As I don't consider myself a Final Fantasy fan any longer, I admittedly only scan news concerning FFXV and Square Enix. If it's significant, I post it here; otherwise, I usually just roll my eyes and move along.
But there are times when the company's totally bizarre backward speak, which goes 'round and 'round in circles (in reverse motion, I must add), just boggles the mind.
A developer and publisher at least has to know what kind of game it wants to make. Right? This isn't about me or any of the fans; if they want to make a Final Fantasy action game, they should just go ahead and do it. But this weird melding of genre elements that neither retains new fans nor adds fresh followers hasn't been working for many years. And how does Square Enix react to this?
Well, in a recent GamesRadar interview with FFXV director Hajime Tabata, he first says the goal of the new title is to attract new players, and admits that past entries haven't done a good job doing that:
"Certainly, in recent years, getting new fans is something we haven't done very well; we really haven't achieved that."
He adds that without new fans, the audience "will continue to shrink and shrink." …wait, why? If you're not taking in new fans, you still have your old fans, which means you won't grow very much but you certainly won't shrink . The only way you shrink is if you lose your fans. FFXIII sold 7.25 million copies worldwide; FFXIII-2 sold 3.4 million; Lightning Returns sold 1.2 million. Those numbers don't reflect an inability to bring in new fans; they reflect a mass exodus of existing fans.
Then, Tabata says he wants to "return to the roots of Final Fantasy." In the very next breath , he says they have to be "proactive" about cutting out aspects of the series that is stopping new gamers from coming into the FF fold. How in God's name can you go back to your roots and simultaneously eradicate the elements that got you your legions of fans in the first place? What kind of wacky circular logic is that?
I've been saying it for a very long time: The fastest way to franchise annihilation is to say, "we don't want these fans; we want those fans." Square Enix's goal, apparently, was never to keep their existing fans happy; rather, it was to abandon those fans and inexplicably start all over by trying to get an entirely new fan base.
Nobody can explain this insanity, can they?
Related Game(s): Final Fantasy XV