Square-Enix Blames Its Losses On The Current Console Landscape
Is it their fault and can the problems be fixed? Or is it too late?
The numbers are in for Square-Enix, and they are not good. Despite some high profile releases that did fairly well in the latter part of 2012, the published nonetheless posted a loss during the past nine months. The reason? The current state of consoles.
According to Square-Enix, and via Destructoid:
"During the nine-month period ended December 31, 2012, the company has not recovered the operating loss posted in the six-month period ended September 30, 2012, primarily due to the increasingly difficult condition of the world-wide console game market, under which the group is struggling to achieve a fair expected return on its investment."
It's more or less the same set of excuses that many publishers have been giving for their less than stellar track record, and for some time now. And while it's easy to dismiss Square-Enix for singing the same old song, once cannot ignore how genuinely chaotic the console landscape truly is these days.
As Destructoid also notes, development costs are simply astronomical, publishers are too skittish to try anything knew, hence why keep doing the same old, same old, plus how selling a good couple millions of a particular title is sometimes not good enough.
Also, we have broken away from the traditional new console every five years cycle, which the major players depend upon for the sake of stability and profitability. Furthermore, competition has never been more stiff, with more avenues to play games for the consumer than ever before.
Still, one has to wonder if Square-Enix is completely oblivious to the fact that, the reason why there is so much chaos to being with is largely due to its own mishandling of business. Though there's plenty of blame to go around; virtually every major player in the console business is culpable as well.
One can only hope that Square-Enix will learn from its mistakes once the next generation kicks in. But there stands a very real chance that, even if they were to make changes, it might be too little, too late, for the grander forces that are in place as a whole.
Will the PS4 and Xbox 720 see a return to form of the traditional console game makers, or is the writing on the wall? You be the judge.