“You will be amazed by what will come on AC:O. That’s the only thing we can say now.”
Ubisoft is “concentrating at the moment” on Assassin’s Creed: Origins, rather than a new entry in the once-annual franchise.
Replying to an earnings call question asking if the series would return to a new-game-a-year release schedule, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot said:
“We are concentrating at the moment on AC:O, for which we are going to launch a few other DLCs. So you will be amazed by what will come on AC:O. That’s the only thing we can say now.”
Guillemot went into some depth about the success of Origins, explaining that it is “is on track to almost double players’ playtime versus prior Assassin’s Creed titles”. Ubisoft Executive Director Alain Corre called it “the successful comeback of the Assassin’s Creed franchise.”
The company clearly puts the success of Assassin’s Creed (and its other 2018 games) down to slowing down production on the whole.
“With more time to polish our games,” explained Guillemot, “we have been able to release three high-quality titles since August […] We have fully embraced the significant increase in resources required to develop ever-bigger games.”
It seems the company’s general push towards earning money through “service” games such as The Division and Rainbow Six: Siege has also allowed for more polish in more self-contained games such as Origins.
“More polish” has been the watchword for Ubisoft since 2016, when it announced there would be no annual Assassin’s Creed game that year for the first time since 2008.
Speaking about the company’s two key franchises in 2016, Ubisoft VP of Editorial, Tommy François laid down a philosophy: “More quality, more polish. So if this means biting the [bullet] and not having an Assassin’s game, or a Far Cry [in 2017], f*** it.”
It seems he wasn’t lying – Far Cry 5 was indeed announced for a 2018 release, and was subsequently delayed to allow for more polish.
As for Assassin’s Creed, it seems we’ll be spending more time in Egypt, with the release of the Discovery Tour DLC on February 20, and the Curse of the Pharaohs pack in March. Going by Guillemot’s comments, there may be more to come.