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Businesses Entertainment Games

Ubisoft Aims For Number Two 35

GI.biz reports that French games maker Ubisoft is aiming to be the second-largest publisher by 2012. They obviously figure EA will retain it's top spot, but Ubisoft Montreal boss Yannis Mallat vows that the company will grow in the next five years. From the article: "Ubisoft Montreal was founded in 1997 and now employs more than 1000 members of staff. The studio is best known for producing titles in the Splinter Cell and Prince of Persia series, and hit the headlines earlier this year after clashing with EA Montreal over staff hirings. When asked if those problems have now been resolved, Mallat replied, 'I wouldn't say we had problems, actually; we had differences ... EA is a competitor and business is business, so sometimes we have competitors' relationships. I know Alain [Tascan, head of EA Montreal], he's someone I know and I respect, and we are now competitors as with A2M and as with Activision, and our relationships are as fine as they could be.'" How can they gain on EA when they've been overrun by bunnies?
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Ubisoft Aims For Number Two

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  • Obligatory (Score:3, Funny)

    by wampus ( 1932 ) on Monday November 27, 2006 @04:11PM (#17007076)
    Random scatological response.
  • And the fact that we got World Champion status on our Wii with Rayman's Raving Rabbids has nothing to do with that.

    Quick, duck behind the cow!
  • If I had been asked, I would've gone with Ubisoft.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Video_game_publisher# Selected_video_game_publishers [wikipedia.org]

      Activision, followed by all 3 first party studios, and then Ubisoft.

      • from the link you gave:

        in order of overall score in six factors: annual turnover, number of releases, average review score, quality of producers, reliability of milestone payments and the quality of staff pay and perks. Note that this is not a ranking by revenue

        It seems unusual to say a company is the number one video game publisher because of staff pay and perks...unless you are an employee. Somehow I don't think Ubi is saying they'll move up to number two based on this way of measuring.

  • Number 2? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by HappySqurriel ( 1010623 ) on Monday November 27, 2006 @04:20PM (#17007192)
    Just as a question, why does no one ever consider Nintendo the top publisher?

    In 2006 Nintendo has sold 25,572,000 pieces of software in Japan (48% of all games sold), and 14,704,000 pieces of software in North America (20% of all games sold). EA has sold 16,693,000 pieces of software in North America and very few pieces of software ing Japan.

    Am I missing something, did EA publish 2 to 3 times as much software as Nintendo in the rest of the world or do people automatically discount first party publishers?
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by spwolfx ( 1029734 )
      you are missing something, but there is no way to find out that info from article above... It WOULD make sense to post some kind of top list, if the whole point of article is Ubisoft becoming #2...
    • Re:Number 2? (Score:4, Informative)

      by Hennell ( 1005107 ) on Monday November 27, 2006 @04:29PM (#17007332) Homepage
      Well the article does say 'The second biggest third-party publisher after Electronic Arts '.

      Though how much of an advantage is being the first party publisher? Okay so you know your own system well (If you have decent internal communication) but you can't develop for any other system which reduces what you can do (Depending on how you count porting one 'game' to different systems...)
      • Firstly, given the numbers that we were provided with Nintendo manages to sell more units without the option of PCs, PS3s or Xboxs.

        Secondly, the key advantage in being a first-party developer/publisher is that you get better margins on the software than if you were a third party. Grossly simplified example: Sales - Production/Marketing as opposed to Sales - (Production/Marketing + Publisher's cut). Porting also incurs additional development costs to consider, while a team focused on jsut one system/architec
      • Re:Number 2? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by HappySqurriel ( 1010623 ) on Monday November 27, 2006 @04:45PM (#17007614)
        I realize that this article is about Third Party publishers, but 90% of the time I see EA refered to as the "Largest Publisher in the World" and wonder whether people have access to statistics I don't have access to.

        Though how much of an advantage is being the first party publisher? Okay so you know your own system well (If you have decent internal communication) but you can't develop for any other system which reduces what you can do (Depending on how you count porting one 'game' to different systems...)

