Ubisoft not expecting Assassin's Creed IV to outperform Assassin's Creed III

French publisher not modeling bigger sales for this year's Assassin's Creed entry compared to last year's.

Ubisoft is not expecting this year's Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag to perform better than last year's Assassin's Creed III. CEO Yves Guillemot said today during a investor conference call that the French publisher is not modeling year-over-year franchise sales to increase.

"To come back to Assassin's Creed IV, in our numbers we have…we expect less than last year," Guillemot said today in response to an analyst question.

Assassin's Creed III has shipped and digitally sold 12.5 million copies to date.

Though Ubisoft is not forecasting Black Flag to outsell Assassin's Creed III, Guillemot said the potential for the game is greater compared to last year. He said this is due to the game's pirate theme being more relatable than last year's American Revolutionary War setting.

"We are actually pushing to achieve more than last year because we think the pirate segment is a great segment that can generate a lot more on a worldwide basis than what was achieved last year," Guillemot said. "But we wanted to be prudent on our expectations so that it can probably be a bonus if it comes."

Ubisoft is not the only publisher to forecast diminished sales for a new entry to a blockbuster series. Activision is not expecting Call of Duty: Ghosts to outperform Call of Duty: Black Ops II, which is on track to become the best-selling entry in the series of all-time.

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

432 comments
Thatineguy2820
Thatineguy2820

1 they messed up by releasing ac brotherhood and revelations those games just made me tired I think the just should've made ac 1 then 2 then 3 then 4

James111wv
James111wv

I just recently played AC3 waited for a used copy priced decently. I gotta say in my book it was really good  i was so sick of ezio so Conner was a nice change to me. Also someone commented that the story is over but I disagree now that Juno has been released that leads to a new angle. 

TrueGB
TrueGB

They're probably talking about how a game's sales are often a reflection of the previous game's popularity.

Hillsy_
Hillsy_

In other words they expect it to do better...

aell329
aell329

I can't take the milking anymore no more ac, no more halo, no more cod, no more battlefield, just staph!

Sgthombre
Sgthombre

There better be Ninjas fighting Pirates or no buy from me.

mars_mezmerize
mars_mezmerize

They know that GTA V, BF4, COD, and etc will be huge so they know what they're up against.

rmartinezdl
rmartinezdl

THIS ONLY MEANS THEY PUT LESS EFFORT ON THE GAME, AT THIS TIME ITS COPY AND PASTE, CHANGE TEXTURES, WRITE A SHITTY STORY, If a developer expects a game to not outsell the prequel, it means the game is shit.

zowbaid
zowbaid

How is this series not dead already?? Didn't AC3 conclude it? Stop dragging on stories that don't need to be dragged on!

scorpgul
scorpgul

Already there are SO many games to buy goddamn it I need about £450 if I want them all which is NOT gonna happen :(

DARKKNIGHTPRABZ
DARKKNIGHTPRABZ

its because of the market atmosphere when it is going to be released. PS4. And soo many new triple A titles, are just gonna empty peoples wallets. And people buy AC every year. Now it will be reduced to buy later when cheaper, and experience something new like watch dogs. 

Plus BF4 , COD, GTA 5, GT, will be selling huge.

yavix
yavix

Hmmm sounds like they already know people aren't going to be as interested this time around. Looks like they need to rethink this annual release model they have going.

depman1972
depman1972

Assassins creed 3 is awesome, ac4 will be too im sure

Sparticus1013
Sparticus1013

I'll be skipping this one. After AC2, too much of these games has been side missions that have little to no relevance to the story or anything. It's a shame. I want to like this series, but there have been far too many of them far too quickly. Maybe they'll shake things up and do some new stuff with this one, but I doubt it.

TrueGB
TrueGB

Le sigh. Sounds like the choice of setting is no longer an important aspect of the story, but merely what's popular enough to move the most units.

ShinjiEx
ShinjiEx

Brotherhood & Revelations burnt out the series

for many AC III was the last game of the series 

time to move on...

peanut-butter
peanut-butter

Assassin's Creed is a franchise where the sequels are, "Hey wouldn't it be cool to be an Assassin during *time period*".  Painting the same thing different colors is Activision's job.

onixevil
onixevil

We don't expect big triple A publishers to spend more money on optimizing their IP on next gen system .You want more money you spend  small budget to make it cross gen title .

Necro_Fear89
Necro_Fear89

The problem with letting a big franchise rest for a few years is that while the IP is being given a break, shareholders who have their own money invested in said development of an IP are not seeing any money being made from it. So what do they do? They have no choice to milk a series so the shareholders are kept happy, despite fans being disappointed. It's why we keep seeing CoD every year, so much money is being made that giving the series a rest is a big no-no for Daddy Warbucks.

G4mBi7
G4mBi7

All i could think about after reading this is that he is basically saying that they did a shitty job with this game and that they are trying to milk the series. I'm on the ropes if i am going to buy AC4 for PS3. I already decided against getting a next gen console and with the disappointing Desmond ending in AC3; I've grown tired of the series. I can just replay any one of the 5 games and get a similar experience. 5 years, moving on 6 now and Desmond's story which HAD SOO MUCH POTENTIAL was laid to such a terrible waste. Yes i'm butthurt about that :(

Rysiu_Gierka
Rysiu_Gierka

I stopped playing this series after ACIII and I will never spend any more money on it when all I can think about is some kind of a trashy soap opera when each single episode ends with "comming next"- that's what happend with AC in my opinion. The difference is if I want to "watch" the next "episode" I will have to pay 60$ again and again...

