Game Devs Speak Out Against Ubisoft's HitRecord Partnership on Watch Dogs Legion

Watch Dogs Legion will contain fan-created songs

Ubisoft and HitRecord are partnering up to get your music in Watch Dogs: Legion

Eventually, HitRecord chooses what work it wants to use and pays the chosen users based on their contributions.

In this instance, Ubisoft distributes US$20,000 between the winning tracks' collaborators, whereas it might have paid more on a composer, producer, musicians and a recording studio instead.

This isn't the first time Ubisoft has partnered with JGL and HitRecord, though; they first struck up a partnership back in 2018, where they commissioned original music for their other upcoming title Beyond Good and Evil 2.

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As with other projects from HitRecord, the songs will probably be made collaboratively in mini teams. Among the more notable names criticizing Ubisoft's actions are Thomas Was Alone creator Mike Bithell, Night in the Woods co-creator Scott Benson, and Vlambeer co-creator Rami Ismali.

Watch Dogs Legion will land in the hands of Ubisoft at the beginning of next 2020 and will revolutionize the formula of the franchise in such a way that the players will have great control over the development of the delivery - hence the 20 different ways to enjoy the adventure.

HitRecord operates by essentially creating a project page (in this case, one has been made for Watch Dogs: Legion), and then members of HitRecord's community (really, anyone on the internet who knows of HitRecord) are able to sign up to contribute to the project.

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According to HitRecord, each chosen Watch Dogs Legion song will get a $2,000 payout, divided proportionally between the artists who contributed music to create each of song. Specifically, Bithell said he takes issue with the use of "spec work", which is basically labor done for free with the hope of future payment.

Whether you're a musical composer, writer, singer, player, or someone with big ideas and a lot of passion... we are super excited to hear your music composition. People also voiced their concerns about that "spec work", and Gordon-Levitt responded by saying the controversy was due in part to people not understanding how HitRecord works. "It's not at all how I think of our community's creative process".

According to Rock Paper Shotgun, $50,000 was set aside for payment on Beyond Good & Evil 2 contributors, but HitRecord's website lists those payments as pending.

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