I don't claim to be an analyst, nor am I any sort of business genius. I know what I'd want them to do, but I honestly don't know how any of my suggestions would be received at a corporate board meeting.

But I think it's painfully obvious that Square-Enix has to do something. Granted, FFXIV was a failure many – including S-E themselves – didn't expect, and FFXIII was a huge blockbuster. And they still seem capable of producing plenty of great portable titles, and that includes the immensely popular Dragon Quest IX for the DS and the upcoming third Parasite Eve installment, The 3rd Birthday , for the PSP. But outside of the FF franchise, they just don't seem capable of producing a top-quality, hot-selling title. Bottom line? This obsession they have with changing their focus to cater to the Western gamer hasn't worked. How can anyone argue that it has worked? Changing Front Mission to a third-person shooter didn't work. Adopting new studios that produce Western-oriented productions (like Kane & Lynch ) hasn't exactly resulted in a windfall of profit.

And you know, it's easy to sit here and reminisce and say S-E should return to its roots, but that's like refusing to acknowledge how the industry has changed. It has indeed changed and this is just another Japanese publisher that is desperately trying to adapt and assimilate. But I almost think that all of them overreacted when they first perceived the overseas shift. I think it was a knee-jerk reaction, and the Japanese game makers suddenly believed every last American gamer became robotic automatons overnight. I've said before that those who played and adored the old-school Squaresoft games still love such experiences, and would certainly buy updated versions. But I was always saying to myself, "but if the company is doing well, who are we to say?"

They're not doing well, though. They're in a tailspin. I know they think traditional RPGs won't sell here, and I know they think a FFVII remake wouldn't be worth the time or money. But at this point, what have they got to lose? Why not at least try to see if those old fans are still there? Why believe that your masses of accumulated fans have all jumped aboard the Call of Duty bandwagon? Peek over your shoulder…the fans are still there. And believe it or not, they want what they had before. At this point, maybe the answer is to retrace one's steps rather than blindly surging forward.

Subscribe
Notify of
110 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
SixSpeedKing
SixSpeedKing
9 years ago

Excellently said Ben. I personally have only played FFVII of theirs but I do hope that they come out of this tailspin they are in. They have made amazing games in the past (all my friends tell me and from things I've seen) and I would hate to see a good developer go bankrupt or some such thing as it means less quality games for us.

Alienange
Alienange
9 years ago

You summarized that quite nicely. I don't think you're alone in thinking that SE is being led down the wrong path. They've messed up so much…

Let me say something about that "immensely popular Dragon Quest IX." I've been spending all of my portable gaming time playing DQIX. I've gotten rather far along and I've just gotta say, the game is boooooring. It starts off ok but then nothing's happening. It's BOOOring. I don't remember ANY DQ game being THIS boring. It's heartbreaking. It really is…

NoSmokingBandit
NoSmokingBandit
9 years ago

I liked DQIX. Its not great, but it was fun. Theres not a strong narrative and they try to cram the multiplayer aspect down your throat, but it was still enjoyable for me.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

I seem to recall giving up on DQVIII because it was boring as hell. All grinding. But when it was good it was good, then boring for 6 straight hours.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

LOL! Your nuts World. DQVIII was awesome. DQIX is good too. Not as good but still fun.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Leveling up was just a pain. And if you wandered into am area you weren't read for, ouch. But playing with Jessica's outfits was fun.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

I didn't find leveling up any more tedious or boring than any other RPG I played.

::shrug::

johnld
johnld
9 years ago

i had he in the bunny outfit pretty much the whole time, hahaha. although when i got that black bustier i had to use it. got my dragon armor so that cool.


Last edited by johnld on 12/17/2010 2:03:35 AM

Underdog15
Underdog15
9 years ago

@World
I don't remember much grinding at all, until I was at endgame and wanted to be super strong.

