When consumers expect a product, you have to give them a product — on time. This might be the lesson learned by French game creator Ubisoft as its stock plummeted by as much as 32 percent after announcing the postponement of the release of the “Watch Dogs” video game.
The much awaited release will not make it before the holiday sales and the operating losses of Ubisoft may translate to as much as $95 million. The figures point toward the opposite direction when the company projected profits of $170 million before.
“Watch Dogs” has been compared to the successful Grand Theft Auto series made by a rival company Take-Two Interactive. The game was expected to roll out before the end of 2013 just in time for the release of the new Microsoft Xbox and Sony PlayStation game consoles. The game is rescheduled for June 2014.
“It’s little bits of polish and fine-tuning, but they really matter — we want these games to be the best out there for new-generation consoles.‘Watch Dogs’ could be as big as ‘Assassin’s Creed,’ even bigger. It’s a great opportunity to increase our market share,” said Steve Guillemot, Ubisoft CEO and co-founder, when asked by Bloomberg.
The huge drop in shares of Ubisoft clearly shows the importance of keeping with expected schedules. Games that hit it big can translate to multi-million or even bigger rake in for game makers. To cite an example, the Grand Theft Auto V garnered a billion worth of sales in its first three days in the market.
“You only get one chance to make a first impression with gamers. The delays bring into question the original timeline put forward by Ubisoft, but they want to give it the best opportunity for sustained success,” said Edward Williams, a BMO Capital Markets analyst, in an interview with The New York Times.
Ubisoft had the idea for “Watch Dogs” a few years back and has been developing it for over three years.
Another game titled “The Crew” will also miss its scheduled debut. The car racing video game is rescheduled for release on September 2014.
So game releases should be on the dot that is what French game creator Ubisoft learned as it is bound to lose millions with the delay of “Watch Dogs.”