Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot admitted during a recent interview with Game Informer magazine that the game publisher is keeping a close eye on Electronic Arts' "EA Access" subscription plan for the Xbox One. He said that gamers typically focus on one brand by a specific publisher and ignore the rest. But with a program like EA Access, the same player can discover the publisher's additional games for free.
Electronic Arts announced EA Access just weeks ago, a subscription service costing $4.99 per month or $29.99 per year. This subscription provides access to the company's "Vault" of games including FIFA 14, Madden NFL 25, Peggle 2 and Battlefield 4. This plan also allows gamers to play titles five days before they're shipped and provides a 10 percent discount when buying digital content from EA on the Xbox Games Store.
Ubisoft's Guillemot compared this service with a TV station, saying that gamers could one day switch between EA to Ubisoft to Activision and so on as if flipping through pay channels on a television. This could be a way to not only attract gamers to a particular console, but a way to increase diversity altogether. However, Guillemot said that the company is currently only studying what a program like EA Access can do.
"We are open to any way that can give players access to our games. It has to work well and be a smooth experience," he told the magazine.
One of the services Ubisoft has tried is Steam's Early Access, which allows customers to purchase games before they go retail. The positive aspect about this model is that customers provide feedback before the game goes retail. The drawback is that the actual launch day is uneventful because a lot of customers already own the game.
Guillemot also talked about the company's relationship with the Wii U, reporting that customers aren't purchasing games like Assassin's Creed but rather titles such as Just Dance. Ubisoft still plans to launch Watch Dogs on the Wii U because the company already promised it to the fans. However, it will be the only mature game Ubisoft will publish on the Nintendo console, Guillemot said.