Ubisoft’s Latest Alexa Skill: The Division Network for The Division 2
Earlier this month, Ubisoft announced an Alexa skill called “The Division Network” that enables players of the newly released, Tom Clancy’s The Division 2, to learn more about the video game’s backstory. The skill is available through the Alexa app and all Alexa-enabled devices. Users can say, “Alexa, open The Division Network” in order to open the skill. The game was released March 15th and is available on Windows, PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One. The skill became available to users March 6th.
Alexa, start the Division Network. Alexa, ask the Division Network for the weather in DC.
The Alexa skill was advertised as a promotion for the game’s launch. Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 is a shooter RPG with campaign, co-op, and PvP modes. It takes place in a near-future Washington D.C., in the aftermath of a smallpox pandemic, following an agent of the Strategic Homeland Division (SHD) as they try to rebuild the city. The skill description states that users can talk to an SHD agent about how the country got to where it is, what happened after the outbreak in New York, who are the insurgents trying to tear DC apart, and how you can help bring justice and stability back to the country.
Video Game Based Alexa Skills
This is not Ubisoft’s first Alexa skill. Ubisoft released an Alexa skill for the promotion of Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey in the Fall of 2018 that features a personality, called Alexios. Users can speak with Alexios casually and while playing the game. The Spartan skill allows users to prompt Alexa with questions to ask Alexios about a specific area relevant to the game in order to hear more about its origin.
Destiny 2 and Call of Duty both launched similar skills earlier last year, both meant to be used while playing their respective video game. The Call of Duty Alexa skill provides a ‘coach’ that offers users performance stats and indicates whether a user’s friends are online. The Destiny 2 Ghost skill worked with the Destiny 2 game in real time to allow players to invite others to their group, and gear up by asking “Alexa, ask Ghost to equip my best weapon.”
In the Summer of last year, Skyrim released an Alexa skill that acts as a stand-alone game. The experience is entirely voice-based and allows users to go on quests, explore, engage in battle, and more. Skyrim’s Alexa skill is unique because it is an actual game users can play. All of the other Alexa skills are extra engagement opportunities for players, meant to promote a separate video game.
An Increasing Use of Voice Assistants as a Consumer Engagement Tool
The Call of Duty, Destiny 2, and Assassin’s Creed video game based Alexa skills differ from the Division Network Alexa skill for The Division 2, as they are meant to be used while playing its corresponding video game. Instead, the Division Network skill is advertised only as a way for fans to hear more about the backstory of the game’s plot. However, the continuation of major video game launches corresponding with promotional Alexa skills points to a trend of brands turning to voice assistants as a platform for consumer engagement. Google Actions are not as popular today among game makers, but with the recent launch of Stadia, that may soon change.