Though Deus Ex: Human Revolution was shaping up quite nicely for its spring release, last night the game’s publisher, Square Enix, pulled some financial jujitsu that resulted in the title being pushed back into fiscal year 2011. As Squeenix’s fiscal years run from April 1 to March 31, this means we won’t be seeing the Deus Ex prequel for at least another four months. While the report Square Enix released to investors indicated that the move was designed to give the game an added coat of polish, we’d bet dollars to donuts that the real motivation behind the delay is a bit more strategic.
After the massive, apology-inducing failure of Final Fantasy XIV, Square Enix was left a much rougher FY 2011 than they’d hoped for. With their only tent pole being a reboot of the spotty Tomb Raider franchise, they needed a way to guarantee profitability in the next year. Simplest solution: push their most anticipated title of 2010 into 2011.
Of course, this strategy had an unfortunate downside for the Japanese publisher, namely that their earnings forecasts for the rest of the fiscal year took a nosedive. The document Square Enix released to investors cut their anticipated revenues for the rest of FY 2010 from 12 billion yen down to just 1 billion, a cut of 92%. Hopefully the move winds up being beneficial to both Deus Ex: Human Revolution as well as Square Enix’s bottom line.