Final Fantasy VI Art Director Reunites With Nobuo Uematsu For A New RPG

By Sato . November 8, 2013 . 10:00am

Back in January, mobile developers Cygames teased a huge RPG project they would be announcing sometime this year. This game has turned out to be Granblue Fantasy, an RPG featuring the designs of Final Fantasy VI art director Hideo Minaba, and Nobuo Uematsu as its composer. Inside Games share some details from the announcement event.


Granblue Fantasy was announced recently at the Roppongi Nico Fare event, where Minaba, Uematsu, and many famous voice actors gathered for the unveiling. According to Cygames director Yuita Kimura, the project started after he expressed his wish to create a game with Minaba, and felt that if he were to make a game with him, he felt it was necessary to also ask for Uematsu’s help as well.


Nobuo Uematsu, who has composed various music for the Final Fantasy series and has worked extensively with Minaba in the past, says that he’s been asked if he could possibly compose something with an Irish-sounding tune. Since he’s always been fond of Irish music, he was immediately interested.


“I believe that my fans may feel a sense of nostalgia from this,” shared Uematsu with a smile, adding that he has already finished composing 11 songs for the game. Additionally, Minaba, who also worked as the art director for Final Fantasy IX and artistic supervisor for Final Fantasy Tactics, has already drawn about 100 characters for the game, and each character will have their own voices.


Here’s a look at some of the said characters of Granblue Fantasy:


Fighter (protagonist) and Rakam.

Marie and Sturm

Dark Knight and Cielo


Bii, and Lulia



Mobage’s parent company DeNA director Kenji Kobayashi shares that works that involve the combination of Cygames and Mobage are the most successful of all Mobage games, and that he has high expectations of Granblue Fantasy, which he feels will be successful as it will be “a game made by a collection of top staff”.


Kobayashi also shares some of his thoughts upon seeing Minaba and Uematsu’s works during the early stages of development. “I thought to myself, ‘Can we really make a mobile RPG with such a large-scale feeling from this?’ but after seeing the game screen, I was truly surprised,” he said. “It’s as if you completely forget that you’re playing a mobile game.”


Early registration for Granblue Fantasy starts today, and the game is expected to launch this winter for mobile devices.

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  • Shane Guidaboni

    Great character art, probably equally awesome music. Of course it’s a mobile game. :|

    • On the contrary, I think this is great -because- it’s a mobile game.
      I’m tired of all the low-budget crap mobile games get.
      I don’t care about the platform but the games and the entretainment they can provide. Turn based RPGs work fine with touch screen and they could make it work.
      I’m pretty interested where this could go.
      EDIT: Nevermind. Explicitely said to be a free-to-play game with same old mobile market in mind.

      • Shane Guidaboni

        By no means am I implying this can’t work. However, I’m disappointed that it’s a mobile game when they obviously have a great team working on it. Another thing that worries me is the inevitable possibility of micro-transactions that could be added to the game. If it does happen to be a world-wide release I would be happy to give it a try.

        • I can sort of understand the “such a dream team wasted” feel, but at the same time I think this is precisely what the mobile market needs.
          Less micro-transactions, less social elements, less half-assed ports, less half-assed “remakes” and more traditional games and innovative new ips on mobile platforms.

          I just think that it’d be a better world if we had more mobile games that we actually could enjoy as full fledged titles. They get more money, we get more games, it’d be great.
          Of course nothing is that perfect but hey, one step at a time.
          EDIT: Nevermind. Explicitely said to be a free-to-play game with same old mobile market in mind.

        • John Diamond

          why oh why couldn’t it come on the ds or something ;(

    • Altin

      Yeah, I was like:
      “Nobuo Uematsu and the Art Director from my 2nd favourite FF?! Sounds like one of the BEST GAMES EV- oh, for mobiles.”

      I thought I could upload .gif Files here. This is me, getting attacked by dozens of feels.

      • Ric Vazquez

        I felt those same feels man

    • Ric Vazquez

      Yeah dude, I know what you mean, R.I.P good old Square

  • taekk


  • Grape Monet

    The director hired Uematsu to compose Irish-sounding music? Does Yasunori Mitsuda know?

  • “I thought to myself, ‘Can we really make a mobile RPG with such a large-scale feeling from this?’ but after seeing the game screen, I was truly surprised,” he said. “It’s as if you completely forget that you’re playing a mobile game.”
    Aha…hahahahahaha!! Oh wait, he’s serious? Whatever.

