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  • 119 Likes/215 Replies/22502 Views
    CaptainStarPaw
    Original poster 40 posts

    I'm an audio producer hobbyist and can confirm a number of audio specific issues present with AC:Valhalla, running Patch 1.0.2. I originally posted my findings on Reddit but wanted to share it here with the Ubisoft team.

    1. The audio quality in general suffers horribly because of heavy lossy compression (low bitrate optimised for size). It is also exacerbated by the fact that the compression quality is not consistent across dialogue, music and SFX. You can pick up on this much easier with a pair of studio headphones/monitors. Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO owner here. The high frequencies are tinny and washed out, similarly to what a 64-96 kbps MP3 sounds like.
    2. If you've played both Origins and Odyssey, you may have noticed that this is not a new issue, although Valhalla seems to suffer worse. Audio quality complaints have been prevalent in the past. Ubisoft do not appear to prioritise audio quality for release as this would significantly increase download and install size. This is presumably due to how they package their releases for the console market. They really ought to release a HD audio pack for their recent AC games so we can actually enjoy unspoilt crystal clear audio.
    3. The audio constantly cuts in and out. I have a very clean and up-to-date Win10 installation with an NVIDIA RTX 2080 Super, along with a Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 sound device. Audio cuts in and out randomly for 1-2 seconds at a time whenever I interact with the UI. Personally, it is most easily reproduced during the tattoo and hair customization screen. This issue does not occur with their previous games.
    4. The volume balance of sounds seems really out of whack, and I can only bare to play this game with the Dynamic Range set to Midnight in the game options, otherwise there are certain sounds that are so loud they almost make me poop myself. This is not supposed to be a jump scare horror experience in the sound department.
    5. Less of an issue, but they have re-used a lot of sound assets from their previous titles. It can be really tacky/cookie cutter whenever this is done, but particularly so when the sound quality is poor to begin with.


    Oddly, many of the official reviews I have read so far completely fail to mention the audio issues, and this is concerning. The issues are so obvious that they must have either purposefully omitted the critique, have sub-par sound systems, or couldn't care less. I remember back in the day when video games magazine reviewers took pride in providing a detailed opinion of sound effects and music.

    How do you guys feel about it? To me, the $60 price tag is a bit of a kick in the teeth, and I feel that Ubisoft should really have audio technicalities down to a T. We also deserve to optionally download HD quality assets, especially since there are many gamers among us that invest a great deal of time and money into our home cinema set-ups.

    Put it this way, would you be okay if you bought a $60 blu-ray box set of your new favourite show and the audio was poor quality?
    Your best Valhalla sound experience would be to listen to the soundtrack on Spotify. It is a beautiful, wholly remarkable piece of work, sadly let down by poor integration within the game itself.




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  • claudiayouhoe
    3 posts

    Hey ubisoft 🙂

    Playing on pc, game is awesome so far but audio is bugged out the mother truckin wazoo. I'm not the only one experiencing this too 😞
    Is this a known issue or what?

  • claudiayouhoe
    3 posts

    Overall the game just seems unfinished and terribly optimized on pc... combat feels stale, animations are clunky and the audio bugs out every so often... such a shame. not worth the £40 even with 20% off 😕

  • gilly775
    5 posts

    @claudiayouhoe That's why I did the $15 Ubisoft + subscription. Although, I originally did it for Watch Dogs Legions which has far less issues 😆

  • RedIndianRobin
    186 posts

    @captainstarpaw Good luck getting Ubisoft's attention on this. Have you seen their known issues thread? They will never acknowledge these kind of stuff and this stay like this forever. Ubisoft are notorious for not fixing anything in weeks or months.

  • Lukensen87
    15 posts

    I have 9.1 Atmos Soundbar and use ''full range audio'' option on my PC, and the audio quality is superb, so I don't know if that's issue on headphones or what, I wish the rest of the game had such high quality (looking especially at you quests bugs lol)

  • DoctorMcBatman
    4 posts

    I mean, almost anything will sound good on $1,000 equipment @Lukensen87 . Clearly though the audio issues are real, because the thread on reddit got 840 upvotes and 240 comments, and some gilding. Lots of people chimed in agreeing.



