Following a tear of underwhelming sales figures for key titles like The Divison 2 and Ghost Recon, alongside some delays to games - it would seem that Ubisoft are looking to have a reshuffle of their editorial team and by extension, give their games a new lease of life.
This was first reported by the good folk over at VGC - over the past twenty years, Ubisoft has employed a central editorial team of around 100 people and tasked them with overseeing the development of its titles, including Assassins Creed and Far Cry. This team advised on a variety of key aspects from visual design to scripts, this team is believed to have had a significant influence on the direction of Ubisoft’s games, resulting in “a cohesive vision across all Ubisoft titles, with learnings from one project feeding into the next.”
Whilst one could argue that the team has enjoyed some long-running successes with games like Assassins Creed and also Far Cry, one could also say that some of the games that we've seen coming out from Ubisoft have been all too familiar. One anonymous source reportedly was quoted as saying, “there were often the ideas of just one or two people getting put into every game. That’s why you tended to see such similarity, because it’s the same taste and opinion being replicated.”
As a result, Ubisoft is planning to expand and restructure its editorial team, telling VGC, “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 experiences for players.” According to VGC’s Ubisoft sources, Ubisoft’s chief creative officer, Serge Hascoet, will still lead the editorial team. However, there will be an additional group of vice presidents, each leading their own franchises with more autonomy and freedom to make decisions they feel will fit their particular area.
The hope is that this will result in more variation between Ubisoft’s games which have increasingly faced accusations of being formulaic and overly similar; following Ghost Recon Breakpoint’s disappointing performance, CEO Yves Guillemot himself said that the game “did not come in with enough differentiation factors, which prevented the game’s intrinsic qualities from standing out.”