Skull And Bones Will Sit In Dry Dock As The Game Gets 6th Delay In Ubisoft's Emergency Investor Call, Lowers Financial Expectations And Targets

Seriously, you just can't make this stuff up...

Michael Byrne
By Michael Byrne, Editor in Chief
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Other Famous Shipwrecks

Remember when Ubisoft delayed Skull and Bones to March 2023, bumping it out of its "late 2022" release window? Yeah, that was ONLY the 5th time the game received a delay.

If you've been looking forward to this game, one we've STRONGLY recommended waiting for reviews on before you plunk down that $70 charge, then bad news for you as the game is now seeing its 6th delay and the "release window" is vague as all hell.

In their published document detailing the focus for 2023 and accompanying "emergency investor call" (where they also lowered the expectations for the performance of their last financial quarter and announced an expected 10% decrease in year-over-year in bookings), Ubisoft says that Skull and Bones has received some great improvements because of their last delay, and now they want to "postpone its release in order to have more time to showcase a much more polished and balanced experience and to build awareness.

Skull and Bones will now be released early 2023-24 according to the letter, "early fiscal 2024" according to audio from the call.

"But it's already 2023 and they said March 2023 so that would work, right?" Nope.

The fact they they call this a postponement means March is out, friends. On top of that, referring to "2023-24" means they are talking about their financial calendar. That puts the new date at (check his TI-83), anywhere from April 1 until, well, they say "early" so let's give them the entire first HALF of the fiscal year and say September 30th 2023. The call audio also, towards the very end of the call, says "beginning" when referencing the release year, so maybe April-June would be a better window to speculate.

That's a pretty non-descript window for you.

This news came from an emergency investors call (recording here, it's certainly worth a listen) where Ubisoft also quietly canceled three unannounced projects (in addition to other 4 projects canceled in July), adjusted the revenue forecast down for Q4, and had to respond to concerned investors by saying they were just trimming down, focusing on premium IP projects, and still had other projects (like the previously ALSO delayed Avatar game) that were moving along nicely.

Don't worry gang, nothing to see here, everything is fine... after all, that's why you hold emergency investor calls, right? Certainly ones that start with "We are clearly disappointed by our recent performance" and moving on to blame "major challenges as the industry continues to shift towards mega-brands and long-lasting live games."

Hell, even the new Mario Rabbids didn't do what they expected, apparently.

While we don't know about potential layoffs at this point, audio from the call does mention there will be "targeted restructuring" internally. We'll keep you updated on that front.

Other key takeaways from the call:

- Sell through on Rabbis and Just Dance were less than expected

- Ubisoft's focus on "live service" is still a HUGE focus, literally it is said a LOT on the call

- A Wells Fargo rep on the call asked about 2023 being stacked gaming wise and Ubisoft agreed but feels gamers want the high profile IPs so that's a focus in this planning.

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In this article: Ubisoft, Skull And Bones.

About the Author

Michael Byrne
Michael Byrne, Editor in Chief
Mike “Magicman” Byrne has been a part of the MMOBomb family for years and serves as the site’s current Editor-in-Chief. His love for MMOs and gaming in general has led him to covering games for numerous websites including Gamebreaker TV and XIV Nation where he proudly displays his fanboy flag for FFXIV:ARR.

Discussion (4)

Flintstone 2 weeks ago
Having tested games since time started, games today do not go out fully tested at all, they are put out to sell and these devs seem to just wing it through by adding updates in the 1st few days of their so called early access.and then afterwards they either do nothing or slowly release what they should of done through a proper test program. not just thrown into the public arena.There's your speed de'funked.
Testing in games needs to be brought back into line,
full tests of developing games need to be tested in house way before early access releases.

Skull and Bones devs: are doing the correct thing,
a good job
that makes them keep testing their game before its release. is the best thing to do.

Early access and kickstart etc etc programs just gave game devs a massive excuse to be lazy and blas'e about game development. and that's why we are where we are today into the chaos.

So I think It is good to see a company that is not as above mentioned devs and is boldly carry on with stringent rules of game development and thorough testing...

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flynnlawliet 2 weeks ago
Was eagerly awaiting this article from the moment I saw the news, and you didn't disappoint. When this game was first announced many many moons ago, I was all for it, but now, I just want it to hit the iceberg and sink, because seriously who can have faith in a game company that has delayed a single game this many times, has gone through developmental hell, and everything else.

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