With minimal marketing save for what was directly aimed at core gamers in niche communities, and a retro-themed, cheesy take on the popular future vision from the 1980s, Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon has gone on to move half-a-million units in just under two months, with Ubisoft deeming the IP a success that surpassed expectations.
Shacknews (and it's good to see these guys still in operation, they seem to be moving through the silent phase of success right now, keeping sensationalism to a minimum and high-quality content pouring out frequently) caught the story from GI.biz, where CEO Yves Guillemot finally didn't have any crap to spew regarding PC piracy rates or badgering PC gamers like some of his other employees just a year ago. Instead, Guillemot was all about thanking and praising the gaming community and setting up the future of digital transparency when it comes to releasing sales data...
"It gives all the industry better visibility on what's happening," Guillemot explained. "And not just the industry, but all the supporters of the industry and the financial community, as well. So we need to have more information to help the industry continue to grow."
"When you can, you keep all your secrets," ... "Everybody feels that if the other guys knew where they were getting their money from, competitors would jump on that. Which is true. But what we've seen is that very often, if you receive as much information as you give, it's not negative."
This is really, really, really good news because Ubisoft garnering success from Blood Dragon and Call of Juarez: Gunslinger means we could be seeing more tightly-budgeted, high-quality games at lower price points. This also opens the door to curtail those "sky-rocketing" production costs from publishers who always feel they have to go AAA or go home.
This, to me, is a fantastic thing and much better than publishers trying to dive into contracted, well-recognized studios to milk existing IP that made it big on Kickstarter.
Having more sub-games make use of existing engine technology and assets already established with AAA games is only good for the long run. Stuff like The Ballad of Gay Tony and The Lost & Damned and Blood Dragon and Gunslinger are great for the industry, great for the technology that powers them and great for gamers and developers alike given how cost effective these measures are.
Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon has already spawned a lot of praise and meta-communities within the industry thanks to its neon-colored take on the 1980s with some amazing music provided by the electro-synth group Power Glove. That's not to mention that the game helped put Michael Beihn back into the spotlight and away from all that terrible, low-budget direct-to-video schlock he's been relegated to over the past few years.
Hopefully, with more publishers seeing how successful something like the $14.99 Blood Dragon was, they'll venture to use some high-end engines to have small teams work on small projects that bask in creativity and originality over Hollywood explosions and been-there-done-that warfare set in Brownstown.