Introducing The Fourth Continent In Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII

By Sato . July 30, 2013 . 9:00am

Square Enix had a busy weekend with fans and members of the press during their special Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII event in collaboration with Sony Computer Entertainment Japan’s Play Community. One of the main topics discussed during their developer talk segment was about the world-driven game and its four continents, including one that was revealed for the first time.


“Yes, the concept known as world-driven is the base, as the time inside the game’s world is always ticking,” says director Motomu Toriyama. “The flow of the 24 hours will show a change in where the people live, along with the scenery in towns, which will differentiate the player’s experience, along with how Lightning will have access [to different things].”


“Again, the project called ‘FF’ usually has a scale of about 100 to 200 people involved in the development,” Toriyama continues. “This time, since there are four continents (the core of the development), we’ve formed units of 10 to 20 people who are in charge of each continent’s development.”


The above image depicts the four main continents of Nova Chrysalia: Luxerion, Yusnaan, Dead Dunes, and the newly revealed “Wildlands”. According to the director, the concept behind the continents is to have the way each continent can be played be different from the others.


Luxerion is a continent that is controlled by an organization known as “The Order”. There are clocks on every corner of the city, as the citizens are constantly reminded of the impending end of the world, while wondering how they’ll live the remainder of their days.


As seen in our earlier report, the theme behind Luxerion is “Murder,” where Lightning will be solving crimes in the Divine City of Light. Luxerion’s playthrough will consist of detective and tracking parts. While the detective parts will be more calm and quiet, the tracking part contrasts these with a more active play style.


Yusnaan is the gorgeous land of enjoyment, that is full parties and festivities every day and night. Getting Lightning into the palace will be one of the main focuses once you get to the bustling city. There are many types of entertainment to enjoy in Yusnaan, which will vary according to the time, so that will also be a big part of the area, including the many time-limited quests you’ll find there.


Toriyama describes the Dead Dunes as a place that appears to have nothing but sand, when compared to the other continents. While most desert areas in Final Fantasy titles consist of walking around and fighting monsters, this time Square Enix have decided to add explorable ruins, making it a simple yet amusing concept behind the land of sand.


The Wildlands is the fourth continent that focuses on nature and the open world play style. The developers in charge of the new continent, were told, “Give Skyrim a run for its money!” by director Toriyama. The degree of freedom offered in the Wildlands will be much higher, where you’ll also get to ride Chocobos to check out various key points of interest.


Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII is slated for release in February 2014 in the U.S. and Europe for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.

Read more stories about & & on Siliconera.

  • KingGunblader

    “Give Skyrim a run for its money!”


    • LightningFarron19

      I think he’s talking about content wise (open area and side quests to the max), not necessarily storytelling.

      • Chiupon

        skyrim has a story????

        • Tienron

          yeah it does, played it to the end?

          • Chiupon




            jesus christ

            I thought it just went on forever

          • Tienron

            lol of course if you skip out on side quests haha but their are so many why would you want too XD

          • lasdjkf

            Why would you even care about a D-Rate storyline anyway?

  • Lexaus_the_Alchemist

    Trying to compete with Skyrim, are we? Interesting.

    • NewestType

      Yes. Hopefully they will make it so you can stack an I finite number of plates while making it even more useless than in skyrim…

  • eilegz

    any final fantasy game its better than skyrim :D hopefully they dont screw up by making a skyrim wannabe =/

    • StarWarudo

      Do you know what an opinion is?

      • Anime10121

        I’m sure he/she does, as that was his, and I happen to agree with it.

      • DyLaN

        ……….DO YOU?

        • Tienron

          i really doubt it will give skyrim a run for its money…..

        • StarWarudo

          I sure do, but I don’t go parading it around as a fact.

          • DyLaN

            So ppl aren’t allowed to voice their opinion cuz you don’t agree with it?

          • StarWarudo

            Of course they can. I never said they can’t, but there’s a proper way of expressing your opinion rather than blatantly shoving it out there. A little “IMO” goes a long way.

          • Symbol de Au

            Saying “in my opinion” is redundant. Everyone knows it’s an opinion.

