Square Enix's new CEO says he would no-life Final Fantasy games growing up, proving himself worthy of his new job

Crisis Core Reunion protagonist Zack Fair stares at the camera
(Image credit: Square Enix)

Square Enix's new CEO has said he neglected everything when a new Final Fantasy game released growing up, proving he's just like us. 

During the Final Fantasy 16 pre-release celebration event in Los Angeles on June 11, Takashi Kiryu told fans about his relationship with Square Enix's biggest IP. Speaking about a specific moment in the Final Fantasy series, Kiryu said: "From then on, I was hooked. I was [a] Final Fantasy fan for life. Whenever a new title came out, I had to make time to play. Forget homework, forget eating, forget sleeping! I sleep in class anyway."

Proving his commitment to the franchise even more, Kiryu adds: "While my friends got into sports or other activities, I was focused on games. And yeah, I had more than a few teachers tell me 'If you play games all the time, you are not going to succeed in life. But, [they'd] be very surprised to see me standing on this stage right now with you.'"

It's clear Square Enix has got the right man for the job of CEO, which Kiryu took on back in 2022. "I believe games have and offer infinite possibilities," Kiryu continues, "they have the potential to alter the course of our lives. As the new CEO of Square Enix, I will continue to cherish those childhood memories that instilled in me a gamer's spirit."

Kiryu's speech is just one of the highlights to come out of the event. Alongside Kiryu, Final Fantasy 16 producer Naoki Yoshida and director Hiroshi Takai were also in attendance which is how we found out that the Final Fantasy 16 demo focuses on Clive’s teenage years. Not only this, but it was also revealed that Final Fantasy 16 was co-developed with Nier Automata's combat genius.

Final Fantasy 16 is set to release on June 22 for PS5 with a PC release expected to follow soon after. 

Just can't wait to play the latest title yourself? Find out how fans are reacting to the Final Fantasy 16 demo.  

Hope Bellingham
News Writer

After studying Film Studies and Creative Writing at university, I was lucky enough to land a job as an intern at Player Two PR where I helped to release a number of indie titles. I then got even luckier when I became a Trainee News Writer at GamesRadar+ before being promoted to a fully-fledged News Writer after a year and a half of training.  My expertise lies in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, cozy indies, and The Last of Us, but especially in the Kingdom Hearts series. I'm also known to write about the odd Korean drama for the Entertainment team every now and then.