Square Enix Launches Crowdfunding Program In Partnership With Indiegogo

By Ishaan . October 8, 2013 . 9:25am

Back in April, Square Enix president Yosuke Matsuda expressed that he felt the games industry’s business model with regard to big-budget titles is broken. You spend a number of years developing a title, Matsuda said, and don’t see a penny of the profits until it’s out in the wild, where it has to compete against a vast selection of other such games. This makes it difficult to guarantee sufficient returns on your investment.

 

The solution? Initiatives like Kickstarter and Valve’s Early Access program, which involve the developer interacting directly with consumers, keeping them informed of a game’s development, and seeing a share of the profits start to come in while the game is still in development, too. Matsuda was deadly serious when he made that comment—so serious that, this morning, Square Enix launched their own crowdfunding program in partnership with crowdfunding site Indiegogo.

 

Titled Square Enix Collective, this initiative allows indie developers to post their ideas, and gamers to decide if those ideas are worth developing. Every idea that is successful will be assisted by Square Enix.

 

Here’s the process. You get your game idea out in the wild on Square Enix Collective. After 28 days on the Collective feedback forum, if the community supports your idea, Square Enix will step in. They’ll help you figure out how much money you’d need to raise, in order to make your game a reality, and provided you pass a test of sorts, will help assure the community that you have the necessary expertise to create the game you want. If all goes according to plan, the Square Enix Collective community will help you get funded via Square’s partnership with Indiegogo.

 

Essentially, the Square Enix Collective brings publisher involvement into a process that publishers typically have no control over whatsoever. So, why even bother when you could just go the whole nine yards without Square’s help?

 

Because Square Enix are dangling the chance to work with “some of the older Eidos IP” from their back catalogue, which they will detail at GDC Next, from November 5th – 7th.


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  • Guest

    They should put Type-0 localization on Kickstarter…… Vita & Console HD stretch goals….. I think it would make the money.

    • artemisthemp

      You mean FFVII HD :P

      • Skeptika Crediblus

        That’s a stretch goal they’d hit in no time flat.

    • OathkeeperSoraXIII

      Yes, yes, a thousand times, yes! I would love an HD remaster for Vita and console.

    • konsama

      Man watching that epic Judeka battle mission with the epic shinryuu fight and those epic boss themes in HD would be too much to handle.

  • TheExile285

    Very nice idea though

  • CirnoLakes

    Best case scenario: New Chrono, new Seiken Densetsu, ect.
    Worst case scenario: Square Enix abuses the crowdfunding model and asks for money for games they were going to make anyway.

    • Trevor Nicolaysen

      Like the way they make Nintendo publish the few portable JRPGs they announce they will?

    • kylehyde

      I have the feeling that this is going to be case

    • Seraph

      Worst case scenario would be Square Enix using crowdfunding money for browser games or mobile card games.

    • Heropon

      Best case : Lightning begin : FF 13

      =))

      • OathkeeperSoraXIII

        No. Just no, I love FFXIII but the series already has ‘episode 0′ which focuses on the characters stories/past. There’s no need for a Lightning begins game. At all. Even if this was a joke…

  • Shady Shariest

    All right… Just few days ago i read that the new big boss would whip some sense into the company… Is this more sensible?

  • riceisnice

    Legend of Mana 2?

    • Kristoffer Brandberg

      So much want… :,)

    • Merrick

      I might pledge for the 10,000 dollar reward if that ever happens.

  • Dark Zerato

    Someone should put FF XVI on this program. At least they will receive fan’s ideas before making something stupid.

    • http://morerpg.com/ newandroider

      It should be after XV is out.

  • Crimson Tiger

    Final fantasy beach volley ball.

    • TheExile285

      Only if Ninja Team develops :P

  • TheExile285

    FINAL FANTASY VII-2!!!!!!!*Shot*

    I kid of course :P

    • Skeptika Crediblus

      Guest starring Lightning! Yaaaaay! :P

      • ronin4life

        “Guest Star”?
        This is SE.
        EVERYONE is Lightning.

        • Shady Shariest

          In fact, pink wig and girl-clothes are the office uniform of SE nowadays.

          • Skeptika Crediblus

            I remember the good ole days, when they were just recycling designs from The Bouncer….

