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Ubisoft: We'll Make Fewer Big AAA Titles Next Generation

Assassin's Creed III creative director Alex Hutchinson recently warned everyone that the massive AAA game may go extinct in the new generation.

And Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot echoes that belief, saying he expects his company to produce fewer large-scale games for the upcoming new consoles. As he told The Guardian:

"With next gen consoles, it's going toward bigger games, and yes, we will make less of them. But with free-to-play games, the teams aren't as big so we can try different things and find subjects that are of interest to consumers."

Gigantic production is difficult in terms of resources and we're already reaching a point where only the biggest companies can pull it off. Next generation, when the even more expensive systems are here, such a huge endeavor would logically be even more prohibitive. That being said, such games are typically gigantic sellers, so you've got yourself a bit of a Catch .22...if you want to be hugely popular, you often have to utilize huge resources, but if you don't have those resources...well, you see where this is headed. It's going to be tough.

The bottom line is that it's just plain risky to make video games these days, and it'll likely get even riskier in the new generation.

Tags: ubisoft, yves guillemot, next generation, next gen consoles, next gen games

9/13/2012 10:37:35 AM Ben Dutka

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Comments (22 posts)

shadowpal2
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 10:59:00 AM
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So I'm guessing what they really mean...is that they're gonna go Visceral on us and MAKE MORE "QUAD-A" titles huh...

Last edited by shadowpal2 on 9/13/2012 10:59:46 AM

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mehrab2603
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 11:01:43 AM
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Hope BG&E2 is one of those AAA titles.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 11:31:20 AM
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So they are going to make fewer than one or two?

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Temjin001
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 12:16:02 PM

lol exactly. On Ubisoft's Uplay shop when you filter games by "brand" within Ubisoft's offerings you have only THREE options: Assassin's Creed, Far Cry, and Tom Clancy (I suppose this one counts for a few). Maybe it just means they're ditching HAWX and will milk AC for as long as it is profitable.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 12:18:43 PM

It's the Activision syndrome, all eggs go into fewer and fewer baskets.

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kraygen
Friday, September 14, 2012 @ 12:15:59 AM

Oh, you stole my line. Was going to ask what was fewer than 0. lol

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BikerSaint
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 12:08:39 PM
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You'd think with all this new tech, things would be getting better for us gamers, instead of some of it speeding towards a cliff in reverse.


Last edited by BikerSaint on 9/13/2012 12:11:01 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 12:20:26 PM

What bugs me is that with all this new tech, where you'd expect the game worlds to get bigger (save for Bethesda RPGs and GTA) they seem to keep shrinking.

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wiley_kyotee
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 3:00:25 PM

Yeah, I think next gen is going to be a precarious time for consoles and their game developers and producers. I believe there is a possiblility of a crash. Will people buy the consoles if there are limited big budget games to play? Will small and medium sized developers/producers find a way to make profits publisihing to consoles or will they be better off just publisihing to smart phones, tablets, and internet? Should be interesting next few years. I suppose the Wii U release will tell a lot about next gen console financial health.

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Underdog15
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 3:31:32 PM

I think part of the problem is in rushing to a new generation when most devs haven't mastered tech that the PS3 has to offer. There's only a couple devs that have really tapped into the PS3, and based on what I see in some games to come, there's more potential.

Costs should be shrinking as it becomes easier to develop for these systems... and to me, we SHOULD be getting another 3 years so that devs can make AAA games at lower costs and lower risks.

But instead of doing that... instead of mastering the systems and getting more and more excellent games as it becomes cheaper and cheaper to develop for this generation, everyone is SPEEDING towards a new generation!! JUST as this gen is -STARTING- to be more accessible to more devs, they want to move on?

I'm positive Sony would love to stick to this gen a while longer if they could. Even if our best games have come close to tapping the PS3... why move on when 95% of the other devs still have more to do?! I get the desire some people have to play with new tech and new toys... but... yeah, I don't know if getting POTENTIAL for better graphics on a new gen will actually result in better experiences for gamers in the long run. I'm also not convinced it will lead to more profitability for developers and publishers.

