Not The Last Airbender, The James Cameron Movie
Licensed video games have built up a reputation over the last few years, and not a very good one either. A majority of them are rushed out with bare bones mechanics and zero creativity all in the vain hope that it will cash in on the movie/TV show it’s trying to emulate.
Ubisoft, on the other hand, sees things a bit differently.
During an interview with IGN, the developers discussed the nature of this new project, how it would tie into James Cameron’s Avatar universe, and why they have a love for all things licensed.
“What we realized when we started to create worlds is that the quality of the world is very important for the experience,” Guillemot told IGN, noting that when they saw Avatar, they were struck by how, like Star Wars, it has a “fantastic world with a philosophy.” As a result, The Division developer Massive Entertainment is now working with Fox Interactive and Cameron’s studio Lightstorm Entertainment to make a game that the Avatar director believes will “bring the beauty and danger of Pandora to life.”
According to Guillemot, Ubisoft sees the new Avatar game as an opportunity to use “teams that are passionate about that world” to create a compelling project with a long-term vision. “So we said, ‘okay, we have to rethink about contractual elements with the movie industry.’ So we did change the terms,” Guillemot explained, noting “it’s a different type of deal than what we had before.”
This time around, Ubisoft is taking a renewed approach. “Now we are joining forces and we really have this angle, which is to make sure that world works well, that people come and stay for a long time and enjoy it, so that we can have new content regularly,” Guillemot explained. “We have to remanufacture the relationship with studios, and in doing that, I think we can recreate something totally different.”
Like Avatar 2, which won’t be released until December 2020, Ubisoft’s upcoming Avatar game is also a ways off from being released, which will give Massive Entertainment plenty of time to make a compelling experience. “Because the movie is also taking it’s time, we have enough time to really create something that will be fantastic,” Guillemot said.
Given how much of a good reception South Park: The Fractured But Whole is getting, maybe there is still hope for the blue residents of Pandora in the world of video games.