Ubisoft Doing Away with Printed Manuals

Under the guise of new "environmental initiative," publisher Ubisoft today announced that it will begin replacing the traditional printed paper instruction manuals included in its PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 releases with digital in-game manuals later this year.

Explained the company:

Ubisoft's digital game manuals will provide multiple benefits for the player and the environment. Including the game manual directly in the game will offer the player easier and more intuitive access to game information, as well as allow Ubisoft to provide gamers with a more robust manual. Ubisoft internal data shows that producing one ton of paper used in Ubisoft's game manuals consumes an average of two tons of wood from 13 trees, with a net energy of 28 million BTU's (equivalent to average heating and energy for one home/year), greenhouse gases equivalent of over 6,000 lbs of CO2, and wastewater of almost 15,000 gallons.

Shaun White Skateboarding, due out this fall, will mark the first of Ubisoft's PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 releases to take advantage of the new digital manual initiative.

As for PC, the company behind such games as Splinter Cell and Assassin's Creed says it has "featured digital game manuals in its PC titles distributed in North America since March 2010" and will us Technimark's "environmentally-responsible DVD case" for all PC titles in North America beginning with Splinter Cell: Conviction PC on April 27.