Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Methinks the game is just about over...

Two things that can only portend great ominousness about any future Final Fantasy XI has or may have had...

1) An Absolute Debacle on the part of their third-party partners, Digital River, regarding the supposed release date/time of the Seekers of Adoulin digital download...

Some of us aren't just trying to get the code to farm whatever information we can get out of the expansion files, people.

Some of us actually welcomed an early-morning download time so that we could keep from over-straining the networks we're on -- some of us share bandwidth with others.

So, imagine my disgust when it becomes evidently clear that the right hand had no clue as to what the left hand was doing, and that the expansion wasn't available on Digital River's services until this afternoon, by all appearances, for many people...

Yes, at the end of the day, it really makes little difference -- the game servers will not have Adoulin content up for at least another 24 hours (as of time of writing, they said the evening of Wednesday).

But, owing to that at least one digital game provider had the expansion, and the right idea to release it (if it says Tuesday, it should be available Tuesday as if the stores were open at midnight for it!), I decided to cancel the SE Store order (they can have their freaking music box, for all it matters), ordered from Amazon, and had everything downloaded and installed within about 30 minutes...

... which then led to about a 45-minute Check Files "update" which, though annoying, was what it was.

I've said this company is in trouble, and days like this are an indication.

2) But, boy did I not have any idea how much trouble SE is in!!

Square-Enix, perhaps not coincidentally, and largely owing to poor console sales in western territories, is announcing a corporate restructuring, top-to-bottom.

Filings as of the 26th (JP Time) (.PDF file here) show some very ominous signs for the company:
  • Earnings reports have forced a revision of the profit margin of the company for the fiscal year ending 3/31/2013 from a 3.5 billion yen profit to a 130 billion yen loss!  (A loss of approximately 113 yen per share of stock.)
  • Reason:  Largely, the console games are not selling well in Western territories.  Even as it is apparent that Square-Enix is trying to grab money anywhere it can get (sources, today, indicate Square-Enix sold off four of it's free-to-play titles to another company for a cash infusion), Square-Enix is forced into a major corporate restructuring.
  • As a result, Yoichi Wada, head of Square-Enix, is out.
They aren't going to be around much longer, people.

I've really gotten the impression that, if Square-Enix doesn't get bought out by some point in 2013, it'll be a surprise.

I wouldn't be shocked if the Evil Bastards at EA come in and swoop up the remains like a vulture picking at a carcass.

I think, honestly, they've made one or two mistakes too many.

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