  • FallenAfh

    As someone who has no preconceived bias against mobile gaming, there’s been nothing but good news lately – in the mean while mobile haters get increasingly bitter. Win either way.


    Look at that Dark Knight! We need these types of characters back in today JRPGs.

  • InWaves257

    this is fucking awesome, i god damn hope they bring it to the west

  • XypherCode

    I know it’ll be a good (great?) mobile game. But I always feel down every time they announce an RPG that’s for mobile. IMHO RPGs aren’t made for them. Of course for Japanese people it might be different since they do almost everything on smartphones these days.
    I’d try it though.

    • FallenAfh

      RPGs are one of the genres that touchscreen controls are good or at least neutral for.

  • InWaves257

    Awesome, can’t wait, hopefully it releases in the West

  • CptPokerface

    …that dark knight looks a lot like one of the judges from ff12. Wonder if it was intentional?

    Mobile game or not, i hope it turns out good at least.

  • SetzerGabbiani

    Expanded port on portables if feasible and I will consider it. This is a dream team…Ito-san is the only missing component.

    • Yause

      These are quasi social games built by psychologists and economists to maximize compulsive spending. Notice that they haven’t mentioned anything about the actual design team. It wouldn’t work to bring in people committed to making actual -games-.

      Hideo Minaba (CyGames bought his illustration company, so expect these to be his focus from now on) and Nobuo Uematsu are draws to attract traditional RPG fans, and Japanese social game developers have gotten very good at merging involved game elements with coercive monetization.

      • I hate that you’re so right about this, but I love you for sharing my exact sense of cynicism.

  • James Darkly


  • I’m looking forward to this :3 I’ve missed you, Uematsu~

  • Rogerrmark

    Great art and music.Such a waste.

  • Tom_Phoenix

    *looks at Catalina’s picture*

    A female knight that doesn’t expose vital parts of her body for no apparent in-universe reason? HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE?!?!?!

    • ChiffonCake

      I know, right? I’d like to see more character designs like this.

    • Bur


      …I think I have a girlcrush on her already.

    • Hinataharem


    • Joker

      You think girl, game or not expose the body for a real reason? Its all cosmetic buddy, girls do that. Game world only a projection of that habit.

      I don’t think high heel any practical in military, but they still wear that. Why? To look good, all that Loreal Paris, hair salon, pedicure, lipstic and shopping habit is done for look good, that is how the real world woman work.

      Interestingly, recently there are sexism label was thrown because some office want to create dress code, effectively limit the type of attire girls can dress. The desire to stand out and to look better among women is that strong shown here, so unlike man that can stand wearing white/faint blue shirt, black pants and dark colored blazer 6 days a weeks.

      I imagine if real life armor possess no protective value, woman will exposed their vital part of her body as well.

    • chaos_envoys

      reminds me of Agrias Oaks.. such masterpiece…
      this team is wasting resource for creating free to play garbage..

    • Suppaman

      Its a game dude, sometimes how it looks is more important the function.. and if you think even deeper, the physic laws do not apply on game, you can wear a pot as head piece and stick as weapon and you still can defeat a 10 meter tall behemoth. If you insist, you might as well lament Cloud for his not practical buster sword or Barret Wallace for not covering his chest and arm. Its a game, not everything have to make sense.

  • ivanchu77

    “mobile RPG”

    yup, nothing to see here, sad to see Uematsu being wasted like this

    • It’s not a waste in Japan. This is how things are going to go so long as the market forgoes consoles and especially handhelds in favor of the mobile market, and Japanese developers have been struggling for years with the budgets required for console titles especially.

      Honestly, as long as I can hear this OST somewhere, no harm no foul.

      • Shane Guidaboni

        If this were a handheld game, I bet there would be a much warmer reception right now.

      • Joker

        I do understand that very much, developer have no money + afraid to take risk, and jRPG itself do not require latest graphic to work (it could be 8bit graphic and still work), so the platform that make sense is mobile platform.

        Still, mobile gaming was hated for its atrocious control, and hopefully they can at least put controller support so I don’t have to opt to touch screen gaming, because I never have great experience with it.

        I also hope somebody manage to make a perfect android/IOS emulator so I can play it on my PC…

  • やっぱりな

    • ivanchu77


      • Aoshi00

        don’t mean to nitpick, should be jinsei (人生) instead of seikatsu (生活) :)

        but yeah, w/ my favorite artist Minaba Hideo and favorite composer Uematsu, of course MOBILE game again, no surprise.. I think the last iOS game was borderwalker or something?

