New consoles = creativity?

July 23, 2012

Well, that’s what Ubisoft’s CEO, Yves Guillemot says. It seems that Square-Enix are not the only company eager to move on to the next generation of consoles, as Guillemot is eagerly waiting for new tech. Speaking to Gamasutra, he said:

What we missed was a new console every five years. We have been penalised by the lack of new consoles on the market. I understand the manufacturers don’t want them too often because it’s expensive, but it’s important for the entire industry to have new consoles because it helps creativity. It’s a lot less risky for us to create new IPs and new products when we’re in the beginning of a new generation.

Our customers are very open to new things. Our customers are reopening their minds – and they are really going after what’s best. At the end of a console generation, they want new stuff, but they don’t buy new stuff as much. They know their friends will play Call of Duty or Assassin’s Creed, so they go for that. So the end of a cycle is very difficult.

While Assassin’s Creed is obviously a big earner for Ubisoft, it seems that Guillemot can see the downside to having the market dominated by a few big franchises. Guillemot used Rayman: Raving Rabbids as an example, saying that the Just Dance series would never have existed without it. The idea for the Just Dance series was inspired by the dance mini-games that featured in the Raving Rabbids series.

If you can’t take risks because people don’t buy, you don’t innovate. And if you don’t innovate, customers get bored.

As an example of new console creativity, Guillemot mentioned the Wii U and their exclusive title, ZombiU. He thinks that those who question Nintendo’s new machine should simply wait and see.

I think Nintendo has very often surprised us, so you never know. I think they’ve created something good, if the customer uses everything they have created, I think we can see a good success with that machine. That type of collaboration can be fun and also challenging at the same time. It’s something has never been done before. Those guys are taking lots of risks with the games they create — and they’re extremely successful.

It’s certainly true that the Wii console was a big success, but whether Nintendo’s strategy will continue to be a winner has a lot of people in the industry wondering. In any case, Guillemot is certainly not afraid to start developing for it.

So, what do you think of his theory regarding creativity vs consoles? Let us know in the comments.