Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Square Enix Accidentally Deletes Final Fantasy IX

The title of the Final Fantasy series has always been a bit of an odd one. There are a few myths about where the name came from, including that it was originally given its name because the folks working on the first installment thought it would be their company's last game. It actually ended up putting them on the map and launching one of the most beloved RPG franchises of all time. This origin is debated by series director Hironobu Sakaguchi, but that's neither here nor there. Thanks to a recent mistake on Steam, however, Final Fantasy 9 was outright deleted, making it seem like that particular game's actual final PC voyage for the moment. The whole situation just feels like an elaborate April Fools' Day joke that doesn't have a clear punchline.


Reddit user error521 caught the mistake by taking a look at the public Steam Database and shared it in a Reddit thread that has exploded with activity. It seems that Square Enix was attempting to make a large update to Final Fantasy 9 and somehow straight-up patched the game out of existence. Every single file related to Final Fantasy 9 had been removed from Steam, leaving fans bewildered as to how something like this could even happen. Sure, Steam has removed games before, but this isn't the usual route.

One user tried to imagine being involved in this gaffe. They wrote, "I can only imagine the amount of cold sweat streaming down the neck of the one responsible for this when they realize what happened."


It was pointed out by a separate commenter that there were likely several cooks in the kitchen when this mistake occurred: "This isn't a mistake that gets made by a developer or ops guy. This is a mistake that gets made by an entire management team in not putting enough effort into safeguards for stuff like this."

Others came to the defense of Square Enix, explaining that it's not really a problem and that the game will likely be back up in no time. There was also a concern that the person or people responsible for the error could be fired or harshly reprimanded. This likely isn't the case, however, as accidents do happen and it should hopefully be an easy fix in the long run. 

As one commenter wrote, "It likely wasn't that big a deal. FFIX isn't some critical piece of software, and it's not even [Square Enix's] flagship game. Whoever did this probably noticed it ... pulled down the current code again, and pushed it up. They'll be the butt of every joke for a bit, but nothing will really come of it. Reddit likes to joke about it, but it's really, really hard to make a mistake that'll get you fired as a software dev."

Another Reddit user points out that this isn't even the worst update mistake ever. That honor likely belongs to the EVE Online update that literally killed the operating systems of some players' computers.


According to a report from GamesRadar+, it appears as though Steam is hard at work fixing the mistake. Several changes to the game file and listing have been published in the Steam Database within the last day.

Several users are also reporting that they are currently able to launch the game, albeit an earlier build without some of the newer enhancements. It's likely that Square Enix uploaded whatever version of the game it had on deck while the problem is being addressed in full. Also, as GamesRadar+ points out, save data for Steam Games is stored in the cloud, so that should hopefully mean that no one lost their save progress when the game was deleted.

Now there's just the question of why the game was being patched in the first place. It could just be regular maintenance or something more substantial. After all, Final Fantasy 3 recently received a cool new update. The PC and mobile versions of the game now have an "Auto Battle" option that allows players to put the game in autopilot during fights. There are also new aspect ratio options and players can make changes to the game's language, UI, and control settings. Perhaps a similar update is coming to Final Fantasy 9

In the meantime, however, it looks like Square Enix accidentally bit off more than it could chew. Hopefully Final Fantasy 9 is restored soon, and better than ever. After all, Final Fantasy 9 is already one of the most well-regarded entries in the franchise, so it's exciting to try to guess what could be added in an update.