An analysis of FF7R and Xbox [warning, long OP!]

When FF7R was announced, it was widely assumed by media and gamers to come to Xbox after a year. This was exacerbated by the boxart from Square-Enix that, even after the initial delay, explicitly stated it was a one year timed exclusive down to the very date:

Now, the reason everybody assumed it was coming to Xbox was due to a few factors:

  • PlayStation console exclusives tend to have this boxart or some variation of it:

OIP

When FF7R Intergrade was announced for PS5, gamers and media alike caught on to the fact that Sony seemed to have extended the contract behind the scenes for at least six months, and also put extra emphasis on “console exclusive:”

A quick internet search shows many sites picking up on this but here is an example from the popular PlayStation fansite PushSquare:

Sony loves a good ol’ timed exclusive, and having pumped a chunk of change into Square Enix’s pocket for the original release of Final Fantasy VII Remake, it looks like it’s brought another briefcase to the publisher for PlayStation 5 expansion Intergrade. A new trailer for the title concludes with some small print: “Available on PS5 at least six months earlier than any other format.”

The original Final Fantasy VII Remake on PS4 was timed exclusive for a year, meaning many had expected it to launch on other formats in April, but it seems the Japanese giant has extended that deal with Intergrade, keeping the title off other consoles until at least January of next year. That’s more than 18 months after the RPG’s original release.

Now, my memory gets fuzzy after all this (likely the intended effect of the obsfucation in the first place), but it seemed to have been widely known that Epic then moneyhatted the game for the Epic Games Store, which was obvious due to their promotions, the SteamDB for FF7R popping up, and the fact that Final Fantasy does pretty well on Steam for the platform to be suddenly blocked in favor of a much lesser platform with something to prove.

At this point, the only thing keeping Xbox fans hopes afloat was the fact that the game originally seemed to be coming to Xbox and the fact that even Steam got shafted due to a competitors “moneyhat.”

However, things became doubtful when:

  • Popular journalists and insiders were claiming Sony wanted mainline Final Fantasy to be exclusive for the entire generation
  • FFXVI was announced for PlayStation/PC only (and later on the PC version was removed, including from Wikipedia), despite the previous entry (FFXV) launching multiplatform. Xbox Series X|S being the most successful Xbox consoles (and especially more than last generation) should have cemented another multiplatform release
  • FFXIV being announced for Xbox, and then quietly forgotten and never mentioned again. While a lot of this may have to do with how busy the devs have been with expansions, Sony had been promotong the game more and more as a third-party exclusive and successful MMO.

And now we are here, where a Steam version was just announced to be 6 months (day and date) late to the party for a port, obviously since the EGS contract is over.

And what does Xbox get? They get the prequel spin-off: Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII Reunion, along with a reminder that the second part of FF7R is launching exclusively on PS5.

My personal take on this is probably too much to write, but I do have a few questions:

  • When do you think the move to keep the game off of Xbox permanently happened? For me, it seems to have been at the start of this gen (hence the above ad) when Sony seemingly wanted to bury Xbox before they got up and running. This coincides with the rumors that they want to get exclusives from franchises/developers associated with Xbox (which we have seen with Deathloop, Ghostwire: Tokyo, KotOR and rumored to be the case with BioShock/others, as well as journalists stating Sony wants FF off Xbox for the entire gen).

  • Why is Microsoft expected, pressed and demanded by media and gamers to release games they own for multiplatform IP everywhere, but things like this that go on behind the scenes for multiplatform IP that is NOT owned by a company is ignored? In 2028 (example), when Microsoft has moved around ABK studios and have CoD on a two year cycle, and need to spend hundreds upon hundreds of millions on funding, marketing, publishing and promoting the game(s), as well as take all the risk with actually owning an IP and having it potentially flop or fail to meet expectations (especially with the millions lost from moving to a two year dev cycle instead of yearly), it feels like there is an expectation and entitlement that the game(s) (and other games) still release on PS5.

  • Meanwhile, a company can seemingly spend a boatload of cash to keep massive AAA game(s) off the competitor’s platform for years (or permanetely whether fully or in perpetuity), despite having absolutely no hands in the development or publishment of the game, and nobody raises an eyebrow.

It just doesn’t make sense and the goalposts always seem moved whenever someone does end up bringing it up.

What are your thoughts?

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My thoughts are its never coming to Xbox and Sony want to make damn sure of that

Which is fine…but don’t hide behind timed deals. Just come out and say FF7R will be console exclusive indefinitely and will only appear on PC

Techncially the timed exclusivity was correct as it did come to PS5 and PC later.I’m sort of over it tbh…but I still don’t understand why you’re putting spon offs on Xbox. Knowing full well you have 0 plans to put remake on Xbox. Thats seriously stupid.

