Yesterday afternoon, a community manager for Anno 2205 took to the forums and announced that the closed beta for the game had been cancelled on the eve of Gamescom. This normally would be fine, as betas are erratic by nature, but this particular beta is a bit different. Ubisoft has been using the beta as an incentive for pre-orders of the game, in fact they are still doing so on the game’s official website. Naturally, this has lead to many unhappy customers who pre-ordered specifically for access to a beta that no longer exists.
As a consolation prize for their “most loyal players”, the game’s developers will instead be giving out an exclusive “Command Ship” (pictured above) and an in-game “Corporation Emblem”. Details about what these items do or if they were once included in the base game are not available at this time. There is also no official word on any Ubisoft social media portals about the beta or its cancellation, only the initial forum post announcement and a second post about how hardcore fans can have their questions answered at Gamescom.
This news comes only a few short days after Capcom had issues with their Street Fighter 5 beta, which was similarly used in marketing to encourage customers to pre-order. At least in that case, Capcom got in front of the issues and talked to their consumers. Ubisoft seems to be content to send out public relations and try to sneak this by due to the game’s low profile. Pre-ordering a game for a beta is never a great bet, only slightly better than buying the Crackdowns of the world just for a shot at a week or two of Halo multiplayer.
Have you pre-ordered a game before only to have your bonus ripped away at the last minute? Are Wolfenstein customers ever going to get to play an early version of DOOM at this rate? What would it take for you to stop pre-ordering games? Discuss in the comments below!