Latest Square-Enix countdown reveals giant middle finger

Subtle design there

Square-Enix, long-known for their RPGs and their occasional, fumbling brilliance, have often used the countdown timer as a means to generate a sort of viral buzz around their video games. Often they are discovered, the media ponders over which instalment ofFinal Fantasy is being rebooted this time, and at the end of it all something happens.

This time, however, something different occurred. Rather than the numerals displaying zeros and a game title and a poorly-animated Flash sequence or trailer playing, a giant middle finger appeared on a black background in the middle of the page. To the thousands of people eagerly anticipating the adventures of a spiky-haired teen in a nondescript noun-punk future/past, this was something of a slap in the face. To add insult to injury, the image provided no context other than linking to the iTunes App Store, where users were invited to pay $15 for the privilege of having a smaller version of the image on their iPhone or $20 on their iPad.

Reactions on the Internet to the move were overwhelmingly negative, with noted fan xXSephiroth_fan420Xx claiming in a forum post that he would “never buy anotherSquare-Enixtitle again. Well okay that’s a lie, but I’ll make angry posts on the Internet about it anyway, because otherwise how are people going to know about my opinions?” He is joined by a chorus of others decrying the move, yet some have claimed that doing this is Square-Enix’s right as a company, and that if it makes more money for them, what’s the issue?

Perhaps more than anything, the reveal teaches us more about ourselves than it does about Square-Enix or the video game industry. While we sit, excitedly watching decreasing numbers on a screen, we’re really only awaiting the inevitable disappointment with which the Internet seems to receive everything.

About Cieran Douglass

Cieran built this website in a cave with a bunch of scraps. Actually no that's not right at all, it was with Wordpress and middling Photoshop and design skills. He often plays video games and his favourites are Paper Mario TTYD, GTA San Andreas, Portal 2 and Minecraft. His display picture is not an accurate portrayal. He currently works for a much bigger website at the University of York, but if you'd like him to write something for you he can be contacted at