Square Enix’s President Doubles Down on Blockchain and Gaming for 2023
Japanese game developer Square Enix will not give up on its blockchain gaming initiatives, the company’s president Yosuke Matsuda wrote in a letter. Matsuda’s remarks come as a response to criticism by Square Enix’s fanbase over the company’s recently found interest in blockchain games.
Square Enix Currently Developing “Multiple Blockchain Games”
Square Enix reaffirmed its focus on blockchain gaming despite strong backlash from its fanbase, the company’s president Yosuke Matsuda said in a New Year’s Letter. Square Enix is best known for its popular game franchises like Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest.
According to Matsuda’s letter, the Japanese company is working on multiple new blockchain games and plans to announce further titles later this year. Square Enix is also open to making blockchain-oriented investments and will “continue to take stakes in promising businesses whether we find them in Japan or abroad,” Matsuda added.
“In terms of new business domains, we named three focus investment fields under our medium-term business plan. Among those, we are most focused on blockchain entertainment, to which we have devoted aggressive investment and business development efforts.”A New Year’s Letter from the President
In the letter, Matsuda emphasized the increasing use of the term Web3, which has now become an “established buzzword among businesspeople.” On the flip side, Matsuda also pointed out significant headwinds the blockchain space faced in 2022 such as the FTX collapse and the broader market downturn, but he hopes that blockchain games will enter a new stage of growth this year.
That said, Square Enix is looking to double down on blockchain gaming. Matsuda said blockchain technology allows video games to establish their own token economy and reach self-sustaining growth.
“As I said in last year’s New Year’s letter, if we consider traditional gaming to have been centralized, then blockchain gaming must operate based on a self-sustaining decentralized model. It is that concept, that philosophy that I see to be key.“– Matsuda added in the letter.
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Square Enix Fanbase Concerned About Poor Quality of Blockchain Games
Matsuda’s letter comes just a few months after Square Enix unveiled Symbiogenesis – its first original game with Ethereum non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Expected to launch this spring, Square Enix describes the game as a “digital collectible art experience” containing storytelling elements.
But the company’s blockchain gaming efforts have not been welcomed by its fanbase, which feels doubtful about digital assets and the possible environmental harm caused by blockchain technology, as well as the poor quality of blockchain-based games.
Nevertheless, blockchain gaming has been growing in popularity over recent years. A recent report by Delphi Digital showed that investor interest in crypto gaming has remained robust despite the sector’s general valuation decline. In October 2022, Square Enix’s rival GREE joined forces with Avalanche blockchain developer to create Web3 games.
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