          • Morricane

            You DO know what kind of association I had with this and Final Fantasy VII being mentioned in tandem? :)

          • Shady Shariest

            Noep.JPG :3

      • akiko_sakuraba

        PLEASE. NO. KEEP HER OUT OF MY GAMES.

    • Anime10121

      I … actually wouldnt object to that! I thought the whole purpose of the Compilation was to lead up to a sequel, ESPECIALLY after finishing DOS and getting its secret ending.

      While I’m in NO WAYS a FFVII diehard, after the Compilation, I actually want a sequel… even if it doesnt have an overworld.

  • Ed Reiher

    Wow it’s unbelievable we might actually get a Square Enix game that appeals to the old fan base now.

  • Capricciola

    Sounds like they’re basically working with indiegogo to get any developer who wants to make a game to basically go on indiegogo and figure out if that’s what consumers want. And since they have a partnership the developers will have an easier time getting in touch with square.

    I think that’s really smart, because if the crowdfunding is still going straight to the developers of the games then it sidesteps that whole “Oh square enix is just doing this to make money” stigma that I think many people had.

    • Your Face

      Seems like a lot of people didn’t read the article and think that they’re just gonna start asking for money to fund their own games.

    • British_Otaku

      Yep, I got the feeling that SE may screw up in a similar fashion to the Ouya’s Free the Games Fund from the title. It’s good to see that they are using this to access what we want and support games, not their marketing budget for Lightning Strikes Twice More.

    • icecoffemix

      You mean they’re not doing this to make more money?

      And why is it better than small developers going straight to market their game with all the convenience of digital indie market sony, google and apple offer? I guess it’s the lucrative IP SE has but we’ll see.

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/keyblademaster333#p/a/f/1/oAlztMvvNkk Keyblademaster333

    Make a RPG where you play as a villain the whole game, and I don’t mean some plot twist.

    • ronin4life

      Look up Overlord.
      And the Badman “What did I do to deserve this, My Lord!?” series.
      Oh, and if you like simulation management games, Evil Genius.
      Hmmm… Feel like I am missing some…

      • Draparde

        Soul nomad’s evil path, though that requires you to beat the game once….so maybe that doesent count XD

    • MrTyrant

      In Growlanser II and IV you could switch to the bad guys side and fight your former comrades. Sandly there wasn’t a hot chick in the other side to make it more worth it…

  • Lexaus_the_Alchemist

    As of right now, only Eidos titles are up for development auction, so to speak. Hopefully SE’s older titles will be available sometime later, like Brave Fencer Musashi, Legend of Mana, or *gasp* Chrono Trigger.

    … …

    … … …

    Yea, fat chance. SE would prolly rather go bankrupt than give those IPs to other devs…

    • Your Face

      I’d rather they go bankrupt than let a Western developer ruin those franchises too.

    • brian

      They may let someone else do a Mana (or Musashi) game, considering the last few of those games seem to be hated by fans.

  • Happy Gamer

    Any good game will do :)

  • Go2hell66

    So i guess this how were gonna get the majority of our games in the future

    • Skeptika Crediblus

      From panhandlers?

      • Go2hell66

        Yup

  • Skeptika Crediblus

    Money first, game later? I dunno…….

    On the other hand, we could finally see Vagrant Story and Xenogears return maybe?

    • Warboss Aohd

      an’ da Mana franchise

      • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

        Except the majority of the people who worked on Mana now works at Nintendo

    • Anime10121

      Xenogears would NEVER be the same or any where near as intriguing without Takahashi and his wife Soraya Saga, also the Monolith team.

      I wouldnt want SE touching that series with a 1 million foot pole. I’m huge SE fan, but they could NOT handle it (or any Xeno title for that matter).

      • http://twitter.com/puchixseda puchinri

        Agreed completely.

      • Morricane

        But more Vagrant Story, on the other hand…:D~~~~
        Or at least something with a similiar style…

        • Anime10121

          Unfortunately Matsuno, the guy behind the major Ivalice games (Tactics, XII, and Vagrant Story) is with Level 5, so I dunno if that would work out either….

          However, I did like FFXII Revanant Wings on the DS…, but it felt completely different than a “real” Ivalice game.

