In a semi-surprising move, Square Enix Japan has released a teaser website promoting Dragon Quest 1-8 making its way to smartphones in the near future. There is no confirmation of a US mobile phone release at this time, nor what versions of each Dragon Quest game the company will release.
I refer to the announcement as, “semi-surprising,” because of recent comments made by president Yosuke Matsuda and the company’s ongoing reform. He made it clear the company is headed for trouble if they don’t change things quickly. Something he wants to see improved upon is the, “asset-turnover ratio.” Square Enix looks to spend less time developing their games so they can keep fresher on market trends, and releasing Dragon Quest games on smartphones is a relatively-inexpensive way of turning a profit on an already-established asset. What is surprising is how fast his words are being turned around into actions.
Part of the bigger Square Enix reform was company heads stepping down, including Eidos Montreal’s general manager Stephane D’Astous. He left his division earlier this year due to a lack of courage, leadership and communication. Even though Square Enix will be continuing to make AAA games on home consoles, their recent trend to chase after mobile gaming and microtransactions has left a sour taste in the fans’ mouths.
It will be interesting to see how Square Enix plans to release their upcoming Dragon Quest content, and how much they will be charging. We will keep you informed if we hear more information as it happens.