    • SiliconNooB

      I’d have agreed with you until XIII… :/

      • lasdjkf

        There are far worse Final Fantasy games than XIII. Do you remember X-2? Or, All The Bravest? How about the Final Fantasy 7 sequel where you played as Vincent? Yeah, those were terrible games. FFXIII is way better than titles like those.

        • SiliconNooB

          X-2 was quite good if you don’t mind the silly nonsense story, and don’t care that Toriyama opted to take a dump on FFX’s characters and themes. Even with X-2’s narrative defects withstanding, watching the cutscenes still weren’t as painful as XIII’s earnest and hamfisted melodrama. As for the game design, it was much better, with great game systems and diverse activities and objectives – I’d take X-2 any day over having to endure XIII’s tunnel again!

          As for the other games you mention, I haven’t played either, and so could hardly comment.

  • Armane

    They are hardly setting the bar high:
    “You see that mountain? You can(not) climb it.”

    I’d rather they try and compete with X or Xenoblade.

  • ShadowDivz

    I think this game is gonna get alot of TIME sinked into it! Ahh, Ahh? *eyebrow nudge*
    On a more serious note i love detective shows, so im gonna be spending most of my time at Luxerion.

    Seeing the one and only truth,
    The body of a diva and the mind of a soldier,
    She is the great detective LIGHTNING!

  • Michael Connell

    I’m more interested to see how the open world aspect of the game compares to Xenoblade than with Skyrim

  • $51888021

    Mmm. I think people will (and already are, I see) misinterpreting that bit at the end.

    They were told to “give Skyrim a blah blah” specifically in reference to the size/scope of the environments. The game isn’t seriously challenging Elder Scrolls in terms of general open-world gameplay.

    • NewestType

      Most people I know who play each respective series pretty much are oblivious to the other one existing.

  • Guest

    Nice…I just want it to be February 11th already :-(

  • SpectralRaiden

    Lightning Returns seems to be the better out of the XIII saga; It’s so sad that it appears to have hit it’s stead on the closing installment though.

    If the first XIII’s battle system was like this I feel that it wouldn’t have gotten railed on as hard as it did. XIII’s combat got kinda boring after awhile because it was just easier to let the computer fight for you:-(

    • Vash bane

      the battle theme was awesome though :D

  • Monterossa

    All hail Lord Toriyama.

  • Azurelegance

    They sound really proud of it… I just hope the game is as good as it’s sounding :)

  • I want this game even more now =)

  • DriftSlave

    The continents look good, hopefully the game holds up to all the hype and delivers….anyways inb4 Lightning haters come out the wet works.

  • Alestaos

    This is going to be fun and the scope of skyrim based on the landmass etc will be intresting after all it seems to of been said in a jokey manner. Which is great to see SE have a sense of humor again. I cant wait especially for the detective area, i kind hope they dont run out and till the end of the game u can continue to do them even if its just random them taking bits from other cases etc. Also it would be a great way to add in some FF series homage like a bad example would be “Find Runaway bride Yuna (or FFX releated name) and then that leads onto Finding the people or reasons Yuna was kidnapped before walking down the altar” Awful examples over xD

    Game sounds fun cant wait to spend time in the world ;)

  • BenderIsGreat

    How am I going to enjoy exploring with a clock ticking down to the end of the game? Do the developers answer that anywhere? Does a single day end when I save, or do they roll over every few hours, or what?

    • Ehren Rivers

      An in-game day is roughly an hour and 15 minutes. Time stops when you’re in a scene, battling, in your menus, or in the area called The Ark. You have the ability to use Glory Points (Energy Points in English) to stop time temporarily, apparently, although GP is also used for healing spells, for special attacks, and possibly other things. You start the game with 5 GP, and you get some at the beginning of every day from Hope. You can also earn some amount of GP from fighting monsters.

      They haven’t given any indication of whether or not the time-stop ability is available from the beginning of the game. You might have to unlock it, or it might be a New Game+ ability, or it could just have a staggering GP cost.

Video game stories from other sites on the web. These links leave Siliconera.

Siliconera Tests
Siliconera Videos