PC turned out to be Ubisoft's most profitable platform in Q1 2019, in large part thanks to Anno 1800 and microtransactions. This also made sure Ubisoft CEO's claims that about 95 per cent PC players are pirates didn't age well at all.
PC is usually not the favourite platform of certain publishers and developers because of its open system nature that also opened the doors to piracy. Some big names in the industry went into extremes though, stating that 93 to 95 per cent PC players were pirates.
The name in question happened to be Yves Guillemot, the CEO of Ubisoft, the company that recorded high profits on PC games in Q1 2019, according to their report.
PC revenue was responsible for 34 per cent of Ubisoft's income in the first quarter of the fiscal year, followed by PlayStation 4, standing at 31 per cent. Xbox One brought in 18 per cent while Switch and Mobile retained their 5 and 7 per cent, respectively.
Compared to Q1 2018, this is massive growth for PC. The platform was in #2 spot back then, with just 24 per cent revenue while PlayStation 4 took the lion's share with 38 per cent. Xbox had 22 per cent while Switch and Mobile had the same numbers as in 2019.
Anno 1800 is definitely one of the driving factors for the increased PC sales in 2019 since the game is exclusive to the platform. Ubisoft also cited recurring revenue, or microtransactions if you will, as one of the forces that drew PC to the top.
The Division 2 was also released in Q1 2019 and it's not hard to guess that many players opted for PC, particularly because Ubisoft's games tend to be hard on CPUs, which can result in performance issues, especially on consoles.
Furthermore, the first raid in the game proved that PC players have an easier time so it is quite possible fans saw this coming even before the game hit the shelves and decided to go for the PC version instead of a console one.
On the flip side, these high numbers could persuade Ubisoft that their DRM-heavy strategy is good for business. Let's hope they don't decide that poking non-pirates is actually the way to go.