Artificial Intelligence Will ‘reshape’ What Square Enix Will Create in 2024

Square Enix's president penned an open letter revealing an aggressive use of AI and blockchain.

Artificial Intelligence will 'reshape' What Square Enix will Create in 2024

SUMMARY

  • Square Enix's President, Takashi Kiryu, discussed his plans for an aggressive push toward implementing AI into future titles.
  • Kiryu shared his belief that AI will reshape future titles and change the processes in game development as well.
  • Gaming studios faced a lot of backlash after a similar approach was taken to implement AI into their games.
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Developers of the fan-favorite Final Fantasy franchise, Square Enix, are said to be looking ahead to maximizing the use of AI capabilities in developing and publishing future titles. Square Enix has always been vocal about integrating the latest tech into their game developments. It will, however, be quite interesting to see Square Enix’s approach to using more AI given last year’s strikes by SAG-AFTRA members who were up against using AI and trying to save jobs in the gaming industry.

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Square Enix was already heavily criticized for implementing NFTs in its games. While it was assumed the Japanese studio would take a step back, an open letter has stressed the studio is doubling down on its efforts.

Square Enix Believes AI Has the Required Potential

Square Enix's President plans an aggressive push toward implementing AI in future titles.
Square Enix’s president plans an aggressive push toward implementing AI in future titles.

Square Enix President Takashi Kiryu released an open letter yesterday highlighting the year gone by and looking ahead to this year, glimpsing at what to expect from the studio. Among the several things that were discussed, Kiryu also touched upon the advancements made by virtual reality (VR), extended reality (XR), and artificial intelligence (AI).

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Kiryu mentioned plans to implement all three technologies into future titles this year and beyond, and more specifically, make good use of ChatGPT’s capabilities. 2023 saw ChatGPT gain popularity and also gain new voice and image capabilities. Kiryu mentioned how 2023 was also a year when Square Enix celebrated the studio’s 20th anniversary and the addition of new management under his leadership after taking over as president back in June last year.

Kiryu mentioned having identified three “focus investment fields” in terms of his plans for new business domains, which included blockchain entertainment/Web 3.0, AI, and cloud services. It was interesting to note Kiryu continuing to add blockchain to his plans, especially given the huge backlash just last year after the FTX scandal.

As for ChatGPT implementation plans, Kiryu mentioned its use to produce “writing or translations or to engage in text-based dialogue,” which seems to have accelerated the rise of similar generative AIs. Kiryu appreciated the applicability of generative AIs in various other formats apart from just text and mentioned how it ties into the entertainment sector.

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Kiryu mentioned that AI has the potential not just to “reshape” what the studio creates but also to alter the processes within the studio, which also includes programming. Kiryu mentioned that the next steps at Square Enix will be to bring together the technological advancements in XR, VR, and AR to fuse the “real and virtual worlds.

An Aggressive Push for Applying AI at Square Enix

Future Final Fantasy titles could look quite different in terms of an AI-assisted process in place.
Future Final Fantasy titles could look quite different in terms of the AI-assisted process in place.

Kiryu went on to mention that the studio is working to “modify the organizational structure and optimize the resource allocation” to support the efforts to implement blockchain, AI, and cloud services. For now, it cannot be predicted just how much AI will play a part in future titles from the studio.

In terms of a negative impact from an aggressive push towards implementing AI into games, Square Enix might not have to look any further than recently released titles The Finals and The Day Before, both of which were heavily slammed for the use of AI-generated voice and text. While The Finals was slammed for AI-assisted voice for characters, The Day Before was slammed even more for heavy use of both AI-assisted voice and text.

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Just last year, the SAG-AFTRA members also highlighted the heavy use of AI training, due to which several artists were underpaid. AI training was also accused of exploiting likenesses without formal consent, which hurt a lot of artists. Several gaming studios were in danger of facing a strike, including Activision, Epic Games, and Insomniac Games, to name a few.

The scheduled talks between SAG-AFTRA members and the video game industry ended with no deal in September last year.

There are several examples for Square Enix to look into to stay away from backlash due to the aggressive use of AI and blockchain in future titles coming from the studio. Fans are waiting for Final Fantasy VII Rebirth to come out next month and Final Fantasy 14 Dawntrail, which is scheduled for release around summer this year.

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Written by Ayoub Hassan Adur

Articles Published: 397

Ayoub Hassan Adur worked in the Translation Industry for more than a decade before turning to Content Writing. Ayoub loves Gaming and has also written news stories in the gaming industry for two other websites before joining FandomWire Gaming. Manchester United fan since the '90s.