Netflix’s Newest Partnership Aims to Change the Game

Things might be looking up for streaming giant Netflix’s mobile-gaming efforts.

Ever since Netflix  (NFLX) – Get Netflix Inc. Report announced a sharp subscriber loss in the early months of 2022, the streaming innovator has been scrambling to figure out what it can innovate next to outshine its competitors.

One of the common user complaints about Netflix is that it simply makes too much stuff, hurling one show after another at the wall and hoping something sticks. 

While many look to Korean drama “Squid Game” as one of Netflix’s breakout successes, the service has invested in hundreds of K-dramas before it, and not a single one of those drummed up the same fervent fan reaction.

Combine this with the fact that Netflix is quicker to cancel its shows than ever before, leading to a mass of jaded subscribers who hesitate to get emotionally invested in anything new since it may end up canned after a season.

No wonder, then, that the streaming service has been bleeding subscribers.

Netflix has been exploring some other avenues to get back on its feet. One of those, a determined push into mobile gaming, has yet to make an impact, with only 1% of its subscriber base playing the titles in its library. And again, no wonder, as many of the titles were not exclusive to the service. 

But now Netflix has said that three new mobile titles are in development. And not only are they exclusive originals, but they will be created with the help of a veteran videogame studio.

Netflix and Ubisoft Partner Up

On Sept. 10 Netflix announced it would partner with French videogame company Ubisoft  (UBSFF) , known for its enormously popular “Assassin’s Creed” and “Far Cry” franchises, to create three new mobile games coming in 2023.

The titles will be based on three of Ubisoft’s current intellectual-property assets:

— “Assassin’s Creed,” an open-world action series that interweaves a fictional narrative with real historical events;

— “Valiant Hearts,” a puzzle adventure set in World War I that follows different characters as they navigate the world at war, and,

— “Mighty Quest,” inspired by the tower defense game “The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot,” but with new game-play elements.

“We’re thrilled to work with Ubisoft, whose track record creating memorable worlds for fans is unmatched,” said Mike Verdu, vice president of games at Netflix. 

“This partnership will provide our members with exclusive access to some of the most exciting game franchises as we continue to build a catalog of great mobile games for our members around the world.”

How This Can Help Netflix

While the deal seals in three exclusive video games for Netflix, only one of the three has the pull the streaming company really needs to get people to download games.

“Assassin’s Creed” started in 2007 and has been a massive success, spawning 24 games since across personal computers, consoles, and mobile.

While “Valiant Hearts” and “Mighty Quest” both earned positive reviews in their original forms, neither has the power to garner big downloads, which is what Netflix needs to get its mobile push off the ground.

But Netflix is looking at potential games domination in more than one way. A recent job listing made clear that Netflix is looking to hire folks with experience in the cloud gaming world, seeking a rendering engineer to “support our cloud gaming service.” 

So while you may not be able to fire up Netflix and pick up your controller just yet, you’ll likely have the ability to do so a few years down the line.

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