Control Every Cutscene In Final Fantasy Versus XIII

By Spencer . July 12, 2011 . 9:59pm

imageFamitsu has a few details on Final Fantasy Versus XIII. Remember Final Fantasy XIII-2‘s live sequences where you can move during a cutscene? Final Fantasy Versus XIII is going one step further and will let players control characters in every cutscene in the game. Tetsuya Nomura says it was important for players to never feel like they have to stop playing.


The event scenes, according to Famitsu, are the same quality as pre-rendered movies, but they are rendered in real time. Nomura attributes this to little difference between the high quality and low quality models. The exception is hair, which is more detailed in high quality models. Nomura says events will be tied to a new system, which Nomura believes has never been done before. He did not give any details to Famitsu.


Events will flow naturally in Final Fantasy Versus XIII and not feel like a game as seen in his other titles. The conversation tempo is different from Final Fantasy, but don’t misunderstand, Nomura says, the game is not like Final Fantasy Type-0 or the Kingdom Hearts series either. Battles in Final Fantasy Versus XIII can change depending on a player’s action.


Final Fantasy Versus XIII presented new challenges for the development team. Because of this the core members have been leading the game, but Square Enix is getting ready to put the game in mass production. Bit by bit they have been recording voices, but there haven’t been many female characters in the scenes so far. To make the conversations feel more realistic they would have four guys record lines in a room together so their dialogue would overlap.


Nomura did not give a date for the next Final Fantasy Versus XIII reveal, but said he has a timeframe in mind.


Update: A summary at FF-Reunion has further details. Nomura brought screenshots of the game to show the reports. One reporter couldn’t believe the graphics were in realtime. Nomura attributed the graphics to their pre-rendered know how and lighting effects. It’s unclear, but it sounds like someone commented that the graphics are like photos. Nomura added that Noctis has a smartphone, which he can use to take photos.


Nomura said we would have to wait until they publically release the images, but we have details on the screenshots. One scene showed a street that looked like Italy with a beige wall with Noctis looking up at a behemoth in the center. Another screenshot showed Noctis standing in a highway road in the afternoon. The same screenshot was shown in the evening with a street sign that reads Meguro.

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  • DanteJones

    This could be really interesting. When they say control do they mean choosing what the characters say via a dialogue tree, or more along the lines of actually moving the character/choosing what the character is doing? (IE: standing there with arms crossed, leaning up against a wall ect). 

    I hope they really flesh this out, it sounds pretty cool!

    EDIT: Forgot to add, if it’s anything like Metal Gear Solid 4 was when it first came out, the detail is going to be so good some people might not even notice it’s not pre-rendered. I remember a part before a boss fight I think it was, it had a cutscene right before and it ended by have a close-up of Snake’s face. The camera pans around and BAM! Instantly starts off into the fight.

    • Zal_Yagun

      They don’t have to do Pre-rendered cutscenes, Most games (especially PS3 exclusive monsters) have decent enough graphics to have Cutscenes flow seamlessly in to gameplay,  Dynasty Warriors 7 tried that, and i laughed when a character does a special pose as it shifts to gameplay, but the character glitches out and returns their normal pose and changes weapons right before you can control them.

    • This might be a tad off topic, but I really liked how Heavy Rain handled the cutscene control. I liked the idea of being able to direct the scene and see things from different camera angles, while your character poses against a wall or something. It might only be an aesthetic thing, but I feel like it really contributes to the atmosphere.

      If you’ve got good graphics, you might as well showcase it, right? So if Versus features something like this in cutscenes, I think it’d be mighty swell. And if there are dialogue trees, even better. (Though I’ll kill myself playing the game over and over trying to hear all of them, or something.)

  • xAKUM3TSUx

    Well I guess this will make the game more…um…realistic. But it’s a feature I don’t care much for. When is this coming out again?

  • PrinceHeir

    finally an update :D

    “Events will flow naturally in Final Fantasy Versus XIII and not feel like a game as seen in his other titles. The conversation tempo is different from Final Fantasy, but don’t misunderstand, Nomura says, the game is not like Final Fantasy Type-0 or theKingdom Hearts series either. Battles in Final Fantasy Versus XIII can change depending on a player’s action.”

    hmm bringing back multiple dialogues from the old games?? :Dit seems their speeding up the development which is good :)hmm 2012???let’s see how Nomura’s game stack up with the other FF main titles :P

  • Lexaus_the_Alchemist

    I give it to him, Nomura knows how to press at people’s buttons to get them to pay attention again. But man, not even mass production yet… SE has some serious time management issues. I’m starting to see a repeat leading up to of last year’s TGS: short interviews here and there, a screenshot to wet the appetite, a small 30 second teaser to show they’re still in production, and, after a no “real” showing at TGS, an announcement will come to ask fans to wait until some SE event next year for more info… And like a sucker, I’ll still wait… Well played, SE, well played…

  • That’s fairly interesting actually. I think something like this will do a lot for the overseas markets, as I often see criticism along the lines of cutscene-heavy games feeling like watching a movie rather than playing an actual game.

