Ubisoft: No New Games Unless They Can Be Made Into Franchises

SecondPrize

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If only it were physically possible to make mid-tier games with budgets that fall between tens of millions for AAA titles and thousands for indie games. Sadly, such a thing is impossible.
 

RatherDashing89

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It's like they think the AC series started with Assassin's Creed 2. Guys? Remember AC1? It was a big risk. And it didn't really pay off--if I recall it didn't sell too well. Heck, it wasn't even that great a game--it was repetitive and full of clunky gameplay problems. But guess what? Without AC1, there would be no AC2, which was a fantastic game because it fixed all the problems of the first while building on the great ideas from it. And without AC2 you would have no franchise. COD4 was a risk too. Where do you think the cash cows start?
 

sXeth

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This also sounds like they have a serious confusion between the game and the engine. Having that massive cost on a whole new engine, sure. But you an re-use an engine for more then one game. Heck, Ubisoft's done reasonably well doing so with BLood Dragon, and (other then the MP), those AC spinoff games in between 2 and 3.
 

BabySinclair

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Or publishers could decide to not spend so much money that they're worried about going out of business on a flop. You know, common sense?
 

Stevepinto3

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There are so many problems with everything being said here I can't figure out where to start.

Weird how indie devs, that don't already have piles of money at their disposal, are capable of making stand alone titles but it's just too expensive for a company like Ubisoft.

I mean isn't this what the Assassin's Creed series is supposed to be now? A massive yearly paycheck for Ubisoft that's about as likely to fail as the Westboro Baptist Church is likely to be welcomed at a funeral? What is the point of these giant publishers with massively successful franchises if it means they can NEVER afford to take a risk, ever? And jesus that one line;

"Because now we're in (a) blockbuster world, and Watch Dogs needs to be a blockbuster because it deserves to be and as a company that's what we need it to be,"
People call gamers entitled, but that' nothing compared to the idea that everything you create deserves to be a hit just because that's what you decide it should be. That, my friends, is entitlement.
 

Vigormortis

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Yet further evidence that the gaming industry, as a whole, is trying to become the film industry.

Which, besides the obvious reasons as to why that is an idiotic endeavor, doesn't make sense when one considers that the gaming industry has routinely...for years...been pulling in more money than the film industry.

It's almost like they're thinking, "Hey! I know what what we should do! We should adopt the business model of the industry that has been doing far worse than us! It makes perfect sense!"
 

GnomeChompsky

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Watch Dogs seemed like it might be the game that would get me to break my ten-year Ubisoft boycott, but this just placed me firmly back in the "hell no" camp.

Thanks, Ubi, for remaining true to yourselves!
 

Aggieknight

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AAA gaming...he's probably right.

Then again, I think that business model is dead in the water. It can only really support the CoDs and Maddens of the world.
 

Chester Rabbit

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To me this is pretty much the equivalent of Capcom saying ?survival horror just doesn?t make as much money as call of duty? Really, REALLY starting to show all your true colors now aren?t you Ubi.
 

Zombie_Moogle

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Yup. Not buying Watchdogs now

I'm not trying to make a big flame war out of this. I'm not even gonna ask that people join me. I just have no interest in supporting a company that operates like this. They can go under for all I care.

& I do mean it. I'm not one of those bandwagon boycotters you see playing the game they signed up to boycott day-one. I haven't purchased an EA game in years.

I'm serious. I'm done with Ubisoft until further notice (leaving exceptions for Legacy of Kain and/or Beyond Good & Evil 2, but those will never happen anyway)
 

Aiddon_v1legacy

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Anachronism said:
There is a very simple solution to this problem. SPEND LESS ON THE BLOODY GAMES.

The point has been made before by Shamus and Jim, but publishers need to realise that making only the videogame equivalent of $200 million summer blockbusters and nothing else is an absolutely disastrous business strategy. If something is so expensive to make that it needs to be a franchise to justify that expense, then you're probably spending too much money on it.
They don't care. Seriously, either they don't care or they're just that stupid. I think some blame ALSO has to go to the devs who constantly think these kind of budgets are necessary for the "masterpieces." Basically you have a load of egomaniacs who believe their game to be the next revolutionary title who constantly get these absurd budgets which they waste on useless CRAP in-game. Sure they COULD take a smaller budget and do something far more focused, but that's not as glamorous.

Vigormortis said:
Yet further evidence that the gaming industry, as a whole, is trying to become the film industry.

Which, besides the obvious reasons as to why that is an idiotic endeavor, doesn't make sense when one considers that the gaming industry has routinely...for years...been pulling in more money than the film industry.

