Ubisoft's Not Sending out Early Review Copies For Steep

In this story from late 2016, our writer looks at Ubisoft not giving out early review copies for extreme sports sim Steep.

Published: November 30, 2016 12:08 AM /


A skier leaping into the air and grabbing their skis in Steep

Ubisoft today posted on its UbiBlog about launch day expectations for Steep and when reviews for the game may be expected, and the news may not be what some wanted to hear.

In the blog, Ubisoft stated that "the success of [Steep's] open beta reaffirmed that it’s best experienced with an active community". Ubisoft has announced that reviewers will not receive any copies of Steep until launch day.

Several skiers jumping into the air in Steep

In the post, Ubisoft explains this decision a little more with the following paragraph:

To ensure a complete experience, Steep reviews will commence when servers are populated with actual players. With that in mind, reviewers will receive their copies of Steep on December 2 when it’s released, enabling them to experience Steep’s essential multiplayer functionality with a larger pool of online players.

Additionally, Ubisoft announced the pre-load times for the PlayStation Network, Xbox Live, and Uplay digital purchases to be set for 9AM PST/noon EST/6pm CEST on Wednesday, November 30th. That way, everyone can start exploring when Steep hits at midnight on December 2nd in the Pacific time zone.

It appears that this will be the universal unlock time for everyone, as that is when the servers will open for play.

A snowboarder leaping over a half-pipe track in Steep

Steep is a project by Ubisoft Annecy, which was originally named Ubisoft Simulations and specializes in multiplayer play. The first project the studio supported was Rayman 2: The Great Escape, and the company worked on multiplayer portions for the Splinter Cell series and developed the online component for the Assassin's Creed series, most notably with Assassin's Creed IV Black Flag.

Ubisoft Annecy also worked in a support role for the last two Assassin's Creed titles, as well as The Crew, The Division, and Ghost Recon Wildlands; Steep is the first title on which the studio has taken the lead.

Steep is described by Ubisoft as an "open world action sports game" with a focus on winter sports. It was announced at E3 earlier this year and releases on December 2nd for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.

Quick Take

There's nothing that can go wrong with that is there? I mean we haven't just seen a AAA game come out without reviews that had major performance issues ... oh wait Dishonored 2 did that. Well that's not a Ubisoft game, it's not like they've had bad launches before ... oh wait, The Division, Assassin's Creed Unity, and others all did that. 

This isn't to say Steep will be bad. Just like Doom showed we don't know at this point. It is, however, a warning sign and a reason to be VERY cautious with supporting this. It wasn't that long ago that Ubisoft set up post-launch embargos to force reviews to come after day 1 buys, and this is more of the same thing. Publishers are doing this because they want people to buy the games early without knowledge of them.

What do you think of Ubisoft's decision regarding Steep review copies? Are you interested in Steep? Did you play the open beta? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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Don Parsons
| Senior Writer

A longtime lover of speculative fiction, in almost all its forms, Don joined TechRaptor in 2014 on a whim sending in an application as he was looking for… More about Don

More Info About This Game
Learn more about Steep
Game Page Steep
Ubisoft Annecy
Xbox One, PC, PlayStation 4
Release Date
December 2, 2016 (Calendar)
Purchase (Some links may be affiliated)