Square Enix CEO Resigns Over Colossal Losses

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Square Enix CEO Youichi Wada has announced he is finally taking responsibility for the company’s disastrous financial performance by resigning, after the firm posted a 13 billion yen loss in its most recent fiscal quarter.

He will be succeeded by 49-year-old Yousuke Matsuda, Square Enix’s chief accountant, who is unsurprisingly promising to turn around the company with a program of drastic reform.

Whether Matsuda – who was presumably not without influence over the company’s direction during his 10 year tenure on its board – is any improvement of course remains to be seen.

His public disclosure of owning a mere 200 shares (presently trading at 1,100 yen each) does not seem a huge vote of confidence in the company’s future.

Wada for his part has not commented on his future employment plans, although a face-saving sinecure seems likely to be all he will manage.

Although no discussion of Square Enix’s failings is complete without mentioning Final Fantasy, continued weak performance from just about all of their latest releases – most recently Tomb Raider and Dragon Quest X – seems finally to have made Wada’s position untenable.

As with the recent “resignation” of EA’s CEO, there is also a strong suspicion that whatever the public facade of voluntary resignation, he has been ignominiously sacked.

Also echoing EA, the CEO in question leaves behind a devastated company in his wake, widely reviled by gamers and having a rock bottom stock price – although given the notorious difficulty of extricating a Japanese CEO from their position, the scale of his incompetence likely dwarfs even that of the great helmsman of “America’s worst company.”


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    Avatar of Monou
    Comment by Monou
    02:09 27/03/2013 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Thank god - This idiot ruined the company. Hopefully the next CEO has something resembling a brain.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:21 27/03/2013 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Don't hold your breath. The people responsible for the bad decisions are the same people who will accept this resignation. It's typical corporate politics to fire the CEO in order to appease the investors, while the board of directors can just continue business as usual.

    Avatar of HouseLife
    Comment by HouseLife
    18:19 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    They put an accountant in charge. Are you seriously going to sit there and say it's a good thing Monou...? Explain in any way how an accountant has ever truly improved jack shit from being the head of a company ever. Then take the result of answering that question and apply it to videogame companies.

    I would stick with Wada anyday.

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:50 28/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Matt Ouimet just led the Cedar Fair group of amusement parks into a net increase in profits of 9.5% with a net decrease in attendance over the last year. He also did this while having an increased capital expense of 6.2% and increased working capital from a deficit of $100mil to positive assets of 3 million in 12 months again with increased capital expense and lower attendance figures. He is former CFO for Disney.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:28 30/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    "Hey guys, we've been losing a lot of money in recent years. I say we put the guy who's been overseeing our money in charge!"

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:52 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    what they really needed to do is find an inventinve and creative director and put him in charge then they might be able to descern between an interesting title and the pure shit theve been crapping

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:30 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    Companies are only as good as their employes. Who of any notably skill is till working for Square Enix?

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:19 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    Honestly, Tetsuya Nomura is one of the few talented people left at that company. A lot of the original FF teams have already left because of mistreatment. The only "Fantasy" type franchise that is still making them any money is the KingdomHearts games (they pretty much print money). If they ever release Versus (which will probably be on PS4) That's an assload of capital right there. Both of those are Nomura's projects, and they're really the only things I care about from that company atm.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:01 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I have to agree here. Kingdom Hearts has yet to be ruined though they tried by putting off 3 for so long.

    At least most of the side stories we got were actually pretty good.

    Versus as well, when it was first announced everyone was more excited by it than FFXIII. They may actually be able to come back a little if they release versus and KH3 fairly soon.

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:17 29/04/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Most of the team that designed their early SFC games is still with the company, believe it or not.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:17 04/04/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Assembling a team of talented employees starts with having good leadership. Without that, the best people will not want to work there.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:53 28/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    SE is moving to be an all outsource company, so there's the answer. to cheap to keep a payrole.
    THQ did the same and see what happened to them.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:08 04/04/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Well spoken and 100% agreed.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:57 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    that's very frontal, but I have to agree with you and I hope you can tell him directly face to face

    Avatar of Erranty
    Comment by Erranty
    05:04 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    I think it has less to do with the games going downhill and more to do with a preferential change their target demographic. The people they're used to selling to have changed, the types of devices have changed, and people's preferences have changed.

