Indie boss Shuhei Yoshida spoke at a conference about the early days of the PlayStation. He said that “Final Fantasy” and “Dragon Quest” were groundbreaking for the success of the PlayStation.
At an event in Bilbao, Spain, Shuhei Yoshida received the BIG Conference Honorary Award. Among other things was GameReactor as media partners who were able to ask the head of PlayStation’s indie department a few questions.
A bumpy start
It was mainly about the beginnings of the PlayStation. At first it was still difficult to win games for the still young platform. Negotiations on this were not particularly successful. Why? According to Yoshida, the console was “hardly a concept”. In addition, with the generation change at that time, the developers first had to understand how real-time 3D graphics worked.
Sony achieved its first major success with the Dinosaur Demo for the PS1. With this, Yoshida and Co. visited various companies to convince them of their project. One publisher made the demand: “Come back when you’ve sold a million PlayStation.” Sony achieved this goal, but things didn’t go particularly well in their home country.
“We didn’t have a strong lineup, so we struggled a bit in Japan. But luckily we had additional strong titles in the US and Europe, so the launch there went really well,” explains Yoshida.
Everything changed when the Third-Party Vendor Relations department contacted SquareSoft. Note: At that time there was no Square Enix, which was created in 2003 from a merger between SquareSoft and Enix. Final Fantasy was created by SquareSoft, while Dragon Quest was created by Enix. These two RPG series were the strongest brands in Japan at the time.
“And they’ve discussed things behind the scenes that I can’t say, but both are committed to bringing their new games to PlayStation. And that completely changed our luck. And finally we had the games we needed to make PlayStation successful.”
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Without the numerous “Final Fantasy” and “Dragon Quest” offshoots, the PlayStation would never have been so successful. The first console from 1994 is one of the most successful consoles ever with 102.5 million units sold. However, the successor console, which went on sale in 2000, was even more successful. An impressive 155 million copies were shipped worldwide, making it the best-selling console ever.
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