DQ X announcement sees Square Enix stock drop

Nikkei also associates Sony dip with game news

Following the reveal of Dragon Quest X as a Wii and Wii-U MMO yesterday, publisher Square Enix's stock saw a ten per cent downturn as investors shifted shares.

Nikkei, one of Japan's leading media corporations, also reported that the announcement not only resulted in a drop for Square Enix, but has also contributed to a continuing slump in Sony's share price, which has reached the lowest level in Japan all year.

In a comment to the media giant, reported by Andriasang, the head of Rakuten Investment Management said that Sony's stock had been further damaged by its rival securing an exclusive on such a popular franchise, continuing a negative trend after a difficult period brought about partly by a strong Yen.

That dip was also identified as having both cause and consequence in Sony's wider electronics business, in some part attributed to recession and debt issues in Europe.

No insight was given as to why the reveal would have negative connotations for both companies, although negative perception of Nintendo's online capabilities may be a contributing factor.

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Latest comments (15)

Stephen McCarthy Studying Games Technology, Kingston University7 years ago
so it is it the "only for Wii and Wii-U" or the part where Square Enix's is trying a new mmo that having the bigger part in the drop in shares?
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As a outsider, one though is that perhaps the fact there was no cross platform support eg. PS3 or XBOX360 and the release only being on the unproven WII/WII U would be enough to send investors jitters as to the success of the Dragon Quest franchise?

Granted that news of the foray into the WII is not new news (circa 2008/2009), nevertheless due to the changing fluidic market situation in 2011, the jury is still out with regards to the viability of the WII U due to the mixed reactions ranging from ultimate machine to confused - is it a peripheral device to a next gen platform, my guess is that investors want solid empirical evidence to hedge their bets.

Granted, the economical situation in japan is so hostile and turbulent, having had a 6th PM in 5 years, a nation wide catastrophe post Fukushima, high unemployment rate and increasingly challenging games development sector - maybe investors just wanted to back potentially secure winners instead of experimental uncertain markets? Japan itself is truly a conundrum. I doubt if even a local could explain it all

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Dr. Chee Ming Wong on 6th September 2011 10:55am

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Daniel Hughes Studying PhD Literary Modernism, Bangor University7 years ago
Possible investors concerns are down to the mess that was Final Fantasy XIV--I can't imagine they'll be keen to see Square Enix make another attempt at MMO's with another of their most popular franchises. It is likely that concerns over the choice of platform play a factor, but given Wii's massive install base, and Nintendo's promise to offer online for Wii U comparable to 360 and PS3, as well as Dragon Quest IX's massive success on DS, you'd think investors might be less jumpy?? Then again, they are only in it for their own short term gain!
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Christopher Bowen Editor in Chief, Gaming Bus7 years ago
This, like all other "stock has dropped/raised" stories, is much ado about nothing ultimately. Speculators are a curious lot, and if their feelings were indicative of success or failure, the Wii would have been *dust*, and we'd all have a shrine to Michael Pachter.

I can't stand the idea of a DQX MMO (though in a sense, DQIX was a small-scale MMO, if you think about it), but this shouldnt' be enough to get the markets moving. This is a whole bunch of people individually thinking it's a good time to sell, and perception becoming reality.
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I loved DQIX (clocked close to 100hrs?), and it wasn't *that* different from what they are proposing here. The main difference being the requirement to "pay" to continue playing... is it still considered a MMO in "single player" mode? (which is one of the two online game modes).

It sold massively on the DS, and I do wonder how it will sell going back to a non-portable console. Also - will it be a full-priced title? And how many hours of offline play are allowed (is it limited to "n" hours, or "n" hours into the quest?)

If it runs on the Wii, there is no reason a 3DS version couldn't be developed...
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James Wells Gaming Contributor - 7 years ago
But the Wii has such a seamless online experience! Right?
*crickets chirp*
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Daniel Hughes Studying PhD Literary Modernism, Bangor University7 years ago
James--the lack of online infrastructure on Wii won't be a problem, Square Enix will be able to set up their own system, free of friend codes, as Capcom did with Monster Hunter Tri. I'm also expecting--with Nintendo responsible for bringing Dragon Quest X to Western markets--that there'll be no online subscription fee in the West, again, as was the case with Monster Hunter Tri. Dragon Quest is hardly huge over here, so I doubt Square Enix will have any objections to the lack of subscription fees if it helps bring Dragon Quest to a larger Western audience.
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Art C. Jones Writer / Blogger 7 years ago
I think there are two concerns about DQX:
1 - It's being done in-house
2 - It's a radical departure from what they've done in the past

I like change, but the gaming market tends not to. Staying true and predictable sells, messing with the formula is fraught with risk. A 10% stock drop might seem high, but since the Japanese stock market was down for the day already, the drop isn't as big as it might seem. Probably 80% of the 10% drop could be attributed to the announcement, which seems about right.

As a gamer I hope mixing up the formula will move the franchise forward, too many games, COD I'm looking at you, have gotten Madden-itis of late.
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Nicholas Russell writer 7 years ago
I love how some of you guys are taking a "change leads to bad things" stance about the company that created Final Fantasy, or the franchise that made its bones way back when by radically changing everything about the game from one entry to the next.

Still though, this news is hardly homogeneous or even limited to today. Thanks heavily to Final Fantasy XIV the company has been hurting since last year and I think this news of them venturing for a brand new subscription based MMO when they've not fixed and, to my knowledge, still aren't making money on their last attempt at the genre is what the people cursing DQX are really worried about. Combine this with them attempting to MMO-ize a franchise that is notoriously retro and slapping a monthly subscription model onto it in a market filled with titles boasting innovative ideas and micro-transaction-based free to play economic models and even people who've never heard of the NES can see why this would be a really bad idea. Then it's being slapped onto the WiiU instead of, say, the more conducive Vita. It's a disaster that's waiting to happen.
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Patrick Williams Medicine and Research 7 years ago
Its good to see that stockholders also think this is another terrible decision by SE... It kills me to see how the company's been doing in the past few years. Another MMO is not the solution, especially not on the Wii, especially not while FFXIV 's issues are ongoing.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Patrick Williams on 7th September 2011 12:39am

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One should look at Square as

Developer with three divisions

1/ Square Japan (sacred cows)
2/ Square London (Eidos HQ)
3/ Eidos Montreal/Crystal Dynamics/ Io interactive (other cows)

+ Square as a publisher/partner (other titles)

cumulatively, that is a lot of clout and room to wriggle!!

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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.7 years ago
@Patrick, shouldn't the fact that the Wii U is launching with a major MMO RPG negate any negative connotations of the Wii getting the game? How about the fact it can be played offline 100% making the online element a non-issue for the Wii anyway.

And as Russell Carroll noted, stocks all over Japan dropped that same day.
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Haven Tso Web-based Game Reviewer 7 years ago
It really depends on how they do it. FF XIV is hardly a success and if Square Enix wants to do it with Dragon Quest X they better be careful. On that note, I think DQ IX did very well with its online function and maybe Square Enix should stick with that formula. I like the idea of street pass for DQ X which kind of expand your world without limiting you to the MMO model. I still don't like the idea of subscription play but don't mind buying an online pass a la White Knight Chronicles model. I think Level 5 did a great job with White Knight Chronicles online model and lots of players are still playing the online components of the game (including me). So hopefully Level 5 will be able to translate that into DQ X.
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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.7 years ago
Haven, SE is developing DQX internally.
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Haven Tso Web-based Game Reviewer 7 years ago
Oh really? Strange that they are doing so as Level 5 did great jobs with the last two games. Thank for correcting Jimmy.
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