Ubisoft is an exceptional game studio with quite a lot of noticeable titles in its portfolio. However, it has come under fire recently for ‘playing safe’ and relying mostly on all of its established franchises rather than coming up with new IPs to widen the experiences. Nonetheless, one thing that we cannot deny is that with each project Ubisoft committed itself into, the company always managed to do an acceptable job at bringing out the potentials. To celebrate this spirit, we have decided to compile a list of some of the greatest games made by the studio for you to enjoy if you happen to find yourself out of games to play.
For this reason, we won’t mention numerous games within a franchise owned by Ubisoft. Instead, we’ll pick out the bests within the list of Ubisoft’s published games. Plus, considering the fact that Metacritic is one of the most neutral and trusted video game ranking sites, we have borrowed their figures to make this list.
If you were to mention Grandia, the majority of people - even those who consider themselves hardcore gamers - would most likely not remember. The series, as great as it is, has fallen into obscurity for the past decade. Even for people who know the series, it’s also not a common knowledge that Ubisoft is actually the owner behind Grandia IP.
Ubisoft has never been known as a studio that can shine on the role-playing front, so the excellency of Grandia II was a great surprise for many at the time. The game was great enough that ports to PlayStation Network and Switch already exist.
Of course, similar to most RPGs out there the world setting was fantastical. You’ll be fitted into the shoes of a mercenary on a journey to unravel the mysterious history of the lands. A history that albeit the citizens of Grandia’s universe have inhabited the land for thousands of years was still unknown up until our young hero comes into the picture.
Simulators aren’t as popular nowadays when putting side by side with the plethora of open-world titles available to gamers. But Silent Hunter has never lost its luster thanks to the handiwork of Ubisoft who somehow managed to transform operating a submarine into an extremely fun experience.
The game will air-drop you into some of the most intense moments of World War II and put you in charge of a variety of naval vehicles, then force you to learn a bunch of naval warfare knowledge. With shipping convoys and destroyer submarines, there will never be a peaceful moment amidst the violent seas. You can also opt to partake in some of the real key moments of the War, so the game actually can be used as a semi-educational tool instead of just for mere entertainment.
Just like Grandia, this game is not very widely known. But critics loved it so much it actually appeared on the list of some of the best Xbox games of all time. So in spite of not being well-known, it is definitely a shining entry in Ubisoft’s expansive portfolio. Motorstorm failed to win over PlayStation’s players, Trials Evolution took it upon itself to enrapture anyone who owns an Xbox and succeed with flying colors.
The player can choose from a long list of motorbikes of various makes and models to conquer the smartly designed obstacle course laid out in front of them. The approach to the game’s design was also innovative: The camera angle created a 2D view while still retaining the 3D model and terrain designs. If you’re interested, fear not, the game aged quite well and still remain relevant even several years later.
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter
You remember those years when tactical shooters are more or less the celebrities of the video game market? Yeah, I missed those days, too. But their royalty status didn’t come for no reason: The market was saturated with excellent tactical shooters in those years. I can name for you dozens of them, but the best in memory must definitely be all of the games with Tom Clancy’s prefix. Out of all of the Tom Clancy’s game, Advanced Warfighter rose above all.
The thing about this game that made it so attractive was that all of the weapons in-game are real. The presence of several types of vehicles like armored personnel carriers, numerous obstacles, and innovative gameplay details served to enrich the player’s experience above and beyond the offerings of most tactical shooters at the time.
Far Cry 3
Far Cry is an old franchise, no doubt about that. But it was the brilliance of Far Cry 3 that launched the franchise to stardom. One of the many reasons that made up the success of Far Cry 3 is that the game offers the player a third-person style experience but still wrapped itself up as a first-person game.
This approach allowed the developers to rid themselves and the game of the design limitations of a traditional first-person shooter. Far Cry 3 also has a pretty riveting storyline that cuts straight into the actions. With this, the game accomplished something that’s very rare for a first-person shooter to be able to do: Make the players care about the story.
