Paradox Q2, Ubisoft patents, Roblox making money, more

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How’s it going everybody, Adrian Simple here from The Gaming Observer, it is Wednesday August 14th, 2019. thegamingobserver.com for links, @gaming_observer on Twitter.

Paradox Interactive had their Q2 results. I’ll do this a bit differently and start with what happened in this quarter. They released one new game called Imperator: Rome, and 6 expansions across various games. They also announced a new game by Romero Games called Empire of Sin, and are creating their collaboration with Double Eleven to continue development on Prison Architect. As a result of all that, they have set record revenues of close to $300 million, which is up 30% year over year. Interestingly enough, they also set record expenses on game development and marketing. They mentioned that while it’s great to have record revenue, they are also relying on their strong cash flow. Basically saying that because they announce their games so early and invest so much in marketing, they need to manage their cash effectively. So they’re doing well, and with a strong 2020 lineup so far, these records might even be broken again soon.

I mentioned a while back that Roblox has more monthly active users than Minecraft at over 100 million players. Well, I’ve actually learned a lot more about this game since then. Basically, what I didn’t know is that Roblox is both a sandbox game and a development platform. There are free tools provided which allow developers to create games and earn money through microtransactions. Two of the biggest games are called Adopt Me, which is a roleplaying game about babies, and MeepCity, which is a social hangout space. Tens of thousands of people are playing these indepedant games at a time. The tools they provide aren’t necessarily elaborate, but it gives young people an easy way to start, if its something they’re interested in, which I think is awesome. Anyway, in total, Roblox creaters are on track to earn $100 million in 2019, so before you blow it off as a kids game, you might actually want to take a look.

A US judge has ruled that Ubisoft’s patent for the game Rocksmith is ineligble for patent protections. This came about because they tried to sue an app call Yousician, which teaches people how to play musical instruments. Their patent was for an interactive guitar game that gives players visuals aids, and has things like multiple game modes. These are very basic concepts that they tried to patent and protect, which remind me of something like King trying to trademark the word “candy” and “saga”. Anyway the judge threw Ubisoft out the window, saying that it was way too broad, and that teaching a user how to play an instrument is an abstract idea that cannot be patented. Ubisoft will not be able to attempt another suit in the future.

Quantic Dream, a studio responsible for games like Heavy Rain, Detroit: Become Human, and Beyond: Two Souls has just confirmed that they are no longer committing themselves to Playstation. We knew this in part because some of their games were ported to PC recently, but David Cage has reaffirmed that this was a major shift in their company. They sought investment from NetEase to help make this happen.

That’s the news for today. If you appreciate this show it’d mean a lot to me if you could leave me a review on Amazon, it helps out a lot. My name is Adrian Simple, I’ll be back tomorrow with the news, and until then… Happy Gaming everyone!

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