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Ubisoft Developing Next America's Army Game 92

Posted by Zonk
from the france-and-america-working-together-to-serve-you! dept.
altodarknight writes "Ubisoft annouced today that they are developing the new America's Army game: 'America's Army: Rise of a Soldier'. Working with the US Army, it will be released summer 2005 on XBox and PS2. The only question is, will it be free like past AA games?"
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Ubisoft Developing Next America's Army Game

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  • Free (Score:4, Funny)

    by wot.narg (829093) <wot.narg@gma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @07:47PM (#11760952) Homepage
    Of course it wont be free. If it was free, all those TERRORISTS! could get it. Then we'd be attacked again, and they'd eat our babies!
    • Re:Free (Score:2, Interesting)

      by game kid (805301)

      If ya get this Army thingy fer free yer a terrist!

      Offensive Bush impressions aside, I don't expect this to be cheap; it is going to be on the XBox and PS2 and I doubt either system's maker will go sans some dough--but then, that's exactly what I wonder: Do the system makers have to get paid for games licensed/made for their system? I do believe makers sign NDAs, etc. to make sure the system's technology doesn't get leaked to the public *cough*emulator makers*cough*...and besides Ubisoft have made non-free

      • If I am paying they better let you be the terrorist. I can understand the free America's Army that forced the opposition to be terrorists and you be the propaganda American good guy.

      • Programming for the xbox requires a development kit from Microsoft. All code run on an xbox is digitally signed (unless you have a modchip). These things cost money...therefore, unless Ubisoft is getting a large amount of money from the Government to offset the above things, it is not at all likely to be free.
  • by rogabean (741411) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @07:49PM (#11760964)
    It probaly won't be free.

    1. They have had great success with the game and it has grown into it's own franchise.

    2. Distribution costs

    3. Can you really se Ubisoft doing anything for free?
    • 4. ??? 5. Profit!!
    • by SoCalChris (573049) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @08:17PM (#11761147) Journal
      Can you really se Ubisoft doing anything for free?

      Something tells me that no software company would do something like that for free.

      If it does turn out to be "free", it will be because it came out of our taxes, just like the previous versions.
    • by Goosey (654680) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:00PM (#11762247) Homepage
      I am not going to venture a stab at if it will be free or not, but I find it a possibility. Certainly Ubisoft won't do it for free, but that doesn't mean that the military won't pay Ubisoft to develope/distribute it for free.

      I suppose it depends on if it is still seen primarily as a recruiting tool, which I suppose depends on how successful it has been as a recruiting tool. Some analysis on it's success in that regard would be VERY interesting, to say the least.
    • by Mork29 (682855) * <keith.yelnick@us ... l minus language> on Thursday February 24, 2005 @05:30AM (#11764675) Journal
      Charging money for this would actually be alot of legal work. Ubisoft will get their money, but it will probably be US tax dollars that pay them. The Army has a huge budget, and the recruiting budget has gone through the roof as of late. Retention is a bit of a problem, so they have to get new soldiers to fill the ranks. I'm sure that they could develop a game for under $1,000,000. That is a trivial amount of money on the scale of the militaries budget. I work in a supply unit and I see that figure get spent several times a day in food, water, and mechanical parts. Besides, it IS an effective recruiting tool. On average, the army spends around $4,000 for every person who signs up for the army. That includes no training, no plane ticket to basic, just to get them in the door and signing their name. I'm sure that figure has gone up even more since I've come in. Also, I don't think the Army can legally sell a commercial product (they can auction off certain surplus, but that's different). In fact, I don't think any govvernment agency can (or the IRS would probably have their own version of Turbo Tax). Besides, if it's a console game, it'll have to be on a disc. You'll have to go to the recruiter to get that disk. He'll probably ask you a few questions before he gives up the disk. In the end, people will go to the recruiter to get a free game, and feet in the door is all they need. Selling the Army is the easy part, it's getting them into the office the first time that's difficult. A free game will do that, but a game you charge for won't. Well, that's my $.02 Oh, and IAAS.
    • maybe the government will spend the US tax dollars on the game and the user will not have to pay for it. Either way, it will not be free, Someone will have to pay for it, the question is who? The user or the government
    • Probably won't be free, but that's because of the distribution costs.