    (huh, @-ing someone automatically does a line break... another stupid thing on this forum) (also, does anyone know how to change your avatar? I can't seem to find it)

  • Lukensen87
    15 posts

    @doctormcbatman
    Actually it's much easier to hear very low sound quality on good hardware, the overall audio of AC Valhalla is amazing and very crispy and pounching, much better than in AC Origins or AC Odyssey (my own experience)

    I don't say that other people don't have issues, again I'm just sharing my own experience, maybe it's a problem with headphones or game has some incompability with them which Ubisoft needs to fix.
    To the folks having issues, did you try changing your Windows sound settings? I heard that sometimes changing headphones to ''stereo'' or ''5.1'' helps, also game has many options for sound, maybe try to change ''dynamic range'' to light/low or to normal/medium, also there is dialogue enhancer option, try to turn it off or on.
    Best of luck until they fix it.


  • DoctorMcBatman
    4 posts

    @lukensen87 That is situational and depends on a number of variables, but generally, good gear does improve the tonal quality vs. lower spec gear. I doubt it's a bug only on some people's games. It just seems some people either get used to the poor quality over their playing, or they can't really tell the difference. I have actual audio engineers chiming on my reddit thread who agree with my fairly harsh appraisal of Valhalla's sound; not to mention hundreds of comments from regular players.

    Things for you to examine specifically if you want to check again: walking through snow's mix and tonal quality, landing from a jump's vapid thud, certain sounds being obviously too loud or too quiet for the situation, water flowing that sounds like a faucet, etc.

  • CaptainStarPaw
    Original poster 40 posts

    More and more people are chiming in on Reddit voicing their opinion. Another thread cropped up and already has 72 upvotes.

    We have seen three threads appear in the last 48 hours, now totalling over 300 upvotes.

    It would be great if a media publication would cover this issue. I've tried contacting writers at RPS, but we need more help from users here to achieve that.

    I also wanted to bring this thread to attention: Are you really not going to make the audio a known issue...?

    It does a great job providing links in the OP to all the other reports out there.

    Here is also another thread on Reddit that was posted 3 days ago which managed to gain 176 upvotes.

  • CaptainStarPaw
    Original poster 40 posts
    This post is deleted!
  • TheRealDaemon
    21 posts

    Saw an article on game pressure quoting the OP and a few other users. Can't post link because it's getting flagged as spam lol. Article name is "Gamers are Irritated by Sound Layer in AC Valhalla".

    Hopefully it'll get picked up on more networks and this gets fixed soon.

  • Zorek67
    13 posts

    @therealdaemon good news !

  • CaptainStarPaw
    Original poster 40 posts

    @therealdaemon Fantastic news. Thanks for letting us know!

  • zhead_
    31 posts

    I really would like to see this issue listed on the known issues pinned thread.

  • Zorek67
    13 posts

    Known issue thread just got updated and guess what guys, NOTHING about AUDIO hahahah what a bunch of clowns.

  • TheRealDaemon
    21 posts

    This is honestly so frustrating. Some acknowledgement or an update would be nice. I've spent more time looking on these forums and reddit about this issue (hoping for an update) than I have actually playing the game on the Series X, because the sound is so bad.

  • CaptainStarPaw
    Original poster 40 posts

    @Ubi-Alien @Ubi-Baron @UBI-Froggard @Ubi-Gaidheal @Ubi-Ginge @Ubi-Heruhoss @Ubi-Kay @Ubi-Litten @Ubi-Mullac @Ubi-Pingu

    Firstly, apologies for needing to do this. With respect, I am not sure which mods are actually active here, or if any of them are able to serve as a middle-person for relaying information to the community from the devs/managers etc. but since I've already tried to address one of them with no response, I'm making an extra effort by tagging several.

    Since the problems with audio on AC Valhalla are among the top voted on this board, with countless corroborating complaints across more than one thread, and daily mentions on Reddit, can we receive some kind of official confirmation or update regarding the audio issues outlined here? Thank you!

    As you can tell, we're anxious to hear something.

  • PalpyIsBack
    4 posts

    @captainstarpaw I think with the stuff that went down yesterday in Ubisoft Montreal (Valhalla's studio) we probably wont hear anything till the monda atleast.

  • CaptainStarPaw
    Original poster 40 posts

    @palpyisback Very good observation - Even though it was only a hoax, I am happy it was handled well and no one was hurt. We're living in strange times.

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