One of the key selling points for the upcoming fantasy medieval hack-and-slash game from Ubisoft called For Honor, was that you were supposed to be able to play the single-player portion of the game offline. Well, it turns out that’s no longer true.
“Ubisoft can confirm that For Honor is an always online experience. Some elements of progression, which is hosted online, are shared across story and multiplayer modes. Players will need to be connected to the internet at all times to play For Honor.”
As pointed out by Tech Raptor, this directly contradicts what they advertise on the page of their very own Ubisoft store. Unfortunately you can’t archive individual store pages from Ubisoft’s digital storefront, but there’s always the good old fashioned screen capture option.
So as stated on the site, they promise an offline experience for the single-player campaign mode. However, the quote they issued to Power-Up Gaming indicates that the story mode will share progression and other features with the multiplayer mode, thus both modes require users to be online at all times.
It’s a really awful turn of events given that this was one of my most anticipated games of 2017 (heck, the background of this site is a wallpaper of For Honor). Yet here we have Ubisoft giving the middle-finger to gamers who were desperately hoping to play the game offline. The always-on digital rights management, or DRM for short, ensures that you can only enjoy the game if you stay online.
EA did the same thing with their 2015 release of Need For Speed, heavily pushing the always-on DRM for the game, and it debuted at no. 7 in its first month out, according to Venture Beat. According to VG Chartz the game moved a combined 3 million copies across the Xbox One and PS4 over the course of a year. Of course, VG Chartz can be widely inaccurate so we have no idea how reliable those numbers are. But for comparison’s sake, Need For Speed: Underground sold 1.1 million copies on the PS2 alone in the month of December back in 2005, according to the NPD charts. So 1 million in one month on a single platform for a niche game is very impressive.
So the question becomes: will you cancel your pre-order or avoid a day-one buy due to For Honor due to always-on DRM?