    Though, I didn’t really see any of that in the 1st Production Department Premiere trailer we saw earlier this year.

    Either way, easily my most anticipated game right now. *Squeals* Can’t wait! :D

    • Brosky Manjula

      There’s a scene where a young Noctis is running towards his dad in what looks like a forest, we look through Noctis’ eyes in FPV and the camera is controllable.

      There’s another part where a bunch of soldiers crash through the windows at the party and you can see that Noctis is controllable there.

      Another part was when missiles are raining down and Noctis is running away from them.

      There are a couple more, IIRC.

  • Reminds me of the scene in the most recent trailer where its a first person view as young Noctis in a field at sunset, and he scrambles around running up to his dad.

  • To be honest,I like the idea of controlling the character(s) during the cutscenes. Makes it more entertaining yet distracting at the same time.

    I see a lot of distraction in my future whenever Versus XIII comes out. The more I hear about the more it sounds awesome. Good things comes to those who wait.

  • Learii

    i like  where this going i just hope its stay as ps3 excluvsed

  • I cant wait for versus and am glad this wont be like KH or type-0.

    i want something diffirent.

  • Siliconera you forgot this part.

    Famitsu noted that the screenshots looked like real
    photos. Nomura replied with an aside that you can take pictures in the game.
    Noctis has a cell phone, and you can take pics wherever you like.
    Regarding when we’ll get to see the images that
    Famitsu’s editors were shown, Nomura just said we’ll have to wait a bit. He also
    noted that areas we’ve already been shown now have the new lighting technology,
    so we’ll have to wait to see these as well.

    • It isn’t so much that we “forgot it” as this information wasn’t from the forums like 2ch and so forth that I read. I believe that’s from the FF-Reunion summary, but not in other reports.

      Thanks for the update I’m scanning it now.

  • Ravage27

    ‘Battles in Final Fantasy Versus XIII can change depending on a player’s action.’

    Fantastic! I always wanted more dynamic battle elements in FF combat.

    ‘there haven’t been many female characters in the scenes so far.’

    Nooooo, we need more hotties like Stella!

    • Syltique

      Versus is definitely a bit too much of a sausage fest.  Another female character would add a lot.

      • What about Stella? Besides at least it’s not Call of Duty (where sausage fests are the core element to the series which is why douchebags play them)

        • FireCouch

          WOW, that generalization.

        • Yes, because only douchebags and macho-headed morons play Call of Duty.  The JRPG fan base is SO superior in every way imaginable…

          Many types of people play a multitude of different games.  Don’t judge so harshly. 

      • Wiccan1109

        One could say the same for FFX-2 but no one complained about being able to play as just girls. (although granted it was about the only thing people didnt complain about) I think its nice that SE is finally taking a bit of time to give some attention to a gender that is very, very much on the extinction list with JRPGs. At the very least, most of the modern ones have a 50/50 split between genders in the main party, and even that is pretty rare, some of them now dont even have ANY men in them. I prefer a balance myself but a JRPG without many women around will definitley be something different, and the ones who are around will have a greater sense of individuality.

        • HistorysGreatestMonster

          A lot of people complained about it being just girls. I’d wager some guys probably didn’t even buy the game for that reason.

  • Syltique

    I’ve never had any problem with not having control during cutscenes.  Personally, I would rather see good cinematography, instead of moving the camera around for no reason manually.

    That said, this is pretty exciting because I’m always up for trying something new with this series.  

    • puchinri

      Agreed. It sounds fun, but I always liked watching a good cutscene and don’t need to control them. I am still curious though~.

      • Ryos

        To my mind something like this is just a good replay option, especially if you have just seen a scene where you want to focus on a particular portion of what’s going on rather than what the default cutscene focuses on.

  • Hexen

    Is there any reason for their closed event press releases of their announcements before it will go later on public?

