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Square Enix is rebooting its game business around multiplatform development and 'unforgettable experiences'

Underwhelmed by the recent performance of some triple-A titles, Square Enix is swapping 'quantity for quality' to deliver projects it claims will guarantee fun.

Chris Kerr, News Editor

May 13, 2024

3 Min Read
Image via Square Enix
Cloud Strife in Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade

Final Fantasy developer Square Enix has unveiled a new medium-term business plan centered around creating "unforgettable experiences" capable of "moving people's heart." Notably, the company is also going all-in on multi-platform development to expand its consumer base.

The Japanese publisher has ditched its previous medium-term plan after acknowledging that many titles, including some outsourced projects and triple-A releases, failed to live up to profit expectations.

It cited other issues with its old plan, including the cannibalisation of newer releases due to a crowded launch schedule, gaps in management infrastructure, and aging legacy titles.

Broadly speaking, the company had previously hoped to find success by rebuilding its HD Game and Smart Devices/PC Browser portfolio, expanding its MMO business, and stabilizing its publishing business. It now feels that approach is no longer viable due to an "incomplete journey to better profitability in HD game development."

As a result, the company's new corporate philosophy will focus on the creation of "unforgettable experiences." What does that mean in real terms? Square Enix has provided some semblance of an answer that may, or may not, provide clarity.

"The power of content is that of moving people's heart," wrote the company. "The experience that people are impressed is etched in my mind as 'unforgettable experiences' over time." It claimed those experiences will deliver "moral support" and "enrich" lives. It also said they must provide "ensured fun."

A new medium-term plan to usher in a new dawn for Square Enix

To achieve that rather nebulous goal, the company is rebooting its business around four pillars and has dubbed the plan "Square Enix Reboots, and Awakens."

Those four pillars will see the firm attempt to enhance productivity by optimizing its development footprint, strike a balance between shareholder return and growth investment, diversify earnings opportunities by strengthening customer contact points, and roll out initiatives to create additional foundational stability.


Outlining how it will streamline production, Square explains it will shift from "quantity for quality" to ensure its releases are fun. In doing so, the company will retire its business unit-based organizational design to establish an "operationally integrated organization" with a focus on in-house development. It will also transition to a project management structure that keeps the balance between the "creativity of individual employees and the management centered on the organization."

To bolster the reach and performance of its triple-A slate, Square will now "aggressively pursue" a multiplatform strategy by extending more support to Nintendo platforms, PlayStation, Xbox, and PC. "[We intend to] build an environment where more customers can enjoy our titles in regards to major franchises and AAA titles including catalog titles," wrote the company. It will also device a platform strategy for smart device (SD) titles that includes platforms beyond the iOS and Android ecosystem."

Accelerating digital sales is another key focus area for the company, which believes attracting PC users could be a huge growth driver. Transmedia initiatives are expected to become another cornerstone of the business, with Square hoping to become an organization that makes "more active use of its IP by offing it across all media formats."

Square's overseas divisions will be rebuilt in line with the company's Japanese divisions, while the company is also hoping to better leverage its own internal talent.

Mergers and acquisitions are on the table, as well. Square explained it has earmarked a maximum of 100 billion yen ($640 million) for "total strategic investments" over the next three years, but said it must "exercise strict financial discipline" in deciding where to invest.

You can check out the pitch for yourself on the Square Enix investor relations website.

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About the Author(s)

Chris Kerr

News Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Game Developer news editor Chris Kerr is an award-winning journalist and reporter with over a decade of experience in the game industry. His byline has appeared in notable print and digital publications including Edge, Stuff, Wireframe, International Business Times, and PocketGamer.biz. Throughout his career, Chris has covered major industry events including GDC, PAX Australia, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and Develop Brighton. He has featured on the judging panel at The Develop Star Awards on multiple occasions and appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss breaking news.

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