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Ubisoft responds to deactivated E3 graphical effects

Earlier this week we found out that Watch Dogs had its E3 graphical effects hidden in the game files. Following from that, The Worse Mod was released, which reincorporates these effects back in to the game. It has taken a few days but Ubisoft has finally released a statement explaining why these effects were deactivated in the first place.

“The dev team is completely dedicated to getting the most out of each platform, so the notion that we would actively downgrade quality is contrary to everything we’ve set out to achieve. We test and optimize our games for each platform on which they’re released, striving for the best possible quality.”


“The PC version does indeed contain some old, unused render settings that were deactivated for a variety of reasons, including possible impacts on visual fidelity, stability, performance and overall gameplay quality.”

According to Ubisoft, the old E3 effects will only enhance visual fidelity in certain situations and can make some parts of the city look worse and impact gameplay:

“The mod in question (which uses those old settings) subjectively enhances the game’s visual fidelity in certain situations but also can have various negative impacts. Those could range from performance issues, to difficulty in reading the environment in order to appreciate the gameplay, to potentially making the game less enjoyable or even unstable.”

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KitGuru Says: While I don't see how enhanced graphics could have a negative impact on gameplay, it is possible that these effects were unstable and could cause performance issues. Have any of you guys tried the game with the E3 graphics enabled? What did you think of it?

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  1. I think the point was they showed a beautiful watch dogs demo and when the final product was released, it was less than what they expected based on the demo.

  2. As far as I’ve experienced and heard other people experience, the performance has been the same if not better in most cases.
    Ubisoft PR BS. Nothing else.

  3. After playing with the mod on, it became self-explanatory why some were taken away. Especially the intense depth of field rendering, which began to feel really suffocating.
    Some effects also dropped frames considerably, but i’m using an older sli graphics card setup, and I could see newer models handling it easily.
    If the company had been crystal clear when people started noticing the graphics alterations from the start, there wouldn’t have been such an uproar.

  4. i have a feeling this is going to bite them as i thought it looked a lot better and ran the same

  5. Yea right.. because without those E3 effects game was still very stable performance wise right? LOL

  6. “Could range from performance issues….” So what they’re saying is that you would have a lower framerate with the higher details and effects. Who’d have thought. Right now they just seem to be making excuses for “forgetting” to put the higher res stuff in AND poorly optimizing the PC version of the game.

  7. Well guess Ubisoft forgot that you can add indepth Graphic settings on PC. Not buying that story for one minute. Pffft taking us as fools?

  8. Well that sounds like wonderfuly crafted bull shit :/ pretty much what i expect from ubisoft now. Simlier to EA but EA admit they suck 😀

  9. Typical Ubisoft Damage control PR BS yet again they have deliberately nerfed the PC port to stop the console Peasants from discovering what a sack of utterly useless and outdated crap the PS4 and XB1 are.

    How many more times must Ubisoft be told to do the PC port right or don’t do it at all. We will not stand for the substandard crap you give console gamers

  10. I am currently using the new E3 graphics mod and its great overall. The only thing I can really notice that would ‘make the game less enjoyable’ is when you walk slow the depth of field reduces a lot, blurring things even in close areas and especially dark areas so much that its kinda hard to see. This is most noticeable at night and when on missions requiring stealth or a lot of walking slow. its changed how i play slightly to compensate for the depth of field but it looks so good i don’t care 😀 Try it and see for yourselves.

  11. Re: Scott

    They could have fixed that with a patch.