NoSmokingBandit
NoSmokingBandit
9 years ago

The problem is that the market is flooded with repetitive western games. Some sell well, most are junk. A good JRPG or any kind of Japanese game would be a huge breath of fresh air. I'm tired of being bogged down with monochrome shooters. SE was the best, and i still believe they can make something new and fresh yet traditional and familiar at the same time. They dont have many chances left, they better get it right soon.

cLoudou
cLoudou
9 years ago

Get rid of Wada.

Anonymous
Anonymous
9 years ago

I second that. He's the idiot who has sullied the reputation of Square-Enix.

johnld
johnld
9 years ago

but square enix is the one who dragged squaresoft's name down.

Lenoxseer
Lenoxseer
9 years ago

Couldn't have said it better myself, Ben. Great article. I was even better to read.

Culoslap
Culoslap
9 years ago

The last JRPG I played was Dragon Quest VIII like four years ago! I really do hope Square returns to it's roots.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Ya know I had a look at Sakaguchi's project "The Last Story" and I could still see that old spark. But I won't get a Wii for it, should have been multiplat.

As far as SE is concerned, they've put on blinders and abandoned their fans. They don't want us. Or our money. The only reason they make any cash at all is cuz anything with FF in the title sells. And yeah, I'll get Versus too.

Arvis
Arvis
9 years ago

Ok, seriously with the Tifa pics….

-Arvis

laxpro2001
laxpro2001
9 years ago

Don't listen to them SE… keep shoving those endless KH spinoffs down our throats which make piecing the main storyline for KH together that much more impossible.

O wait, SE is a business… doesn't that mean they want to succeed? If so then kindly disregard my comment.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

I like Birth by Sleep quite a bit. 🙂

laxpro2001
laxpro2001
9 years ago

Actually I do as well. Only one aside from Chain of Memories I enjoyed, but thats because BBS felt like more than a hand-held game. BBS was extremely good, I would just really like to see Sora finally make a return and wrap up the trilogy.

Pandacastro
Pandacastro
9 years ago

@laxpro2001
KH 3DS is the last one before KH3.The ending of 3DS is the opening of KH 3.

STAY3R
STAY3R
9 years ago

SE can return with 4 steps, and evry one knows it's a no brainer
1) PS3 exclusive Kingdom Hearts 3
2) PS3 exclusive Dragon Quest X
3) Final Fantasy VII Remake
4) Rerelease of Final Fantasy XII with HD Visuals

SE should have followed Mitsubishi's business techniques, they always do what they are best doing at, yeah lancer evo i'm looking at you.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

I read a long time ago Square was eying the Wii for DQX.

TheCrazyMerc
TheCrazyMerc
9 years ago

I don't know about but they should release FFXII, with FFX/-2 with it so it can be like the GoW I and II HD remastered bundle.IMO.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

I would like to see that as well but I'm sure Square wouldn't do it unless they could make it multiplatform.

shadowscorpio
shadowscorpio
9 years ago

You've just identified a business term in which EVERY business is supposed to follow: Comparitive Advantage. It means keep to doing what you have been good at and let others that are better in areas that you are not good at do them.

SE is not good at making westernized games or westernizing their Japanese franchises. They are good at making solely JRPGs and they should for the love of God stick to that!

Slycly
Slycly
9 years ago

A remake or sequel to Chrono Trigger wouldn't hurt either.

johnld
johnld
9 years ago

final fantasy XII is fine as it is graphically. why update a game that doesnt need much changes. i'd rather get HD upgrades of graphics from the ps1 era.

johnld
johnld
9 years ago

final fantasy XII is fine as it is graphically. why update a game that doesnt need much changes. i'd rather get HD upgrades of graphics from the ps1 era.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

"A remake or sequel to Chrono Trigger wouldn't hurt either."

Indeed.

Arvis
Arvis
9 years ago

"A remake or sequel to Chrono Trigger wouldn't hurt either."

Pretty sure they made a sequel to Chrono Trigger… It was one of the greatest video games of all time and has the best soundtrack of all time as well.

-Arvis

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

Chrono Cross was not a direct sequel to Chrono Trigger. It also isn't nearly as good as Chrono Trigger.

