Assassin's Creed III sells 3.5M, Watch Dogs in 2013

First-week sales of Ubisoft's new action game rise 100 percent over AC: Revelations' mark; futuristic action game landing next year; company posts $41.35 million loss for six-month period.

Assassin's Creed III is off to a hot start. As part of its financial report for the six-month period ended September 30, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot revealed that first-week sales of the studio's new stealth-action game came in at an estimated 3.5 million copies. This represents a year-on-year increase of over 100 percent from last year's Assassin's Creed: Revelations.

During a post-earnings financial call today (attended by Joystiq), Guillemot dropped another morsel of news. The executive said Ubisoft's futuristic third-person action game Watch Dogs is slated to arrive sometime in 2013. This game was announced during Ubisoft's 2012 Electronic Entertainment Expo media briefing in June.

In terms of specific financial figures, Ubisoft posted a €32.3 million ($41.35 million) loss for the six-month period, compared to a €37.1 million ($47.55) loss this time last year. Revenue for the period came in at €279.2 million ($357.88 million), up 12.1 percent from the €248.5 million ($318.13 million) the company hauled a year ago. Major contributors to the uptick in sales were Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier and back catalog sales. Additionally, Ubisoft said its online segment jumped 59 percent year-over-year to €28 million ($35.9 million).

As for the period's loss, Guillemot explained that this was to be expected based on the cost of the company's marketing spend for its major third quarter titles including Assassin's Creed III and Far Cry 3. Additionally, the executive added that it is those very titles that are expected to lead Ubisoft to a record second-half financial performance.

To that end, Ubisoft has updated its full-year sales guidance, which is now expected to come in at between €1.2 billion ($1.54 billion) and €1.26 billion ($1.62 billion). This is compared to a previous target of between €1.16 billion ($1.49 billion) and €1.2 billion ($1.54 billion).

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

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Discussion

0 comments
SavoyPrime
SavoyPrime

Got ACIII on deck. Really looking forward to Watch Dogs. That E3 demo was sweet!

FlashCharge
FlashCharge

Great game, great story, and just fun to play.  ACIII is a blast and hope Unibsoft adds additional content.

AlexFili
AlexFili

Not surprisingly good sales here, I hope the AC3 multi-player servers stay up for a long time!

wexorian
wexorian

it could be 5 million fi they launched PC v same time with consoles, Far cry 3 inc it will sell good too. Also Ubisoft must return to origins they started with Prince of persia why not make a new game, or continue pop 2008 it was good game not much challenge but good enough :P

valensim
valensim

Grand Theft Auto V vs Watch Dogs... awesome year for gamers. PS: V wins. ;)

GLDanzego
GLDanzego

What exactly is a "marketing spend"? What kind of writing is THAT? Come on, man. SMH

jark888
jark888

All of AC series plus all of their DLCs sound like a real deal. Hope they include online passes too.

DeadSoulKing
DeadSoulKing

If Ubisoft wanted me to buy AC3, then they shouldn't have revealed Watch Dogs.

ferval100
ferval100

Hopefully the PC version kicks ass! I'm holding off till it arrives.

brxricano
brxricano

Watch Dogs demo was AMAAAZING. The sooner the better.

musalala
musalala

I"m  confused...is this article good or bad? They sold 3.5 million which is good, but they made a loss which is bad which is it?

ROEG-GAMER
ROEG-GAMER

After playing Assassins Creed 3 I don't wanna play the trilogy . Assassins Creed 3 is amazing. I'm looking to see what kind of Assassins Ubisoft  is gonna develop next. AC3 is the best game in the series, I'm just waiting on the new DLC for AC3.  

muzza93
muzza93

I dont understand economics. But i would like to know why every article about publishers earnings are always a huge loss, never seen one of these say they made a profit, never. You just sold 3.5 million copies and still lost money? What the **** i dont understand lol. Someone help.

Seifer24
Seifer24

Definitely looking forward to watch dogs.

E3's trailer was astonishing 

 

alenth
alenth

Wahhh wahhh greedy corporations, wahh to much DLC content wahhh they are destroying the industry wahhhh you people are blind, how sad that instead of enjoying games you people like to bash the other customers that enjoy the product, i don't like DLC spam either but at least having fun is more important than playing games only to show your e-peen.

mav_destroyer
mav_destroyer

I keep getting this confused with Sleeping Dogs, whats with the sudden interest in putting "Dogs" in the titles?

svaubel
svaubel

So a game that is full of anti-consumer stuff is a contender for best-seller this year. Sigh

 

So what does it have? Season Pass, Online Pass, DLC out the ass, AND microtransactions.

 

The industry's shoddy business practices will continue.

emperiox
emperiox

Didn't Ubisoft say that it's almost the end of AAA games? Haha Ubisoft is so stupid...

JDWolfie
JDWolfie

Disappointed about Watch Dogs but not surprising since we haven't heard anything since E3. Was really looking foreward to that along with South Park: Stick of Truth. Oh well. Still got Halo 4 and Arcade games.

BelaidKL
BelaidKL

YES! Can't wait for E3 2013 now.. Watch Dogs = My most anticipated game thats arriving on the 360 next year! (Last of Us is my PS3 one)

MJ12-Conspiracy
MJ12-Conspiracy

Good to know AC is doing well but I'm far more interested in Watch Dogs....

That E3 trailer was awesome, between that and Star Wars 1313...so far those are my must have titles of 2013.

Jon493
Jon493

 @AlexFili Ive already noticed a STEEP drop in the AC player base. Its hard to maintain a full game. Most are 5 - 6 player matches, Im disappointed

Greyfeld
Greyfeld

 @GLDanzego They're talking about the money it's taken to market their games.  Basically, the money they've spent making sure everybody and their mother has heard of them.

