Ubisoft: Our future games are co-developed for current and next-gen

Plus, publisher expects longer lifespan of next gen games due to DLC and microtransactions

Ubisoft is developing key games for current and next gen consoles simultaneously, the publisher's chief executive has said.


Yves Guillemot said there's currently no way Ubisoft can measure whether next gen development costs will rise because the firm is building projects for next and current gen hardware in tandem.

Speaking during a conference call following the publication of the company's first half financial results, he said: "For the first two years [of next gen development], because we are making our games on next gen and old gen at the same time, we expect the overall [development] costs will not increase. We don't know about the third year, when we will take full advantage of the capacity of the consoles."

Meanwhile, Guillemot said it is "very important to consider that revenue per product will increase", and that the "lifespan of next generation games will be longer".

This, he said, is due to new game elements such as DLC microtransactions. Ubisoft said that, for most of its titles, the average revenue per user would be higher.

Last month, Ubisoft CFO Alain Martinez said full price retail titles can learn from free-to-play models, and that he expects the next generation of consoles to "offer more and more item-based content".

While Guillemot didn't name-check any particular games being developed for consoles both old and new, the stunning Watch Dogs, which he today reiterated is set for release in 2013, is an obvious contender.

Take-Two's CEO also said last week that the arrival of new more powerful consoles won't necessarily mean a leap in development costs.

"We don't have a ramp up of operating expenses for next generation," said Strauss Zelnick. "In many instances, we believe that it may be somewhat easier to make titles for next-gen depending on how the technology comes together."