      That said, it'll probably cost $5 or thereabouts, simply to recover the manufacturing and distribution costs. The army isn't looking for a profit off of this. Hell, there in enough trouble already with Full Spectrum Warrior.

      On a side note, does anyone else find it kinda funny that a French company is making America's Army? Cause, ya know, it has a certain ironic appeal :).
  • by hexghost (444585)
    Will this next one not suck?
    • I agree, but not as trollishly. The most recent game, while being very realistic, lacks the action of newer games. I'll admit, I'm a sucker for source, but, IMHO, it isnt fun at all with the +8 min rounds. If you happpen to get killes in the first munite or so, you have time for a snack...or two...

      Its just annoying, and compared to other games, even (shutter) halo 2, it cany quite compete. Frcry was great, if a little pricy (this can be expected of new games) and mabey, Ubisoft can pull this off, funded b
  • by dcocos (128532) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @08:07PM (#11761072)
    The game won't be free (for download at least) because with out modding you PS2 or X-Box you can't burn your own games. And I consider it a waste of tax dollars to distribute it any other way, thank you DRM mongers!
    • That's a really fucking good point.

      Does GNU/FSF have any official position on platforms that explicitly forbid free distribution, like PS2/XBX?

      • by Anonymous Coward
        PS2 and XBox do not explicitly forbid free distribution; they have anti-piracy mechanisms which stop you from using a DVD you burned yourself. The US Army is perfectly capable of making the DVD's themselves and mailing them out or putting them in electronics stores for free (like AOL discs) if they want.
  • Free (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jericho4.0 (565125) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @08:08PM (#11761082)
    Of course it will be free. This is not a game, it's a piece of government funded propaganda, designed to instill a positive opinion of the US military in youth wordwide.

    I played it, and was struck by how many times I died. This seemed highly instructive.

    • Re:Free (Score:5, Interesting)

      by cjsnell (5825) on Thursday February 24, 2005 @02:54AM (#11763958) Journal
      I'll take the bait.

      [Spoken as a former soldier]

      If you have an axe to grind, grind it with US politicians, not the US Army. The US Army acts on the orders of their Commander in Chief, the President. The US Army does not make policy, it merely carries it out. Our soldiers are hard working young men and women who chose to serve their country rather than sit around and drink beer "back on the block" with the rest of their generation.
    • Will it still be free if EA buy Ubi though? I'm sure EA's bean counters will do a thorough evaluation of the game before deciding the programmers need to be put on something more profitable like The Sims: Old People's Home or the 374th Madden sequel.
      • Bottom line: It doesn't matter. Since it's owned by the Army (AFAIK), and it's not classified, it's public domain. Anything produced by the US government that's not classifed is public domain.
  • by cassidyc (167044)
    the same what that Full Spectrum Warrior isnt

  • Will there be a Linux port? Say what you want about AA, but at least it was one of the very few quality games ported to the penguin recently.

    I know the answer is "no", but one can dream...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @09:55PM (#11761851)
    A French company developing a US military recruitment tool.
    • It would be more ironic if Ubisoft was actually a French as in 'From France' company as opposed to simply a french canadian company...
      • Ubisoft is "French as in 'From France'".
      • Re:Oh the irony! (Score:5, Informative)

        by Alarash (746254) on Thursday February 24, 2005 @06:46AM (#11764882)
        Hi,

        Ubisoft is a french from France company, created by the Guillemot brothers. They also possess the Hercules hardware manufacturer (formelly known as the... "Guillemot" brand). Ubisoft also posses GameLoft, a cellphone games developper.

