Square Enix Boss On Simultaneous Worldwide Releases And Keeping Things Japanese

By Sato . April 6, 2017 . 2:00am

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Square Enix president and CEO Yosuke Matsuda spoke with Nikkei Shimbun about their focus on simultaneous worldwide releases, not changing content for other regions, interest in Nintendo Switch, and other tidbits. [Thanks, Hokanko-Alt.]

 

Here are some highlights from the interview with Matsuda-san:

 

  • Final Fantasy XV moved 6 million units (in shipments and digital downloads) in a little over a month, and this record was possible as a result of its simultaneous worldwide release. It was especially favorable in North America, where it sold smoothly.

 

  • Over 20% of Final Fantasy XV’s sales come from digital downloads in North America, a ratio that is higher than other regions. Digital downloads of some titles have made up to half its sales in the North America and European market.

 

  • Simultaneous worldwide releases are becoming more important.

 

  • Rather than changing the content of games for different regions, Matsuda believes games that are made as a product of Japan are better received. He feels that they must place importance on their own originality.

 

  • Having more platforms is a good thing, and Matsuda hopes the Nintendo Switch succeeds for this reason.

 

  • In addition to developing new titles for Switch, he hopes to see more of Square Enix’s existing titles get ports wherever it’s possible.

 

  • Most of Square Enix’s smartphone titles struggled in the first half of 2016, as it’s becoming more difficult to succeed with games that appear to have been made through a template, or based on the success model they once had.

 

  • Serious consideration on the differences between Square Enix’s smartphone games and others’ will be needed in order to take their seats.

 

  • Including Japan, the United States and China makes up for 80% of the world’s smartphone market, so simultaneous worldwide releases aren’t a priority [for smartphone games].

 

  • Square Enix is looking into the game markets of the Middle East and India.

 

  • Several new gaming platforms will become available in 2017. In addition to Nintendo Switch, we’ll soon get Project Scorpio. (Hokanko-Alt points out that Matsuda says “several new gaming platforms” but only mentions two, including one that already released.)

 

  • Square Enix is keeping on eye on PC, Windows 10 Game Mode, Google AR’s Tango, but lately their attention is on Nintendo Switch.

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