The Assassin’s Creed publisher recently agreed to acquire cloud gaming rights outside the European Economic Area for all Activision Blizzard games released over the next 15 years, should Microsoft’s $69 billion acquisition of the Call of Duty maker go through, as is now expected.
While not disclosing the finer details of the transaction, Guillemot told the Financial Times that Ubisoft’s streaming deal will involve a “one-off payment” to Microsoft.
“When Netflix first said it was going to go into streaming, their shares fell a lot and they were widely criticised,” he said.
“Today we see what they have become. It’s going to be the same with video games but it will take time. But when it takes off, it will happen very quickly.”
Research group Omdia estimates that cloud gaming services will bring in $3.2 billion in 2023, representing two percent of total consumer spending on games, but that the figure will at least double in the next five years.
“We strongly believe in the next five to 10 years, many games will be streamed and will also be produced in the cloud,” Guillemot said. “That’s what pushed us to go forward with the [Microsoft] deal.”
Boosted by the launch of increasingly powerful mobile technology, Guillemot expects game streaming to be embraced in emerging markets where console gaming hasn’t established a major foothold.
“Countries that need to progress very quickly often jump to new technologies and skip old methods of the old systems,” he said. “So we think that [these regions] will move more quickly to streaming and the cloud than others.”
The company’s vision, according to the leak, is to “develop a next generation hybrid game platform capable of leveraging the combined power of the client and cloud to deliver deeper immersion and entirely new classes of game experiences.”
It adds: “Optimised for real-time gameplay and creators, we will enable new levels of performance beyond the capabilities of the client hardware alone.”