Square Enix comprises two of the most venerable Japanese companies to ever enter the game industry, and the publisher has a massive catalogue of classic titles to keep selling to modern players. There are no shortage of options in that regard – from the Final Fantasy 7 Remake to Trials of Mana – but now the company wants to follow in the footsteps of Microsoft, Ubisoft, and EA.
“We do already provide games for Microsoft’s Game Pass,” CEO Yosuke Matsuda tells GamesIndustry.biz. “But at the end of the day, the direction that we’re thinking about is having a channel of our own.”
It’s clearly an important topic for the company right now, as Matsuda has discussed it in multiple interviews. He tells Game Informer that “the more classic titles that you might have played on NES, we are still working hard to make it so you can play those. We actually have launched a dedicated project internally to port those, so we are working to make them available on a variety of platforms. Certainly down the road, we would like to see that on a subscription or streaming service, so we’re exploring the possibility of creating a dedicated channel for ourselves.”
That’s assuming, of course, that the company actually knows where to find the code for its older games. “It’s very hard to find them sometimes,” Matsuda says, “because back in the day you just made them and put them out there and you were done – you didn’t think of how you were going to sell them down the road.
“Sometimes customers ask, ‘Why haven’t you released that [game] yet?’ And the truth of the matter is it’s because we don’t know where it has gone.”
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Matsuda’s not specific about which games have been lost, but Square Enix has certainly found plenty of classics to re-release already. With Origin Access and Uplay Plus showing the blueprint for third-party publishers to launch their own subscriptions, so don’t be surprised to see more and more follow suit.