But the company has some exciting releases scheduled.
Image credit: Ubisoft | Assassin's Creed Mirage
Ubisoft is a company that makes players question their choices quite often: NFT ventures, endless sequels, countless delays... However, tensions are high inside the studio as well, according to Insider Gaming's sources, and what Ubisoft was betting on doesn't seem to perform that well.
The report says that the morale there is "at an all-time low" and the employees are afraid to be next in line for restructuring, resulting in waves of layoffs.
Ubisoft's desire to chase trends like NFT, web3, and battle royales didn't lead anywhere despite a large number of games in popular genres in the works. Insider Gaming claims there were "around a dozen" battle royale games in development from late 2021 to early 2022. Many of them, like Ghost Recon Frontline, failed to interest audiences during playtesting and were canceled.
Image credit: Ubisoft | Skull and Bones
Now, extraction shooters are in style, and the report states that at least three major games in the genre are in development at Ubisoft: The Division: Heartland, Far Cry’s Project Maverick (possibly 2025), and a new game set in World War 2 (should be released around 2026-2027).
With such ambitious plans, some of them are bound to be delayed, but at Ubisoft, it happens a bit too often. One of the most famous examples is Skull and Bones, a title about piracy, which finally got its release date (this time for good I hope) a few days ago.
The game is said to have cost about $200 million, but the company doesn't even expect to receive that money back from sales. Sources claim the huge delay was caused by "power-hungry managers trying to elevate their careers. The constant changes in vision created a rotten atmosphere, with some developers confused as to what they were meant to be doing on a day-to-day basis."
Now, we just need to wait for Beyond Good and Evil 2, a game that's been in development for 15 years. In 2022, it reportedly started playtesting, so we might hear about it soon.
Image credit: Ubisoft | Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown
The dark mood at Ubisoft was also kindled by the return to office policy, Insider Gaming says, after three years of working remotely. Not everyone was happy about it, naturally, as they had to think about commuting and babysitters for at least two days a week.
In addition, despite all the hassle, some famed projects still can't reach the heights the company hoped for. Fans have nice things to say about Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown, and it has a great rating of 86 from critics and 9.1 from users on Metacritic. However, the report states the game has around 300,000 players only and has brought about $15m in revenue. It's pretty sad considering it's one of the strongest releases from Ubisoft in years.
Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora can't boast about its sales as well: it has accumulated 1.9 million players ($133m in revenue), which is nearly not as much as some other Massive Entertainment games make.
It's not all bad, though. If everything goes well, we'll see some exciting launches soon: Star Wars Outlaws (first half of 2024), Assassin’s Creed Codename Red (second half of 2024), and some more in 2025 and 2026, like Ghost Recon (Project Over), two new Far Cry games (Project Maverick and Project Blackbird), two new Assassin’s Creed titles (Hexe and Invictus), the Assassin’s Creed Black Flag remake, and the Splinter Cell remake.
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