• Jade Raymond Leaves Ubisoft

                Ubisoft® Toronto Founder Jade Raymond Departs to Pursue New Opportunities

                Ubisoft Appoints Alexandre Parizeau Managing Director of its Toronto Studio

                Toronto – October 20, 2014 – Today, Ubisoft announced that after 10 years of collaboration, the company and Jade Raymond have agreed to pursue future opportunities separately. Alexandre Parizeau, a founding team member of the Ubisoft Toronto studio, replaces Raymond as managing director.

                During her tenure at Ubisoft, Raymond was producer on the first Assassin's Creed® (2004-2007) and served as executive producer on Assassin's Creed® II (2008-2009), Watch_Dogs® (2008-2009) and Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell® Blacklist (2010-2013). She also opened the Ubisoft Toronto studio and served as its managing director since 2009, a role she will turn over to Parizeau starting October 29.


                “I've spent 10 extraordinary years at Ubisoft, and I am proud to have been part of many of the best teams in the industry making truly remarkable games,” said Raymond. “This is one of the hardest decisions of my career, but the Toronto studio is strong and on a solid path. I’m confident that now is a good time for me to transition leadership of the studio to Alex and to pursue my other ambitions and new opportunities. Stay tuned for more on what’s next for me, but for now, I'd like to thank Ubisoft for its partnership through the years, and I wish them the very best in all their next endeavors."

                With more than 15 years in the game industry, Parizeau has an impressive range of experience across many facets of the business. As a founding core member of Ubisoft Toronto studio, Parizeau is a proven and trusted team builder and leader. He also served as senior producer on Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell® Blacklist, and producer on Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Conviction® and Rainbow Six® Vegas. Parizeau will report to Yannis Mallat, CEO of Ubisoft Montreal and Toronto, and will oversee Toronto’s continued role as a key contributor to the development of some of the biggest brands at Ubisoft, as well as a number of unannounced projects.

                “On behalf of Ubisoft, I’d like to thank Jade for her leadership and many contributions over the years, and wish her all the best in her next adventures,” said Mallat. “The Toronto studio is a key part of the Ubisoft global network, and Alex has been at the heart of the studio’s growth over the years. He was the obvious choice to lead this talented group of people as they continue to develop amazing games.”

                More information about Ubisoft Toronto can be found here: http://toronto.ubisoft.com/en

                Source: Press Release
                Comments 8 Comments
                1. SadPanda's Avatar
                  SadPanda -
                  I wish her well in whatever she decides to do.
                1. curryking1's Avatar
                  curryking1 -
                  I'd be bored of that much AC too :P
                1. AC!D's Avatar
                  AC!D -
                  Great career so far. Enjoyed the AC series and really enjoyed Splinter Cell Blacklist. Also being put in charge of opening a new studio can not be easy. She clearly has the chops to reach even greater heights. I wouldn't mind seeing her head up Santa Monica Studio. Since Becker left they seem to be lacking in leadership.

                  Sign her up Sony!

                  Just please don't go to fuckng EA!!!
                1. Segitz's Avatar
                  Segitz -
                  I dunno. I sort of never liked her. Not really sure why. One thing I remember was her reason for no demo of AC1, that it was open world and that it didn't work, because you can't just close off areas for the demo... and that's exactly how they gate progress in the game itself...

                  Other than that... I am happy that Ubisoft didn't sexualize her for promotion. Because she's a good looking woman, so it stands to reason for trying to do that.
                1. masteratt's Avatar
                  masteratt -
                  Other than that... I am happy that Ubisoft didn't sexualize her for promotion. Because she's a good looking woman, so it stands to reason for trying to do that.
                  Not sure why but that comment made me go a bit "wtf". Not like devs / publishers sexualise their female employees so I don't know why that "stands to reason" to do it....


                  As for her rep sheet, it's damn great. I thought she was involved in every AC, in fact turns out she is only involved with the best ACs and one of the best stealth games of recent time to boot.
                  Where-ever she ends up will get a good win. For some reason I think she'll fit well at SCE Santa Monica.
                1. Segitz's Avatar
                  Segitz -
                  Quote Originally Posted by masteratt View Post
                  Not sure why but that comment made me go a bit "wtf". Not like devs / publishers sexualise their female employees so I don't know why that "stands to reason" to do it....


