2020 has been hard on us all, but Ubisoft especially has seen some trying times. After months of allegations of abuse, cover-ups, and sexual assault, several key executives were fired and HR was turned on its head. The investigations are ongoing, resulting in more changes, and the atmosphere, as told to us by a few developers there currently, has been grim. Pair that with the backlash of painting BLM as a terrorist organization in a recent promo video, and it's been one disaster after another.
With a Ubisoft Forward showcase going on today, many were wondering if they were going to address what's been going on since the last showcase was deafeningly silent due to "time constraints." With today's showcase, many were glad to see the video, but that elation was shortlived when a follow-up tweet on the Ubisoft account said that the apology wouldn't be included in today's show either because of ... time.
It’s good to see this addressed but there is so much more that needs to be done. There are INCREDIBLE people at Ubisoft, they deserve to feel safe and proud of where they are. https://t.co/zn84NoFMqP— Liana Ruppert (@DirtyEffinHippy) September 10, 2020
We hear you, due to timing constraints, we chose to release the video as a standalone message before our #UbiForward event, but we are working to ensure it will be available in full in the VOD versions of the show.— Ubisoft (@Ubisoft) September 10, 2020
To be fair, The messaging in the initial video is a good first step. The work is far from over, but addressing the matter head-on and putting their money where their mouth is means a good effort is being put forth. That being said, we spoke with over 10 video editors in this industry with specializations specifically tied to digital events, and all of them stated that adding this into the showcase would take under 5 minutes and not take away from the show's time.
Related: Ubisoft Removes Controversial Ghost Recon Video, Reports Show Massive Internal Frustration With Company
The time constraints issue was used during the Assassin's Creed event back in August and using the same reasoning twice when there was more than enough time to prepare is ringing hollow in many minds. CEO Yves Guillemot has a long road ahead of him if he wants to make things right with his teams and with the community.