  • Room201

    Rather pointless imo but still appreciated? I don’t see what is the problem with cutscenes since to me they are like taking a breath of fresh air after playing around for a while.

    Also, all that talk about models and rendering makes me feel like this game is going to kill or make my PS3 really toasty when I play it…

  • MrDolomite

    Wow! Cool!
    So when’s it coming out?
    Oh, you don’t know? Then I’ll continue to not care.

  • Ben Tan

    well imho since ff 13 is an estrogen fest, this game needs to amp up the manliness to counter it!

    • Ironically, by making it more manly, I think the game is appealing even more to the female gamer fanbase, myself included.

  • Sounds like they’re going for something like Half-Life.

  • XypherCode

    hmmm so in this game you can move the characters even in cut/event scenes as opposed to The Last Story and FFXIII-2 you can only move or pan the camera around.
    interesting :D

  • Take your time Nomura, no rushing… I want an epic FF game because it already sounded more epic than ever as the days goes by! XD

    But, I would prefer them to have more female characters just like in any other FF series… Or is it just Nomura’s style to have too many male character in a story just like KH? Hope this is not the case in FF though.. Even as a gamer who loves bishonen I am more than happy to see more strong female in a story..

    • 128bitigor

      This is Nomura we are talking about… if he could, he would make only yaoi games…

      • Guest

        Is Nomura married? Or has he been seen with women? He’s always dressed a bit too fabulous…I question I question….

        • 128bitigor

          Have you seen Aounuma, Miyamimoto, Ueda or any other famous game creator with women? He looks really… erm… flamboyant? But for Japanese standards he looks like any other guy, huh? I don’t know, but judging from his projects he really must be into 15yo boys… 

          • Guest

            Well i’ve seen Itagaki with women…

  • This sounds really interesting. Now I’m actually excited for Versus. The only thing that I don’t really like so far is the potential romeo and juliet scenario… (please prove me wrong, Nomura).

  • SolNeko

    this is turning out to become the best final fantasy game ever made!

    • am not sure about “the best ever made” but for this generation yes.

      • Don’t insult it!

  • LezardValeth

    This game is never coming out…

  • HistorysGreatestMonster

    I absolutely cannot wait for this game. Somehow, though, if the party consists of just Noctis’ friends for the entire game, I am not that bothered by the cast being all male. Now, if the party is constantly changing, then, yeah, it should be different sexes. But I can imagine a big part of the story being the emphasis on his friendship with these particular guys.

    With how long the game’s taking, though, can I suggest recording both the Japanese and English voices at the same time, Nomura?

  • “Nomura added that Noctis has a smartphone, which he can use to take photos.”

    goddamn. reading about this game always makes my dick go hard.

    • Guest

       Why can’t a girl gamer talk like this

      * waits for “no girls on the internet” response*

      • I’ll be really scared if a girl comes and says something like her dick goes hard…

        • Guest

           No u wont :P

    • badmoogle

      Check your hormones you might have a problem.

  • I’m under the impression that the dev team only works on this game on sundays or national holidays. The game has been revealed in 2006 and still there isn’t a solid timeframe/release date we should be expecting?

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m really excited about this, but, I really don’t understand why SE keeps us from getting to know more and more about this game. I’ve yet to see any game company do the same thing at this time and age (I particularly recall a 12min gameplay clip of Batman Arkham Asylum being released last week).

    • “I’m under the impression that the dev team only works on this game on sundays or national holidays.”

      At this point in 2011, I wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest. Maybe Square-Enix should think about NOT overloading themselves with the dozens of Kingdom Hearts and Final Fantasy sequels in development at the same time.

  • karasuKumo

    Take as long as you want SE it already sounds like it will be an amazing game. I love the idea of controlling cut-scenes but would also like it to be optional. Sometimes it’s nicer to watch the cut-scenes knowing you aren’t involved. When this game comes out I doubt I’ll be leaving my house lol.

    Meguro as in the Meguro ward of Tokyo? Sounds interesting.”Nomura added that Noctis has a smartphone, which he can use to take photos.”Can he put them on an in-game Facebook page too? lol Tag a Behemoth in the photo. ^^

    • Yu_TheKing

      LOL I can imagine that too. 

      Status: Chillin’ in Tokyo with Betty the Behemoth. (Unless their non-gendered or all-male owo)

  • amagidyne

    All-male, huh? That settles it: I’m shallow. My interest in this game is waning.

  • Shinji Kazuya

    Oh god! This sounds so damn awsome! I love epic story cutscenes and now you can control the character during it? HWOAH!!!
    Damn! I’m gonna have a blast playing this!!!

