Digital is "more predictable & cash generative" business

Info from Ubisoft’s financial presentation.

Lots of neat info in there, like actual figures for the revenue split between digital vs physical, and projections for China.

Check out that horse armor!

Bad link?

Hmm. It seems they took it down.

Here’s this at least:

I’d just like to state for the record that I hate everyone who’s helped make games as a service such a good proposition for companies.

I would like to leverage my HIGH USER ENGAGEMENT to purchase a license to view that horse armor in-game because that skin aesthetic appears quite PLAYER CENTRIC and will increase the LIFETIME VALUE of my Assassin’s Creed PLATFORM EXPERIENCE.

My favorite part is how they turn games into a service, try to service the one blob that moves from one service to another, and then wonder why giant games fail to sell.

I don’t know about that. Ubisoft’s financials are strong and their games are hits. Even their titles that don’t seem to get a lot of buzz turn out to be massive sellers like Ghost Recon Wildlands.

I actually think they’re just making really good, competent, and cooperative games. That’s why they’re selling. Rainbow Six: Siege is a tightly focused cooperative/competitive shooter. GR: Wildlands is a big open world cooperative mission conquering adventure. Assassin’s Creed Origins is, well, Assassin’s Creed. For Honor is a competitive/cooperative fighting game with swords and bling.

The reason they’re selling lots of services for these games is because they’re built on really good core experiences and mechanics.

That is a pretty badass looking flaming horse.

One co-worker of mine tells me every Monday how much he loves Rainbox Six: Siege, and how much his wife hates that he plays it all the time.

I haven’t played it a ton, but I think it’s an excellent game. Every match is like a new puzzle to solve that just happens to involve first-person shooter gunplay. It’s tense because TTL is short and it’s over fast enough that you’re right into another one quickly. My kids have squads they roll with and they have a blast playing together.

It hasn’t always been of the highest quality when it comes to bugs and issues, but the moment to moment gameplay is so good that I don’t think anyone cares too much.

These days I think any bug in a multiplayer game that doesn’t result in loss of progress is basically a feature. It turns into a viral Youtube/Twitch video where people giggle about the “glitches” and give out free marketing. It actually harms the discoverability of a game if it works as expected all the time.

I thought For Honor was terrible and I only ever hear people complain about balance problems.

McDonald’s sells a lot of hamburgers too. They’re okay.

Looks like the original slide deck is back up. I’ve archived it here just in case it goes away again:

PC bros I thought we were smarter than this.

Maybe we can blame it all on Asians.

What makes you think For Honor is terrible? It has very good combat. It’s had its share of bugs, but it is definitely a solid game at its core.

I played the beta and formed an opinion. The game modes are really bad, and the connections were really bad (might be improved now with dedicated servers). I can see how someone might like the basic combat I guess.

I’m sure the reality is as sad as you’re implying but it should be noted that “additional content” in this context includes both reasonable stuff like expansion content as well as objectionable stuff like loot boxes.

Remember when everyone made fun of Randy Pitchford for describing Battleborn as a “hobby-grade” experience and now that is literally what all the big publishers are chasing. If you game is just a game you only make money once. If you make a game designed to be an ongoing “hobby” there’s no cap to how much you can earn.