Remember the days when EA was the evil empire? Everything was so easy. All you needed to do was completely slate anything it came out with on every forum possible, before secretly heading out in the dark of night to pick it up. Or, you know, maybe just from your local Target.
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Now things are a little more complicated. If it’s not Rockstar hitting the top of the charts with Grand Theft Auto, it’s Activision with Call of Duty, or Ubisoft with Assassin’s Creed, or Ubisoft with Watch Dogs, or Ubisoft with The Division, or Ubisoft with... you get the point.
Yes, the French publisher likes to think of itself as top dog these days and, according to a handy press release its just pumped out, it has the figures to prove it.
“In the most recent monthly sales report from market research firm the NPD Group in North American and in cumulated reports from GfK in Europe and NPD in Australia, Ubisoft again ranked first among all publishers in year-to-date sales,” detailed the publisher, presumably while letting off a lot of party poppers.
“August is the sixth month in a row that Ubisoft has held the year-to-date sales lead in the United States, Canada, Europe and Australia. Ubisoft’s market share in Europe and Australia year-to-date is 14.9 per cent, according to GfK and NPD, and is 16 per cent in the US and 13 per cent in Canada.”
So, how has it pulled this off? Ubisoft states The Division is the biggest selling game of 2016 to date. Well, in France, Germany, UK, Benelux, Spain, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Australia and North America, that is. Other games are performing strongly - Rainbow Six Siege and Far Cry Primal of note - but it’s basically The Division. The Division is, like, proper popular.
Of course, I’m a little suspicious as to why Ubisoft is so obsessed with sales figures from January to August.
Could it be that it knows some rather big releases due out in the next couple of months from its rivals - Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Battlefield1, Mafia 3 to name but a few - might well knock The Division of the top of 2016‘s tree? I’m saying nothing.