Square Enix May Follow Trend and Go Digital

July 8, 2010Written by Jonathan Leack

Piracy and used game sales have been recognized as a growing problem for game developers over the past few years. EA and Ubisoft have both adopted methods such as “Project Ten Dollar” to combat used game sales going into the future. With that said, EA’s firm move against second-hand sales might be influencing more than just Ubisoft.

Yoichi Wada, CEO of Square Enix, recently sat down with VentureBeat and shared his thoughts on the current industry climate. During the interview Wada stated the following:

“At the very high level, the trend for packaged software sold in stores is still very tough. For one thing, used software has become very prevalent in the U.S. market. That has reduced sales a lot and it has driven prices down too. That has made the trend tougher.”

When asked about whether or not Square Enix is moving toward digital content, Wada replied:

“We have always been trying to expand the market for our digital content. Another way to put it: Without changing the business model, it will be difficult to survive in this business. Dependence on packaged software sales may not be viable.”

Digital content has become a growing trend over recent years and even Sony tried it’s hand at the market with the controversial PSP-Go. While many consumers including myself still haven’t embraced digital content fully due to bandwidth and storage issues, developers, both old and new, are inclined to adopt the new business model due to it’s security and profitability. However, nothing beats owning a nice collection of Blu-ray PS3 games, and for those reasons alone it’s hard to tell whether or not hard copies will ever be driven away.