Ubisoft is Facing Exploitation Accusations for New AC Shadows Contest

Assassin's Creed Shadows Trailer

Ubisoft is facing some controversy with the “Assassin’s Creed Shadows Dubbing Challenge” contest for TikTok, announced on June 18. The winners of this contest will be granted a unique opportunity to delve deeper into the captivating world of voice acting, joining a recording session led by seasoned professionals, including the renowned Danny Wallace (Shaun Hastings).

Participants will also be able to lend their voices to a secondary NPC, with their dubbing to be featured in the highly anticipated Assassin’s Creed Shadows upon its release. 

Contestants must follow Assassin’s Creed or Ubisoft TikTok accounts according to their preferred language out of the seven options. From there, they must choose one of the Assassin’s Creed cutscenes being progressively added to those accounts this week. Then, you must use the ‘Duet Feature’ and record yourself reading the script. Once that is done, post the video on your TikTok account with #AssassinsCreedDubbingChallenge. The team will then choose the best performer for each language.

After emerging victorious in the Ubisoft contest, the Assassin’s Creed team will fly you to London to lend your voice to a secondary NPC for AC Shadows. Furthermore, you will undergo specialized voice training under the guidance of a professional coach and will have a personal recording session. While this opportunity might seem like a dream to Assassin’s Creed players, industry experts have criticized it, labelling the contest as exploitative.

As spotted by Destructoid, Senior voice artists such as Rufus Wright from Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, Jennifer Caitlin Roberts from Fire Emblem Heroes, and Jack Sapsford have voiced concerns about this challenge. Wright, who has dedicated countless hours to voicing Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, a job for which he was compensated as a professional, stated, “Using fans to work for free is a really, really bad look, particularly when these games gross billions of dollars.” 

Sapsford chimed in, stating that voicing lines for characters is considered “a job and not a competition” He also advised that contestants should remember to charge $250 per hour for their work. On the other hand, Caitlin Roberts raised another important issue, asking Ubisoft whether we could get “confirmation” that the fan submissions will not be used to train AI, highlighting the ethical implications of the contest. 

On the topic of AC Shadows, check out Insider Gaming’s recent reports on what’s included in the game’s collector’s edition and its gameplay deep-dive from Ubisoft Forward 2024 here.

Do you think Ubisoft’s new AC Shadows contest is an exploitation or a genuine opportunity for the fans? Let us know in the comments. 

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  1. Harassment, sexual abuse, racism, exploitation… Ubisoft is the gift that keeps giving.

  2. It’s definitely giving the same vibe as with Journalism of people being promised exposure instead of actual pay. There is also that concern about the amateur VAs training AI for future Voice Work which is a real concern.

    To play Devil’s Advocate though, you can see this at face value and see that it as just a competition in which a few amateur VAs are going to get an opportunity to get their foot in the door, whereas before they might not be giving it. Despite the quality of the games, at the end of the day, you will be voicing a character in a high budget AAA game and getting professional coaching that could end up helping your career. Ontop of all of that, you will be getting exposure by posting your submission online so also will be getting a following.

    I feel it’s going to depend on how much voice work they do. If it’s a few lines, then sure that’s fine. However if they’re spending a few hours unpaid, then yeah I would start considering that exploitative.

  3. That’s ridiculous. Taking it at face value, it was meant to be a cute contest with a free trip to London to see what it’s like to be a voice actor…getting a coach, recording in a studio, and having your voice in a AAA game. The NPC you voice would probably only have a few lines at best. Instead some people make it out to be some deep sinister plot. Then people, who just like to complain and jump on the band wagon of hating things, make it out to be some huge conspiracy. I really thought it was a neat way to generate interest.

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