In their financial report for the third quarter (ended December 31, 2015), Ubisoft revealed that the next Watch Dogs game will release before March 31, 2017.
Laying out their initial targets for the next fiscal year (April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017), Ubisoft said they will “launch a very high-quality line-up,” including For Honor, South Park: The Fractured But Whole, Ghost Recon: Wildlands, the next Watch Dogs, and “a new high-potential AAA brand with strong digital live services.”
One franchise missing from their next fiscal year is Assassin’s Creed, which is taking a break.
As for Ubisoft’s third quarter financial results, they saw €561.8 million in sales, citing a “strong comeback in multiplayer” with Rainbow Six Siege, along with record engagement levels and digital revenue weighting. However, the €561.8 million was down from €809.7 million last year, which they say is a result of a “slower launch than expected for Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, in an exceptionally fierce competitive environment.”
For a breakdown of Q3 sales, 47% was in North America, 43% in Europe, and 10% in the rest of the world. Looking at individual platforms, Ubisoft sold 41% on PlayStation 4, 27% on Xbox One, 12% on PC, and 6% on Wii. PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Wii U were under 5%, while the PlayStation Vita wasn’t listed.
They also raised their full-year sales target to €1.36 billion, with next year projected to hit €1.7 billion.
Ubisoft Co-Founder Yves Guillemot said:
Looking beyond our sales figures for the quarter, which have led us to update our full-year targets, our strategy of focusing on player engagement is paying off. For example, Rainbow Six Siege achieved record engagement levels during the period thanks to the success of its exceptional multiplayer mode. These advances are a decisive step in our business development and demonstrate the strong execution of our strategy, which will ultimately translate into regular revenue streams and enhanced profitability. The upcoming releases of Far Cry Primal and The Division should confirm these trends. The Division – whose recent closed beta exceeded all of our expectations – is set to be one of the largest launches of a new brand in the history of the video game industry.
We are now in a position to take the decision not to release a new Assassin’s Creed game in 2016-17, in order to give the brand a new dimension, while still presenting very solid targets for the fiscal year. These targets reflect the measures we have been putting in place over the past few years to transform our business model. Our portfolio of powerful franchises is solid and balanced and our global audience is growing steadily. At the same time, the digital segment is playing an increasingly important role and we are making a strong comeback in multiplayer. We now create experiences that accompany players throughout the year so we can enhance their long-term engagement. Each of these positive factors testifies to the change in Ubisoft’s profile and has a favorable impact on our financial performance.
As for the fourth quarter of this fiscal year, Ubisoft is expecting €591 million in sales, up from €170 million last year. This is because The Division, Far Cry Primal, and the Black Ice expansion for Rainbow Six Siege all release by the end of March.