Assassin’s Creed II
Just like Far Cry, Assassin’s Creed is more or less a household name for most gamers at the moment. But all of the new games like Origins and Odyssey that Ubisoft continuously dished out, Assassin’s Creed II still remains solidly as the staple of the entire series even after almost a decade. The reason why people are so in love with the franchise is rather simple: Ezio Auditore is the only character to which the player will be attached to from the moment of his birth up until his old age through three full games that could make up a separate saga of its own: Assassin’s Creed II, Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood, and Assassin’s Creed: Revelation.
The storyline remains to be one of the best to ever be featured in the franchise and although Ezio lacks the fluidity in animation or even graphical details in comparison to newer iterations of Assassin’s Creed. There’s a kind of novelty and fun in playing as him that none of the newer cast of characters can compare. The game still retains much of the features that made the first game a major success: All of the free-running, emphasis on stealth, the takedowns, and on top of all, the captivating storyline that’s a mix between semi-alternative historical and sci-fi. The series of games still is one of the best I have ever played and there are zero reasons for you not to give it a try if you haven’t.
Looking back, games about the grim years of the Second World War were plentiful with notable franchises like Call of Duty and Medal of Honour reigning the genre. But Ubisoft took the opportunity to introduce a rather radical idea: A simulator sets in World War II but while every other developer focuses on the fights on the ground, Ubisoft took the virtual battles to the skies with IL-2 Sturmovik.
The majority of the game all has to do with taking over the helm of over 30 types of warplanes and navigate them through the shattered skies of the war. The game by itself contains about 70 types of airplanes overall and you can choose whatever you like best to shoot down the enemies. The player is also given the chance to pick whatever sides they want to be on, be it the Americans, the Germans, or the Japanese: It is arguably the height of historical aerial combat.
Taking a glance at the list, you’ll notice that all of the games all had to do with death, destruction, and war as general themes. Turning our gazes away from these stark topics a little bit, this one game is completely children-safe. So children-safe the game turned out to be a commercial failure, but for those who actually managed to test run the game, there’s no denying the quality.
Rayman Origins takes you back to the olden day of side-scrolling gameplay. There are no sophisticated catches and gameplay designs you have to worry about: The rules are laid bare and the enemies are especially easy to defeat. The progression system is rich and standard for such a game as you improve the protagonist’s skill points and add new abilities.
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
One thing that I regret the most is that Prince of Persia fizzled out of existence after the last generation came out. If it was still running, I’m plenty certain that it would be able to match the legendary status of popular franchises like Far Cry and Assassin’s Creed. In fact, Prince of Persia is better than Assassin’s Creed in many aspects so it’s a greater shame that we can’t see all of these advantages panning out with modern game design techs. Sands of Time trilogy is typically considered as one of the best pieces of work that Ubisoft had ever put out, and of course, it’s not without a good reason that it was received so warmly.
The intricacy and creativity put into the level design can be seen from the very moment you start up the game. The combat system is pure pleasure to play on and the time travel mechanic makes for a unique experience that builds up a classic title that a gamer must definitely play through at least once in his/her informal career.
Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Chaos Theory
The stealth action genre was first started by Metal Gear Solid in 1998 and in 2019, the genre is carried mostly by Hitman. But in the middle of the two franchises, there’s Splinter Cell. Although the series is already known as one of Ubisoft’s greatest, Chaos Theory has a special place as the greatest of them all.
The game signified a dramatic move from the game design point of view by allowing the player to actually kill Sam’s opponents. Making the world of Splinter Cell considerably grittier, more realistic, and in-line with the spy world of the game as a result. The addition of a multiplayer mode also made the game more memorable for those who take the battle to the Internet, forging unique moments with the game that can make it a hard-to-forget experience for those who had gone through it.
Interested in more of our videogame-related articles? Please check out this post for some of the best villains ever in the history of videogames.