There’s little doubt that there’s always a risk for players when it comes to ‘live service’ titles. If it doesn’t take off, the core developers could be removed from the game and it essentially is left stranded, reaching out for a life raft. Those who bought this game may be left with something poor, never to truly see it’s potential.
Ubisoft had two games like this in For Honor and Rainbow Six: Siege. Both have seen more success later in their lives than ever would be expected from their quality at launch. This is where ‘live service’ can actually be done right and work for both the players and developers. Here are two words I never thought I’d be uttering: Kudos Ubisoft. The company has deserved it by sticking with the two titles, dramatically improving them and the rewards are being reaped.
In this case, we can look at Rainbow Six: Siege, which has reportedly hit $1 Billion in sales since the game was first released, driven by players coming back and spending more on the game. Not only that, though, the game has grown by over 40% over the year from April 1st, 2018 to March 31st, 2019, hitting a player base of over 45 million. This is a long way away from a game that, three and a half years ago when it launched, was hit with a mixed reception at best, often criticised for a lack of content. Many content updates, seasons and more later, you see the results.
Here is the specific line from Ubisoft:
Rainbow Six® Siege: more than €1 billion in cumulative net bookings since the game’s release and a 40% year-on-year increase in the player base (to over 45million)
This could only improve if recent hints of brand new gameplay types are implemented. With a user base in the tens of millions, spending an average of close to $300 million per year, this sort of content could only drive the game into new heights. Until that time, we’ll have to wait and see exactly what is in store for the future of Rainbow Six: Siege. What is certain is that Ubisoft is certainly benefitting from this, which you will be able to read about shortly in a breakdown of their financial year.