Top 4 Video Game Companies that Fear Money

Chrometophobia is the fear of monetary gain. The mere thought of Scrooge McDuck’s swimming pool vault would send such victims into anaphylactic shock. There are four notable video game companies that suffer from this affliction; please keep them in your thoughts and prayers as you read this list.

4. Valve

In the time between the release of Half-Life 2: Episode Two and the moment of this writing, five years have passed, Valve has released seven games, and a fan-updated remake of the original Half-Life has been finished.

Yet, the world has only heard whispers of the apparitional third iteration of Half-Life. Were it to be even just announced, sales of all the Half-Life games on Steam would spike. If, heaven forbid, the game were to actually release, it would undoubtedly be considered the biggest release of whichever year it inhabits. There is not a single game in existence that could ignite as much excitement from fans as an announcement of Half-Life 3, not even the game contained in the No. 1 entry on this list.

Even though rampant piracy spoiled sales for the second game, it still went on to sell more than 12 million copies. Now, with the ubiquity of Steam and the pent-up energy felt by fans, no explanation can be offered for Valve’s refusal to announce Half-Life 3 other than the developer having an acute fear of wealth.

3. Take-Two

It’s very rare to see a chrometophobia victim so publicly and loudly voice their opposition to being drowned in heaping piles of cash, but in the first half of 2008, Take-Two Interactive, the publisher behind the Grand Theft Auto series, as well as the 2K line of sports games, and their stockholders were offered $2 billion, or $26 per share, for the company by EA.

Before the EA offer, Take-Two stock was $15.83 per share. That means shareholders would have stood to make an over 60% profit on their investment, a nightmare-scenario for the true chrometophobe.

With quick and brave action, Take-Two allowed the offer to expire, and the company’s stock prices, which had been inflated to $27 per share because of the deal, were saved by the Great Recession and banking collapse! Coming into 2009 with stock prices of nearly $8 per share, the publisher had triumphed over the tremendous stacks of money, leaving them squarely on the table where they belonged.

 

2. Nintendo

This Japanese publisher and developer sits high on this list for avoiding two courses of action that would likely result in a fire hose of cash being shot in their faces.

First, untold amounts of success await Nintendo if they were to create a massively multiplayer online version of their already wildly popular Pokémon franchise. The market wants this game so badly that Capcom has seized the opportunity and released what is ostensibly a Pokémon MMO in the form of Monster Hunter.

Add in free-to-play elements, such as being able to buy your own custom-designed poke balls or accessories for your Pokémon, and Nintendo executives would have enough capital to purchase a fleet of solid-gold gundams.

Second, such a plan, much to Nintendo’s dismay, would become exponentially more profitable if the company would give up on its hardware ambitions and, instead, focus solely on becoming a third-party publisher.

This fall when the Wii U launches, Nintendo will quickly realize that no one is going to buy their system because of its merits. They’re going to buy the Wii U because it’s the machine that plays Mario and Zelda.

Nintendo got incredibly lucky in 2006, when they were able to capture the casual market, but now they are facing a Dreamcast moment with their hardware, and like Sega before them, they should abandon their hardware plans and sell their feverishly popular software titles on all platforms.

Why should Nintendo bother creating an HD console or an online infrastructure, when they could simply let Microsoft and Sony do all the legwork for them? This doesn’t even touch on the portable market domination that could be enacted if Nintendo were to release games for iOS and Android platforms.

But alas, Nintendo would not be able to bear the record-setting fiscal years that would be incurred. The extreme, Wii-fueled profits of the late 2000’s were already too much to endure, and the company can ill-afford a repeat.

 

1. Square Enix

If one were to compare the zealotry of Final Fantasy VII fans to the fans of any other game, one would believe that FFVII contains the secrets of life and happiness, while the other contains a quilting simulator.

This game makes people do things like this. And this. And this. And this.

At this point, a Ritz cracker labeled “Final Fantasy VII HD” priced at $100 would sell millions of copies. The only missing piece to its release is the willingness Square Enix to cash massive paychecks.

