Final Fantasy 14 Expansion And Strong Nier: Automata Sales Highlighted In Square Enix Earnings
Final Fantasy XIV's Stormblood expansion launched in June.
Like numerous other game companies, Square Enix has reported its earnings for its most recent fiscal quarter, which came to an end on June 30, 2017. It was a period without any major new game releases, although there were still some bright spots.
Most notably, the launch of Final Fantasy XIV's Stormblood expansion led to a sizable increase in Square Enix's MMO business. MMO net sales for the quarter were 9.3 billion yen, over 3 billion more than during any quarter in the previous year. The publisher will continue to pursue the MMO space, as the next two months will see new versions of Dragon Quest X released for PS4 and Nintendo Switch in Japan.
On the traditional packaged games side, net sales were down due to the lack of new releases. However, Square Enix did see "strong download sales" of its catalog titles, specifically calling out Nier: Automata (which I assume did well entirely because of this video). This led to the company's console games generating more operating income (the amount the company earns before deducting taxes or interest) when compared with the same period a year ago.
In terms of mobile games, Square Enix described its mainstays--Final Fantasy: Brave Exvius, Hoshi No Dragon Quest, Dragon Quest: Monsters Super Light, and Kingdom Hearts Union X--as "continuing to show strong performances." The mobile/PC browser segment saw an increase in net sales to 23.7 billion yen, up from 19.7 billion last year.
Unfortunately, no specific unit sales figures for any of these games were shared. Total net sales for the quarter were 57 billion yen, up from 51.1 billion a year ago; operating income was down to 3.9 billion from 8.9 billion. Square Enix warned investors of the "major changes" facing the industry, which could lead to larger fluctuations in future results. In particular, it noted that "consumer needs for contents suitable to smart devices such as smartphones and tablet PCs are rapidly expanding, while the console game markets in North America and Europe are increasingly getting competitive and oligopolistic."
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