  • origami_samurai

    This is a neat idea controlling a character during cutscenes, but even if it didn’t have this I’m 100% sure I’m buying this game

    • Shinji Kazuya

      Yup. I have been set on buying it ever since they announced it back in 2006!

  • doomspeller10

    I just hope camera control is not included in that cutscene system… 2-chan will flood the internet with panchira shots…
    For XIII-2 I would like to be able to control Lightning in cutscenes and punch Snow some more, you know, just in case he shows up at all.

  • SirRichard

    It’s going to be hard to resist the temptation to make Noctis rub against walls during dramatic exposition scenes, or stand really unreasonably close behind people when they insist on talking to me with their back turned.

    • Shinji Kazuya

      Ahahahahah! I can already see it!!! :>

    • doomspeller10

      Yayy… Nomura is giving us the chance to be douchebags. It’d be much nicer if they added character reactions that are related to your behaviour during the cutscene. A trophy like “Make romantic interest commit suicide” might become possible and even popular.

      • Guest

        I guess that’s too “Mass Effect” for them.

        • thebanditking

          It would definitely not be something I would be interested in. Thats not what I want from a Final Fantasy, I play RPG’s for the story they tell. I don’t care about dialog/decision trees that make the story “mine” its one of the reasons I don’t play WRPG’s like mass effect and Elderscrolls 

          • Guest

            FF XIII-2 will have conversation choices and in Catherine you can reply to texts with different responses. Both will have alternate endings too. Also, some JRPG’s have visual novel like conversation choices so it’s not a WRPG exclusive trait…

  • badmoogle

    I’m not that interested in controlling cutscenes tbh,but it’s a nice addition and he said they will include another element to it that has never been done before.I’m curious to see what that will be.
    The impressive thing for me is that everything has a new lighting system now and apparently the already impressive footage we have seen before now looks even better.It shows the team is really ambitious for this game!And the ability to take pictures is nice but will we be able to export them to the PS3 HD?For example in White Knight Chronicles you could also take pictures but it was kinda pointless since you couldn’t export them to an external device and share them.
    Anyway it was a nice update,but to be honest i was kinda disappointed we didn’t  get any new screenshots.:/

  • Daisuke Inuzuka

    I don’t know about anyone else, but this sound effing awesome! 
    rarely get excitebike over graphical stuff anymore, but something about this game just seems so magical…

    • badmoogle

      Indeed.I’m also getting a very good “vibe” about this game everytime i hear news about it…

  • AzureNova

    “Final Fantasy Versus XIII presented new challenges for the
    development team. Because of this the core members have been leading the
    game, but Square Enix is getting ready to put the game in mass

    Ive been waiting for Versus XIII for years now alongside my pre-order, and after reading this I’m looking forward to it even more.

  • Yu_TheKing

    This may be the best FF-Game in terms of well-almost everything. (imo) Can’t wait to see more details about it.

    • KyoyaHibari

      Agreed, I’m loving the dark fantasy style with these rich designs in the environments, with cool characters, an intersting story, new mechanics such as this, and a nice combat system, this is going to be amazing!

  • Guest

    Controlling characters in cut scenes is cool but they should also let you control what they will say or give choices

    • I really hope they don’t do this, unless it is used sparingly.  I absolutely hate dialogue checklists and illusion of choice.  Something like Tactics Ogre or FF7 choices, sparingly, but not annoying.

  • Nice! Kinda like a throwback to 7/8’s ability to control characters during scenes.

  • Metal gear style? :D

  • Finally another update, Ive been waiting for this! I really want this game now, it’s getting better and better! I hope that the release date is not too far away…. >.<

  • Just blind hype and pointless info. And its no step further its just the same camera control it seems.

  • This game just makes me wanna…………………..wanna……..……DANCE!

  • Angeru_Lito

    Hopefully the movement is scripted , I will hate to see videos of people making stupid stuff like moving arround in circles and worse crap just because you can move, if it is scripted then sure not a big thing but its a nice feature

  • Jirin

    If the conversations reacted dynamically to your actions during them, that’d be something.  If you’re just getting the same script, only walking around on your own, I don’t see the point.

  • SonicRulez

    That’s sorta interesting, but as I recall you can move in cutscenes in FFVII and FFVIII right?

  • haqua

    Well, that’s pretty cool, I guess. Thing is, sometimes I just wanna rest my hands, but I guess you don’t HAVE to move them.

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