Japanese publisher Square Enix has announced its first full-year results since its formation in a merger, with sales of some 63.2 billion Yen (469 million Euro) leading to profits of 10.9 billion Yen (81 million Euro).
Although this figure is lower than the combined profit figure for Square and Enix in the previous year - in fact, the income totals only around 67 per cent of the individual incomes of the two unmerged companies - it's still a healthy figure for the firm.
Projections for the coming year are even stronger, with sales expected to climb 20 per cent to 76 billion Yen (564 million Euro), while profits are slated to rise by 4.6 per cent to 11.5 billion Yen (85 million Euro) - with growth expected in all of the publisher's core business areas.
Square Enix finds itself in an interesting position in FY2005 - with updates to its three biggest franchises all nearing completion, it has an embarrassment of riches in terms of products and is currently considering its options as regards launch dates for the upcoming titles.
Kingdom Hearts 2, Final Fantasy XII and Dragon Quest VIII are all likely to be completed during the current financial year, and according to Square Enix president Yoichi Wada, the company is "still discussing in which order to release our three major upcoming titles."
One of the stated aims of the Square Enix merger was to organise the company's release calendar such that Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest games would be spaced out from each other rather than being released in direct competition. As such, it's even possible that one of the titles could be pushed into the following financial year - although Wada says that the company is committed to meeting its unit sales targets for the year "under any circumstance."
Wada also hinted once again that Square Enix was softening in its views on developing for Microsoft's consoles, and could end up working on Xbox 2 - stating that the firm won't develop anything for Xbox Live, despite its enormous success in the online gaming market (Square Enix now has half a million players in Final Fantasy XI, which is more than half of the entire installed base of Xbox Live), but that it is in discussions over the XNA architecture.
On DS and PSP, Wada was enthusiastic, saying that the firm would have a launch title ready for the DS, with more projects in the pipeline as well, while on PSP the company hopes to release original titles rather than ports, and will - as previously announced - be launching the rendered movie Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children on the UMD disc format.