs. No powerful hardware needed. No Internet connection mandatory. Even Windows is optional in many cases ...

User avatar
Ya5MieL
Marksman
Marksman
Posts: 428
Joined: 06 Jan 2006
Location: Kutjevo, Croatia

MMX and Uplay

Postby Ya5MieL » Dec 11 2013, 19:17

Uplay and attached support is the single worst one on the market.

So many issues that it stopped being funny long time ago.

Even at the moment I have unsolved tickets with their support for well over a week, with statuses "on hold" and similar. (preordered MMX on ubishop.com but only effect i got from it is 43€ less on my bank account, with no game/early access to play)
They are fast when it comes to taking the money but extremely slow/sloppy when it comes to producing a solution.

Making every game a damn social platform is ridiculous, especially for us older gamers that simply want a working game without online interaction gimmics.

My tone in this post might be slightly more angry than intended, but it just reflects the current state of mind with regards to this platform.

Roman
Pixie
Pixie
Posts: 127
Joined: 02 Dec 2006

MMX and Uplay

Postby Roman » Dec 23 2013, 9:44

I don't purchase any games that are online-dependent for play/installation/activation (although admittedly, the latter are less bad than the former). And yes, this does mean my game purchases have plunged in recent years, even as my income can better support them than before.

Much as I wanted to support this game, I will not make an exception for it. If a company cannot trust me enough to buy their product without this requirement, I will not trust them to patch out the online activation once they eventually shut down their servers (meaning I would not be able to install/activate the game anymore). If they do patch out that requirement in the future, then I might buy the game at the time... if I get to hear about it somehow and provided that I am still interested.


Return to “News”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests