Ubisoft is shuffling the structure of its editorial team in order to encourage variance and newness in the games it makes, according to a report from VGC.
VGC claims that this move was triggered by the poor performance of The Division 2 and Ghost Recon Breakpoint, an admittance the developer had made itself in a financial report from 2019. First and foremost, Ubisoft chose to delay Gods & Monsters, Rainbow Six Quarantine, and Watch Dogs Legion, even though the games were on track to their original release windows. “While many of our titles are strongly differentiated, we need to ensure this is the case for all of them,” said CEO Yves Guillemot at the time. “We are already acting on these learnings and tackling these issues head on. We are implementing today the first change at the group level to improve execution. We have [inaudible] our processes already a few times in the past with remarkable effect and we will focus our energy to ensure we deliver again.”
Now, it is said that Ubisoft will announce that its editorial team will undergo changes to ensure that future projects diverge from the formula. The editorial team, based in Paris, France, is made up of around 100 designers and producers who determine a “cohesive vision across all Ubisoft titles.” Sources imparted that the structure of this creative team will be expanded, letting the seven vice presidents direct one of Ubisoft’s franchises. Current chief creative officer Serge Hascoet will remain but he will drop in to projects at various milestones, instead of monitoring their course throughout development.
With the vice presidents enjoying a new degree of autonomy, it is hoped that each of Ubisoft’s franchises will develop an independent identity under their direction. “In the previous system that editorial had, 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,” said one anonymous source close to Ubisoft. Moreover, this group of vice presidents will be taking talent from Ubisoft’s Canadian studios, like Child of Light’s Patrick Plourde and Splinter Cell’s Maxime Béland.
We don’t know if this is exactly what is happening behind closed doors. However, VGC received a statement from Ubisoft that implied that something of the like is going on. “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,” it read. Allegedly, this has led to in-development games being made over for uniqueness, and at least one Ubisoft Montreal game that was “very far” along to be binned. Again, we can’t tell until Ubisoft makes an official announcement, but it seems to be serious stuff. We’ll keep you in the loop once we know more.