Veitsknight
Veitsknight
9 years ago

Chrono Cross has two sequels. Radical Dreamers and Chrono Cross.

eLLeJuss
eLLeJuss
9 years ago

Yes square enix. Listen to Ben. The only way to move forward is by making FF7 remake. YOU TELL EM BEN

Anonymous
Anonymous
9 years ago

Stop whining & support Square! Constantly the same rants over and over. "Wah wah, no rpgs. Mommy!" Looking at the arrival of my Game Informer today and the lovely Lara Croft cover astounded me! Eidos is working hard while Square pay the bill. I've been a big, big Tomb Raider fan & I cannot wait for this. With next year, bringing Dissidia 012 (PSP), Deus Ex (PS3/EXbot), Arkham City (PS3/EXbot), Agito XIII (PSP), Dragon Quest X (Wii), Dungeon Siege III (PS3/EXbot), to name a few, 2011 will be an excellent year for Square Enix!

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

"Stop whining & support Square!"

No.

"2011 will be an excellent year for Square Enix!"

LOL! If great is the new Mediocrity, then yes. It's a great year.

By the way, Square didn't create any of those IP's(okay Agito XIII and Dissidia but I have given credit in the past for Squares PSP titles, and DragonQuest X has not been formally announced. It's rumor at this point unless you can provide a link?) I think you have missed the point by a long shot. No one cares about those games coming from Square. We want Square games. We want PS3 support. Not Western games published by Square.


Last edited by Jawknee on 12/16/2010 11:37:02 PM

Anonymous
Anonymous
9 years ago

How are these not Square games? They are published by Square. Owned by Square. Payed by Square. I say billy, this is a Square game. I will admit, I will NOT be getting any of those games outside my Playstation family though I support Square regardless if they do not show up in MY CONSOLE of choice. I made it a priority to stick with Playstation till I die.. or they die.

& Billy, Ryutaro Ichimura, said Dragon Quest X is exclusive for the Wii

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

"How are these not Square games?"

Square didn't create the IP's or develop the games. It really isn't that hard.

Anonymous
Anonymous
9 years ago

I say, the one where it says "Comment pending moderator approval' Damn, burned! Cause that is what smart people do

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

Smart people also use proper grammar and punctuation.

Drrrrr, Burn…or something.

Anonymous
Anonymous
9 years ago

I see what you did there. Not cool

maxpontiac
maxpontiac
9 years ago

Indeed, Jawknee. Indeed.

TheAgingHipster
TheAgingHipster
9 years ago

Now now kids, let's play nice. One of the main reasons I frequent this site is the (usually) polite nature of comment discussions. I'd hate to see that marred by one troll.

By the way, I feel obligated to point out that correct use of punctuation and grammar is not indicative of intelligence.

Teddie9
Teddie9
9 years ago

On that list in the first comment, I'm only looking foward to Deus Ex, which has now been DELAYED.


Last edited by Teddie9 on 12/17/2010 10:35:40 AM

Underdog15
Underdog15
9 years ago

uh… 2011 will NOT be an excellent year for SE. They have no more money anymore.

Fane1024
Fane1024
9 years ago

@ Jawknee

To be fair, you make plenty of errors yourself (or at least your iPhone does).

I don't think I've ever seen you get "its/it's" right. 😉

@ Hipster

Yes it is. Intelligent people take the time to correct their errors because they understand that clarity is an important aspect of communication.


Last edited by Fane1024 on 12/18/2010 3:28:04 PM

Anonymous
Anonymous
9 years ago

BTW, @BEN, Square Enix publishes Call Of Duty games since the first Modern Warfare up till now with Black Ops also. Maybe that transition of seeing what succeeds or not inspired Enix to invest in western gaming. Is that so f&$%-ing bad?


Last edited by n/a on 12/16/2010 11:27:27 PM

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
9 years ago

WHO publishes Call of Duty…?

kraygen
kraygen
9 years ago

Prime,

Really? Open the window, clear the haze, and think that one over again.