December 16, 2022

Meet Thibaut Machin : Game Director

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Meet The Team is a casual interview with the studio’s talents. Get to know us, discover our backgrounds, our favorite games, our life at Ubisoft and our hidden talents! This time, let’s meet Thibaut Machin, Game Director at the studio!

thibaut machin



Yes! It depends on the period but this year, I played a lot. To give some examples, I finished Immortals: Fenyx Rising, Ghost of Tsushima, It Takes Two but also Elden Ring, Sifu, Jedi: Fallen Order, Hades, Death’s Door or more recently Stray, and as I’m a completionist, I platinized them all or almost. I don’t really have a favorite genre because I am quite curious. I do a lot of open worlds because it’s a genre that we exploit a lot at Ubisoft and I’m mostly on Playstation because it’s a way to stay in touch with my childhood friends. We play Fall Guys together and a lot of other games of all kinds.

I started on the Gameboy, then the Super Nintendo, the Dreamcast and the Playstation, at my friends’ place. I always wanted to create video games, it was a dream. Growing up, with my little computer, I started experimenting with things on Heroes of Might and Magic II where I created my own maps. On Counter Strike, I was strategizing on my textbook and modeling my own maps on Valve Hammer, despite the challenging tools, which were less developed than today.

When internet allowed it, I played in LAN on Warcraft III, Counter Strike, then World of Warcraft and DotA. I always liked competitive games at a good level. I discovered game design and level design on my own initiative. A long way that led me to where I am today.




It’s hard to answer, I have several! First Metal Gear Solid : I bored my parents to get a Playstation and play this game, which I finished several times to get all the rewards. I had tried the Training Mode at a friend’s house and I was hooked right away. The story is incredible, and some parts of the game like Psycho Mantis or Sniper Wolf really impressed me! I spent a lot of time playing with friends. This game is a turning point for me.

I would also mention The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, my first encounter with a Zelda, whose universe and labyrinthine dungeons fascinated me. World of Warcraft, because of its size, its fantasy and its universe. It’s an MMO that allowed me to make memorable encounters and that offered me an incomparable team game experience. Finally, Portal 1 & 2 because both games are level design masterclasses and I admire how complete the experience is and how it converges in the same direction.

In terms of favorite characters, I have a few that are related to the games I’ve played or my passions: Solid Snake from Metal Gear Solid, Link from The Legend of Zelda or more recently Sam Porter Bridges from Death Stranding.



Let’s start by saying that I’m what we call a hardcore gamer, so I like to spend time on games that are known to be difficult and I’m not afraid of a good die and retry. It’s surely the raid experience of World of Warcraft or Elden Ring that allowed me to acquire this patience and self-denial. But it’s the indie games like Celeste or Furi that offered me the biggest challenges recently! In Celeste, the last levels of the C-Sides are really a condensed difficulty. Congratulations to those who managed to complete them!



During my studies at Supinfogame, now called Rubika, we were interviewed by emissaries from Ubisoft. One young recruiter in particular kept my profile, then invited me to Paris for an interview. It was for the Just Dance project, but very quickly, I was redirected to Ghost Recon: Future Soldier for which I had more to bring, and it worked! I worked on this game for two years before leaving Ubisoft. I wanted to take some time for myself and see something else, so I moved to Australia, while maintaining contact with Ubisoft.

From Australia, I watched the E3 2012, where I discovered Watch Dogs and then I got a big kick out of it. I got back in touch with the recruiter who had spotted me and she offered me to come back to Paris to join this project. Thanks again Audrey! I took my tickets from the middle of the desert with the firm intention to come back and join the team, and that’s what happened!



art director

You can make the best designs in the world, but the result is always different from what you expect when you face the players! Being a Game Director is an interesting role because you have to define the creative vision first, then work with the teams to execute it and iterate on it until it’s top notch, while leaving them enough room to grow and be creative. Today, I’ve been working at Ubi for 12 years and I’ve moved through several positions and projects. My most recent projects are Skull and Bones in Paris and Assassin’s Creed Mirage with Ubisoft Bordeaux, but I just joined a new project that I can’t wait to announce to the world!

I consider that video games are a human and collective adventure. I would be sad to develop a video game alone. The people I work with are truly beautiful encounters. Today they’re also close friends whom I can go on vacation with.



It’s not a memory but a project: Watch Dogs 2. I had an important role on it and I invested a lot of time on this game. I also progressed in my skills because I worked as a world designer, mission designer and technical designer. I’m extremely proud of the result and when it was presented at E3 and in commercials, it was a great moment for me.

The game itself is very good, the hacking works very well, the world is colorful and varied, and I got hooked with the cool and challenging aspect, which makes it a unique game for me. The storytelling also touched me a lot and I was proud to read the letters from fans who wrote to us about the game. In fact, one mother thanked us for the way we handled autism, which allowed her son to see a future, to identify himself. This kind of feedback reminds us why we do this job.



I hike, which has nothing to do with video games, and it allows me to take a break from work, clear my head and disconnect. I like the fact that it’s a little bit more solitary, walking is like a meditation for me. Going to the mountains and living these adventures, alone or with others, to discover nature, reminds me of Australia. I like climbing summits, I have done several 3000m in France and some itineraries like the GR20.

Thibaut Machin Photographie
© Tous droits réservés

I also do landscape photography, star photography, sometimes a little urbex. It makes me travel. I had the chance to visit countries on the 5 continents, and what matters to is taking time to discover different cultures. I had a crush on Argentina, for its various and beautiful landscapes, as well as its gastronomy.



A song that has made me de-stress and smile for many years: Bam Bam by Sister Nancy. It reminds me of many things. I discovered it in GTA: San Andreas and I found it in Skate. When I was a teenager, I had a little ritual. I would run GTA in a hurry before going to catch my bus. I would fly over the forbidden city to the north, hoping to hold out long enough against the police to hear the song randomly played on K-JAH West radio. When I want to be in a good mood, I play this song.





Editor: Jennifer Lufau
Graphic designer: Stéphanie Guérin

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