Japanese publisher Square Enix has announced its nine-month profit loss to be 5.7 billion yen. However the company has reported at the same time that their sales have risen to 102.7 billion yen. Square Enix have laid the blame the console market and poor game sales for the loss:

"During the nine-month period ended December 31, 2012, the Company has not recovered the operating loss posted in the six-month period ended September 30, 2012, primarily due to the increasingly difficult condition of the world-wide console game market, under which the Group is struggling to achieve a fair expected return on its investment."

However, the company is not without a backup plan to recoup their losses:

"[Square Enix] views the expansion of content and services that conform to emerging customer needs led by the fundamental change in the business environments, and the launch of full-scale commercial services for major MMO titles will establish its profit base, and is focusing all efforts on an earnings recovery from now on."

Focusing on an MMO to resurrect commercial success seems a risky undertaking, especially when Square Enix is in the process of rebooting one of its failed MMOs that flat-out didn’t even get a console release (Final Fantasy XIV). Nor will failed iOS / mobile ventures such as Final Fantasy: All The Bravest suffice. With historically large investments going into games lacking consumer demand such as Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, it's not particularly surprising that their bottom line is suffering.

The real shame is that Square Enix has published some fantastic titles recently, such as Deus Ex: Human Revolution, Hitman: Absolution and Sleeping Dogs. It would be great to see more games of this calibre being produced, rather than the consistent milking of a certain JRPG franchise.

Hopefully the company will get the second wind it deserves and not go the way of THQ.