    If square enix focuses on developing a really good game for Android and iOS they'll get out of this rut rather quickly.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:56 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    They're already been doing this since the start of the gen (The world ends with you) as have many companies including EA. Mobile development hasn't been the answer to any of their woes. Most games don't break even on Google play or iOS without major backing from a publisher and even then those games don't break even either, or have small profit margins.

    It isn't demographic changes so much as its been incompetent management; while they rehash the same franchises over and over again. Not to mention they have archaic pipelines for creating content that keep games in development hell. Couple that with devs like Toriyama trying to "CoD" FF and you've got a recipe for disaster.

    What Square-enix really needs right now is a complete shake up in management, and more Devs like YoshiP.

    Avatar of Erranty
    Comment by Erranty
    10:50 27/03/2013 # ! Good (+0.4)

    @09:50
    Actually, I do play those PS1 games still. Even ones that I've never played before have been more enjoyable than the newer games. And if you use an Emulator you can improve the graphics quality when you feel like it.

    It's a lot like the reason why indie games have been increasing in popularity. They're focused more on doing interesting things with gameplay than spending all their budget on graphics, because they know that's the only way they can compete, and it's been working for them.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:05 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    @9:50

    I have played the old FF games MANY times and they are still just as awesome as ever. The recent FF games are still shit in comparison.

    Square Enix fucked up when they stopped making the games they wanted and started to try to cater to western audiences. What they didn't realize is that the people in the west that liked their games back then liked them because they were jrpgs and DIFFERENT. Catering to the west was and still is the worst thing they can do.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:33 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    multi-platform is not the most important, take for example the Apple, They only make SO to Mac platforms. I think that the most important is the quality of the software, if it is not very good, not will be sold. In the last releases, they were good, but not very good.

    Comment by Anonymous

    Path of exile its a great example of gameplay over grafics, if u compare it do diablo III.

    Comment by Anonymous

    Then why don't you sit down with your PS1 and play the old awesome games?
    Because the quality is poor in comparison with modern games. No one wants to play those old ultra repetitive games. You're probably even afraid of ruining the fond memories of those good old times by playing it again and end up hating it.
    Face it, it's us who have changed for the worse. We've probably become tired of those kind of RPGs or we've just become too fucking demanding. Or both...

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:10 27/03/2013 # ! Drivel (-0.8)

    At this point every game has to be built with a multi platform approach in mind from the beggining, efficient coding that will reduce costs of development and porting.
    There's no other way, they need to release everything on as many systems as possible.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:29 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    I disagree with that notion. As a person who grew up playing virtually all the games that square enix (when they were squaresoft) had made and once being a huge final fantasy fan, I believe that the quality of the franchise took huge hits. Square let franchises like Brave Fencer Musashi and Xenogears go to the way side only to get stuck in long development cycles to water down their final fantasy product. I'm all for being innovative in your product and not stagnating it but the crap that they've come out with since ff10 has been inexcusable.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:54 30/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Thank You! Glad somebody agrees. FF X was pretty damn boring in the gameplay department. FF XII had better gameplay even if some of the characters were still just as annoying.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:31 28/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    final fantasy x was crap

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:02 27/03/2013 # ! Good (+0.8)

    To: Square-Enix
    From: Your Customers

    Subject: Instant Cash.

    Body: Chrono Break, Final Fantasy Versus XIII (or hell, release it as XV), Parasite Eve 3 (that PSP disaster was NOT a PE game), Final Fantasy VII R, The World Ends With You 2, Kingdom Hearts III (for crying out loud), Final Fantasy Tactics 2 (the Advance games don't count for this number system), a GOOD "World of Mana" game, Dragon Quest X (outside Nippon-land), Final Fantasy V & VI on 3DS/VITA, reboot of Star Ocean (without all that 4th dimension BS), hiring-on Tri-Ace more often, and GOOD GAMES IN GENERAL.

    Do it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:03 27/03/2013 # ! Good (+0.6)

    Well said.

    In short lets go back to the fucking roots and target the appeal to the audience that has always been your customers instead of westernizing and going after fucking western fanbases that have never and never will like jrpgs.

    Currently they target the wrong users and ditch those that would really buy their stuff.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:00 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    P.S. Also Moar Xenogears.