Square claims that they will release an HD remake of the game only after they exceed its sales and status with a new game. The company just announced the third Final Fantasy XIII sequel, so unless Final Fantasy: Skyrim: Commander Shepard’s Return is announced next, that moment may never happen.

They even released a tech demo for an HD FFVII, as if to say, “Look how easy and possible this is!”

If the game were to be announced, it would undoubtedly be Gaia-shattering news for the Final Fantasy faithful, and there are only a handful of other games that could muster a bigger or more excited launch. However, Square Enix is the company that is the most petrified of mullah, so they will continue to put their faith in Hope and Lightning before they ever return to the golden geese of Cloud and Sephiroth.

 

  • http://mediocritycodex.blogspot.com/ Timothy Hsu

    rush…that sephiroth cosplay is you, isn’t it. ISN’T IT

    also, so goddamn fucking true. all of it

    • http://twitter.com/rushrooms Joseph Rush

      Shhhhhhhh. Just shhhh.

  • Vampiric

    This article is pure retard when it comes to the nintendo portion. The author clearly doesnt get nintendo and clearly doesnt get why they make money

    Pokemon mmo? I think theyd rather get the easy 50 dollars from 15 million people, keep the fanbase happy by making the games the way the fans want, and then continuing to make massive ammounts of money

    Portable market domination? try the 3ds is at 20 million units and skyrocketing. Releasing games on ios would dellute the brand and compete with there own device which let me explain it to you, in the end would make them less money

    And your stupidest point, are you seriously suggesting that nintendo shouldnt make a system?

    In reality thats what microsoft or sony should do.

    Nintendo, is the only one who actually SELLS HARDWARE.

    • http://mediocritycodex.blogspot.com/ Timothy Hsu

      opinions are certainly the stuff of vitriol, aren’t they?

      • http://twitter.com/rushrooms Joseph Rush

        Mister, you can take your fancy words and walk right on out that digital door.

      • Vampiric

        bad opinions like his yes

        • http://mediocritycodex.blogspot.com/ Timothy Hsu

          bad opinions! we have far too few of those apparently

          • Vampiric

            agreed

    • http://www.facebook.com/gwwampler Gregory William Wampler

      I’d have to say, even though a bit odd in his wording, I’ll agree there is a point to Nintendo’s madness. It actually irritates me that after all this time, people still don’t understand the REAL reason why Nintendo won’t stop selling hardware. It isn’t only so they aren’t competing with themselves, but Nintendo ENJOYS making games and making them different. They truly love seeing people have fun in new innovative ways. Nintendo is one of the best companies in the world because of this. I know, I know. They are STILL a company and need to make money; however, if Nintendo really only cared about making money, would they be on this list the author made up? Wouldn’t they simply throw Mario on every mobile platform/phonr imaginable? Answer me that…

    • http://twitter.com/HanFreakinSolo Patrick Lindsey

      doesn’t*
      they’d*
      amounts*
      dilute*
      their*
      most stupid*
      shouldn’t*

      • Vampiric

        your so dumb you can only argue points with grammar

        • sMk

          *you’re

          and spelling =/= grammar

          • Vampiric

            point and game

            trolls are so easy to play

  • http://twitter.com/CraigBamford Craig Bamford

    Clearly it would make sense for Nintendo to go software-only. After all, just look at the immense success of Sega. Or Atari. Or NEC.

    Seriously, I get why people say that, but it always just suggests that the writer doesn’t know why Nintendo’s games are so well-regarded. They quite famously develop the hardware platform for their software and vice versa. Mario 64 wouldn’t have existed without the N64′s analog controls, and the N64′s analog controls were designed precisely to allow for games like Mario 64. The Gamecube wasn’t much different, and the Wii was so famously software/hardware interdependent that people were perfectly happy with nothing more than Wii Sports.

    Why on earth would Nintendo give up that advantage? Why develop for Sony and Microsoft when they’ve proven over and over again that the software/hardware combo works fantastically well for them? Why leave Nintendo’s fate in the hands of companies with decades less experience in hardware design? Companies whose missteps have prompted many people to proclaim that that the next console generation will be the last one?

    What’s the upside?