Thats like Bethesda making a Starfield Prequel spinoff and putting it out on Playstation…only for the main game to never show up.

ITs clear Sony are paying huge sums of money to SE for these and whatever they don’t pay…SE will port. Like Star Ocean, Stranger of Paradise and this crappy crisis core remaster.

But What can you expect? Sony lost Bethesda games…theyre gonna double down on FF7 remake.

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Well, that’s the thing that Sony gets a pass for. Obsfucation for the duration of timed exclusives which means said exclusive may as well be permanent. Crash N Sane Trilogy had that question asked for an entire year with the devs unable to answer, and when one accidently did he deleted his tweet and stopped talking on social media.

The only reason FF Origins and Crisis Core (plus whatever Final Fantasy game doesn’t seem worth it or looks mediocre/budget) are coming to Xbox is because Sony are not paying money to keep those off Xbox, but instead want the premiere AAA games to themselves. So while most people agree it makes no sense to release FF7 Crisis Core on Xbox, it makes sense to Square Enix because they get money either way.

This is actually more harmful then most realize towards Xbox as a whole because it loses out on the most popular IP in a genre (a genre which MS is making strides to add to Game Pass to increase diversity) which adds to Xbox gamers not being as interested in said genre and then other smaller devs not porting games in said genre, and the cycle repeats.

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I wish some j schreier or whoever would try to investigate this. I mean wtf with these secret release dates. I remeber very well how everyone tried to press Microsoft to say how long tomb raider will be exclusive. And now no one cares?!??

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Someone with twitter should ask him if he knows what’s up

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I suspect if he knew something he’d have said it by now, all these industry insiders rely on sources for their information and if they don’t have a source on a subject there isn’t much they can do.

I feel like the answer is very obvious though ? Sony paid for an extended exclusivity window.

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Lol yeah, now that you mention it, Tomb Raider is a good example of the lopsided duality. Microsoft got blasted to kingdom come by both media and gamers alike for not announcing it was a one year exclusive. The furor was so loud and hateful that Microsoft had to change course with their third-party exclusive stance and focus more on their own studios and XGP. I remember the hatred being so crazy that casual friends knew about it. What a time that was, and what a short memory gamers have.

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The extended window is surely up by now, intergrade came out over a year ago. But, these things aren’t always immediete and unlike the Steam release an Xbox port would take active development. I wouldn’t be surprised if we do get FF7R by the end of the year.

Sometimes he responds (like Avowed) to questions he’s asked instead of dropping stuff without provocation.

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That Sony made a move after the Bethesda manouver stole all the major RPGs from their platform.

Maybe the trilogy will be on the next Xbox or MS will buy SE and get it that way. Either way i doubt this was always the plan, but SE is dumb and had to sell off half their company for spending money, doubt its working out that well.

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My guess would be that Sony wants Final Fantasy VII Remake, FFXVI and FFXIV to be fully console exclusive and probably made the deal years ago with the option of extending the one year timed exclusivity for an unknown amount of time.

At this point, anyone who wants to play FF7R, FFXVI or FFXIV will probably have to buy a PS5 or a capable PC because after 2+ years, it’s seems highly unlikely that these games will be coming to Xbox.

Im an Xbox fanboy who considers Final Fantasy a top 3 IP. Ive made it a point to buy every single FF released on the platform.

Fuck Sony tbh

Microsoft shouldve played hardball with CoD and Minecraft when they had the chance, if this is how the competition is going to behave.

Damn shame

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wE just have to enjoy superior RPG’s coming to xbox like Starfield and P5R I guess.

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Seeing as I don’t think we can rely on SE ever going forward to bring JRPGs to Xbox, Microsoft should just give money to help Mistwalker grow, to become a JRPG powerhouse.

Also give money to Level 5, so they can reclaim their former glory.

Those companies might not be SE, but with MS’ backing they could be just as good, if not better.

At least they still make turn based JRPGs and I for one want more of those, not less.

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This is me as well. :neutral_face:

I’ve given up waiting for FF7R on Xbox and I’ll just finish my PS4 copy now. I kept playing a little bit and then waiting because it seemed like an Xbox port was right around the corner. :laughing:

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I think Sony is buying Square, man. They’re probably just waiting for the Bungie deal to go through

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So Square Enix releasing a FF7 Crisis Core for Xbox and PC has convinced you that Sony is acquiring them?

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Y’know, as much as I adore chocobo and moogles, this isnt the worst compromise

Ill likely end up with a PS5 because of these shenanigans though. Just watch

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If Sony were buying Square they wouldn’t be able to exert any control over it till the deal was done - same as Microsoft with Activision and Bethesda. Nothing Square does now in connection to Sony is any indication of an acqusition.

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