Ubisoft boss, Yves Guillemot, says digital “Doesn’t React As Fast On Consoles As It Does on PC.”
During an investor's call yesterday, Guillemot explained why digital games' prices stay the same on PSN and XBL rather than matching other online retailers.
“Digital is more reactive than what we put in stores, but at the same time, it doesn’t react as fast on consoles than it does on PC,” Guillemot admitted.
“What we can say is that when games are older than one year, digital is a lot more dynamic on console because there are less units in stores. It’s a new business, a new trend, and we think all this will get more in line with time, but for sure, at the moment you see all sorts of prices depending on who is doing a promotion for that specific week.”
Ubisoft CFO Alain Martinez continues to clarify on the subject:
“On digital we will not sell [a game] for a lower price compared to physical. After a few weeks or few months things can change, and as Yves has been saying, sometime you might have a promotion on Amazon [that is] not on GameStop, but we can also react on the digital side,”
“We are actually more aggressive on the PC side where digital is very, very strong. We tend to be more conservative on the digital side for more console and more flexible on PC.”
During the aforementioned investor's call, Ubisoft shared its sales figures for the fiscal quarter, which ended June 30th. What is of note is that the PC platform has almost managed to top every other platform, tailing just 4% behind the PlayStation 4.
The backlash that Ubisoft has received for Watch Dogs' 'downgrade' forced the company to change their approach on how they demonstrate pre-release games, CEO Yves Guillemot explains:
"With E3 2015 we said, OK, let's make sure the games are playable, that they're running on the target machines," Guillemot told The Guardian. "When we show something, we ask the team, make sure it's playable, make sure gamers can immediately see exactly what it is. That's what we learned from the Watch Dogs experience – if it can't be played on the target machine, it can be a risk."
Guillemot, although, clarifies that some of Watch Dogs' issues generated from trying to create a ground-breaking experience for undefined early hardware.
"It's a real challenge to create those types of games," he continued. "When they come out, especially the first iterations, they are not perfect on everything. We think we launched a good quality game for a first step in a new brand with a new technology. It's just so complex – seamless multiplayer, connectivity with mobile and tablets, so many things – it was maybe a bit too much for a first iteration."
So it appears that what we have seen at the E3 2015 event last month is more or less what we will be getting with the releases of Assassin's Creed Syndicate, Tom Clancy's The Division, For Honor, and Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege. There has been some controversy surrounding Tom Clancy's The Division, again regarding a downgrade in visual quality, and it can be said that it is quite apparent. The rest of the titles look quite nice though and that includes Assassin's Creed Syndicate. Let's hope that this time Assassin's Creed fans will enjoy a smooth launch as well.
We will bring you any news from Ubisoft as soon as it becomes available.