Square Enix announced World of Final Fantasy, an upcoming chibi-style game for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita, last week during E3. Director Hiroki Chiba recently spoke with 4Gamer to share more about the upcoming game.
As previously reported, World of Final Fantasy features a “stacking” ability, where the two siblings form towers. They can adjust their size, turning small enough to jump onto the monsters during combat, or shrink monsters and have them ride on the twins.
“Depending on the combination of monsters, there will be a difference in ability and status,” Chiba tells 4Gamer about the effects of forming towers. “The protagonist Ren and Ran, can stack two monsters, and they’ll add HP according to the amount the stack, and if they all know Fire then they’ll be able to use Firaga (while stacked).”
You won’t always have to be stacked, as they end up forming a party of two characters and four monsters, but it seems like it’s always better to be stacked one way or another.
4Gamer asks if the battle system will be an ATB (Active Time Battle).
“Yes. We’re using the Super Famicom era’s ATB as the base,” responds Chiba. “With the addition of the tower system, you’ll get to enjoy a battle with more depth and strategy. Again, being able to intuitively select commands and such, will make it easier even for those who don’t know much about the battles of Final Fantasy.”
Chiba says that Shinji Hashimoto was the first to come up with the concept of collecting monsters which is seen in World of Final Fantasy. After Chiba approached with the subject, he felt the desire to play it and began working on plans with Hashimoto. From there, Tetsuya Nomura and Yasuhisa Izumisawa joined, and things began to take shape.
Izumisawa, who previously worked on art for Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles, was put in charge of the chibi designs for the characters, while Tetsuya Nomura made the normal-sized characters, after he was consulted about having new Final Fantasy protagonists.
4Gamer asks about how the concept of stacking came to be for World of Final Fantasy.
“There was a drawing that had a Magitek Armor with characters on it, and Izumisawa drew other characters on top of the heads of those characters, and that’s how it started,” explains Chiba. “After looking at that, we came up with it after thinking ‘’how about we just make this into a system?’”
So far, we’ve seen Cloud and Warrior of Light in the game, but Chiba explains that World of Final Fantasy isn’t part of a parallel world, but a new and different world. The stage is set in “Grimoire,” where Final Fantasy characters live as chibi characters.
As far as the story goes, it will progress in linear fashion, and Chiba says that the playstyle was based on the games prior to Final Fantasy X, in a world similar to older games from the series, where the world expands as you advance through the story.
4Gamer asks about how many monsters from the series will we see in the game.
“We’re developing the game while trying to put it as many as possible, but even with game balance in mind, we’d like to at least have as many monsters as the first Dragon Quest Monsters game as the minimal requirement,” says Chiba, as he jokingly says that the rest also depends on how much time the staff would like to put into the game.
Finally, 4Gamer asks Chiba if he could share more about the music of the game.
“We requested Masashi Hamauzu to do the music for the trailer that we recently showcased,” says Chiba. “In addition to making new songs for this title, he’s also been put in charge for making arrangements for existing songs. We’d like to have the Chocobo theme playing while riding Chocobos, and we’d like to avoid possibly ruining the image of the Victory Fanfare. You’d like to hear ‘Battle on the Big Bridge’ when Gilgamesh shows up, right?”
“We’re developing the game with the intent of having it line up with the main-numbered titles [of the series], and as a title with plenty of volume, so please look forward to it,” concludes Chiba.
World of Final Fantasy will release sometime in 2016 for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita.