Workers at the Paris office of Assassin’s Creed Mirage, Rainbow Six Siege, and Far Cry developer Ubisoft have been encouraged to go on strike in response to wages and working conditions, and following remarks made by CEO Yves Guillemot in a recent letter to employees, as the company confirms that pirate game Skull and Bones has been delayed, though Beyond Good and Evil 2 is still in development.
Solidaires Informatique, the union representing workers at Ubisoft Paris, calls for a half-day strike, demanding an increase in pay and the implementation of a four-day week that was promised to employees previously. In a statement, Solidaires Informatique directly quotes a letter written by CEO Yves Guillemot to Ubisoft employees following an investor call on January 11. The company announced that it had delayed the upcoming Skull and Bones and cancelled three unannounced projects, amid lower-than-expected sales for 2022.
“Today more than ever, I need your full energy and commitment to ensure we get back on the path to success,” Guillemot says in the letter, as reported by Kotaku. “I am also asking that each of you be especially careful and strategic with your spending and initiatives, to ensure we’re being as efficient and lean as possible. The ball is in your court to deliver this line-up on time and at the expected level of quality, and show everyone what we are capable of achieving.”
Urging strike action, Solidaires Informatique refers to Guillemot’s letter directly, and outlines demands for workers at Ubisoft Paris.
“According to Guillemot, the ball is in our court (but the money stays in his pocket),” Solidaires Informatique says. “On several occasions, Mr. Guillemot is trying to shift the blame (once again) onto the employees; he expects us to be mobilised, to ‘give it our all,’ to be as ‘efficient and lean as possible.’ These words mean something: overtime, managerial pressure, burnout, etc.
“Mr. Guillemot asks a lot of from his employees but without any compensation,” Solidaires Informatique continues, questioning whether company salaries have remained in line with inflation, and asking “what has been put in place for the teams that come out of productions exhausted (like those of Just Dance or Mario)?”
The union says it demands an immediate 10% increase for all salaries, the “improvement of working conditions,” including the implementation of a four-day working week, and “a strong commitment against disguised dismissals and a condemnation of abusive managerial policies that push employees to resign.” The half-day strike is suggested for January 27.
Although three unannounced projects have been cancelled, Ubisoft has confirmed that long-awaited sequel Beyond Good and Evil 2 is still in development. Skull and Bones meanwhile is expected to receive a playable beta ahead of its delayed launch.