Open world shooter The Division will be the product of two different Ubisoft developers.
Ubisoft Massive announced the game at E3 2013, but today, Develop reports that Ubisoft Reflections are making it too. Specifically “about 40 percent” of Ubisoft Reflections will work on “all of the game’s systems: main characters, enemies, RPG pillars, building Manhattan, online components, and so on,” according to Managing Director Pauline Jacquey.
Ubisoft Massive and Ubisoft Reflections names have never been so prominent, so who are they exactly?
Well, Ubisoft studios tend to help finish the publisher’s biggest games. If you’ve ever watched the credits at the end of an Assassin’s Creed game, you would know. But with The Division, Ubisoft Reflections is doing much more work than its done on Watch Dogs, Just Dance, and Assassin’s Creed 3. The studio found its niche in 1995 with the vehicle combat game Destruction Derby. It went on to create Driver, an open world series similar to Grand Theft Auto. Six Drivers later, it proved it was good at making games with cars. So, naturally, its role in helping create Watch Dogs was primarily the driving, which suggests it might do the same for The Division–Ubisoft has not said if the game will have vehicles, though. Ubisoft Reflections is also co-developing racing game The Crew with Ivory Tower, which is due out before The Division.
Ubisoft Massive was one of those studios Ubisoft stuck on games that needed to be finished. Before Ubisoft purchased it, it developed World in Conflict, a real-time strategy series set in an alternate history where the Soviet Union invades Western Europe. After Ubisoft purchased the studio in 2008 it helped work on Assassin’s Creed: Revelations and Far Cry 3. The Division will be its first original game under Ubisoft’s ownership.
The Division’s promise of an open world that will phase players into what would otherwise be a single-player experience is ambitious, and if Ubisoft Massive and Ubisoft Reflections can pull it off, you might see their names more often.
Update: Noted that Ubisoft Reflections is also developing The Crew with Ivory Tower.