Ubisoft has canceled three unannounced games, the company has revealed in its latest financial update. It has also delayed Skull and Bones, which has already been delayed several times in the past.
The company cites “major challenges as the industry continues to shift towards mega-brands and long-lasting titles that can reach players across the globe, across platforms and business models.” It says that over the last four years, its strategy has been about building “long-lasting live games and adapting our strongest franchises” like Assassin’s Creed, Far Cry, and Tom Clancy games like Ghost Recon, Rainbow Six, and The Division “to converging trends to make them truly global brands.”
“However, the games from this investment phase have yet to be released, while our recent launches have not performed as well as expected,” the press release reads. “Compounding this effect, in the context of worsening macroeconomic conditions, the trends over the Holiday season, in particular the last weeks of December and beginning of January, have been markedly and suprisingly slower than expected.
“This overall context has triggered a full review of our revenue prospects leading to increased cautiosness over the coming years. Considering this, combined with the significant additional investments that resulted from lockdown and new working patterns that have a profound impact on productions across the industry over the past 3 years, Ubisoft is announcing today a set of measures dedicated to strengthening its long-term growth and value-creation prospects.”
It’s in those measures that Ubisoft reveals it has canceled “three unannounced projects, on top of the four already announced in July 2022,” referring to its cancelation of Ghost Recon Frontline, Splinter Cell VR, and two more unannounced titles last year.
Ubisoft then reveals that Skull and Bones has been delayed a fifth time. It will now be released early 2023-24. However, players will be able to play it soon, it sounds like, in the game’s upcoming beta phase. As for why Skull and Bones has been delayed again, Ubisoft says the game needs more polish.
“The additional time has already paid off and brought impressive improvements to its quality, which has been confirmed by recent playtests,” the press release reads. “We believe players will be positively surprised by its evolution. We have decided to postpone its release in order to have more time to showcase a much more polished and balanced experience and to build awareness.”
Elsewhere in the financial update, Ubisoft notes that it has decreased its Q3 2022-23 net bookings target from roughly $892 million to about $779 million. The company again cites “the more challenging environment,” noting that big 2022 releases like Mario + Rabbids: Sparks of Hope and Just Dance 2023 performed lower than expected.