          • Morricane

            Well, I don’t need it from S-E, you know? :)

            FFXII RE was not exactly a work of art though S-E did throw out worse on the DS.

      • Skeptika Crediblus

        Sad, but true. They aren’t the company now that they were 10-15 years ago.

        I wish the Xeno series weren’t Wii-exclusive, though…

        • Anime10121

          Well, I wont go so far as to say that, they still are a great company. Its just the talent that made most of their old franchises/series have moved on/left for other studios.

          But the “Xeno” series isnt really exclusive to Nintendo. Just the Xenoblade/ whatever X ends up being, because Nintendo has the majority share in Monolith now.

          Xenogears and XenoSaga are still properties owned by SE and NB respectively. So in all truth, both of them could come out with more Xenogears/Saga games of their own volition, if they were so inclined… But the truth of the matter is, neither of them wont, because both series are basically dead to SE/NB, which is honestly the one of the largest reasons Monolith Soft is with Nintendo now, because Nintedo will actually publish their games…

  • Minos

    You know Matsuda, FFVI took one year to complete.

    You guys don’t need tricks nor magic shenanigans like these, just go back to your simplier roots.

    • akiko_sakuraba

      Unfortunately, there are graphic standards. Although Ar Tonelico 1 and 2 take a different look on this by using sprites, awesome story, and character portraits, I doubt Square Enix could return to doing that.

      • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

        Whatever happened to Square’s B-team? The SaGa games were never at the forefront of graphics, but they were excellent titles in their own right.

        I’d love to see a late-90s style SaGa game on a handheld console

  • Audie Bakerson

    “some of the older Eidos IP”

    Oh boy! We might finally get DaiKatana 2!

  • jujubee88

    These are Eidos titles,

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eidos_plc#Games

    Deus Ex JRPG pls

  • http://www.isfuturebright.com/ Silvio Carréra

    They should try to crowdfund a remake or new game on the chrono series. That would really get people attention.

    • brian

      It may get their attention but I doubt many of its original fans would buy it without the talent from those old games working on it.

  • Blackburn7

    Just in case they had no plans to translate it anyway: Crowdfund the localisation of Drakengard 3, please. Seriously, the uncertainty whether this game is being localized or not is killing me.

  • Michael Connell

    Crowdfund for an upgraded remake of FFVI or VII or a third entry into the Chrono series and you’ll have my interest.

  • Ty Austin

    It would be absolutely brilliant if people started posting ideas of sequels to SE’s franchises that they have forgotten, and had major support.

  • http://www.segalization.com/ Kuronoa

    Somebody offer to make a new Psychic Force please.

  • Scipio

    Localize Drakengard 3.

  • http://youtube.com/miyabigaming 禍津水木

    SE doesn’t seem to get what their problems are

    • JustThisOne

      But in my opinion, this is definitely a small step towards the right direction. Listening to community feedback might be able to help them figure out what’s worth investing in.

      But you’re right though. This doesn’t really solve their budgeting issues. :X

  • epy

    My Spidey Sense is tingling…

  • KK

    I like Square Enix and all, but I feel like they have been milking gamers dry with countless versions of Final Fantasy, gave us an absolutely terrible Parasite Eve sequel on the PSP, and were a little too cheap when it came to providing us with an extra game case to go along with that weak excuse of an “artbook” that came with the “Special Edition” of Kingdom Hearts HD Remix 1.5. I wonder why they are now turning to gamers and asking them for their hard earned money? Is it because they cannot find additional development funding through any other method?
    I almost see them being right up there with Capcom and SEGA (not a good thing). I feel like and Konami and Namco are two major Japanese publishers that haven’t rubbed me the wrong way…yet.

    Also, my guess is that this is probably for Nosgoth (Legacy of Kain franchise). And if that’s the case, hopefully Crystal Dynamics doesn’t botch up the multiplayer like they did with Tomb Raider. God, that was awful!

    • saxophone15

      I don’t think you understood what this program is about.

      • KK

        Doesn’t change the way I feel about the publisher/developer. Frankly, it doesn’t sound like 80% of the people commenting understand the details of this program. From what is outlined and explained, I am still finding myself a little skeptical of what they are trying to accomplish, and it really makes me wonder what sort of rights you’d be handing over to Square if your idea did get approved.

