The latest Ubisoft FY 2004-2005 sales figures are amazing. They show that PC games make up one quarter of their business with the other 75% made up of combined console sales. Now, I realize that those figures take into account games that share multiple platforms, but they also include PC only games sales. I haven't been able to find number of game sales for each game yet, but if memory serves me correctly, those include sales figures for some of Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow, iL2: Forgotten Battles Aces Expansion Pack and Pacific Fighters, Silent Hunter III, Prince of Persia and Brothers in Arms to name a few. Imagine what it would have been with a release of a GR2 for PC when originally scheduled. The one thing I see with a release like the XBox version is a hurting for the next version.
Some people say that the if PC gamers stopped buying Ubisoft published games, it wouldn't hurt their bottom line, but I don't agree. With figures like that from one sector of the market, losing one quarter of your total sales is a big loss. I don't think any stockholder or investor would like to lose money due to the loss of a sizable market.
If Ubi can publish some quality games of some genres, why can't they produce the same quality of game for all of it's games? I hear BIA is to linear and the MP component is junk (I haven't even tried the demo yet, but want to) as it doesn't allow for the kind of fun poeple want. Maybe people do not understand how it is supposed to be played. Seems to me, while a good game is hard to find, people want them.
I think one reason why Ubi has done so well is they are trying to produce quality games compared to the largest US video game conglomerate. Whle EA has permeated all sorts of game types, they fail to appeal to those who wish more from a game and that is why Ubi has been able to do well on all platforms. Sure Ubi has some average gamer fare, but do they really want average gamers? Possibly. Should they try to pull in the average gamer, sure, but they should create titles just for average gamers. Ubi has already shown a propensity for developing games for those who want more than average fare. Look at the sim and strategy games they have released compared to other companies. For every Ghost Recon, there is a Battlefield 1942 or Delta Force, for every Rainbow Six, there is a Counter-Strike. For every Silent Hunter, there is Enigma: Rising Tide. I can't compare other genres as I am not into them, but you get the drift. For every game Ubi has that challenges a gamer, there are many others that fit the genre that are aimed at the average gamer.
I think Ubi seems to be aware that at least PC gamers aren't some dumb kid and I am not implying that console players are, there are many over the age of 18, but while Ubi XBox game sales are equal to the PC for the last fiscal year they are down 2% from the previous fiscal year. That is in contrast to the PC's 1% increase. PS2 game sales are 11-12% higher over the same periods and the only console to break 30% sales. What does it all mean, I can't say, but as I said, Ubi can't afford to lose one quarter of their sales. Not meeting PC gamers needs could hinder that bottom line if they are not careful.
My 2 cents.