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Former Square boss says Square-Enix merger was a 'complete failure', company has 'no vision for the future'

Hisashi Suzuki, the man who was President of Square at the time of its 2003 merger with Enix, has taken to Twitter to blast Square-Enix's current direction. According to GamesIndustry.biz (whose Japanese-reading skills we trust more than our own), Suzuki branded the 2002 merger of the two companies 'a complete failure' and said Square-Enix has 'no vision for the future'.

Suzuki's outburst comes after Square-Enix released its financial report, lowering its forecasts after slow sales of 'a major HD game title', most likely Sleeping Dogs. He also pointed out that the total value of Square Enix as a publicly traded company has still not been able to exceed the value of the publisher before the merger.

After the merger, Suzuki served as director at the company from 2003-2005 and now works as a director at Sega (another merged company thanks to its fusion with Sammy). He said high development costs had been dragging Square-Enix down, but that its recent long-term deal with Epic to use Unreal Engine 3 and 4 should help.

Plus, we can't help but think that Square-Enix's next-gen tech demo isn't a bad vision of the future at all. What do you think? Let us know in the comments.

Sources: GamesIndustry, Kotaku

Topics

Square Enix

20 comments

  • Nikku7 - November 9, 2012 2:16 a.m.

    I don't think they're doing so bad, but it would be nice to see more new from them. I still enjoy Kingdom Hearts. TWEWY is amazing and they should make more games like it, and I also loved Deus Ex: HR. I agree to some degree, but not completely. I don't play a lot of Final Fantasy, but I have friends that do and at least with every installment they try to make something completely new. Many of the games I have played in the series are drastically different gameplay wise.
  • Vincent Wolf - November 8, 2012 11:11 p.m.

    I absolutely agree and respect the man for having balls to say it. They do bad games and bad sequels to these bad games. Which is a pity really, since I'm still waiting for a FF7 remake and some decent new Parasite Eve (not some handgeld game with shitty story).
  • Clovin64 - November 8, 2012 3:45 p.m.

    Though its not quite as good as Square's best, I've enjoyed the SE games of this generation, and I've got high hopes for their next-gen efforts (so long as they don't cripple themselves with super-expensive development costs!). That said, I'd dig the next-gen FF to be another tribute to the SNES days of heart warming fantasy characters and adventure (a'la FFIV,VI and IX).
  • space_cakes - November 8, 2012 2:49 p.m.

    I agree with him. After the merger, Enix IPs just weren't the same. Star Ocean, come back to the light!
  • Cyberninja - November 8, 2012 2:47 p.m.

    I liked the FF13 games and Dragon Quest 9 was good, my problem is that they need to bring out more really good HD games, so far the only HD game that they released this year(going by Japan) was Sleeping Dogs which obviously wasn't going to sell as much as a FF or DQ, I can't wait for LR:FF13 but I still feel they need more diversity with their products.
  • taokaka - November 8, 2012 2:04 p.m.

    Localize type 0 and all your woes will simply dissapear.
  • TheInvincibleDragon - November 8, 2012 10:53 a.m.

    I agree to a point with him. Today's SE is not doing so hot. I did love all the Final Fantasies up to 13, and Dragon Quest 8 was brilliant. I just wish that they would go back to the glory days, and revive some of the older RPG IPs, like the Mana series, Breath of Fire, etc. And make a Dragon Quest for major consoles instead of the DS. I know it's easier said than done, but it could be a start. Go back to you roots, get back to the basics, and start making quality games again. Square was always one of my favorite developers as a kid, they just need to recapture that magic that they had back then.
  • Cloudiology - November 8, 2012 12:40 p.m.

    breath of fire is capcom.. and after BoF4 they murdered it..
  • colin-myers - June 10, 2013 11:02 p.m.

    I completely agree. I would LOVE to see the mana series come back (secret of mana III was amazing, I have no idea why they never localized it) as well as more entries into the Chrono series (we all know Toriyama would be down cmon lol). Square used to dominate the RPG industry and many of my favorite stories/characters were from their games. They helped shape my childhood and I'd love for SE to revive that sense of wonder I had as a kid. Cmon guys!!
  • bass88 - November 8, 2012 11:09 a.m.

    Doing what? Live stripping?
  • Talvari - November 8, 2012 7:58 a.m.

