Square Enix President Talks Dragon Quest VIII US Release
03.03.05 - 2:16 AM

In an interview with Reuters News Agency, Square Enix president Youichi Wada talked about his company's current status and upcoming releases in Japan and North America.

Looking back at last year, Wada mentioned that alongside his company's triple platinum title Dragon Quest VIII: Sora to Umi to Daichi to Norowareshi Himegimi, many companies released new installments of their flagship series. This resulted in a very energetic market situation in late 2004 and early 2005. According to the Square Enix president, this pattern will repeat itself in the future. Looking ahead at this year and 2006, he predicted a great opportunity for the industry, citing the upcoming releases of Final Fantasy XII and Kingdom Hearts II in Japan and abroad, the introduction of next generation consoles and the arrival of the current hardware's final generation of high quality software.

Regarding the US release of Dragon Quest VIII, Wada stated that he would like to release the game as soon as possible in North America. Provided the Level 5-developed title turns out to be a success, Square Enix will consider bringing related products to the North American market. Hence, Wada placed a major emphasis on the release, saying a successful launch would have a major impact.

Looking ahead, the Square Enix president predicted that by 2008 or 2009, online games would account for more than 50% of the industry's revenues and profits.

Final Fantasy XII and Kingdom Hearts II have yet to receive official release dates, but both games are expected to be available in Japan sometime this year.

Chris Winkler

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