        It’s sad they use these big names to prop up these social or F2P games on phone.. I have an iPad and an android phone, but I really don’t care about seeing these tags on the articles.. I might as well just buy a Minaba artbook and an Uematsu soundtrack.. use Uematsu’s talent better for serious games..

        It’s no wonder my favorite games in recent yrs are mostly western games, that are actual games.. I don’t even like to play Sugar Crush on my phone :P

  • ShinGundam


  • Masa

    why don’t you ever put mobile in the title, instead we click this topic and leave depressed. :(

    • Testsubject909

      It’s all according to their Keikaku.

  • This looks very incredible for a mobile game. While I’d prefer it on a better platform, honestly I can’t complain.
    I think this’d be a neat direction for more mobile games instead of the low budget ports and free to play stuff. I approve of this!

    EDIT: Nevermind. Same old free-to-play business model ;_;

    • Yause

      This free-to-play. It’s just the next generation of product which merges high production values with DeNA’s Mobage formula (which has made them a multi-billion dollar company).

      • When was it stated it was free to play?
        I’m giving the benefit of doubt to this since it’s quite far ahead from their previous attempts to get mobile games right (look at that terrible FFIV TAY “remake” with DS graphics upscaled).
        While I don’t doubt they might screw it up later along the road, I don’t necessarily think it’s bad it’s on a mobile platform.

        • Yause

          The Mobage line works that way. This is a F2P social game network with an emphasis on collectible card RPGs.

          The Inside Games article confirms that it’s monetized via in-app transactions, but that’s the rule of the game for this business.

          You can try Rage of Bahamut or Marvel: War of Heroes for a sample of Cygames’ work.

          • That article has nothing to do with this game. I’m aware of the mobile market and its tendencies.
            However, correct me if I’m wrong, there’s nothing implying such things just yet.
            Hold on your negativity until that’s confirmed or if it was, please correct me.
            I’m afraid you’re being too generalizing with these statements.

          • Yause

            If you want it explicitly spelled out:


            At the top: Winter release, pre-registration begins November 8, business model is free-to-play with in-game spending.

            DeNA’s Kenji Kobayashi specifically confirms the social elements later in the article.

            In short, these things are growing up now that the operators are swimming in cash. They can bring the audio/visual appeal of console games to the table (largely by recruiting illustrators from the mainstream industry), but that doesn’t change the corporate and market aims.

          • Touché.
            That’s incredibly disappointing.

  • Go2hell66

    iphone iphone iphone

  • fairysun

    All right, we have the right person for art and music. Now, who is the one in charge for gameplay?

  • Gemlit

    I don’t really mind if it’s on mobile as long as they discuss a possible console game of this caliber in the future.

  • sakusakusakura_nyo

    Huge waste of an rpg project.

  • Death Saved

    Can we please have a tab for non mobile exclusives alongside the 3ds and Vita tabs up top.

  • Neophoton

    Was moderately okay with it up until the F2P aspect. I’ll pass.

  • Little OT: where is Sakaguchi? I loved The Last Story/Lost Odyssey and they are like vanished :(

    • They were our hopes for the old Final Fantasy… At least there’s Bravely Default.

  • Pekola

    *Animal Noises*


  • Zantetsuken_Gilgamesh

    The article sure did keep the mobile part near the end hehe. I will say I love the art designs, too bad ill never play this game.

    • Really? It’s in the very first line.

  • z_merquise

    I just wonder, do RPG fans in Japan felt the same way like many people here and in other gaming sites I visit towards mobile phone games?

    • Gemlit

      I think a lot of Japanese fans of RPG fans feel the same way about mobile as we do. But, I also think that less of them probably care about them because most Japanese folk use the transit system (trains) to get around so that it would be more convenient for them to play and/or keep their boredom occupied. Of course, there really is no alternative than there is to play a game on a console.

    • Nana

      Overall, the attitude is very similar. It has a reason the 3DS is doing so well. The mobile RPG and console RPG crowd had a HARSH split a few years ago, they aren’t the same audience anymore. Very simplified: The FF-fans went mobile, the DQ-fans did not. Both snarl at each other.

