When you yank one of your most anticipated Christmas titles a month before it's due to release, you're going to end up out of pocket.
Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot warned investors that the shock delay of Watch Dogs from November 2013 to Spring 2014, alongside a slip in The Crew's release window, will knock their projected takings from $1.94 billion to $1.38 billion this fiscal year. Worse, he also told investors to prepare for the worst, since an original profit estimate of $236 million has now been smacked down to an $88 million loss. This is partly down to Splinter Cell: Blacklist and Rayman Legends under-performing, but the extra $560 million is probably a factor.
Watch Dogs' has apparently received impressive pre-orders, which have now naturally been pushed back, while Sony will be scrambling to sort out their now-defunct Watch Dogs PS4 bundles (and are probably a bit peeved to say the least).
"The tough decisions we are taking today to fully realise the major potential of our new creations have an impact on our short-term performance," said Guillemot. "We are convinced that, longer term, they will prove to be the right decisions both in terms of satisfaction for our fans and in terms of value creation for our shareholders.
"Fuelled by strong momentum for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, calendar 2014 will see the return of growth to the console market." [via CVG]
Translation: "we'll make all that money back, and buy a golden helicopter." It makes good sense to delay Watch Dogs into the spring, where it can release relatively clear of the next-gen launch titles and holiday season shooters (not to mention Ubisoft's own Assassin's Creed IV), but I daresay that plenty of gamers and investors are more than a little irked this rainy Wednesday morning. Still, there's always Grand Theft Auto Online.
Oh. Now we get it.