It's almost like they're thinking, "Hey! I know what what we should do! We should adopt the business model of the industry that has been doing far worse than us! It makes perfect sense!"
Thing is the film industry is more diverse than that. Sure, you have all of these big blockbusters, but studios also have a bunch of other production teams that do stuff that's far smaller. I mean, end of the year stuff is always awards season which are typically prestige projects which are done through arthouse production studios. Furthermore, the film industry also knows that not every film can do well, but they have secondary sources of revenue such as merchandising or video sales when movies come out on DVD or Blu-Ray.

The games industry...does not have that. They keep trying to do this blockbuster model all the time, but it's not working. Though I've noticed this model is more indicative in the West than anywhere. Japanese publishers like CAPCOM, Nintendo, Namco, Atlus, etc DO have big showy titles every now and then, but they typically also release far smaller titles on, say, handhelds. That's why I wonder why Ubisoft, Take-Two, EA, and Activision don't make more games for the 3DS. It's got a big install base, the games wouldn't be as expensive to make, AND you can get more product out more quickly.
 

1337mokro

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I always imagine Indie devs just popping champagne every time a major publisher says the stupidest thing ever.

"Guys Ubisoft shot itself in the foot again by only aiming at franchises. Let's make a game where you are an intergalactic Janitor to give the people some variety from the bland sequelitis they will soon suffer from."
 

Pyrian

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Is there really any reason why any particular game couldn't have a sequel? What's different about a "sequelizable" game that's not just an ordinary game? The plot certainly doesn't matter, when you've got prequels, side-quels, and entirely-unrelated-quels all over the market. Gameplay can remain similar no matter your starting point.
 

Ace Morologist

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Andy Chalk said:
because that's what people like and that's what sells.
No, Ubisoft. No.

Here's what we (i.e., I) like: Fun, original, inventive IPs. Fun, smooth, gameplay with a challenge that ramps up reasonably. A good story full of likeable characters who we get to be and interact with. A satisfying END to that story.

That's what we (i.e., I) like on EVERY video game disc we (I) buy. Give us that. Then, if we really like that and we're really clamoring for more (as we do), take a good long look within yourselves and ask whether you've REALLY got more (and better) stories to tell in that world. If not, it's REALLY okay not to give us a sequel. We'll live. Move on to the next thing and see if we like it better.

That's how you should do it. That's the way to do it right. If you feel yourself adopting a condescending tone and telling me (in your mind), "The realities of how we do business won't allow us to work like that," you're doing something painfully, dreadfully wrong. The business you've CHOSEN to be in the business of entertaining us with video games (for which we pay you large amounts of money). If you're starting from the DESIGN level with the mindset of "We need to make this make us the most money possible", rather than "We need to make this a fun video game that tells a great story", you need to stop, reassess and change the way you do business.

We're not your ATMs. We're not your customers. WE shouldn't come into the equation at all. You should be making games that you, (rather, the designers) know are fun and well made. If you're right, word will spread and your games will eventually be successes. You'll make all your money back and pull down some profits and we'll all be happy.

Absorb that. Do that. Become that.

And get me a beer.

--Morology!
 

Darklupus

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Stop being so needy! If you make games, they will come. Get your priorities in check. As long you have fun making it, the game(s) will sell!
 
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And this is why AAA gaming is on its last legs. Inflated budgets, ridiculous sales targets and homogenised gameplay have the opposite effect of having better selling games, instead pleasing no one and closing down studios left, right and centre. Activision, EA and Ubisoft are going to have a very poor medium-term future while this development model stifles creativity and kills franchises rather than birthing them.
 

Jburton9

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So the new market is more compact focused gameplay that delivers consistent enjoyment which fits into their franchises only company direction. Sounds good at first, on paper...

Franchises = more risk adverse game development

Now that is more like what will happen and so their products become bland, which is not something people want to spend their hard earned money on.

Executive spin: Bland is not the right word, it is blended enjoyment. If you have too much fun right away then how would you have any more fun later? Even better, we will spread that fun across a three part series, purchased separately of course...



Well at least there is indie self publishing that we can support. Maybe that will start up a mini company industry, small pods of developers to join up for a project then move on to the next one that interests them. Making games this way may even keep the gaming scene fresh hmm.
 

coates32

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This is a very dangerous move by Ubisoft. By having this sort of business philosophy, they run the risk of having less unique and diverse games, which will more likely bore gamers and make them less money. Like some of the other comments have said, I, too, became a lot less in Watch_Dogs. At least Ubisoft is being honest about how they start up new IPs.
 

Ishigami

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Sep 1, 2011
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Everything that is wrong with the video game business in one news.

I'm still interested in Watch_Dogs or The Division however should it turn out that Watch_Dogs does not feature a satisfying resolution but sequel baiting as Assassins Creed then I'm very much done with UbiSoft.