  • LightGenx

    I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

    • revenent hell

      Do both. I did. But its a trend as of late ive found while reading about gams.
      There are some genuinely cool sounding games where ive gone “I’m so buying that!” and then I finish reading and they are inevitably followed by “mobile”…. It must be because they are cheaper devices to developed for and less overall work is involved…
      Its just sad because no matter how cool the game may sound/be countries outside of the one developing it probably wont get most of them simply because they are mobile games and more often than not, I’m going to go out on a limb and say, they probably aren’t as popular in the US as other devices are for gaming.

  • Earthjolly

    Yeah, lets just kick the Vita in the groin again…

  • Flamboyant Ass Nigga

    Are mobile games that popular in Japan? it’s like all i’m seeing these days.

    • ShawnOtakuSomething

      lol your user name fits

      • Flamboyant Ass Nigga

        I know pic fits too.

  • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

    The art looks really nice.^_^………Iphone.T_T…….cardgame…….T___________T”

  • notforsale

    I was kinda(ish?) okay about it being a mobile game….but a CARDGAME as well?! *sigh* -_-“, no thanks…..

  • Paul Rodriguez

    I didn’t even bother reading the story. Just scrolled to the part that has “read more stories about” just to verify what I thought the platform would be.and I was right. Came in with low expectation and left feeling ok.

    Read more stories about Android & Granblue Fantasy & iPhone
    Read more stories about Android & Granblue Fantasy & iPhone & Screenshots on Siliconera.
    Read more stories about Android & Granblue Fantasy & iPhone & Screenshots on Siliconera.

  • xxx128

    Awesome news… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… please don’t let this be a telephone game… awww damn :(

  • Oversoul

    His art direction skills are something to be desired
    The characters, creatures, backgrounds, graphic design for the bars/menus and other things all clash horribly for no good reason. i expect better from people like this. It looks like a newgrounds game that hired a great illustrator and nothing else.

  • rurifan

    Yet another game Siliconera doesn’t bother to mention the most important aspect about in the front page blurb. Almost like they know that nobody cares about mobile games and wouldn’t bother clicking through if the platform was noted up front.

  • Elvick

    Mobile… nice bait and switch title.

  • P4ine

    Why do all these JRPG producers (especially Square Enix) keep making mobile games even though no one really appreciates and wants them? I thought they loved money.

  • Im in love with mobile games now :> global version please :>

  • SlickRoach

    You had me at FFVI. The fact that it’s a mobile game doesn’t bother me as much after playing Puzzles & Dragons.

  • 40

    Yay Kanae! Too bad it’s a mobile…

  • TobeGrendizer92

    I wonder why so many people on this site treat “mobile game” as “piece of crap”. They even say that not stating it’s a mobile game in the title counts as “trolling”, even though there are plenty of titles that don’t mention a game’s platform, and no one complains. This attitude is even more tiresome than writing a mini-rant about it, then making a self-reference.

    • Twottoot

      No one cares about mobile games thats the problem, its pretty much a Japan only thing.

      • TobeGrendizer92

        It makes sense for a Japanese company to invest in a type of game that’s selling very well.

      • Rytan

        People care. It’s just that the whiners are more vocal than the lovers.

    • fayt255

      I think a good bit of the hate comes from companies like Square turning well known game series into these mobile card games while a true sequel to such games gets completely disregarded so people just get disappointed. Also most of these games don’t make outside of Japan.

  • They should beleive again in 2D for console like 3DS or ps vita. They got the skills.

  • KiTA

    Eeeh. Mobage? Are any Mobage games not 1 button card games with no gameplay or strategy other than “grind more or spend RMT?”

  • chaos_envoys

    whenever I sees mobage, Free To Play cames to mind.. online only, free to play, microtransaction, all of them destroys gaming….

  • firstarioch

    Well it’s sad to see that these type of caliber of people are forced to make games on devices that I have zero interest to play .
    If this is the future of gaming than I’m out ….
    Will stick to retro. I can’t stand mobile games ascwell as third person shooters which current gen is plying us with ….
    Sad times .

  • joemari5


  • FreeRPGer

    This sounds very, very intriguing and right up my alley with the gurus behind this one — oh, I take that back. It’s only for mobile devices. I’d have been a happy-straight-up-steeple-boy even if it was for the 3DS. grrr!
    I’m so glad I still have “all” my retro consoles (and spares), because that’s what it looks like I’ll be doing most of the time if I want to play a quality JRPG.

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