Ubisoft’s chief executive has said the gaming industry is on the cusp of a streaming revolution comparable to Netflix’s transformation of television and cinema.
“We strongly believe in the next five to ten years, many games will be streamed and will also be produced in the cloud,” Yves Guillemot, the boss of the French gaming giant, told the Financial Times.
Cloud gaming – sometimes known as gaming on demand or game streaming – allows users to play video games remotely using just a wifi connection. It removes the need for expensive hardware as the game processing is done via a super computer elsewhere.
Guillemot said that when Netflix announced it was going into streaming its shares “fell a lot” before the company morphed into an entertainment powerhouse.
“It’s going to be the same with video games, but it will take time. But when it takes off, it will happen very quickly,” he said.
Britain’s competition regulator has said the UK market for cloud gaming services could be worth over £1bn by 2026 – a similar size to the UK’s revenue from recorded music in 2021.
Ubisoft, which produces games such as Assassins Creed, recently inked a cloud-gaming pact with Microsoft, securing streaming rights to Activision Blizzard’s extensive game catalogue. It caused shares to surge up to nine per cent.
It came as part of Microsoft’s strategic manoeuvre to gain a green light from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) for its $69bn (£55bn) Activision takeover. Last week, the CMA said the tech giant’s restructured offer “opens the door” to the deal being cleared.