DarthLod
DarthLod

Thats what happens when you milk a franchise to death. Give it a rest for 3 years.

wizardboyus
wizardboyus

i don't think this means the game is gonna fail, i think this means that developers/publishers are starting to figure out how to have realistic expectations. this is a good thing if triple A games are to survive, otherwise shareholders will only see that triple A games are not meeting their expectations...meaning they won't invest in as many projects. the answer to the dilemma is easy, lower the expectations for exactly the reason stated above; any profit above their expectation will then be considered a bonus!

The_Kazekyo
The_Kazekyo


One of the things that i always tought it was lame in AC was how modern day assassins are dumb and untrained, in AC Brotherhood Lucy gets impressed by the leap of faith that Dezmon performs in Monterrigionni, she was trained to be an assassin since she was a child but never seen one of the most characteristic moves of the assassins ? This shows how much little tought they put on some aspects of the game and that happens because they need to run against time to launch a game every year.

NovahJCMP
NovahJCMP

From what I understand he is saying or implying that the game is gonna be worse. Oh god no!!!!!!! Just make it like AC2 please with some new elements and keep the main elements of the first and second one. Don't just go with something as distant from AC2 as sailing a pirate ship just because people liked the ship element in AC3. I mean compare the epicness of the trailers of the past games with the trailer of Black Flag and you will see how awesome the other ones were. Please Ubisoft don't release an AC game next year. Spend more time on it even if it has been worked on for 2 years. Bring back the original elements, interesting character and right setting for it. There are so many places that hold potential.

santinegrete
santinegrete

Well, yeah, everyone tires with almost yearly releases. Hell, if they gave Gears of War with one year's difference, I'll easily could see how little it changed. Wondering what's gonna suffer of this game because of this expectation... if only it's the marketing campaign, then you can expect loyal fans to get the game anyway, and they are not few.

ANUBISZER0
ANUBISZER0

I can totally relate to the Pirate theme, I say things like Arrgh and Matey on a daily basis.

Roweb0t
Roweb0t

@aell329 yeah you obviously don't know what milking is.. every AC has been different. especially with the latest AC3.

kytomasi
kytomasi

@aell329 the hell are you talking about? Ubisoft isnt milking AC. They are releasing Watchdogs. People have the wrong idea of what milking actually is. Milking is when you are doing nothing but making the same game over and over without any new IPs. 

made_u_look
made_u_look

Crap? Compared to what? The first AC was crap, wanted to gauge my eyes out on how buggy the engine was and monotonous everything was. The AC series has been consistently been getting better. Now because if you think the game was crap because your one of those people who sits on Ezios knob. Then your opinion hardly matters.

Grenadeh
Grenadeh

@jaz4life20 AC3 was hardly crap, it was a great game full of 100% troll ass mission design.

Hurvl
Hurvl

@scorpgul I'm in 2007, because of my backlog :P. Damn, there were so many good games released 2000-2006 that I'm still playing a lot of them. Luckily there are only a few games in 2013 that I'm interested in, but 2014 is another matter.

Grenadeh
Grenadeh

@DARKKNIGHTPRABZ Lol not really. CoD and BF4 are not AAA titles, they are shitty copypasta shooters that no one will care about after 3 months. The only reason BF3 is still relevant is because they just recently released the final DLC. GT6 is also far from a AAA title, most people simply have no interest in Gran Turismo - including people who liked it when they were growing up. The only competition any game will have this December, unless some of these flimsy release dates get clarified, is GTA5. CoD will sell 14 million and BF4 will sell about 14 million as well, with GTA5 selling more. 

And I would hardly call Watchdogs new. You'll come to notice one day that developers don't deviate from what they're good at: Far Cry 3, while a shooter, takes pretty much all of the same game mechanics as Assassin's Creed and just puts them in a new setting. Watch Dogs will be little different.

The_Kazekyo
The_Kazekyo

@wizardboyus I think that another reason was that a lot of people were disapointed with AC3 and now will think twice before buying AC4.

Scorpion1813
Scorpion1813

@The_Kazekyo  

What about the fact that at the end of every game the Templar threat is destroyed, yet at the START of every game (excluding the first) you take control of the LAST assassin in order to rebuild the creed and fight the Templar - who, at this point, have great influence and positions of power (like the Pope).

Even Desmond's time is like that. There are about a dozen assassins left, yet the Templars/Abstergo literally run of world! They own EVERYTHING!

Grenadeh
Grenadeh

@santinegrete Gears of War wasn't good in the first place, and it didn't change between the entries either.

aell329
aell329

releasing a game yearly isn't milking ok...

CaptWaffle
CaptWaffle

@Grenadeh  

No, you're wrong.  All of those games will sell huge because they ALWAYS sell huge.  It's obvious you don't like Battlefield or COD, but that doesn't change the fact that they will sell like hotcakes as always.

I'm not a huge fan of either series, either, but that doesn't blind me to the obvious.

Grenadeh
Grenadeh

@faycerol3media @DarthLod If you consider doing it right to be making the best game in the history of the franchise, (San Andreas), giving it a rest for 3 years, and then making the worst game in the franchise, then sure yea. Yes, that's right GTA4 is worse than GTA1,2,3, Vice City, San Andreas, LCS, and VCS. Game is just garbage.

Grenadeh
Grenadeh

@Scorpion1813 @The_Kazekyo Uh no. At the end of every game a specific templar threat in a specific Area is destroyed. At the end of AC2 the templar threat actually wasn't destroyed, nor at the end of AC1 - just a traitor in AC1. And AC3 was just all kinds of cliffhanger  , other than the conclusion of Desmonds arch.

SythisTaru
SythisTaru

@aell329 Its like these stupid TV shows that keep milking. A new season EVERY year? Are they NUTS!?