In a year full of success stories in the industry, Ubisoft seems particularly pleased with the critical and commercial reaction to Assassin’s Creed Origins. Once determined to make Assassin’s Creed a yearly franchise, fatigue set in and Ubisoft realized that more time and a larger rework was what the game needed, and they returned this year with Origins, which I am comfortable declaring the best game in the series so far.
That seems to have…inspired Ubisoft to take more time with other games as well. And that means game delays.
Ubisoft announced today that it’s delaying three games, citing ACO’s time in the oven as a reason to do so. That would be:
- Far Cry 5, delayed from February 27th 2018 to March 27th 2018
- The Crew 2, delayed from March 16th 2019 to “first half of Fiscal 2018-19”
- An announced “franchise sequel,” delayed from Fiscal 2018-19 to Fiscal 2019-20
The Far Cry 5 bump is not that bad, just a month, and if it can mean the game arrives in a more bug-free state, that would be ideal. That short of a delay does imply that no larger rework is planned of the game, and these would probably be minor additions/changes. I’m guessing that Ubisoft is just doing everything in their power to ensure they never have a meme-worthy launch like Assassin’s Creed Unity on their hands again.
The Crew 2 isn’t exactly one of Ubisoft’s biggest releases, so this delay should be fine. Everyone is curious about what this “franchise sequel” is, with some speculating that it’s Beyond Good and Evil, but I don’t think that game as even pretending like it was going to be released in 2018. I wonder if it might be something on the Tom Clancy side of things, as I’m still waiting on Ubisoft to announce plans for something like The Division 2.
The only people that seem to mind game delays are investors, not fans, so I doubt Ubisoft will experience any blowback from players about any of this. Most players would rather everyone takes the game to make a good game (and ideally, reduce crazy crunch on its creators), but investors really want major releases all the time, which is where the pressure is usually applied.
I have found myself wondering about Far Cry 5 a lot lately, as while I hope that it manages to do the same thing for that series that Assassin’s Creed Origins did for AC, nothing I’ve seen so far really indicates that’s the case. Then again, I wouldn’t say the marketing for Assassin’s Creed Origins really sold the game for how much of an improvement it really was over past games, so I guess we’ll have to see.
As for the far-flung delayed game, maybe we’ll find out more about that at E3 this summer, but there’s a list of usual suspects given Ubisoft’s ongoing series. It could even be the next Assassin’s Creed game itself, or something like Watch Dogs 3.
Regardless, this is a good move by Ubisoft, and I hope other companies follow its lead instead of rushing out underwhelming sequels in the future just to hit arbitrary deadlines (*cough* Destiny 2).
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