Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate sales were down launch week, but rebounded by week two

November 04, 2015 Stephany Nunneley

Ubisoft announced today first week sales for Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate were low, compared to the same launch period for Assassin’s Creed: Unity. However, sales for the game rebounded during its second week on the market.

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First half highlights

Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate sales up second week.

Rainbow Six Siege beta was “largest” ever in company history.

Focus for the company are triple-A titles.

PS4 titles made up the majority of console sales.

Firm reported a $71M loss for first-half of FY15-16.

Digital sales hit €100M, representing 48% of sales.

Console digital sales continue to increase more so in North America.

Back-catalog sales up by 53% to €184.3 million.

First-half generated €207M in sales, down 57% .

Q2 sales hit €111M, down 11%.

Ubisoft Q2 FY 2014-15

More games were sold on PS4

According to the firm, Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate word of mouth is “acting in favor of the game,” and the firm is pleased with the “good marks” received from larger critic outlets. As noted above, compared to Unity, sales for the first week of Syndicate were down, but second week sales increased. The firm also attributed the low launch week sales to the prudent stance it has taken with the title, by only releasing it on current-gen systems.

During the call to investors today, the firm reiterated it no longer provides sales figures for individual games or engagement metrics; however, it did note it was pleased with the number of beta players in Rainbow Six Siege.

The beta for the game was the “largest ever” for a Ubisoft title as far as player numbers, said CEO Yves Guillemot.

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Guillemot said the focus for the company at present is on triple-A titles, with mobile games a secondary priority.

The firm is also pleased with fan reception pertaining to the focus on single-player in titles such as Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate and Far Cry Primal, as multiplayer wasn’t very popular with either IP’s last outing.

Sales by platform were reported as well, and percentages noted are for Q2 and first-half, respectively.

  • PlayStation 4 – 27% and 32%
  • Xbox One – 12% and 15%
  • Xbox 360 – 9% and 14%
  • PlayStation 3 – 9% and 17%
  • PC – 17% and 15%
  • Wii -3% and 1%
  • Wii U – 1% and 0%
  • Others (mobile, etc.) – 22% and 6%

Breakdown of sales by geographic region are as follows for Q2 and first-half, respectively: Europe 44% and 45%, North America 44% and 43%, Rest of world 12% and 12%.

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Digital on the rise

As with Electronic Arts and Activision, digital contributes quite a bit to Ubisoft’s bottom line.

According to the firm’s latest financial report, for the six months ended September 30, 2015, digital sales came in at €100 million, representing 48% of total sales, compared to 28% during the first-half 2014-15.

€42 million of the figure came from additional content such as free-to-play titles and DLC.

Digital sales on consoles continue to increase but more so in North America than Europe. In three to four years, Ubisoft expects 40% of revenue to come from digital.

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Major franchises such as Assassin’s Creed, Far Cry, Just Dance, The Crew and Watch Dogs drove up back-catalog sales by 53% to €184.3 million.

Ubisoft reported first-half sales fiscal year 2015-16 were €207.3 million, down 57% year-over-year from €484 million.

Second quarter sales for the period totaled €111 million compared to €124 million year-over-year which is a 11% decline.

Slides below provide a better look at the firm’s financials as well as how its IP compares to competitors Activision, Take-Two and Electronic Arts.

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