This weekend, during the Ubisoft Forward, one of the big news of the conference was in the alliance between the developer and Netflix. The streaming platform will not only produce an Assassins Creed live-action series, but will also be home to three exclusive mobile games within the service: Valiant Hearts 2 (January 2023), Mighty Quest 2 (2023) and a new Assassins Creed mobile game for smartphones (undated).
For many, the biggest surprise of the news may be that Netflix remains committed to its plan to invest in video games. 2022 has not been a kind year for the streaming platform. The latest earnings reports have failed to meet expectations, the platform continues to lose content from its service (either due to cancellations or licenses moving), while there are questions about its plan to compete with this new era of streaming or its tactics to capitalize on your current subscribers by forcing people to stop password sharing.
An Apptopia report earlier this year claimed that the platform today is not having much success in attracting this audience. According to his report, today only 1% of his subscribers use his games. Of course, the figure can be justified considering that the feature has been on the air for less than a year and that Netflix has more than 221 million subscribers. But it is still a much lower number than expected.
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In a conversation for ENTER.CO, Leanne Loombe (head of external game development for Netflix) confirmed that the company’s current strategy is to increase its catalog of games and consolidate the offer of options that they can offer their subscribers. Part of this process is in partnerships like the ones announced this weekend. Netflix, on the other hand, does not seem to be concerned about the current number of its users who know or play its titles, nor does it have any additional plans to motivate more of them to use it.
Loombe also reinforced the idea that games on Netflix will not have commercials, advertisements, or micro-transactions. Because of this, the status within the ad-supported plan and the games is unclear, with her claiming that she could not / knew the details about the limitation of these games within the plan. She also assured that Netflix has no plans to offer or integrate games with NFT or any other type of blockchain, saying that it would go against its current philosophy of offering an experience that is not transaction-locked.
For now, Netflix is betting on ending the year with 50 games in its library. We’ll have to wait a bit longer to see if more is better… or at least more users for the streaming platform.