With Monster Hunter: World and Final Fantasy XIV’s crossover announced at E3 2018, FFXIV producer and director Naoki Yoshida and Monster Hunter executive producer Ryozo Tsujimoto caught up for a chat in an interview with 4Gamer.
The interview started out with 4Gamer asking the two developers to share the process on how the collaboration started. Talk was said to have started about seven years ago.
Naoki Yoshida, Final Fantasy XIV producer/director: This goes back about eight years from now, but on the day after it was decided that I would be in charge of the rebirth of Final Fantasy XIV, I had a chat with Tsujimoto-san. He said “What are you thinking!” I told him “I’ve already decided on doing it,” so then he told me “But I wanted you to make Monster Hunter… okay, so if it doesn’t work out, then come work on Monster Hunter. If it does work out, then bring those achievements and come make Monster Hunter.” He also told me “You guys will probably do just about anything for the rebuild, and I can lend Monster Hunter’s power to help with that, so feel free to ask for anything you need.”
Personally, those words coming from Tsujimoto-san were huge, as I was in a position of flipping over Final Fantasy XIV which was in a grave state at the time, and it was very encouraging to know that someone was there to support me.
However, for that reason I felt that Final Fantasy XIV needed to be able to stand head to head with Monster Hunter, otherwise it would truly just be getting help if we were to do something like a collaboration, so I told him I’ll do my best until that time comes.
Ryozo Tsujimoto, Monster Hunter executive series producer: I first met Yoshida-san about ten years ago, and ever since then I thought that he had the talent of a director, and I always hoped we could make a game together someday. And then I heard he was to be in charge of Final Fantasy XIV, and I thought to myself “Wait a second. Really? Is he seriously going to do it?” I’m sorry, but I thought it was going to be a big mess.
Naoki Yoshida: Obviously, the chances of failure was much higher. [laughs]
Ryozo Tsujimoto: But I understood that he was one to not listen after making up his mind, and I wanted to support him, so I thought it’d be nice to do a collaboration someday.
Naoki Yoshida: For the collaboration timing, it actually started before Monster Hunter: World even released. I went out for a meal with Kaname-san (Monster Hunter World executive director Fujioka Kaname) who told me that he was planning on taking on the world with Monster Hunter World, which actually didn’t even have that name at the time, and he talked about possibly doing something together with Final Fantasy XIV. And just about a year from now we officially talked about it, and decided to make preparations for it.
I believe that Monster Hunter is Japan’s number one title that made new fans within Japan. I believe there are many people who grew up together with Monster Hunter. As for us, we’d like to get people like that and borrow Monster Hunter’s power to get them to experience an MMORPG like Final Fantasy XIV, and on the other hand we want to get people playing Final Fantasy XIV around the world to just see how amazing Monster Hunter is.In any case, I felt that right now is the best timing for a collaboration.
Ryozo Tsujimoto: On the other hand, up until then we never actually said “I want to do a collaboration.” On our end, I was worried that if we were to do a collaboration with Monster Hunter, which isn’t as popular around the world, that we’d be the ones causing trouble. Since Monster Hunter: World is developed for a worldwide audience, and it continues getting updates, I thought that now was the best timing, and decided to propose a collaboration.
Monster Hunter: World is available on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, with a PC version arriving this fall. Final Fantasy XIV is available on PlayStation 4 and PC.