        In general, being a first party publisher doesn't provide much of an advantage if you look at the market share of Sony, Microsoft and Sega (when they were still a first party publisher). I could be wrong, but I believe it was Sega who said something along the lines of "The biggest problem with releasing software on Nintendo's platforms is that you have to compete directly against Nintendo's software"; the implication of the statement was that only really good third party games sold well on Nintendo systems whereas an average game would sell well on the PS2/XBox.
        • A big draw for Nintendo is franchise loyalists. There are people who continue to buy Nintendo systems simply to continue playing Zelda, even though they prefer the other consoles for almost all other use. When you have someone who bought Wii specifically so they could play Twilight Princess, and they do most of their other gaming on the 360, of course Sega is going to have a hard time getting people to buy software for Wii. You could make similar arguments for Microsoft and Sony, but frankly, what franchis
        • Sega has another problem, it is less competing with Nintendo, they do fine in this area, gameplaywise. It is that they have too few franchises and new concepts. Sonic and Monkey Ball alone does not do it in the long run. They had a possible excellent gameline with Shenmue but failed to port it to platforms with a bigger userbase. The only recent addition I have seen in their lineup is the DS mini game titles besides that constant rehashes of Sonic and Monkey ball. While this works for now due to the huge i
    • by KDR_11k ( 778916 )
      In 2005 EA sold twice as many units as Nintendo in the US (25% marketshare vs. 14% or so). The rankings constantly shift. I think Ubi was #3 after EA and Nintendo some years ago (which would be their #2 third party goal). EA is more stable than Nintendo whose sales seem to vary depending on the console lifecycles.

      Oh and don't forget Europe.
  • They inherited the Might & Magic line from now-defunct 3DO, and frankly, Ubi's entries in the field sorta scare me with their incompetence. Nevermind that I can't even play them half the time due to new patches introducing new crash-at-load SecuROM bugs. The error "Not enought movement points" pretty much kills any hope I have for them. If they can't be bothered to spell-check one of the most common messages in a game, which scrolls up on screen just about every turn, I can't take them seriously.

    Some
    • by jandrese ( 485 )
      I don't know, it seems to me that they're trying to follow EA's model, I mean it worked for the #1 didn't it. :P
    • Bunnies don't have clues.

      They have ears.

      As to quality, it's hard to push out quality when you've been overrun by bunnies, as their Christmas/Noel video showed.
    • I've noticed this in a bunch of their titles recently as well. I spotted two early on in Red Steel (Tattoo spelled Tatoo in one cutscene, and before the action even starts, there's a sign that says something like "Authorized Acces Only" or something like that, with the missing S in Access.
            There was another typo early in in Raving Rabbids too - maybe someone should send that Rabbids back to grammar school.
    • Ubi's produced some pretty amazing games though, like the Splinter Cell and Prince of Persia series.

      Plus, SecuROM's a much better choice than that StarForce bullshit they were using before. I actually buy some of their games now rather than just immediately ignore them.
      • by seebs ( 15766 )
        It's better than Starforce, certainly. That's why I bought a couple of their games this year... But after the massively increased hassle of recent SecuROM, I'm not buying games using that either.

        Oblivion and GalCiv 2 have proven the viability of omitting copy protection.

        The NWN 1.02 patch's horrible problems, confirmed BY THE DEVELOPERS to be caused entirely by SecuROM, are proving the non-viability of using it.
  • Infogrames France (Atari USA) been saying that for years. So is Infogrames going to buy out Ubisoft or is Ubisoft going to buy out Infogrames?
  • Who does Number Two work for?
  • I never aim for number two, not when I can sit.
     
    Its number one that tends to require more accuracy, otherwise you have to wipe up after.
  • If Ubisoft can hold up their current progress, I would be surprised if they dont. EA is the largest because of the large number of subsidaries it owns, but all the action adventure games I've tried from Ubisoft are always amusing and bring new concept to the gaming world, from Beyond Good and Evil, Prince of Persia my favorite, to King Kong (The Gorilla part) They didnt do well in the human part. Another thing they have to be aware of is their subsidaries game quality. For example Legend of Jack Sparrow fro
  • Ubisoft titles always seem loaded with bugs, but I wait patiently for the patches and often buy their games. At least some of their titles try to break out of the norm, which is more then I can say for the other guys. At least some of their titles can be considered a little innovative. The closest thing EA does to innovation is buying out a small shop that did innovate, then defecating all over it. Understand I'm not giving them a pass on their sloppy releases, but to their credit they do seem to eventuall

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