Ubisoft announced today that it is lowering financial targets for fiscal 2019-2020, now expecting net bookings of $1.6 billion. It also pushing back the release dates of some of its big upcoming releases.
The publisher is making the adjustment following the launch of Ghost Recon: Breakpoint, which came out on September 5 for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. The online tactical shooter had a weak reception from critics, earning a 58/100 score review aggregate site Metacritic. But critics aren’t the only ones disappointed with the title, as Ubisoft cofounder and CEO Yves Guillemot notes that sales for the game have been “very disappointing.”
Guillemot goes on to blame Breakpoint’s weak performance on it coming out so shortly after 2017’s Ghost Recon: Wildlands, noting that “we need to make sure there is more time between each iteration of live games” while also saying that Breakpoint did not release with “enough differentiation factors.”
The CEO doesn’t talk about The Division 2 as much, but the press release announcing the new financial targets also noted that it is expecting less revenues from the online shooter as well. The Division II came out on March 15 and started off strong, but it could be having a hard time keeping players.
Big game delays
Along with its lower expectations for those game, Ubisoft is delaying three of its major upcoming releases: Gods & Monsters, Rainbow Six: Quarantine, and Watch Dogs: Legion. All of them will come out during the 2019-2020 fiscal year, which starts on April 2020.
The reason for all three delays is the same. After Breakpoints disappointing launch, Ubisoft wants to make sure these titles are as good as they can be.
While each of these games already has a strong identity and high potential, we want our teams to have more development time to ensure that their respective innovations are perfectly implemented so as to deliver optimal experiences for players. This decision will have a very significant impact on our financial results for this fiscal year and goes against our recent successes in building a more stable development model. However, it is in line with our strategy to maximize the future value of our brands for the long-term benefit of our employees, players and shareholders.
Gods & Monsters was set for February 25. Watch Dogs: Legion was supposed to come out on March 3. Rainbow Six: Quarantine did not have a specific release date, but it was supposed to come out during this fiscal year.
Meanwhile, the pirate game Skull & Bones is delayed again. It was supposed to come out in March 2020, but now we won’t see it until at least 2021.