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If The Rumors About Final Fantasy Origin Are True, Good Job Square Enix On Expanding The Footprint of The Final Fantasy Brand

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Rumor: Final Fantasy Origin, A Dark Souls Style Action RPG Being Developed By Team Ninja
This is a very interesting rumor and seems almost all but confirmed at this point.. The current talk is that we will get an official reveal at E3. I first read about the rumor on IGN.

I think this could really work. I haven't personally played any of the souls games but a couple of my friends have and I understand the appeal. Lately every time you turn around it seems like another game is announced which is trying to emulate that souls style experience the latest being Lies of P.

From a business standpoint it makes perfect sense. First, you have the main line Final Fantasy series. In every game in the main series you have a party of unique characters that come together to save the world.(Or try to save the world)

From there, in a shrewd move to cash in on the popularity of MMOs, Square Enix developed Final Fantasy Online(final fantasy 11 and 14) to take advantage of consistent revenue of a subscription business model. Final Fantasy Online has become its own entity, completely separate from the single player experience of the other games.

And now we have Final Fantasy Origin which will likely spin off into its own separate entity to harness the power of the Final Fantasy name and cash in on players that love the hardcore action RPG souls experience. 

With three different ways to interact with the Final Fantasy brand, Square Enix ensures that Final Fantasy will be around for years to come and will be bigger than ever before. 

Big American Publishers Need to Wake Up And Start Diversifying to Expand The Footprint of Their Top Games 
American publishers should take a long, hard look at what Japanese companies like Capcom(Resident Evil), Square Enix(Final Fantasy) and Sony(Uncharted, The Last of Us, God of War) are doing. They are all rapidly diversifying by adding more ways for fans to interact with their intellectual properties. 

Take Two seems to have received the memo. As GTA online is its own entity. The problem is that they've taken far too long with its next installment in the main line GTA series. GTA 6 is long overdue. Many fans actually expect that the delay is due to Take Two/Rockstar being too afraid that a new GTA game would hurt sales of GTA 5. I don't know if that is true or not but what is absolutely true is that 8 years is far too long to leave fans waiting for another game.

Sony is quite obviously focusing on developing films and tv series for their popular games. It remains to be seen how they pan out but at the very least I expect The Last of Us to become something akin to a global phenomenon. All the pieces are there in terms of a winning formula, they partnered with HBO, that was absolutely huge. The setting is proven, zombie like creatures, end of the world storyline and of course they've done some great casting.

Over the years we've had a ton of Resident Evil content; movies, shows, big games, small games, action games, horror games, remakes! It's no wonder that the Resident Evil franchise is so successful. They may not have world breaking sales numbers like call of duty but they are vey successful and will remain so because above all else they serve their target audience consistently with new content.

Square Enix
I expect Square Enix is the next one on the list. They've already started on the path. Before you know it, I predict we are gonna have 3 different visions of final fantasy. They will all have a consistent release schedule of downloadable content and as a superstar emerges they will begin to receive the Final Fantasy 7 treatment. We will get remakes, spinoffs, remasters, collaborations etc. I'd even wager at some point they create some kind of connected final fantasy universe. And then of course at some point you have to imagine a movie adaption or TV series adaption of final fantasy 7, 8, 9 and 10 are coming. It just makes too much sense. With Square Enix close relationship with Sony you would have to think these conversations have already taken place at some point.

In conclusion I think this is just the tip of the iceberg. I expect a lot more companies to take their most popular IPs and start branching out into movies, television series and different gaming genres. Once you develop a dedicated fan base it just makes sense. And I think its a good thing for the gaming industry as a whole. Hopefully once publishers see that you have a lot more options then just sitting back and releasing a sequel every 4 years full of microtransactions then perhaps they'll be a lot more likely to make a heavy investment upfront into original IP.

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