I’ve always said this, and maybe now you’ll finally listen to me: Dogs are greater than assassins.
French publisher Ubisoft confirmed today that its latest major release, the open-world hacking game Watch Dogs, is its fastest-selling game ever. The company noted that it has sold more copies of the new release in its first 24 hours than any other Ubisoft game ever — that includes every Assassin’s Creed. Watch Dogs launched yesterday for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3, and it is likely benefiting from a consumer thirst for games on the new-gen hardware. It is also earning mostly positive reviews (including our own).
“It’s great to see so many players enjoying the game,” Ubisoft chief executive Yves Guillemot said. “And it shows that Watch Dogs has cracked the code for developing a new blockbuster IP and a thoroughly new-gen experience.”
Watch Dogs took the top spot from 2012’s Assassin’s Creed III, which, like Watch Dogs, had a significant amount of hype leading up to its release — but that franchise also had the chance to establish itself with several predecessors. That’s something Watch Dogs did not have, and it makes the game’s brisk sales quite impressive.
Ubisoft’s success with Watch Dogs is also likely due to its positioning as the first big third-party multi-platform release that its developers built from the start to work on the new consoles. Since the debut of the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 systems in November, software sales on those devices have taken off as gamers gobble up every significant release for the system. This open-world game probably benefited from the consumer hunger for “next-gen” games.
Watch Dogs’ success also means that Ubisoft will likely start churning out annual releases in the series. This was always Guillemot’s plan, but now that it’s proven it can sell (and in the first half of the year), the French company now has something to complement the annual Assassin’s Creed.