Can Final Fantasy Still Save Square Enix?

In the past, whenever Square Enix released a new Final Fantasy, things were A-OK. Yet, last year the Tokyo-based game maker released two, and things are anything but.

In late December 2009, Square Enix launched Final Fantasy XIII in Japan, and the title hit the West in 2010. The game is the fastest selling title in the company's history, moving over five million copies.

In fall 2010, Square Enix released its new online title Final Fantasy XIV. The game seemed undercooked, the reaction was negative and the release was bungled, eventually leading to apologies and the game's designers getting the boot.

But even the mighty Final Fantasy cannot save Square Enix, with the company seeing a 76 percent dip in profits during the year. The reason for the hemorrhaging was due in part to high value of the Japanese yen. It was also due to how all games performed, not to mention things like the delay of Deus Ex: Human Revolution.

"Consumers are getting more selective, and there's a big difference between games that sell and games that don't," said Square Enix honcho Yoichi Wada, adding that the game maker is rallying itself to make titles that consumers want to get. So no Mind Jack 2, then?

Later this year, Square Enix is releasing a new Final Fantasy game, Final Fantasy XIII-2. But no doubt, Square Enix (and players) are thinking that the eagerly anticipated Final Fantasy Versus XIII cannot come soon enough.

スクエニ、円高為替差損30億円直撃 4~12月期76%減益 [MSN産経ニュース]


    Maybe making some better business desisions would help a little... like making a FF7 remake, which will practically be a licence to print money, rather than make a sequal to a game that was by far the weakest in the series (13), although I'm sure the three people that liked FF13 will be happy...

    (And before I get slammed, that last part was a joke :D)

      Not a remake, just an HD rerelease.

        In most cases I wouold agree with you, but in this one case I dont. While I'm not a big fan of remakes just for the sake of it, I trully think that with a bit of effort, an FF7 remake would be better than the original... add visuals like the PS3 tech demo opening, voice acting using the cast from Advent Children...

    I dunno about that, when they started making "remakes" was when they lost my interest. They felt like cheap nasty rehashes than a serious attempt at a game.

    SE should contract Mistwalker to make all the Final Fantasys.
    Then they'd be great!

      Now THAT would be a smart move for SquareEnix! And its not a coincedance that the quality of Final Fantasy has dropped since the formation of Mistwalker...

    They should publish The Last Story in every non-Japan territory, and bring it to 360 and PS3...

    Good! I am honestly glad to see that company losing sales. It is the only way they can turn around and start making AAA titles closer to those of yesteryear.

    And by that I mean make them more open wordly, add back in the joy of exploration! Create engaging characters, not amalgam japanese hipsters who seem to care more about their hairstyle than what they're doing. Yes, the characters have always been stylised, but they used to have a universal element to them.

    They should get a Western character designer to have a look at their characters. You don't need to follow their advice 100%, but just have -some- input.

    I agree with the above comments and say they should go even further - allow any external game company to make the core mechanics for them and just focus on the cutscenes (which they do amazingly well).

    Dragon Fantasy!
    You know how well cross overs do in today's gaming market!

    I had no idea everyone hated the recent FF titles until I went online. Because I enjoyed them, and I don't have a gripe about any of it.

    "...adding that the game maker is rallying itself to make titles that consumers want to get."

    So, we'll finally get Chrono Break? Or is Wada gonna keep sticking his fingers in his ears and chanting LA LA LA LA LA I CAN'T HEAR YOU to all the legions of fans asking for it?

    Woo Dress-Crystariums!

    Like many people I'd love a FF7 remake but the simple fact is to make a game that size with all the pretty visuals and (mostly) all the voice work, would cost far more than any game they've produced yet.
    If they only added voice for main story line characters or something it would certainly be more feasable.

    I've been loving the DS remakes of final fantasy games though, they're a perfect fit for a smaller system I think.

    I haven't played any of their online games, but I still get more value for money (that is to say, time I happily spend playing it) from a Final Fantasy game than I do from basically any other.

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