Square Enix has announced that it will be launching a new label on the Japanese market. It will be called “Extreme Edges” and will house all the mature Western developed titles that the publisher is bringing to Japan and that have been, historically, not well received by players who are accustomed to the mechanics specific to Japanese games.
Yoichi Wada, who is the Chief Executive Officer of Square Enix
, has told Famitsu that the Extreme Edges label will officially be launched on May 6, when the Stimulus Package map pack downloadable content for the PlayStation 3 version of Modern Warfare 2 is outed in Japan. He hopes that a new brand will prove gamers in Japan are capable of enjoying Western titles, as long as they are well designed and using the latest technology.
The new brand will only publish titles that fall under the CERO-D and CERO-Z ratings in Japan, suitable for those who are over 17 years of age. Titles like Modern Warfare 2 or Singularity, which will be launched in June, fall under this category. Square Enix will also likely use Extreme Edges to publish Just Cause 2
, a game developed under the watchful eye of the Eidos division in the West. A release date for Japan is set for June 10.
Square Enix is aiming to develop more of a global appeal, with the move of buying Eidos being the most bold so far. The Japanese gaming market appears to be shrinking year over year and a move to the West is crucial for other publishers, like Capcom and SEGA. The problem is that any Western move will be coming into conflict with the sensibilities of Japanese gamers. A long term solution could be the one Square Enix is trying now, creating different brands with clearly targeted audiences on the various markets where it puts out videogames.