Okay Ubisoft, I get it. You want me to buy Wildlands.. Really bad.  

And honestly, I get that. You are a large company that needs to sell millions of copies of your game to stay in business.  

Wildlands is a game I have kept a wary eye on all the way throughout development. After numerous successful E3 showings, the game seemed as though it would come out red hot. In fact, in my mind I had pegged it as a possible candidate for game of the year, or at least score a 9.0 or above on most reviews. 

As the years dragged onward and the time drew nigh unto Ubisoft's release, the beta for the game came out and basically dumped ice cold water on the press. Ever since the release of the beta the one sentiment I gathered was that Wildlands was plagued with performance issues.  

I will be the first one to admit, that I am a performance ***. I have a zero-tolerance level for games that are clearly unoptimized. However, some games receive a pass if the gameplay is fun enough to compensate for a few lag ridden choppy action scenes (ie PUBG, Battlefield, Skyrim). Ubisoft is not a company I will be giving a free pass to anymore. We have seen time and time again from every Assassin's Creed game since Unity that they are no longer a game company that releases polished games.  

This weekend Ubisoft decided to lay out a lot of cheese and peanut butter inside some mouse traps outside our little gamer houses by making Wildlands free to play over the weekend. After hearing that they added a special Splinter Cell Sam Fisher cameo to one of the missions, I immediately hopped on Steam to let the game download overnight and try it out (I emerged out of my little mouse house and started nibbling on the cheese). 

The first thing I noticed was the game kind of looked muddy... Which isn't a bad thing. I wanted to try out the game on my big screen TV and I was streaming the game on the steam link. Fine. I switched over to my powerhouse gaming pc (1080ti 16gb ram 8600k ect). Then I started playing around with the graphics settings, applying 4k, v-sync on, ultra settings to see what the game could do. Not very much apparently, the game quickly turned into a slideshow.  

sighed, dialed the settings back down to something more reasonable: high, with medium shadows. Then I got into a vehicle and started driving down a mountain. For about 10 seconds I thought the game had completely crashed, as the screen just froze, and the game became unresponsive. I played through an entire campaign mission and just about every ten seconds the game stuttered. Oh yes, and the ads. Every damn second there was a break in the action, an intrusive pop up begged me to buy the game or I would "LOSE ALL MY PROGRESS." 

Keep in mind this was all inside about a 15-minute play session. I quickly grew impatient and bumped to resolution down to 1080p with settings on medium, expecting that my frames would skyrocket through the roof and make the game enjoyable or at the very least interruption free. Sadly, despite dropping nearly every single graphical setting down, the game could not seem to pull its act together. I quit the campaign mode before I even saw Sam Fisher, the entire reason I downloaded the game in the first place.  

I rebooted the game, then jumped into the Ghost War, the 4v4 multiplayer mode: I recorded a tidbit of action at the link below at 1080p 60fps

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In one of my earlier matches I did extremely well, getting 7 kills 0 deaths in a fast-paced mode called uplink. While I must admit, the multiplayer mechanics were sound, and the game felt like it had a lot of progression to offer, I couldn't shake the feeling like the game needed another year in the oven.  

It comes down to this: if I don't even want to play your game for free, what makes you think I would want to buy the full product? There are too many other good games out there pandering for my attention that feel finished. The value proposition I get from a broken game is like asking me to buy food from a restaurant that does not cook their food to completion, whilst the competitor down the road offers a similar product done right every time. Ubisoft, you had a chance to win me over and I would gladly give you my money. You're just not quite there yet, and neither am I. PS Wildlands made my PC blue screen as I was trying to save this very article :{