I really think it's premature to move on... and I think people are moving on because they need to stay relevant and competitive. If everyone held back, they would all make more money, I'm sure. And we would be having more fun.

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bigrailer19
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 12:37:47 PM
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All I got from this is they will keep releasing AC and maybe one other new ip or another of their established franchises. So they want to focus on AC, their money maker.

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Temjin001
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 12:42:27 PM
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meh, oh well. All of the games I like most anymore aren't even AAA.

NG3
VF5: FS
Double Dragon
eventually DOA5 (it'll avg lower than 8, lower possibly than 7)

Yep that awful selection of games gets the most loving from me. So I'd say bring on the crappiness. I'll be there!

Last edited by Temjin001 on 9/13/2012 12:42:44 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 12:51:39 PM

Cult gamers ftw.

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Qubex
Friday, September 14, 2012 @ 1:54:04 AM

Love Double Dragon... used to play it in oodles on the Commodore Amiga500, was a good conversion...

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

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wackazoa
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 12:51:39 PM
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So are they still going through with the annualization of AC ?

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Temjin001
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 1:10:25 PM

let's see, nearly a year long ad campaign for AC3. Expensive and LONG ads during even prime time NFL games. Yeah, I'd say AC is here to stay, every year, save it be for maybe a hiccup in between console generations. But hey, Sony gamers get not just one AC, but TWO games this year alone.

Better clear some shelf space, AC lovers. You'll have a shelf looking like Madden fans before long.

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Lawless SXE
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 2:26:23 PM
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Oh bugger off with your F2P nonsense. I don't care if the graphics aren't jawdropping, or if there are issues with the sound as long as the mechanics are awesome and the story is solid, I'll almost always regard it as a great game. The idea of AAA bugs me because people hear it and think spectacle. Give me whatever.

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wiley_kyotee
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 2:43:09 PM
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Didn't Ubisoft just add a AAA game, Watch Dogs? With all the buzz from E3 I would assume that this game will sell well and they will have to produce further entries for the next gen consoles. As stated above, they will probably continue with the annual AC. If the new Splinter Cell sells well, they will want to continue with this.

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Gamer46
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 3:32:21 PM
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I'm a big fan of Assassin's Creed and Splinter Cell. As long as they don't f*ck those games up I won't complain too much about the direction it looks like Ubisoft is going. However, I do think the annualization of AC needs to stop. It's a great series but at some point releasing a game a year in that kind of a series is going to catch up with them.

Last edited by Gamer46 on 9/13/2012 3:33:54 PM

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Advent Child
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 4:22:58 PM
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So what I keep hearing from these guys is since the beginning of video games stuff has always kept moving forward with better and better games but now we are actually setting ourselves up to start devolving the quality of our games because we have advanced too far?

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Underdog15
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 5:19:50 PM

Yeah kinda. lol. The problem is we're pushing forward to the next step at the peak of the generation when profitability will finally really start to look up. We've hit the point where game development costs will finally start to go down while the cost of games can stay where they are.

Basically, if we stayed with this gen just a couple more years, we'd get many more AAA quality games and devs would make more money. BUT, in order to be competitive and "cutting edge", there's pressure to move up and up at the same time technology becomes more innovative. Instead of sticking to the tech of this generation can handle, which is still impressive, they're trying to move forward with what should only be affordable by 5% of the developers out there can afford.

So... in order to stay relevant, most companies will need the change how they deliver games... pay to play/free to play (buy add-ons to stay competitive in the game), or make less impressive games.

I'm sure you could get really in depth with research to evaluate whether or not it's good for the industry in the long run and what the causes of fast-forwarding are...

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Teddie9
Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 7:19:00 PM
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Probably for the best considering that the new hardware will push development costs higher - hopefully square of all companies follows suit so they can actually release a good AAA title.

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