As digital-based games continue to have greater prominence in the world of media, more companies are looking to find ways to adapt to this changing world. Even Sqaure Enix, one of the longest developers currently active, is trying to figure out how to capitalize on the increasingly-digital future. One such way is making all of its titles available digitally in the future. What form this will take is unknown, but Square Enix does mean all of its titles, even the weird NES ones.
While Square is still determining what this project will turn into, it looks like a high priority for the publisher. President and CEO Yosuke Matsuda said porting its titles to a digital service was already “a dedicated project internally.” It will more than likely end up being a subscription-based service, though whether or not it would involve streaming remains up in the air. “Certainly down the road, we would like to see that on a subscription or streaming service, so we’re exploring the possibility of creating a dedicated channel for ourselves,” Matsuda said.
Square Enix Subscription Service Currently in the Works
Being around since the 70s, Square has a staggering amount of games in its back catalogue. Of course, there’s the long-running Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest series, plus the Kingdom Hearts games. In addition, there are the franchises it inherited from its purchase of Eidos Interactive, including Tomb Raider and Deus Ex. Whether this would include titles that were only published by Square Enix, like Life is Strange and the upcoming Dying Light 2, is unknown.
Unfortunately, there is a lot that may prevent this dream from fully becoming a reality. Square Enix has had a history of losing the source code for a variety of its titles. “I’m embarrassed to admit it, but in some cases, we don’t know where the code is anymore,” Matsuda mentioned. This is a story that has certainly been told before. For the Kingdom Hearts remaster in Kingdom Hearts 1.5 HD Remix, the assets were actually recreated after the original ones were lost. And issues with the source code were long rumored for the reason we haven’t seen a proper Final Fantasy VIII remaster prior to its revival at E3 2019.
To see Square Enix dabble in a subscription-based model certainly isn’t surprising. Almost every major publisher is beginning to at least toy with the idea. EA Access is already widely available on certain platforms, while others like Ubisoft and Bethesda have stated their intentions to invest more into subscription platforms.
Would want to see all of Square Enix’s titles on a digital platform of sorts? Let us know!