The success of 'Far Cry' threatens to annualize a la 'Assassin's Creed.'
Ubisoft's abandonment of the Wii U is just one symptom of what has taken hold of Ubisoft, and what is guiding the publisher's agenda. According to Tony Key, Ubisoft's senior vice president of sales and marketing, "It became very clear to us about two years ago that this is a blockbuster world we live in now."
Central to the latest set of ploys by the big publisher is the combination of 'Assassin's Creed III' and the upcoming 'Assassin's Creed IV.' "We spend so much time, energy and money creating these experiences like Watch_Dogs and Assassin's Creed, you need to match that now on the marketing side. You're making a huge bet on the development side, you've got to be all in...That means we have to be able to match the resources our production teams are putting in on the marketing side. You saw that with Assassin's Creed III, that was our largest marketing campaign ever as a company. What's interesting now is it doesn't feel so big any more. This year we're looking at Assassin's Creed IV, and Watch_Dogs, and saying 'That's what it takes nowadays, that's what we're going to keep doing.' "
Ultimately, it seems that Ubisoft has planned to fast track 'Watch_Dogs' to 'Assassin's Creed II' and possibly even 'Assassin's Creed III' levels of popularity. "With Watch_Dogs we went straight to expensive... we won't even start if we don't think we can build a franchise out of it."
And then there is 'Far Cry,' which now appears to also be headed for the 'Assassin's Creed' level of marketing and sequel frequency. "We’re totally psyched from [Far Cry 3]. It’s a great brand, and now it’s got the recognition it deserves, so we’re clearly going to make another one: more on that soon." Oddly enough it seems that the one effect of the success of 'Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon' was to simply raise awareness of the 'Far Cry' brand, and to bring in more players that Ubisoft hopes to captivate with a 'Far Cry 4' media blitz.
Another Ubisoft franchise, 'Prince of Persia' seems to be dormant after succumbing to sequelitis and being overshadowed by its 'Assassin's Creed' cousin. "Prince of Persia, it’s got a really strong legacy with Ubisoft and it’s still there. We have nothing to announce, but, you know, we haven’t sold it off or given it away, so be patient. I know that’s hard!"
Author: Brian Hoss