February 9, 2007 - Yoichi Wada is one of the most outspoken industry figures in Japan, often sharing his thoughts as one of his two identities: chairman of the Computer Entertainment Supplier's Association or president of Square Enix. In a recent interview with Japan's Nikkei BP, Wada assumed the latter form as he discussed Dragon Quest and the future of the PS3.
With Dragon Quest IX coming out for the DS, Wada fielded a question about this meaning a shift in Square Enix's development strategy towards the platform. This isn't necessarily the case. "Following portable machines, we see the market for the PlayStation 3 and other next generation consoles taking off, so we will develop for that."
In fact, nothing has apparently been decided for the next Dragon Quest. "Aside from the Dragon Quest titles that have been announced, nothing has been decided. We're not thinking about fixing [the series] on the DS."
The Square Enix president seems to have a lot of faith in the PS3. "We have expectations from the PS3. However, it's still early. For us to do business [on the platform], it will take a bit more time."
Wada expects a shift to the PS3 to begin first with a more pronounced shift to high definition television sets. "Once the television environment is in place, at last the true game business will form. I see the PS3 market taking off starting around 2008."
"Some journalists don't understand that there's a difference in the amount of time hardware takes to spread and have taken the tone of 'the world of high vision, high quality gaming has come to an end.' However, once you see the world of high vision, there's no going back."
Closing up, Wada offered his vision for how gamers will split across all the various systems out there. "I believe casual gamers will go to the Wii, DS, or even PSP while those who want to have a fuller experience will go to the PS3 and Xbox 360."