    I still have faith in Lightning Returns and Versus :|. Imo XIII and XIII-2 didn't turn out as bad as people seem to think
  • bass88 - November 8, 2012 7:47 a.m.

    I know what the next Final Fantasy should be about. A young man goes on a quest to save his small village. He works with other towns to build trade agreements, learns new farming techniques and innovative technology. His work allows the land to boom and he is elected as their leader. He carries them to greater success when he travels across the land to discover new lands and new trading partners. Sadly, greed gets the better of him and he encourages his people to invest in a new machine that would enrich people's lives. They agree because he hasn't done them wrong so far. Sadly, this new machine fails to take off and bombs, almost single-handedly destroying all he built. Facing ruination, the man agrees to merge with another prosperous region to save his people. Unfortunately, he has become a mere figurehead. His suggestions are cast aside and his innovations are userped and perverted to quickly make money. The people of the land are once again comfortable but the lands in the west tire of the changes. Instead, the lands of the west adapt the old technology and use it as a springboard to develop more advanced technology. The lands of the west thrive and become bigger and stronger. But they become greedy too, and begin a campaign to overtake the old kingdoms. The man appeals to the new kingdom to listen to him but they don't. Instead, they build a barrier here and there to stop the western advances but all it does is slow the west down. The man is faced with a difficult choice - succumb to somebody else's rule once again or pull away. He and his people may be poorer but they are free to innovate again and appeal to their former allies.
  • ultimatepunchrod - November 8, 2012 6:40 a.m.

    I don't know if I agree completely. The Final Fantasy games (aside from 14) have been generally well accepted, and before you jump on my case about 13, it has just as many fans and haters as any other game in the franchise. But I think they should really reign in Kingdom Hearts. It has the potential to still be a mega success for them if they just start working on 3, or forget about all the unintelligible offshoots. Everyone loved 1 & 2 and then Square did exactly nothing after 2 to keep anyone but the most dedicated of fans on board. Also, as the article said, the Eidos stuff does well for them, so I doubt they're in as much trouble as Suzuki insists. Hopefully, they keep the Sleeping Dogs developer on board and turn it into a franchise. From what I understand, that game was awesome.
  • BladedFalcon - November 8, 2012 5:57 a.m.

    Well... considering that the biggest games coming out of the company are not even from them, but from Eidos... Yeah, I have to agree that in general, this merger has been for the worse rather than for the better. Really, in the last 10 years, the only new IP that has been great and stayed in my mind from them has been TWEWY. Aside from that, we haven't gotten anything truly memorable like we kept getting beofre the merger. The latest moves concerning FF have been atrocious, (whether you like FFXIII or not, I think there's really few people that would call it the best FF ever, and even fewer would agree that it was the one FF that warranted 2 sequels >_>. Not to mention the utter failure that is FFXIV and the lack of FF Versus XIII...) and aside from FF, they've barely made use of their franchises aside from a stray Dragon Quest game and such.
  • CUFCfan616 - November 8, 2012 5:13 a.m.

    Once they remember that it's the games that matter then they'll be fine. Until then, each 'title' will be a playable tech demo
  • nintendo365 - November 8, 2012 4:48 a.m.

    Yeah, that company has slowly been dying since about where they merged. I think the problem with them, as is with alot of developers is that theyve gotten too big for their own good. Look at Capcom and the decline of the Resident Evil series. Its the same issues for Square and Final Fantasy- Forgetting their fans and instead, going for the casual crowd. FF10 was okay to me, not great but certainly not bad, but 10-2 was unbearable. They desparately tried to expand their demographic to women, when- little did they know: Girls already play FF games! FF13/-2 were both bad games. No matter how good the soundtrack and graphics are, the gameplay was pretty damn weak and they were both about 60-75% CG cutscenes. I mean seriously, it had 3 goddamn discs. 3!
  • Cloudiology - November 8, 2012 10:45 a.m.

    ff7 as 3 discs? ff8 was 4, ff9 was also four? also ff13 was one disc on the ps3. what's your point?
  • nintendo365 - November 21, 2012 1:43 p.m.

    13 was 3 discs on the 360 smartypants. What I was saying is that they needed to lay off the CG, and focus on the actual gameplay. Flashy visuals only carry games but so far.

Showing 1-20 of 20 comments

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