Ubisoft Talks Balance Between Casual And Hardcore
It takes all kinds to make the world go 'round. And if you want to maintain your big business status, you require mainstream appeal.
Hardcore gamers, veteran gamers, and "purist" gamers will bemoan the explosion of the casual market, claiming the new focus on fast, accessible, and oh so painfully stupid has a negative impact on the "real" games they love. However, Ubisoft says that rather than attacking the casual peeps, the hardcore enthusiasts should be thanking the non-gamers for all the extra monies.
Ubisoft boss Yves Guillemot spoke to Gamasutra about a specific "balance" between casual and hardcore. While their Assassin's Creed and Tom Clancy franchises rake in the critical acclaim and do indeed sell extremely well, it's the casual hits like Just Dance 2 and Raving Rabbids that help pay the bills. Said Guillemot:
"It's a balance. It's not that we changed the way we do things. We integrated the casual on top of the core. This is helping us spend more money on the high definition titles and is helping us come with more high-definition games."
The bottom line is that with casual, simple hits for kids, senior citizens, and those who really don't call themselves "gamers," Ubisoft drags in more money. And with more money comes the opportunity to create bigger-budget hardcore titles. Remember, it's a bigger profit margin; as Guillemot says- "To make Just Dance, it's just 1/10th the cost of Assassin's Creed."
And besides, isn't it nice to see gaming be so widely accepted? If it had remained a hardcore, niche hobby, it would still be mocked by the majority. Well, we may have to put up with a gaggle of shovelware on the Wii but at least we're a mostly accepted group of hobbyists. ...not in the eyes of NBC and The Today Show, of course, but whatever.
7/19/2011 9:31:50 AM Ben Dutka