Square-Enix "Westward Expansion" Little More Than A Cop-Out?
You know, at first, we were willing to give Square-Enix the benefit of the doubt and simply agree that their perceived gravitation towards Microsoft is nothing more than good business, and they're not really turning their back on long-time PlayStation loyalists. However, we're quickly moving past this theory and starting to adopt a darker, more negative outlook...
A recent post over at Gamer.Blorge turned us onto the Siliconera report that the Xbox 360 exclusive RPG, Star Ocean: The Last Hope, will need 3 DVDs. Now, this is something we should've most certainly expected, but then we read the Blorge article and began to reflect more on the current situation. Quite clearly, they'll need multiple discs for the 360 version of Final Fantasy XIII as well, and they further admitted they won't start working on that version until the PlayStation 3 iteration is complete. Hence, the only conclusion one can reach is that Square-Enix is going out of their way to produce a 360 version for North America. This is only marginally suspicious, but when it comes to something like the new Star Ocean - a series that has only known PlayStation consoles, by the way - how is it "good business" or even "expanding" business by making a game specifically for the 360 with the lesser software format? On top of which, we're talking about a JRPG, which typically never fare well on a Microsoft console. Sooo...what's all this about?
Sure, one could argue that with a project like The Last Remnant, work began before Blu-Ray solidified their victory over HD-DVD, and the PS3 was still very early in its life cycle with a tiny user base in comparison to the 360. This is probably why the game debuted first on the 360 (of course, now that we've seen the reviews, we're not anxiously awaiting its release on the PS3). However, we can't find a legitimate reason for putting The Last Hope solely on the 360. The only reason? Er...we're sensing a definite Microsoft bias right now. It's one thing to expand westward and increase the radius of your target circle, so-to-speak, but they're not doing that by making a game exclusive to one platform. Damnit.
12/7/2008 Ben Dutka