Ubisoft Is Shifting Focus To ‘High-End Free-To-Play’ Games

Ubisoft is planning to focus more on “high-end free-to-play” games, according to the publisher’s CFO.

Credit: Ubisoft

The company’s shift in strategy was announced during its full-year earnings call on Tuesday (May 11). During the call, Ubisoft’s chief financial officer Frederick Duguet stated it needs to rely less on “AAA” releases [via VGC]:

“In line with the evolution of our high-quality line-up that is increasingly diverse, we are moving on from our prior comment regarding releasing 3-4 premium AAAs per year. It is indeed no longer a proper indication of our value creation dynamics. For example, our expectation for Just Dance and Riders Republic are consistent with some of the industry’s AAA performers”

The Division Heartland
Credit: Ubisoft

The CFO then added that the publisher intends to create more free-to-play games as part of its yearly line up:

“Additionally, we are building high-end free-to-play games to be trending towards AAA ambitions over the long-term. This is purely a financial communication evolution and doesn’t change the fact that we continue to expect a high cadence of content delivery including powerful premium and free-to-play new releases.”

Ubisoft’s comments follow the announcement of Tom Clancy’s The Division: Heartland, a new standalone free-to-play experience. Referring to Heartland’s announcement, Duguet stated during the call that the game would help grow the franchise’s audience:

Ubisoft banner
Credit: Ubisoft

In terms of Heartland, the way we think about building the audience reach growth for our biggest franchises, so starting with The Division, is to come with high-quality free-to-play games.”

Duguet also confirmed that Ubisoft’s current fiscal year schedule includes Far Cry 6 and Rainbow Six Quarantine. However, the company apparently has no big-budget plans for the second half of the year. The publisher has also delayed its upcoming pirate game Skull & Bones till 2022. 

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Featured Image Credit: Ubisoft

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