Square Enix continues to be one of the most frustrating companies to follow, as the publisher tends to release quality games while also making scummy decisions. The company previously sold a ton of IP to try getting into the NFT craze and now they want to implement AI for game development.
Takashi Kiryu, the company’s president, made comments about aggressively using AI during a New Year’s letter the company sent out (via VGC). AI will be used to “enhance” development productivity and create new forms of content, even though these are things that human developers can do.
“We also intend to be aggressive in applying AI and other cutting-edge technologies to both our content development and our publishing functions,” Kiryu wrote. “In the short term, our goal will be to enhance our development productivity and achieve greater sophistication in our marketing efforts. In the longer term, we hope to leverage those technologies to create new forms of content for consumers, as we believe that technological innovation represents business opportunities.”
Unfortunately, this is hardly news from Square Enix, as the company keeps investing in these fads for a quick buck or two. Fans of the company already know about SE’s foray into NFTs, spearheaded by the previous president, so this move to AI is more disappointing than surprising.
It’s a shame too because the company released several quality titles in 2023. Octopath Traveller 2 was an excellent old-school JRPG, Final Fantasy 16 is a fun hack-and-slash title with RPG elements, and Star Ocean: The Second Story R is a fabulous remake. How a company can make so many quality games while wanting to rely on AI and make money from the blockchain boggles the mind.
No matter what decisions the company makes, it seems that Square Enix will have another big year in 2024. Final Fantasy VII Rebirth will be coming to PlayStation 5 next month on February 29 and is expected to be a system seller.