The Resonance of Eorzea

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

...Has SquareEnix cleverly trumped Blizzard?

Let's face it people... SE has pulled a coup of potentially epic proportions.   It is no news that several of WoW's elements were researched, studied and possibly even incorporated (albeit loosely) by SE developers during the creation of FFXIV.   One factor that is even more thought provoking is the fact that Blizzard's latest expansion to the WoW universe (Cataclysm) was also due to be released this year; and many critics had speculated on which title would pull more players.

However, the real coup lies in the fact that three weeks ago, SquareEnix gave everyone a pleasant surprise by announcing a firm release date for FFXIV.  Several of us were all marking our calendars for either Thanksgiving or Christmas 2010 only to have them snicker: "Yesss Blizzzzard, we vill have our game out on zee 3oth of Setember heh heh".

Considering the fact that both games started alpha and beta testing within weeks of each other, with SE securing an earlier release date, they have effectively began a gradual but definite trend of people cancelling their WoW cataclysm pre-oders.  In other words, by marketing strategy standards, Blizzard just got blasted in the face like so...

(Notice the smirky grin on the Corsair/Pirate's face?  Spiffy piece of artillery as well,  if you ask me... has already convinced me to make it my third job-class to level up ).

No offense to WoW and it's truly remarkable global player base of 11 million strong... but I tried WoW a few years ago and never really liked it.  I could have endured the slightly cartoonish graphics but it was the community that irritated me to no ends (I was unfortunate enough to start the game with a constant stream of retarded chatterboxes yapping absolute drivel left, right and bloody center).  Was no surprise that I quit the game within a couple weeks.

That said, we shall hope to see how SE capalizes on their "lead" over the next several months... in the meantime, keep alpha/beta testing, dear Blizzard; and inform us whenever you eventually secure a release date for your frightfully cartoony MMO.  Be well everyone.

Always everyone, please remember that all the official videos and images from SE were used here strictly for fan purposes; and all the product, system names and/or company logos remain the registered trademarks of Square Enix.  Copyright (C) 2010 SQUARE ENIX CO. LTD. All Rights Reserved


  1. Are you pulling this from any data or sales (pre-order cancellations) report? I haven't heard many WoW fans saying they are leaving for FFXIV and in fact, I know the US Media has largely ignored FFXIV altogether.

  2. Don't be so sure that XIV will come out in September. SE shot themselves in the foot by announcing the release date before the Beta even begun. Sure, they could make it, but right now they could also fail horribly at making the deadline. Hopefully they will delay the game if that happens.

  3. @ Johnny:
    I have an account on NPD mainly for business purposes, however be aware that they no longer display public figures for several sectors of the multimedia industry.

    But ultimately, the present North American figures for WoW cataclysm pre-orders dropped by over 18,000 over the past couple weeks; while FFXIV went up approximately 40,000 (mainly due to SE's release date announcement).

    I shall be very frank: The whole marketing strategy by SE is quite commendable... they just announced a new CEO for their North America region (the chap is well known in the UK and has 20 years experience from Namco, Sega and Microsoft).

    Next, remember that Gamescon is coming up next month in Germany (August 18th to 22nd), and three or four weeks after that will be Tokyo Game Show. I have no doubt that SE intends to sway players in Europe and Asia during those periods.

    It is only after these two events have fallen into place that SE will begin to aggressively market FFXIV on the US Media. Do you recall what they did for FFXIII by cleverly debuting the repeated commercials during the All-Star NBA Finals?)

    Nah mate... no delays on this one. Earlier today, a couple of my Japanese friends just emailed me Tanaka's quotes from this week's Gamewatch magazine. Be rest assured that he reconfirmed the date and briefly explained the 18 classes on the game.