The recently revealed Final Fantasy XV was one of this year’s biggest surprises at E3 this week. In the midst of a busy schedule for director Tetsuya Nomura, Famitsu.com were able to catch up and discuss future plans for the much anticipated fifteenth installment of the Final Fantasy series.
To begin with, many have wondered about any significant meanings behind the end of the trailer, when it was quoted, “The world is ever changing… For the fifteenth coming,” and if it has anything to do with the story of the game.
According to Nomura, this quote isn’t part of the game, and it was just a line that was made for the trailer alone. It won’t have anything to do with the story or any of the characters.
Nomura also briefly touched upon the nature of the game’s story and its battle system. Both are different from past Final Fantasy games, and this is a result of the game having started out as Final Fantasy Versus XIII. That said, while the game has been rebranded to “Final Fantasy XV,” the idea behind having a different story and and action-based battle system has not.
Nomura says he had to confirm that this would be okay during talks of the game being rebranded as the next numbered Final Fantasy XV. After being told that it wouldn’t be a problem, things went ahead as planned.
Additionally, while Square Enix hinted earlier in the week that Final Fantasy XV may have sequels or future follow-up games that continue the story, Nomura clearly confirms that this will indeed be the case.
Says Nomura: “In the trailer, there was a line that read “A World of the Versus Epic,” which suggests that it will be part of an epic. While Final Fantasy XV will have one climax, as a story, we plan to continue it further.”
This, Nomura says, would make it easier for him and the rest of the team to develop freely without having to worry about the story and contents fitting into just one game.
That said, if Final Fantasy XV is to become a continuous series, players may expect subsequent games to be released in a shorter span, similar to the Final Fantasy XIII series. Famitsu asks Nomura to weigh in on the subject.
“As for as how it will be released, we’ll announce that later on; however, having you wait a long while for a next title isn’t something we would desire…” Nomura replies. “Also, we’ve been exploring online compatibilities ever since the shift towards the next-generation hardware was decided.”
He continued in regards to possible online features, “There are many possibilities. To develop a big title for next-gen consoles, the development costs and time increases significantly, along with its entire scale. When it comes to offline games, even titles that have been in development for years can easily be played out in a short period of time. In order to increase the span of play time, I believe that online features are definitely required. Also, in order to keep the story and anticipation going, I believe that such features are needed, so we’re currently exploring possibilities.”
Famitsu then asks whether there are any plans involving the PlayStation Vita or other hardware for Final Fantasy XV. To this, Nomura replies that Square Enix are interested in using the Vita, smartphones and tablets for new developments.
“Not only PS Vita, but we’re also exploring possible implementations using smartphones and tablets to bring new developments that have yet to be seen in the Final Fantasy series,” Nomura says. “I believe that such expandability has been made possible thanks to the advantage of switching our development method to a PC base.”
Finally, Nomura leaves the following message for fans:
“I deeply apologize for having you wait for so long. I hope that our latest announcement has been able to meet all of your expectations. From this point on, the quality will only be getting better. We plan on revealing more information at future large events such as the Tokyo Game Show, so keep a close eye on the upcoming evolution of Final Fantasy XV. There are many of you who feel that Japanese developers have fallen behind those from the West in the current generation. I believe that this title will show you otherwise for the next generation.”
Final Fantasy XV is currently in development for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.