This winter, Xbox One, PS4 and Windows PC winter sports take their rightful place among current-generation sports titles. Steep, a sports game in development by Ubisoft Annecy hopes to merge what folks love about winter sports with the hallmarks of recently released Ubisoft games. The Steep release could be a big turning point for sports games at the company.
Steep takes players to a mountain to train and developer their skills. Like The Crew and Watch Dogs before it, Steep is set in an open-world. The mountain that players are dropped on is the game’s arena, where they are free to learn death-defying tricks and routines. Ubisoft confirmed the Steep release date and more over the summer.
Don’t let Ubisoft’s flashier releases – Watch Dogs 2 and Ghost Recon Wildlands fool you. Steep could be a surprise hit this winter gaming season.
Steep Release: The Story & Setting
Steep is set in the Alps mountain range during the winter. Snow crunches under player’s feet. They’re exposed to the same elements that push real-life extreme sports lovers to the brink.
The overwhelming majority of popular sports games are for arena competitions. We’re talking basketball, football and soccer. From what Ubisoft has shared about it, we know that Steep wants to put outdoor winter sports on the same pedestal that these other sports occupy.
Players roam the game’s settings in search of new competitions. Rather than wall off multiplayer, players exist in the game world together. They can see each other outside of the game’s dedicated missions, even bump into each other if they are in the same area. Players can choose to travel by foot to different locations, or drop into the area.
Steep Release Date
Steep launches on December 2 on Xbox One, PS4 and Windows PCs; and the game will require an internet connection. It won’t be coming to last generation consoles as Ubisoft has almost entirely transitioned away from developing Xbox 360 and PS3 games. Only Xbox Live Gold and PlayStation Plus subscriptions unlock multiplayer on their respective platforms. Players will need that too.
Steep Release: Sports
Ubisoft Annecy says that the game will include four “main” sports for gamers to master. Two of them focus on staying the ground. The other two are all about getting dropped from planes.
Players can ski, use a wingsuit to fly, snowboard and go paragliding throughout Steep at any time.
Steep Release: Mechanics
Because Steep is an open-world game, Ubisoft is free to play around with some game mechanics attempted in other sports games. Co-operative play is baked into the game, with the studio teasing ways to take on the game’s play by themselves or with a group of people. The whole thing sounds a lot like the integrated co-operative play The Division has.
Gamers discover new areas scattered throughout the Alps by going to them or spotting them with their binoculars from far away. There are secret areas to stumble across too.
Tricks, challenges and races form the crux of Steep’s gameplay. When they’re able to finish a challenge successfully, the game saves a Trial for other players to attempt based off their gameplay. In-game GoPro cameras allow players to relive their favorite moments over and over. Players can switch in and out of third-person and first-person camera modes too.
Players create their characters from one of four different play styles. Freerider mixes all the other styles. Explorer focuses on finding new locations and challenges. Freestyler focuses on tricks. Bone Collector is all about doing ridiculously dangerous stunts.
To prepare its servers and teams for the game’s launch, Ubisoft will hold a Steep Beta.
Right now, details on the Steep Beta are pretty hard to come by. We know that these betas will take place sometime before the final game arrives on store shelves in December, but we don’t know exactly when. Ubisoft also hints at there being more than one beta for players.
As for how users get access to it, it seems that the only thing they have to do is register for it. A registration page on the Steep website allows users to sign up for the beta and get new details about the game the moment they are made available.
Steep Release: Pre-Orders
Because the title is the first in a fresh, unproven franchise, Ubisoft is keeping the different editions of the game to a minimum. Only a Standard and Gold Edition are available for pre-order. The later includes access to the game’s season pass, but no physical extras besides those. Everyone that purchases the game before release gets access to an exclusive flare, 3 outfits and 3 extra challenges, Ubisoft says.
Expect to hear a lot more about Steep from Ubisoft Annecy closer to launch.