        The company is spread like this:

        - Headquarters are in Montreuil, a city right next to Paris. A few games are developped there, like Rayman. That's also where the websites are designed.
        - European warehouse is located in Bretagne (a France's departement, what you guys in US would call a state althought it's quite different).
        - And last but not least, the main development studio is located in Montreal, Canada. Games like Splinter Cell or Farcry are developped there. This is also where most of Ubi.com teams are located (aka the evil GMs that get you banned in Shadowbane or EverQuest Europe). The reason is that the Canadian government made a very, very good offer to Ubisoft, and as a result it's 40% cheaper for the management to send people there rather than having them work in France (where social security, health care and transports are to be payed at least at 50% by the company, that's the law).

        • Far Cry was developed by an independent team called Crytek. They're from Germany. Ubisoft was just the publisher for that game.

          I don't know about Splinter Cell. I think it was an all Ubisoft venture.
          • Crytek employees where hired with Ubisoft contracts and many of them worked in Montreal. I saw one of them sign his contract with my own eyes.
  • Given Ubi's penchant love of hostile copy protection schemes, will it be playable for most people? The nicest part of AA is the lack of an annoying anti-user protection scheme.
  • by dousk (829088) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @10:43PM (#11762155)
    Kill, kill, kill..... Doesn't anybody **** anymore ?
  • (ficticious) but wouldn't be surprised to see this sometime soon:

    A new video game for the US Army is being created by Electronic Arts.

    After hearing of the news of having to develop yet another war game in a short time, many EA developers, artists and other staff have decided to enlist in the US Army. Reason: the pay is the same and the days are just as long.
    • by Maserati (8679)
      Reason: the pay is the same and the days are just as long

      ... and you occasionally get to shoot at people who piss you off.
  • by cyrax777 (633996) on Wednesday February 23, 2005 @11:50PM (#11762591) Homepage
    the bill same with the other AA games!
    • You the tax payer of the US, the rest of the world gets it free. That's if it is free as its not. Think of it this way, not every person in the US will play this game, lets say 1 in 350 will play it. So 350 people will pay for your game, 50/350 = $0.12 you pay for the game. Thats if its free.
  • The only question is, will it be free like past AA games?

    Depends on how recruiters are doing for Iraq...
  • Wow...this is an incredible contract that Ubisoft got. The few govt. contracts and grants I have done in the past were almost always over paid and plush.
  • by Louse (610514)
    I ventured, around 3 months ago, to post on the AA board about how crappy their engine was and how easy it was for game hackers to cheat in the game. This came after I saw the nice little threat AA offered to cheaters. "And we're comming for you." Ha. I am glad Ubi is making the game, but sadly reserved from pure glee because I doubt the game will be free. The game that is avaliable today is like the first nuclear weapon device (it wasnt quiet a bomb)...held together by duct-tape.
  • Not a fat chance. Pigs would fly before all that. No. It certainly wouldn't happen. Not a chance in many. Na-ah. Nope. BUAHAHAHAHA.

    -"Ahhh, children..."
  • When I submitted this I had another sentence after the question saying probably not, but maybe a budget release. A free release would have issues with international releases. Production and distribution internationally would not create any more US army recruits, and hence be a waste of money. The only possibility is that it is distributed over xbox live for the xbox release, and bundled with another ubisoft game for the PS2 release. And this is not likely.
    • Production and distribution internationally would not create any more US army recruits, and hence be a waste of money.

      This isn't a recruiting tool. Its a propaganda tool. I played AA from version 1.6 to 2.2, and there were probably more international players than US players, all across the time board. Most people just wanted a free online game.