    • Dagobert

      I kind of agree with you, but yeah this program of theirs has nothing to do with what you mentioned. It’s pretty much them making a profit off of indie games since the indie game industry is getting bigger each year.

    • Rytan

      The Third Birthday wasn’t a terrible game. It was pretty damn good in it’s own right. It just suffers from Metroid M syndrome. Good games flawed by bullshit stories that pretty much ruin their respective stories mythos.

      • KK

        Well, let me rephrase that, and say that it left MUCH to be desired. And it was so much more difficult than it needed to be given the platform it was on.

        • Ni ~UNREAL BLACK THINGS~

          T3B was only difficult on hard onwards. specially if you try to be the HADOKOA GEIMA and start it direct on hard because the game is meant to be played using the NG+ mechanic. if you get the best weapons in normal mode, hard mode will be alright and you’ll only suffer in Deadly and Genocide mode.

      • Ni ~UNREAL BLACK THINGS~

        not quite Other M syndrome, since we didn’t really play as Aya and she still is Aya Brea for the few seconds in the ending

  • SetzerGabbiani

    For those of you who might have missed the point, this is more like a crowd-sourced business incubator except that it’s focused on video games specifically.

    Basically, SE is trying to eliminate as much risk as possible while maximizing potential profits from viable ideas. We’re being used as focus groups without SE having to shell out $$$. They get talent, ideas, and potentially new studios without too much investment/overhead.

    • Godmars

      Well, I’m sure that they wont listen or take risks. Will buy ideas just so they can’t be published by other companies.

  • http://twitter.com/#!/Leafy_Cam Leafhopper

    This was the funniest article all day.

  • Richard N

    Finally! My Final Fantasy Tactics : Ivalice Doki Doki Cadet Academy Dating Sim idea will finally come to fruition!

    Agrias-senpai, aishiteru!!~

  • supersungin

    i want chrono break

  • supersungin

    chrono break !!!!!

  • http://twitter.com/puchixseda puchinri

    I have a couple of ideas. :’)
    But zero programming skill or any other talent. I could handle my own writing though~.

    This sounds pretty nice, and I hope some good does come out of it. Maybe they should also adopt something similar to what Ninty allowed Gamefreak to do (which I’m also hoping brings forth more original titles).

  • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

    Regardless of how one might feel about Matsuda and his intended direction for Square Enix’s future, you have to admit, the guy backs up his talk with actual initiative. Just a few months ago, he talked about Kickstarter and Early Access, and we already have Square experimenting with crowdfunding. That’s a good thing.

  • akiko_sakuraba

    Just waiting for any older FF reboots. FF9 and FF8 are top on my list, but I would love FF7 HD as well. Square Enix spends shits loads on making crappy games that do not sell all the time- How about pooling that money spent on developing crappy games to release remakes that would earn WAAAAAAAAAY more money.

    • りんごタルト@エスカのアトリエ

      And let them bleed more money as well? Sorry but I really think remakes are money going down the drain. It’s not like the earlier FF remakes sold millions and brought Squeenix weeb cash.

      • https://twitter.com/LordOfPiracy Monkey D. Luffy

        trust me millions of people want a final fantasy 7 remake

        • りんごタルト@エスカのアトリエ

          Trust me, not everyone will buy it. And it will suck. And no, it won’t keep Squeenix afloat.

          Enjoy your Fujoshi Fantasy XV.

          • https://twitter.com/LordOfPiracy Monkey D. Luffy

            Petitions with hundreds of thousands of signatures all over the web,even prominent members of society asking as well you sir are living in a dreamworld lol

  • http://forums.rpgmakerweb.com/index.php?/topic/25050-farm-mapping-contest/#entry239430 Chaos17

    They need our money to support indie dev ? Seriously ? LoL ?

  • Ouch My Head Said Dionysus

    Cue a million angry fanboys posting ‘NEW SEIKEN DENSETSU’ ‘NEW ROMANCING SAGA’, ‘NEW PARASITE EVE’

  • shaffy_oppa

    So does this mean a producer could ask to develop a new fear a effect?

  • shaffy_oppa

    Does this mean a publisher can ask to develop a new fear effect?

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