Watch Dogs could have been best-rated launch game on next gen, says Ubisoft

Tuesday, 17th December 2013 12:23 GMT By Dave Cook

Watch Dogs missed the launch of PS4 and Xbox One, but Ubisoft’s North American president Laurent Detoc has stressed that the decision to delay the title wasn’t made lightly. He added that had Watch Dogs released on time, it could have been the best-rated launch title on next-gen formats.

It follows Detocs explanation that AWOL shooter Rainbow Six: Patriots wasn’t working as intended, and therefore had to be remade. See what he said through the link.

Now, in the same IGN interview, Detoc shed light on the thinking behind Ubisoft’s delays. “It’s a very intense decision,” he explained. “I think one of the fascinating things about this industry is that you can go from genius to idiot in an extremely short time frame.

“These are some of those moments, where you’re riding sky high on Watch Dogs or Rayman, and then suddenly you have to break it to the outside world, and sometimes even convince the inside people. Not everybody agrees. You have to say, ‘this is in the best interest of the product, to do this,’ because at the end of the day we’re going to be able to do this extra fine tuning.”

On Watch Dogs specifically, Detoc stressed that come gamescom, Ubisoft was certain the game would release on time. “I’ll tell you, at Gamescom, everybody was looking each other in the eye thinking we would be there at launch. There were already some lingering doubts, but we were plowing through it. There were more than a thousand people touching that game.”

He added, “Then eventually, a month later, we said, ‘this is not gonna fly.’ Then it takes a few more weeks to decide how we’re going to package that news for everyone. It’s not just about delaying for the sake of delaying it. No matter how hard we try, we also put out games that are not good quality, unfortunately.

“It’s not because we go out and say, ‘great, let’s make a piece of junk and put it out there.’ It’s really painful to us. But some games, you just can’t make them that much better because of how they’ve been progressing. Part of the decision to delay Watch Dogs is also that. We know it’s not where we want it to be. Can it get there? What will it take to get there? That’s why it takes a longer process. But in August we really thought we were going to have that game at launch.”

Despite Watch Dogs’ delay, Detoc remains confident that the sandbox title will become a hit when it eventually launches, citing the oft-delayed GTA 5 as an example of where a little extra time can go a long way. “I actually believe that Watch Dogs could have ended up being the best-rated game on next gen if it came out at launch,” he stated.

“We wanted it to be even higher. The whole package is there already. But without sending them too many flowers, the guys at Rockstar have showed us again that if you make a 96-percent game, people will come.

“Watch Dogs, I can only hope we get to that level. There’s an attachment to the brand, in the case of GTA, that makes people really want to give it that 100-percent review. We’ll be missing that on Watch Dogs until we go further, potentially. That’s what we’re after.”

Do you think Watch Dogs still has what it takes to become a mega-hit, despite its delay? Let us know what you think below.

Via OXM.



  1. monkeygourmet

    Not meaning to be bitchy, but thats not saying alot! :)

    Someone on Neogaf mentioned that it performed poorly in an internal reviewing session (not sure if thats true), but it doesn’t fill me with confidence.

    Overall, I think the game will be okay, but far to simialr to other Ubisoft titles to be really ground breaking, especially as AC4 & GTA 5 are still fairly fresh in peoples minds.

    #1 10 months ago
  2. Kieran

    Then why delay it ubisoft haha :)

    #2 10 months ago
  3. Dave Cook

    @2 For the reasons they explain above.

    #3 10 months ago
  4. GK

    they lose the hype about a game,i dont wait this game any more.

    #4 10 months ago
  5. MFBB

    I am sure its also because of Assassins Creed 4.

    Ubisoft dosnt want his two big games to compete with each other.

    #5 10 months ago
  6. jomac3db

    This was my most anticipated next gen game but now the division has taken that spot

    #6 10 months ago
  7. Lloytron

    Source – an OXM story based on an IGN interview?

    #7 10 months ago
  8. melonbuster1

    They will sell more when more systems then release the game in the dry period for the next generation. .

    #8 10 months ago
  9. Dave Cook

    @7 Err, no. I think you’ll find the IGN article linked at the top, and at the bottom VIA OXM.

    #9 10 months ago
  10. Lloytron

    @9 Same difference!

    #10 10 months ago
  11. sb319

    Easy claim to make eh, but we’ll ever know because the game obviously wasn’t ready for launch. So it’s a fairly meaningless thing to speculate on.

    #11 10 months ago
  12. Bomba Luigi

    I wanted to make a Game for Next Gen, but then I didn’t. But it sure would have been the best rated Next Game! Really!

    #12 10 months ago
  13. Ireland Michael

    If it could have been the best rated launch game on next gen, it wouldn’t have needed to be delayed in the first place.

    #13 10 months ago
  14. Phoenixblight

    They were far more worried about saturation and cannibalism with Assassin’s Creed 4. That is why all games that were going to release this quarter were pushed not because of the state of the game.

    #14 10 months ago
  15. jomac3db

    They should’ve delayed ac4 instead

    #15 10 months ago
  16. Cort

    “the guys at Rockstar have showed us again that if you make a 96-percent game, people will come.”

    GTAV would have sold the same amount of discs if it had a 75 average. It’s called hype.

    “Watch Dogs, I can only hope we get to that level. There’s an attachment to the brand”

    What brand? Come back when you have a product.

    #16 10 months ago
  17. Rylan_S1

    If Watchdogs has launched on time it would have been the best next-gen launch title.

    And if my grandad had tits she’d have been my granny!

    #17 10 months ago
  18. andreaaragon77

    you make 76 bucks per hour that great going girl good for you! My story is that I quit working at Shoprite to work online, seriously I couldn’t be happier I work when I want and where I want. And with a little effort I easily bring in $35h and sometimes even as much as 85 euro/hr… heres a good example of what i’m doing,

    #18 10 months ago

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