Oh, Square. I don’t even know anymore.
You guys were given all the time in the world. All the development resources, all the A-list talent, all the designers, illustrators, artists and programmers you could ever want at your disposal, and what have you turned out in the last decade?
A game so bad it wrecked the reputation of the Final Fantasy brand – considered the unassailable bastion of Japanese RPGs. The pissing away of a pedigree so valuable that merchandise of any sort commanding the iconography from games they made decades ago still demands premium prices. Once respected industry leaders and the pride of Japan, Square-Enix have become a joke to their once-loyal fans worldwide. These same fans have long since moved onto other things, like jobs and families and lives of their own.
The last decade in video game development – the seventh generation of video game console hardware – will be remembered for a game industry grown bloated, arrogant, and fat, giving rise to the worst kind of business practices. But I will remember it for the death of Japanese video game development, and the snubbing of an established truth that I had long since proclaimed as gospel: that Japan made the best video games in the world. I will remember it for the loss of faith I had in Square to make games of any sort.