Ubisoft is going to focus more on ‘high-end free-to-play games’ in the future

When Ubisoft announced last week that its next Division game, called Heartland, will be free to play, we wondered if it was a sign that the publisher was pursuing the success that Activision has enjoyed with the free-to-play battle royale Call of Duty: Warzone. The short answer is yes, it is—but its ambition is not limited to Tom Clancy shooters.

Ubisoft chief financial officer Frederick Duguet said during today’s earnings call that the company’s previous commitment to release 3-4 premium, “triple-A” games per year “is no longer a proper indication of [Ubisoft’s] value creation dynamics.” Instead, while it will continue to maintain “a high cadence of content delivery including powerful premium and free-to-play new releases,” the goal is to grow audiences “by widening our brand at the top of the funnel”—in other words, convincing more people to try Ubisoft’s games by making them free at the entry level.

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