Assassin's Creed creator Ubisoft promises more social games in 2011

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Assassin's Creed Project Legacy
The company behind games like CSI: Crime City for Facebook and the Assassin's Creed franchise, Ubisoft, says that social games will be a bigger part of its strategy for 2011. The French publisher told All Things Digital that more than 15 percent of its employees in the Ubisoft San Francisco offices will be dedicated to "companion gaming." This new strategy involves the company using Facebook games to promote coinciding consoles releases. Remember the Assassin's Creed Facebook game, Project Legacy, released to promote the second game in the series?

Yeah, you're going to see a lot more of that in 2011. The third-largest independent videogames publisher hopes to turn this trend into dollars, though its previous efforts haven't caught on like competitors such as Zynga's games. And almost inversely, Ubisoft VP of Digital Publishing Chris Early said, "Digital will not kill physical. There will always be support for a certain percent."

While he is likely correct, I'm not sure that's the mindset you want when investing 15 percent of your developers into an online-only platform. "You have to look at the top 10 sellers, or rely on a friend," Early said to ATD of the issues surrounding online game sales. "There's a significant hurdle to digital." This couldn't be more true on Facebook, and it's quite a hurdle for Ubisoft to jump over. Can the company can do it with backing from iconic industry names like Assassin's Creed and Prince of Persia? Companies including Konami, EA and Disney (and Ubisoft) have tried before and failed, so here is their chance to prove it.

[Image Credit: Ubisoft]

What do you think of the potential girth of promotional Facebook games to come from Ubisoft? Do you think it will be successful using this strategy? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.
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