      The whole point of the game was to make people think about our soldiers, and what they're doing "over there" (wherever "there" is at the time). Nobody ever discus
      • AA was originally desgined as a recruiting tool, the fact that it has this side effect was irrelivant in the development process. It mainly targeted the gamer which was a group that had a low recruit percentage (obviously you can't measure this but its just common sense). The US Army ads all across the web also have this objective. This is shown with the new game. It shows a recruits life in the army from bootcamp to the field to leadership. If it was just to show international people the US troops then th
  • You can get a free copy for your xbox or ps2 after you have a small talk -with no strings attached- about your options in the army at your local army recruitment office.
    • This ought to be fun:
      Hi, I'm 28 with a herniated disc between my L5 and S1 vertebrae. I think that Bush is a terrorist who should be tried for treason for his crimes against the country, along with the rest of his cabinet. Can I have a free copy of the game now?
      BTW, I support the military, and think you guys do a good job at what you are trained to do, kill people and break stuff. Why the past several presidents have decided that you should work as a world police force is beyond me, but no I have no in
  • GOOD! (Score:4, Informative)

    by xchino (591175) on Thursday February 24, 2005 @11:16AM (#11766399)
    I used to be an avid America's Army player, until I got so sick of all of the bugs. Half of the weapons dont work and aren't used in any maps, like the shotgun and fists.. which have been bugged for years. It also runs like absolute crap. I can play Doom 3 and HL2 both at 1024x768 with moderate settings and they play smoothly. With all the settings turned down in AA, I still get lag on any map more compliacted than Bridge Crossing. Sometimes it would bug causing your teammates to look like OpFor. I once hit a guy in the chest with a 203 round, it exploded, and didn't do a single bit of damage. This game is written like crap, and any time you complain to the community about it, you get 1000's foreigners crying "Quit bitching! It's FREE!". Well no sir it is most certainly not free to us Americans who's tax dollars were used in its creation. I have no problem with them making a game for recruitement but I would expect it to at least be commercial quality, i have seen open source projects done better than that game. I have since quit AA completely, and play Counter Strike Source exclusivly, but if Ubisoft can make this game, and make it right, I very well might switch back. Under current circumstances however, I find it to be unplayable.
  • Does anybody else find it amusing that the recruitment tool for the US Army is being made in Montreal, Canada? Arguably the city in North America most opposed to the invasion of Iraq?
    • Does anybody else find it amusing that the recruitment tool for the US Army is being made in Montreal, Canada? Arguably the city in North America most opposed to the invasion of Iraq?

      Its being made in Montreal, a city that was largely opposed to the war in Iraq. By a company based in France, a country which was most certainly not part of the Coalition of the Willing.
      You'd think that the jigoistic reaction that the US had to France's position against the war in Iraq would have kept this from happening,
  • And even I think it's dumb this game isn't being made in America.

    While the details aren't clear, this is obviously associated with the US Military, and it seems like the money should be going to a US company.

    The caveat to that of course is a US company would have to make a competitive offer! I guess that didn't happen, but it seems too bad.

    Actually I'm a canadian (Ubisoft main development in Montreal) and I'd prefer to not have this game developed in my country =P
    • At the risk of being called isolationist, I agree. Why wasn't this game made by a US company? It often strikes me that the US government should be doing everything it can to spend money locally. Basically, if its a military purchase, buy from a US company. If the government is solving a problem in a particular state or town, buy the supplies and labor from companies in that state or town. This way, not only to you get the immediate effect of the solution to whatever problem is being solved, you also ge
    • And even I think it's dumb this game isn't being made in America.

      C'mon, this is the same US Army that got berets for all of their soldiers (not just special forces, and against their wishes), all with a large Made In China tag in 'em. BIG PR flap.
  • Will we have the logo of Ubisoft, or their soon-to-be possible overlords, Electronic Arts?
  • The French developing Pro American Army Propaganda tools?! What is the world coming to?!?!?!
  • This could be good or bad. as for being free I dont think so. But lets face it I have an XBOX and I really can't see playing AA on it. it just wouldn't be as good as the computer version. now if I could transfer my jacket over to the XBOX version that might be worth it and also would be cool but thats some wishful thinking, and most likely not going to happen. just thinking about having to get all my certifications and ranks again makes me shutter, also sitting through medic training again. I think I

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