This week VideoGamesChronicle is reporting that Ubisoft is preparing to announce their plans to restructure their editorial team following a “difficult year” for the company. For the past two decades the editorial team at Ubisoft has been responsible for the creative direction of all of Ubisoft’s games and IPs. The editorial team is based in Paris and is comprised of about 100 designers and producers who control the creative direction on all aspects of Ubisoft’s game design from game design to world building and script writing.
We are reinforcing our editorial team to be more agile and better accompany our development teams around the world as they create the best gaming experience for players.
Ubisoft intends for the editorial revamp to help the company diversify its portfolio of games and IPs and help keep their offered titles flexible and distinct among the competition. Following the weak sales and market performance of Ubisoft’s tactical shooter Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint, Ubisoft President Yves Guillemot acknowledged to investors in October 2019 that overall Ghost Recon Breakpoint “did not come in with enough differentiation factors” to distinguish it from similar games, leading to poor reviews and reception.
October 2019 also saw Ubisoft announce that the company would drastically alter their plans for the fiscal year, delaying several announced titles including Gods and Monsters, Rainbow Six Quarantine, and Watch_Dogs Legion. Guillemot stated that the decision to postpone the release window on these titles was to give them more development time and a part of Ubisoft’s new strategy that will focus on sustainability.
The editorial team at Ubisoft will continue under the guidance of current Ubisoft chief creative officer Serge Hascoet and the current group of vice president-level members of the editorial advisory board. Current VP Tommy Francois will remain, alongside Child of Light‘s Patrick Plourde and Splinter Cell‘s Maxime Béland. The team will transition to having more autonomy as a group independent of Hascoet and will reportedly be given individual franchises to helm going forward.
“In the previous system that editorial had, there were often the ideas of just one or two people getting put in every game,” an anonymous source close to Ubisoft’s editorial team told VideoGamesChronicle. “That’s why you tended to see such similarity, because it’s the same taste and opinion being replicated.”
“We are reinforcing our editorial team to be more agile and better accompany our development teams around the world as they create the best gaming experience for players,” Ubisoft shared in an official statement to VideoGamesChronicle. The editorial team will also expand and grow offices outside of the Paris location.
VideoGamesChronicle also reported that sources shared that at least one title in development at Ubisoft Montreal has been canceled despite being “very far” along in its development cycle because it doesn’t fit in with the new shifts in Ubisoft’s overall strategy. Other titles currently in development at Ubisoft are reported to be in the process of being “reworked” to make each game stand out more in Ubisoft’s library and be distinct from offerings from other developers and publishers.