There once was a time when Square Enix was my favorite publisher – I would buy anything they did and generally ended up happy. But then they started losing their touch and making weird decisions. They seem to be finding their feet again, and I’m beyond excited for all the Final Fantasy XV announcements they made, but the sales target might be a bit ambitious.
With all the delays in making Final Fantasy XV a reality, plus all the extra content, Square Enix has obviously poured in quite the investment. According to director Hajime Tabata, that means a hefty sales requirement. During a press conference, he explained that the game needs to sell ten million units worldwide over the entire life-span of the game in order to recoup the investment.
That’s quite a number of units. Just for some context, Square Enix said that Tomb Raider had to sell five million units to break even. They eventually exceeded those expectations, but only after the release of the definitive edition brought the units sold to six million.
I adore Final Fantasy, and it’s definitely a key franchise for Square Enix, but is it more popular than Tomb Raider? Without an imminent PC release, can Squeenix expect to hit those kinds of sales figures on consoles alone? At the last announced figure, the PS4 had sold 36 million units to consumers. I’m sure that number, plus the number of Xbox Ones, will continue to climb through the year. However, even if 60 million new generation consoles have been sold by the time Final Fantasy XV launches on 30 September, that means one in six gamers will need to buy the game for it to pay off. That’s a ridiculously high ratio.