Final Fantasy IV: The Complete Collection may be another remake of Final Fantasy IV, but Takashi Tokita, the lead designer for the original game, created a new brand new story. The Interlude episode takes place between Final Fantasy IV and its sequel The After Years. During the 15 hour scenario, players will be able to make their own parties with characters that couldn’t be paired together, a system that reminded me of the Game Boy Advance remake.
For Final Fantasy IV’s interlude episode can you tell us more about why you wanted to focus on the restoration of Damacyan Castle?
Takashi Tokita, Director: It made sense as a natural flow that everyone in the party gathered back at Damacyan Castle one year later. By gathering together, it allowed players to create parties they couldn’t make in the original story.
Can you give any more hints about the story in the Interlude?
It starts at Damacyan, but it goes to Fabul. There you will see some characters from The After Years. So, if you played The After Years you might get a kick out of seeing those the characters.
Will we see any new abilities for the characters of the Band system from Final Fantasy IV: The After Years?
The Band system is only the in The After Years because of that the Interlude uses the same system in the original game.
I noticed that Cecil was level 30, so will Palom perhaps be strong enough to cast Meteo?
There was peace for about a year so he’s out of practice. [Laughs] We tweaked it in that way because we initially discussed the possibility of transferring save data from the original game to the Interlude then to The After Years. Because some people have played The After Years before we wanted to create a game where players can play freely and choose the story they wanted to play first.
Was it difficult to start working on a sequel to Final Fantasy IV many years after the original release?
When we were initially creating The After Years we were working on it at the same time as the Final Fantasy IV remake for the DS. Because they were going on at the same time there weren’t any issues.
There were so many versions of Final Fantasy IV, which one is your favorite?
Hmm… because the first one was the original and if the first one wasn’t fun none of the other ones would happen, the original one is my favorite.
In addition to Final Fantasy IV, Square Enix extended other Final Fantasy games, which other classic Final Fantasy would you like to extend?
I mainly worked on Final Fantasy IV. All of the other Final Fantasy titles had their own leads, so I can’t really say. But, this is one of the things that makes each of the Final Fantasy titles unique and distinct.
Looking way back, what can you tell all of the fans of Final Fantasy IV about how the game has changed from the original plan?
When we first developed the game because of memory issues we had to cut everything to 1/4. The story structure didn’t change, but a lot of the dialogue and little details had to be cut out. All of that is probably lost, we don’t know where it is.
If you got a chance to remake Final Fantasy IV would you try to search for any of the data to add?
Similarly to movie editing, if you have good editing you have a good tempo for the movie. I think it was important that we did cut it to a fourth of the size because that is what created the proper pacing and tempo.
We switched topics to Tokita’s other titles after talking about Final Fantasy IV and some of the revelations may surprise you. Here’s a hint… Nanashi no Game. Final Fantasy IV: The Complete Collection makes its debut in Japan this week and is slated for April 22 in North America.