Ubisoft announces the cancellation of three unannounced games and once again delayed its long-running pirate adventure Skull and Bones.
Announcing the news on Wednesday, the company said it “faces great challenges as the industry continues to shift toward mega-brands and long-running titles that can reach gamers around the world, across platforms and business models.”
Ubisoft said it has spent the last four years trying to adapt its biggest brands — Assassin’s Creed, Far Cry, Ghost Recon, Rainbow Six and The Division — to these converging trends.
“However, the games in this investment phase have yet to be released, while our recent releases have not performed as well as expected.”
The company said software sales during the key holiday season had been “remarkably and surprisingly slower than expected”, with Mario + Rabbids: Sparks of Hope and Just Dance 2023 among the games that fell short of expectations.
Skull and Bones, which after a series of earlier delays was scheduled for a March release, will now arrive “earlier” in Ubisoft’s next fiscal year (2023-24), which runs from April to March 2024.
The company stated that “the additional time has already paid off and brought impressive improvements to its quality, which has been confirmed by recent playtests,” and hopes that “players will be positively surprised by its evolution.”
In addition to Skull and Bones, during its 2023-24 fiscal year, Ubisoft said it plans to release Assassin’s Creed Mirage, Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora, “and other yet-to-be-announced premium games, including a big one, as well as promising free-to-play titles for some of our most important brands.
Upcoming free titles from the publisher include the PC and console game The Division Heartland, and the mobile titles The Division Resurgence and Assassin’s Creed: Codename Jade.
Last July, Ubisoft announced that it had also canceled Ghost Recon Frontline, Splinter Cell VR, and two other unannounced games.