Ubi Soft has entered the North American massively multiplayer online RPG market as the new publisher of Wolfpack Studios' upcoming Shadowbane. The well-known publisher has high hopes for both the game and for its first push into North American MMORPG territory. Gilles Langourieux, general manager of Ubi Soft's online division, saw the new title as "an extraordinary opportunity for us to further strengthen our online presence. He added that "Ubi Soft intends to make its presence known in this market, and working with Wolfpack Studios gives us a chance to grow with a quality development team and an excellent product in order to do just that."
Langourieux's aggressive stance is not merely exaggeration, either. Ubi Soft plans to attract hundreds of thousands of players with the game's release and to generate in excess of $40 million over the first 2 years of its availability. Ubi Soft's online division will also play a major part in Shadowbane's upkeep, handling the game's network and server infrastructure, billing, customer service, and in-game support. With Wolfpack Studios continuing to create ongoing episodic content even after the game's release, Shadowbane has the potential to last for many years, even amid the glut of MMORPGs expected in the near future.
Fans of Shadowbane, one of the most eagerly anticipated titles in development today, should be happy with the partnership. Josef Hall, president and co-founder of Wolfpack Studios certainly is. According to Hall, "Ubi Soft is the perfect partner for us in North America. Not only are they enthusiastic about the potential of Shadowbane, but they also have a strong understanding of the online marketplace, and are a leader in product promotion and distribution." With the deal cemented, gamers should expect an excellent launch of this new PC RPG in the first half of 2002.