Ghost Recon: Breakpoint was met with a lot of criticism when it launched last month, with one of the biggest complaints being that its microtransaction store was ridiculous. The game lets players buy hundreds of different items with real money, making for a marketplace that just seems completely tone-deaf in the current climate. However, Ubisoft says that it had a reason for implementing such a store to begin with.
During the publisher's most recent financial call -- in which Ubisoft basically called Breakpoint a disappointment -- the company cited the success of the microtransactions in Ghost Recon: Wildlands, Breakpoint's predecessor. According to Ubisoft, in-game purchases were quite popular in the Bolivia-based open world shooter, and so it decided to include them in Breakpoint.
"We understand it has been seen as too big a store and that it was really not appreciated at all, but it came from the fact that players were spending time in the store and buying things in Wildlands, and our teams thought they could give them the opportunity to have more choice. Which has not been well-interpreted, but that was the goal," said CEO Yves Guillemot.
The thing is, Wildlands' microtransactions were only expanded upon and properly explored later in the game's life, whereas Breakpoint's been pushing them from day one, and it's easy to argue that the latter's store is much more aggressive. But hey, at least Ubisoft's actually bringing it up.
It all comes back to the fact that, despite all the backlash against them, microtransactions do make big publishers a lot of money. If you really want to get rid of in-game purchases, everyone's going to have to stop opening their wallets.