Latest Ubisoft financials reveal ‘more dev time’ for upcoming releases
Ubisoft’s latest financial report reveals that the publishing powerhouse has lowered their revenue targets for fiscal year 2019-20, and that they blame Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint.
The latest entry in the jollily jingoistic Tom Clancy franchise hasn’t been received particularly well by critics or consumers, while Ubisoft was expecting good numbers following the success of Wildlands. Ubisoft has adjusted their expectations from The Division 2 as well, and pushed several titles into the next fiscal year – presumably to ensure they’re actually worth buying.
”…critical reception and sales during the game’s first weeks were very disappointing.”
Gods & Monsters, Rainbow Six: Quarantine and Watch Dogs: Legion are all delayed until sometime after April 1st 2020, and Ubisoft have learned some new lessons: First and foremost, it’s hard to develop a sequel for a live multiplayer game since the first game already features loads of content and a polished experience.
Established brands have strong expectations attached and any changes need to be very carefully measured. Case in point: Breakpoint was “strongly rejected by a significant portion” of its community. Finally, despite being different enough to alienate fans, Breakpoint didn’t have “enough differentiation factors” to stand out in the market. Gamers sure are a fickle bunch!
Time For A Quick Daily Quiz?
What family’s history is chronicled by the Call of Juarez games?
The answer will be revealed at the end of this issue!
“Very disappointing” Breakpoint sales
Ubisoft big cheese Yves Guillemot has revealed his deep dissatisfaction with the recent Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint, which forced his company to downgrade its revenue expectations. He said “quality appeared on track” judging by reception at E3, GamesCom and other trade shows but that both “critical reception and sales” had turned out very disappointing.” Why? Their new ideas were apparently not “perfect enough”. That explains everything!
MediEvil review round-up
Sony and developer Other Ocean Emeryville have brought MediEvil back from the dead with a remake of the 1998 PlayStation original. What do critics have to say about the return of the not-exactly-classic adventures of Sir Daniel Fortesque?
- Daily Star (Score 5/5) – ”Other Ocean’s reimagining of MediEvil is a respectful recreation of a unique classic. While some might think that the developers have gone down the safe route of a carbon copy recreation, it’s clear that a lot of work that has gone into retaining MediEvil’s original charm. The result? A gorgeous display of creative affection for a series limited by its original console confinement.”
- PlayStation Universe (Score 9.5/10) – ”MediEvil finally makes the transition from PS1 to PS4 in a spectacular new remake that fans have been clamoring for. The Tim Burton-esque beauty and clever gameplay has held up incredibly well for a twenty-year-old game but some precarious camera angles and clumsy combat keep the game from perfection.”
- Game Rant (Score 4/5) – ”The MediEvil PS4 remake stays true to the original game while being a more enjoyable experience overall. There were still some ways that the developers could have made the MediEvil PS4 remake even better, but what’s here is still a great game and will leave fans hungry for more.”
- Twinfinite (Score 4/5) – ”All in all MediEvil PS4 is a solid, well-made remake that is a Halloween treat for longtime fans thanks to its remarkably improved sounds and visuals. Other Ocean Emeryville also does a nice job of ironing out some old kinks for modern audiences while leaving the gameplay mostly intact. Most of the time, this is for the better, but sometimes it’s for the worse.”
- CGMagazine (Score 7.5/10) – ”For better or worse, MediEvil is a PS4 game that plays like a PSX game.”
- Destructoid (Score 7.5/10) – ”Given that a physical copy of the original MediEvil goes for roughly $30 these days, shelling out the same price for a PS4 remake is a steal.”
- TheSixthAxis (Score 7/10) – ”MediEvil resurrects one of our all-time favourite PlayStation mascots for a new generation. This remake does exactly what it promises, revamping dated visuals while staying faithful to the 1998 original, even if that means digging up certain design choices that have remained buried with Sir Dan all these years.”
- IGN (Score 6.5/10) – ”MediEvil successfully brings Daniel Fortesque’s tale back from the dead yet again, but not nearly enough was done to modernize the mechanics of this remake.”
Burnout was quite a thrilling drive
Criterion Games’ original Burnout from 2001 was heavily influenced by Konami’s 1998 arcade racer Thrill Drive, and early builds made available to the press showed a lot more variety in the traffic than the final version ended up having. Motorbikes, scooters and police vehicles were originally intended to liven up the streets of the American, European and Asian tracks.
The game’s working title was Shiny Red Car, and early footage showed that Criterion was quite graphically ambitious, with more detailed tracks and scenery than what eventually released. A victim of Sony’s PlayStation 2 hype, maybe? While the series didn’t reach its peak until Burnout Paradise in 2008, it certainly made Criterion’s reputation and EA acquired them after they helped save the ailing Need For Speed franchise in 2004.