Greyfeld
Greyfeld

 @HipHopBeats If Watch Dogs is even half as amazing as it looked at E3, it's going to be a day-1 purchase for me.  I can't wait to hear more about it.

AlexFili
AlexFili

 @DeadSoulKing Watch Dogs might not be out for another 12-24 months though! I can't wait that long! :)

TrueGB
TrueGB

 @musalala It means the game sold very well but the company suffered a loss overall for the last 6 months as a result of the usual costs of doing business. AC3 is too new to have had its sales figures impact their balance sheet yet.

Slade968
Slade968

 @muzza93 It is because these articles are generally reporting the high sales of a NEWLY released games. Those types of games generally cost a lot of money to produce and because of that they are losing money for the LAST 6 months. Even with AC3's great sales, it is too new to have impacted their balance sheet hence the loss.

 

If you look at a broader time range of their financial earnings about 6 months from now, they will most likely be making profit.

 

It is rare for companies to have the cash lying around to be able to start up a large project. There is just too much overhead and because of that, those companies are almost always at a deficit at the beginning before they have sold whatever product/service they specialize in.

 

TrueGB
TrueGB

 @muzza93 Huh? Publishers post profits all the time. I think 2K posted one recently, Rockstar usually, and Activision never seems to lose money (and they shouldn't given they have the two best cash cows in the industry).

gokulgamer
gokulgamer

They did sell a lot of copies but they feel they have spent lot of money on advertising and marketing.So they feel their profit is only marginal

MdoRandoms
MdoRandoms

 @muzza93 And companies report very conservatively by law because if they are optimistic and are wrong they can get sued so they always report less than they are making, Ubi could actually be making money but they report it as loss. Its kinda dumb and you need to take an accounting class to understand it.

MdoRandoms
MdoRandoms

 @muzza93 Cost of production is apparently quite high. Then it has to be put onto disks and those disks need cases and those cases need the art work. Then there is royalties and probably some taxes along with paying voice actors. Lots of staff and, if there is a game engine licensed out from someone, such as Havok, DMM. Ubi did create a very powerful engine in order to be able to have these huge numbers of people on screen at a time (around 1000 or 2000) and that takes a lot of time and resources. Then there are distribution costs and taxes on that and more taxes and fees.... Its kinda ridiculous how much money is spent on taxes and fees. I dont know their exact accounting report, but I'm sure if you wanted to look for it you could find it.

Kravyn81
Kravyn81

 @muzza93 Because if they posted their profit then they can't continue to pass off the argument that "used sales are destroying the industry" bullshit.

 

Let's think about this for a second and see if we can't sense something is amiss: According to these developers they continually post a loss...YET THEY CAN MAGICALLY PUMP OUT MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR GAMES AT A REGULAR CLIP.

 

Hmmm....As Spock would say, "Highly illogical, Captain."

callofduty405
callofduty405

 @svaubel that sawtooth sword mission for preordering literally took me 5 minates to do. That's the whole reason i preordered it and the mission was horrible and buggy. They really are trying to get every penny out of us.

 

megadeth1117
megadeth1117

 @svaubel Just goes to show that bitching on the internet accomplishes absolutely nothing.

AlexFili
AlexFili

 @Jon493 I must admit, Matchmaking in Brotherhood was awful for me, but I have a feeling ACIII will be much better in that regard. Wolf Pack looks great too.

GLDanzego
GLDanzego

 @Greyfeld I get what he's trying to say. However, "spend" is something you DO (as in "I spend money"), not a thing. There's no such thing as "a marketing spend".

 

Granted, so many game journalists- and journalists in general- are poor writers, but that.......that's just something else.

Slade968
Slade968

 @Kravyn81  @muzza93 While your argument sounds good and resonates with how people feel about big company's attitude toward used games sales, it is completely inaccurate. Almost all companies are earning at a loss when a new (high earning) product is released.

AlexFili
AlexFili

 @Chance2007 For what it's worth, Wolf Pack offers a co-operative experience for players in the form of tackling with AI.

AlexFili
AlexFili

 @Chance2007 As far as I can see, there's a clear divide between co-operative games and competitive ones. Let's take your example of people working together in a story setting. We have things like Grand Theft Auto, Left 4 Dead, Portal and many other examples. For this you have a few problems: What do you do with all the cutscenes? What if one person wants to skip them? What do you do when a certain mission is clearly only designed for a single person and the other players feel bored? What if one of your best friends is near the end of the game and one is near the beginning? How can the beginner possibly not get spoiled?Then we have games where multiplayer is a completely seperate entity (and on PCs, a completely different EXE), Call of Duty, Bioshock, Gears of War, Mass Effect 3. These are session based games which allow for many modes, lots of customisation etc. This is flexible and very easy to release alongside the main game.

 

To be honest, a lot of this is up to the user's own preference. If people really want a co-operative Assassin's Creed game, the developers will work hard to make one. You just have to realise that doing so is a big challenge, and not one to take lightly.

Chance2007
Chance2007

Honestly, I've never been a fan of Assassins Creed multiplayer, even in this installment of AC I find the online experience to be something I didn't really enjoy. Of course, that's entirely my own opinion. I say it without the intention of putting a downer on the idea of a multiplayer system. The option so do so will always be nice. However, I would have preferred a Multiplayer experience where you can do in game missions with your friends. Or rome around the streets of New York or something with another online player. Creating havoc and what not, of course. Without removing the other types of online games included. I would have also liked to have seen an online ship battle where you can go head to head with naval side of the game. I found the naval gameplay to be particularly appealing. Then again, I haven't looked into the multiplayer system very much so this might have been something I missed. I think this is more for the singleplayer experience if anything. The storyline is excellent. I brought AC Revelations despite the lack of changes in the game purely for the storyline. Truly Brilliant game and I really hope to see more.