    Avatar of warjoke
    Comment by warjoke
    10:59 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    and tell them to stop making card games as well.

    seriously, its not in digital format.

    Avatar of Satonaka
    Comment by Satonaka
    14:06 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    @5:02

    This

    Just the Chrono Brake/Break game alone with Yasunori Mitsuda's music would do it for me right there.

    ALso bringing over some of those unreleased NA mana games wouldn't hurt for the PSN/Vita ^ ^

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:30 28/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Just a shame the dream team that made Chrono Trigger left the company

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:01 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    I must be the only one asking for S-E to just give me Rad Racer 3.... lol

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:50 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    They need Game Arts to do something...like Lunar 3 or another decent Grandia.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:51 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Add a Threads of Fate sequel to that list and they have another customer.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:24 01/04/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    This made me giggle.
    But I'd like to have seen the backstory journey for both characters AND NOT JUST SOME DAMMED TEASER. Hell release the past, present, and future of the story as a single game.
    Vagrant Story sequel please...

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:34 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    all of those wouldnt sell nearly as much as regular mainstream AAA stuff like deus ex do/can.
    so they either make a lot of those with very small production cost or they never do it.
    in this day and age the only way publishers try to rescue their companys is cutting alot of staff and then proceding to release a bloated game with a ridiculous budget which then either fails or makes money back thus rescuing or dooming the company.
    In other words: They rather gamble than working hard for a slow recovery

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:32 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    They're main problem was that they've mainly been churning out remakes rather than new stuff. This got worse when the remakes by themselves aren't that well remade.

    The conclusion is Epic Fail.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:32 28/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    also no more games on xbox

    Avatar of Yamato
    Comment by Yamato
    03:37 28/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    no mention of that Bravely Default localization everyone's asking for?

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:47 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    are you nuts? the problem wasnt what they relased but what they developed. are you REALLY sure you want the same people who messed up all the curent titles to stick their dirty hands in your remake and seaquel pie? id rather wait for them to get some good teams back to work THEN let them work on the titles we all want to see.

    Avatar of Castian
    Comment by Castian
    03:39 28/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Only the truth here,
    The actual Squeenix, will only create crap from those treasure games.

    They're like King Midas, but instead gold they're turning everything they touch, into crap.

    earlier fantasies awesome, now crap.
    tomb rider? before nice now crap.
    just cause 1 was interesting, now crap.
    What would happen if they touch our ol'school favorites? yeah.... crap.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:13 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    I agree, pretty much with all of your point.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:55 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Speaking of tri-ace, another Valkyrie Profile would be nice.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:31 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Agree for all except the FF7 remake. True, it would sell shit-loads but no matter what they do, the nostalgic fans are not going to be happy at all.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:19 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    I most certainly agree on a FFT 2... That plot has so much potential, yet it was so overlooked. Well, the whole game was overlooked and only got a small PSP reboot. It deserves more than that.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:49 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    With a ye olde english retranslation that made me want to throw the game through a window. Fucking hell I hate ye olde english. It's old for fucks sake take it off the life support.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:22 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    You pretty much printed out the exact guidelines they need to make them the undisputed RPG kings. In addition to this, they also have the rights to the "Grandia" games and that awesome battle system. I'd like to see them take that system, and add a GOOD story to it. They also need to release FF Type-0 over here.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:13 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    NO.

    Only rpg king is atlus. Plain and simple. Atlus does not sell the millions SE does but Atlus rpgs, specially SMT and spinoffs have become the role model and standard of rpgs.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:23 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    It's an expression, you brainless fanboy.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:17 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    Atlus doesn't produce many of the games, so it doesn't really count. They simply have good taste.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:02 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    I would add just one thing Geno.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:16 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (0)

    He should be punched in the face by a school teacher~~!

    Avatar of HouseLife
    Comment by HouseLife
    18:17 27/03/2013 # ! Neutral (-0.2)

    I don't care what anyone says. The 4th dimension concept in Star Ocean was brilliant. It sincerely annoys me that I found out how many people were angered by that. That was honestly excellent. I do not however like how they finished it off, but even then it wasn't handled badly. That shit was great.

    Comment by Anonymous

    True i find it great but the levels in sphere company!! Man that annoys me. Still i love star ocean maybe one day it will come to PS4






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