Yosuke Matsuda talks briefly about the pandemic’s impact on business.
There’s been a lot of less than pleasant things that have come from 2020. No doubt, it will go down as one of the worst years in recent memory (and hopefully, the next year is much better). While there’s several reasons for this, the biggest one is COVID. The disease spread through the globe, shutting down industries and causing all types of havoc, sickness and death. It’s still far from over, too, as some countries never came to grips with how to deal with it, and others are experiencing their second or third waves. It had a big impact on the gaming world, too, and the President of Square Enix touched on how that company dealt about it.
Square is, of course, one of the largest Japanese third party developers. Japan was notably hit by COVID and had their own struggles. Talking to The Financial Times, Yosuke Matsuda said that COVID made it seem like time was standing still, and even said there was a point where they basically couldn’t develop anything. While not explicitly saying it, he also seems to hint that future titles will still be affected (thanks to My Nintendo News for transcribing).
“There is also a considerable impact on the production side. It will resonate in the future. What we are selling now may have provided some positive aspects, but on the negative side time has stood still in terms of production. We couldn’t develop anything. That is where the impact will come.”
While it does seem as if developers have gotten the work from home thing down more, no doubt we will see the impact in the following years. Square has some big titles coming up, such as the recently announced Final Fantasy 16, as well as some smaller scale things, such as Balan Wonderworld. Time and business goes on, of course, but don’t be surprised if next year ends up being just as chaotic on the game side as it was here in 2020.