UbiSoft pledges to cut software piracy

San Francisco (CA) – UbiSoft CEO Yves Guillemot has pledged to ‘tremendously decrease’ software piracy.

“All together, on home consoles, the piracy is low,” Guillemot told ShackNews. “But on the PC, the piracy increases quite a lot, and we are working on tools that will allow us to actually decrease tremendously the piracy on PC, starting next year in fact and probably one game at the end of this year.”

However, Guillemot noted that the Nintendo DS titles were particularly susceptible to unauthorized use in Europe.

“What we are seeing in Europe, especially on the DS, is that the piracy is strong so we are working to put new figurines and new elements in the box that will change that for the future,” said Guillemot. “We see a different attitude towards piracy in the US than in Europe. We made a survey that is telling us that in the US, our consumers will be more willing to buy product than to pirate them. That’s a major difference.”

The CEO also confirmed that Ubisoft was shifting its casual game focus from the DS to other platforms, including Natal and the Wii. Indeed, Ubisoft recently announced that first fiscal quarter sales plummeted 50 percent to €83 million due to decreased DS game sales and “poorer-than-anticipated” market conditions.

A casual game is a video game or online game targeted at a mass audience of casual gamers, typically distinguished by their simple rules and lack of commitment required in contrast to more complex hardcore games.

“We are currently experiencing a very sharp slowdown in our sales for Nintendo DS as well as sales of back-catalog titles, in the context of a market that is tougher than anticipated,” said Guillemot. “The casual business is changing rapidly, and we are still interested in it, but we have to reinvent it this year. We already have a big shift from DS to Wii this year and it will continue with the Wii and also the Xbox 360 with the new 3D camera next year,” Guillemot told Kombo.