We need to talk about that Square-Enix relationship with Xbox

I think with Sony closing most Japan studios they are going to lean on money hatting SE games like we have already seen. Basically if you are an Xbox fan try and divorce yourself from SE games, if they come to Xbox they will be late and SE will never prioritize Xbox while Sony is bribing them day and night. The only consolation prize is if these SE games come to Xbox at all maybe they will be on gamepass so we won’t have to pay full price for any of them.

Seems Sony decided it was cheaper to money hat Japanese games from SE then keeping their own studios open.

Just Sony being scared and prone to money Hats again. I’m glad MS bought Bethesda as it looks like Sony was targeting them to get alot of West based Money Hat games on their side.

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At this point I think Sony acquiring Square Enix is a high possibility. It’ll be their Zenimax, but not as valuable.

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Because they don’t sell it on Xbox. Circular cause and effect of Square’s own doing.

The relationship is fine. Sony just pays for exclusivity. Due to marketshare MS would have to pay way more. Also, Intergrade will definitely come to the Xbox soon, maybe at the same time since Sony didn’t say anything about any sort of exclusivity.

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Thanks for your replies.

Several people have stated we should be more vocal about our dissatisfaction with SE skipping or delaying Xbox versions of their games all too often. How could we do it? I’ve replied to Tweets from them so far - maybe it’s not enough?

And yes, I do agree a lot of PlayStation players take the timed exclusivity for granted. They forget that Final Fantasy also sold millions of copies on Xbox and often bring up that bullshit ”Final Fantasy is tied to PS historically so a timed exclusive is okay“ argument.

Lastly, I’ve tried supporting SE games on Xbox as much as I could. I bought almost all of them. But it’s getting to the point where I find that harder and harder to justify.

What will FF7 Remake be priced on Xbox? Everyone on PS Plus will have it and the PS5 upgrade is free to previous PS4 owners. Who else still expects Sqaure to charge full price for FF VII R on Xbox like they did with the two (late) Kingdom Hearts Collections? I honestly find the addition to PS Plus a bit baffling. PC and Xbox sales will be low.

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I would complain more about TWEWY Neo skipping Xbox than any of the obvious moneyhatted games.

There’s talks that the PS+ version of the FF7R will NOT be upgradable to PS5 NextGen version.

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What relationship?

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@crazillo Actually the PS Plus version is confirmed not to have the free upgrade to the PS5 version. Square Enix want as much money as they can get of course. What’s funny is that this isn’t the case for Control this month.

Also no doubt it will be full priced when it comes to Xbox. SE always do this with their late ports on any platform. They’re doing this right now with the KH games on Epic Games Store. Ah in fact that’s another instance of SE accepting yet another moneyhat.

SE definitely work with Sony a lot via timed exclusives, now the question is what happens after…

If Xbox users buy up whatever game when it does eventually release there, how does that impact future titles? Does that say to SE “We can continue doing these deals and still make our Xbox money” or does it say “Hey maybe there is a large userbase here we shouldn’t neglect”? Also what about the alternative where the game sells poorly on Xbox? Does that say “Wow Xbox owners don’t like our games” or does it say “Hey maybe the timed exclusivity hurt our sales here”?

I have this feeling that if you support these games when they come out it condones the practice, but if you don’t they will see it as nobody wanting the game in the first place.

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Wait… there’s a relationship? :doubt:

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Always comes back to what I say about MS, Xbox and Japan. They don’t give a fuck basically

Honestly would be a pointless acquisition since they already get 90% of their games except the odd game that is switch exclusive.

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It’d cost more than Zenimax though, and they already get the games.

To me, it looks like SE is just engaged in business as usual, like any other developer.

This is how I imagine things happen:

  • Sony goes to games they want as exclusives or timed exclusives to get an edge over the competition.

  • Sony makes an offer with some money to help pay for the game’s development

  • the developer/publisher weighs that against estimated sales across all consoles versus just the PlayStation console and adds the money had to the latter figure

  • If it looks like that money hat will not counterbalance lost sales on other machines then they’ll accept it

From my perspective it’s all a business play and nothing personal. There may be quotes or actions that would demonstrate that I’m completely wrong about this. I’d be interested in seeing them if they do exist. EA not publishing a game on the Dreamcast was tied to a particular conversation between SEGA and EA. While one can claim that he it was at least partially a business decision on EA’s part, it was also fairly petty.

The problem here with the Xbox is the number of potential sales that the console and the userbase could offer. Definitely if the Xbox centric userbase are cold on JRPGs, it does affect that equation. But the biggest number that affects it are the total sales of the Xbox console.

20% of Xbox owners could buy a particular game, with 15% of PlayStation owners buying that same game. But the PS has 2.5x the userbase and therefore nearly double the sales.

The second the Xbox has those numbers, publishers like SE will find it harder to justify taking a money hat.

Of course, xCloud adoption and Gamepass adoption helps that.

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Couldn’t have explained it any better.

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Though if the devs are releasing their game for PC, its just a minor amount of additional work to also release on Xbox Series X|S. Thats the benefit of using GDK and unified development environments. The sales numbers look vastly different when viewed that way.

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MS need to get Crystal Dynamics and Eidios Montreal. Then they have no use for Square

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This, while not wrong, is an overly simplistic look at the situation. Consider the following;

  1. The games are being made timed exclusive not only from Xbox, but also from PC.

  2. Revenue from sales is now only part of the story. MS guarantees financial payoff with Game Pass and, further, not releasing on other platforms lowers the exposure to the brand and devalues the intellectual property. A multiplatform AAA IP is a far more valuable asset than an exclusive one.

  3. Final Fantasy VII Remake Intergrade isn’t coming to PS4 and is, for now, a PS5 exclusive. The standalone Yuffie story DLC isn’t coming to PS4 either. This is clearly not about install base or number of sales and you can’t tell me Sony moneyhatted to keep the game off their own platform.

  4. No other publisher is doing this with AAA rated games, none. This is not the state of the market, so therefore there must be an additional reason.

In the end, there’s something more happening here than purely a financially motivated business transaction. SE are uniquely open to accepting Sony’s bribes despite it clearly affecting sales and image. It’s on Phil and the team to work on that of course, but it can’t simply be dismissed as being normal and healthy.

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