Ubisoft Plans To Have Piracy Solution In Place This Year

Piracy has taken a hefty toll on Ubisoft, according to company head Yves Guillemot, but the developer and publisher say they are hard at work on a tool that should help reduce the negative impact.

"Altogether on console, the piracy is low," Guillemot said. "On the PC the piracy is quite a lot. We are working on a tool that would allow us to decrease that on the PC starting next year and probably one game this year."

Guillemot didn't say what that solution would be, but it since he talked about it as if it were a new tool and not an existing form of digital rights management, like SecuRom, it stands to reason that it may be an internal solution.

The topic of piracy came up during Ubisoft's quarterly earnings call after Guillemot pointed to it as part of the reason that their DS games haven't been selling well.

He said that piracy on Nintendo's DS is strong, though oddly not as bad on the DSi, and that the company has learned that they can reduce the impact of illegal copies of the game by including physical extras like figurines, with their titles.

The increase in piracy on the DS started in Spain, Guillemot said, where they say "sales going down at a very strong level" last year. That then seemed to move to other countries this year, increasing the most after the month of March with continued impact this summer.

"We see it coming country by country." he said. "We see when we put other things with the product (people) go and buy the game. We need to make sure that the value is better when the buy the box then when the download it from the Internet."

Guillemot said that Ubisoft is working on the problem both internally and with Nintendo's help.

"Nintendo has been able to slow down piracy a lot in Japan," he said. "They are now putting pressure to make sure it decreases in many other countries. We think we will be able to solve this matter."

Ubiosoft was so concerned with piracy on the Playstation Portable they started to retreat from that platform, Guillemot said. But there are now "new ways to control piracy" on the PSP, he said, and the company is reinvesting in the platform.


    Oh, I thought they were going to say "we're planning to release less shovelware". Ah well.

    Im sure something big happened a little under a year ago that could explain this drop in revenue. What was it?

    Oh wait... The economy fell to pieces and people have stopped spending on games.

    Why does everyone blame piracy for their problems? As other commenter's have said, Ubisoft have released a lot of shovelware, could it be that users have become discerning? *shock horror*

    I think it would be interesting to see how a fully fleshed out video game with good multi player and single player alike goes vs a fantastic game with single player. Blizzard (NOT ACTIVISION) have said that they believe that a solid online component with something similar to CDKEY authentication is the solution to piracy, and they are right.

    Want people to buy your product instead of pirating it? Give them a reason too! Make your game fantastic, give people their moneys worth and make something that people want to play with others, in an online environment.

    Coming from the nation of pirates, i would also suggest that region fixing be stopped. Valve have taken the step of giving Russian gamers releases the same time as american ones, could this be because they were the ones making part of this piracy possible - simply because they wanted to play it?!?

    Maybe that should be a new stratagey, great games for everyone at a good price. Think about it.

    Maybe if their games didn't suck so hard, they'd have more sales

    ubi's DS games suck, frankly only 3 publishers are worth buying from - nintendo, squeenix and atlus.

    I'm inclined to agree with the above posters, there's only a handful of Ubisoft DS games that are actually worth playing.

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