Rumor: Ubisoft Intentionally Downgrading The Division on PC
Ubisoft is apparently ordering the developers of The Division to downgrade the PC version to match its console counterparts.
This claim comes from an anonymous source supposedly working on the game. According to this unnamed staffer, “publishers” are currently pushing for more uniformity between PC and console games, a doctrine that has apparently already led to several downgrades in The Division.
“There is definitely a lot of push coming from publishers to not make the experience so different on consoles as to alienate people into thinking that next generation is not as powerful as PC,” said the developer. “This is probably what happened at Ubisoft Montreal. I think that while making stability changes is definitely important, it does not completely obliterate a lot of enhanced rendering applications.”
The reference to Ubisoft Montreal, of course, is referring to suspicions among many gamers that the PC version was made intentionally worse to mesh more closely with the versions being released on PS4 and Xbox One. These suspicions were ignited by a modder’s discovery that higher end visual settings had apparently been left in the code of the PC version while being disabled in the actual game. Ubisoft responded by claiming the additional options were removed on account of potential performance issues.
The changes to The Division, meanwhile, apparently already include the removal of “screen space reflections” as well as other alterations that the source claims have reduced the game’s visual quality so that it’s “not as good as the original reveal.” They would go on to affirm that gamers can expect that Ubisoft will “never fully disclose” the true details behind these sorts of changes.
“They will not admit that they practice this or actively downgrade a game,” they said. “It is much easier to say they removed things for stability which is often a lie as you can tell by the post-issues which are expected in any production we do.” They additionally expressed their hopes that game company’s making “false promises” about their games will stop creating hype “that they ultimately cannot deliver on.”