Business model was F2P all along ;-)
93-95% PC piracy rate means F2P is just as effective, with lower costs
Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot has told GamesIndustry International that the percentage of paying players is the same for free to play as it is for PC boxed product: around five to seven per cent.
Speaking to GamesIndustry International editor Matt Martin at Gamescom, Guillemot revealed that free to play has been an effective way for Ubisoft to market product to territories in which PC gaming had been so badly affected by piracy that profit was impossible.
“We want to develop the PC market quite a lot and F2P is really the way to do it,” said the French CEO. “The advantage of F2P is that we can get revenue from countries where we couldn’t previously – places where our products were played but not bought. Now with F2P we gain revenue, which helps brands last longer.
“It’s a way to get closer to your customers, to make sure you have a revenue. On PC it’s only around five to seven per cent of the players who pay for F2P, but normally on PC it’s only about five to seven per cent who pay anyway, the rest is pirated. It’s around a 93-95 per cent piracy rate, so it ends up at about the same percentage. The revenue we get from the people who play is more long term, so we can continue to bring content.”