                  As for her rep sheet, it's damn great. I thought she was involved in every AC, in fact turns out she is only involved with the best ACs and one of the best stealth games of recent time to boot.
                  Where-ever she ends up will get a good win. For some reason I think she'll fit well at SCE Santa Monica.
                  You're right... it's not something they usually do with their own people... just other people. Now that you say it, I don't know how I came to this forgone conclusion that this "should" be the case. Probably because she's the only one, from my mind, I consider to be actually fit for the part, you know.

                  And it's not just sexualization that came to my mind (but I didn't type). It's also the "ball playing" to audiences. Say... she's a woman... make her advertise to women etc.

                  Either way... the way she didn't announce her next stage makes me curious as well.
                1. curryking1's Avatar
                  curryking1 -
                  I think it would be an interesting case study if someone could visit that studio or just happen to be a fly on the wall, to just see how it operates in this regard.

                  It is in Toronto/Canada though, I'd hazard a guess there is more reservation about going down any such route as that, especially for a large studio, Jade being the leader there for a long time, and her own avoidance of the spotlight in this regard, I wonder what kind of culture she fostered in her own studio. I imagine the culture around a large studio is a big aspect of this, and the ambient culture as well.

                  That said we have all this odd controversy about AC Unity too hard to make gurls' animations and that's Ubi Montreal so there's that too.

                  Not surprised she is from Montreal btw.

                  I think to find out though any answers for how they operated in respect to these issues you'd have to go to Jade herself.
                1. curryking1's Avatar
                  curryking1 -
                  That was fast

                  Oh wait archive :P

                  Jade's Empire
                  From the archive: Ubisoft Toronto's first lady Jade Raymond on sexism, robots and why Bobby Kotick should be funding more meaningful games.
                  Every week we present you an article from our archive - either for you to discover for the first time, or to get reacquainted with. This Sunday, in light of her departure from Ubisoft Toronto, we present Simon Parkin's profile of Jade Raymond, originally published in 2012.

                  "I don't know when we decided as an industry that in order to sell five million copies of a game you have to make a Michael Bay film. There are other options."
                  Wow!

                  And now she is my hero.
                  "I always thought developers were particularly intelligent, sensitive and thoughtful people. I haven't had any negative experiences working in the industry regarding sexism."

                  A classy and progressive lady, and representing a studio in Toronto, muchos kudos and respek knuckles to her :P

                  Raymond is, of course, something of an anomaly, having been promoted to managing director of a huge studio by the time she was 35 years old. It's possible that her experiences working in a male-dominated industry have been the exception, not the rule. But then again, Raymond's own route into the industry was exceptional.

                  "I had my heart set on joining the game industry," she explains. "I don't come from a wealthy family, so I knew I had to get a good job to be able to pay off my debts, so I figured it would be easier to do that as a programmer rather than, say, an artist. So I was a Computer Science major at university."

                  'You wouldn't think that Assassin's Creed is a particularly female type of game, but... that team had the highest percentage of women on it of any other project at Ubisoft at the time.'

                  "So becoming a programmer was a business decision?" I ask.

                  "It was partly a business decision," she says, laughing. "But also I was part of this experimental after school programme when I was in Grade 3 [eight years old], where I got to build robots and program them after school. It was just in Logo but it meant that when I was very young I was taking motors and building robots to get them to do different things. There were only three of us in the group so we each got a huge amount of attention. The person leading the group would set us a problem and we would have to build a robot to solve it. That gave me exposure to computers and programming at a very young age which left a lasting impression."

                  ...

                  "You make a good game and it will be played regardless of gender. A good game is a good game... I mean, can you say that Super Mario Bros. 3 is made for girls or boys?"

                  ...

                  'You wouldn't think that Assassin's Creed is a particularly female type of game, but... that team had the highest percentage of women on it of any other project at Ubisoft at the time.'
                  Berry berry interesting...

                  I actually noticed in the comments... I forgot she used to be a TV reviewer of games for Electric Playground (Canadian show).

                  Edit Lol I didn't know Keighley was Canadian, he was a host on the show too XD

                  Elecplay.. the creator of Canadian gaming superstars apparently.
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