Square Enix: “Next Final Fantasy will be an RPG Again”


Motomu Toriyama, the director said to have been the driving force behind Final Fantasy XIII’s notorious linearity, has stated once again that the main reasons for the changes were that he wanted a “story-driven” game and that it was too much trouble to make “not truly important” elements like towns in HD; he does however promise that towns and traditional RPG elements will be returning in future titles.

The development process was, he says, limited by the amount of effort required to make non-linear environments, echoing his previous comments:

“In the previous Final Fantasy games on non-high definition consoles, we were able to kind of take everyone’s ideas and include them in the games.

I call it a bento box system, where you have all of the different little things in there. So we had minigames or towns were you were able to talk to all of the townspeople. But with the HD console you’re not really able to do that because it takes so long to develop.”

Odd that Bioware and others seem to have managed what Square Enix claims is impossible even with some of the highest budgets in the industry.

“If you think about how long it’s already taken to develop this game, to have to have included all of those other aspects, it would have been too long.

So what we did instead was define what was truly important to the game, and include those aspects and really emphasize those items we wanted to include.

We had to consider the amount of time it took to create the game engine, which we built from scratch, as well, and so with that additional time included we had to decide what we could and couldn’t do.”

Asked directly if it might not have been better to pursue towns rather than cut them completely, Toriyama is dismissive:

“You can wait longer for the game where we can improve those elements!”

He also admits he personally made the design decision to strip out the traditional RPG elements:

“Personally, the Final Fantasy games that I have worked on have been very story-driven, so in terms of the development I wanted to, of course, use my personal strengths which where those.”

He does however seem chastened enough to promise their re-inclusion in future titles:

“The next title that we will create will have those elements, and the improvements to those elements that you were mentioning.”

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  • “In the previous Final Fantasy games on non-high definition consoles, we were able to kind of take everyone’s ideas and include them in the games.

    …But with the HD console you’re not really able to do that because it takes so long to develop.”

    You see what graphics are costing us? Stop focusing on them!

  • seriously dont see how its that hard, like Bioware nail RPG so much on the systems just sounds like excuses. But I thought it wud suck but all the great reviews threw me off but now it all comes gushing out which is interesting.

    • at least… there are some of JRPG that lead to different path and ending because of our action in the game.

      for WRPG…i don’t know?? is there any?? all i know is the evil always got beated up by some dark/neutral/holy warriors…. nothing ever change from the past

      not that i hate WRPG, but WRPG also tend to very “short” and sometime the gameplay could be very easy in the long run.. the “feel” of fixed level mostly come from bioware games is a bit annoying for me (i love grind ^^)

    • FF8 is not as good as FF6, FF5 or FF7. People should really try FF6. The game has bad graphics and sound compare to today’s games (super fanicom or snes game), but the story is one of the best, along side FF7…

  • XIII, to me, feels like a punishment for not liking XII. They took away the complete control and expxlotarion they had given us and handed us the linear, cutscene-laden mess that is XIII.

  • I’m a Bioware hater and personally I think the FF series is fucking dead,Toriyama himself doesn’t have a fucking clue what an RPG is :

    “Toriyama went on to make some comparisons between Western role-playing games and Japanese role-playing games. Of course, he played fast and loose with the definition of the genre, using Hitman and Tomb Raider as his examples of “Western RPGs.”

    The difference, he said, is that Western RPGs like those ones starring Lara Croft have camera systems that zoom in tightly on the main character because the player wants to identify closely with that single character, whereas Japanese RPG cameras are more zoomed out, because the player wants to see the entire scene from a bird’s-eye view. ”


    Oh dear

  • Was Super Linear but still Enjoyable. Grand Plus is quite the amazing place once you reach it. Too bad the entire game couldn’t have been more like it with missions and a big open place to explore spread in the game.

  • I say give the listens to someone who actually cares. Maybe they can breath some new life into the franchise. Out of curiosity, I wonder what Final Fantasy would be like if it were an action beat-em-up like Muramasa or cell shaded.

  • Another thing Motomu Toriyama mentioned in his talk was his desire to create interactive cut-scenes, I think this should be interesting if done right. More details of the talk are here: gdc.gamespot.com/story/6253527/ffxiii-director-intends-to-keep-series-story-driven

  • This is most definitely the case of not having completed the development tools before having to finish the game. The completed tools look pretty slick, so moving forward they should have a lot more time to produce a more sophisticated game. To get the game out on time they took as many shortcuts as they could.

  • Oh yeah?
    They are just trying to create an overhype by blurting out all these promises, I’m sure that in the near future they will refer to the next FF as “The best FF yet to come!”. Just like with XIII.
    Don’t let them fool you and make you fall into the trap people, Square games turned into shit after most part of the original FF team left Square Enix.

  • Well, it sounds like that everyone was expecting FFXIII to be a sun of such perfection that its brilliance will erase all the empty voids in our lives that we need to play RPGs to fulfill.

    Unfortunately, it was only enjoyable…though from the way some people are complaining, you would think that FFXIII entered their houses at night and murdered their dogs.

  • I can see the complaints has escalated in their intensity and reasoning. At this rate, FFXIII will end up being responsible for people’s self-esteem problems, the economic crisis and murdering people’s dogs…

    To be honest, I think FFXIII has been quite enjoyable. Sure, if you have played a lot of JRPGs, you will probably not be surprised by some of the twists and events. But overall, it is a very polished package with solid characters and fantastic visual. It is nice actually to see Square Enix experimenting with the RPG formula every now and then. FFXII didn’t get the balance right, but FFXIII is a vast improvement. If Square Enix simply makes FFVII+1 iteratives, sure the fans will be pleased, but that’s when the franchise is really going to die from stagnation.

    So yeah…don’t hate FFXIII unless it actually does murder your dogs. Enjoy it while it lasts, the next one won’t be here for a while.

  • The majority of all the people here are so fucking stupid. How come FXIII has become so-called ‘utter shit’ just because it isn’t what you expected it to be? Sure, it may not be as open and RPG-like as before but if you look at what’s left, you cannot possible say it’s shit.

    The cutscenes alone make this game at least a 4/10. Then you have the gameplay, which isn’t bad at all. After a while it gets pretty challenging so the fairy tale of the game playing itself can be thrown out of the window. The story, which is very solid. The characters that get totally screwed over by the English VA’s, but ignoring that they are very likable.

    I can’t say to much because I haven’t finished this yet, but so far I am enjoying this a lot. Sure, it’s my personal opinion, but the stuff some of you guys are spouting out are so exaggerated like fuck.

    • I wouldn’t say FFXIII is a bad game at all.
      It has the things I usually play JRPGs for: nice characters, decent soundtrack, interesting story, decent battle system. But that’s all, there is nothing else. The game is not immersive and the ultra linear stuff just feels dumb. FFX is my favorite FF and even this game feels sandboxy compared to XIII. I have no intention at all on playing XIII again.

      Also, the “HD towns are too hard to do” is a terrible excuse. These guys just should be more sincere with their ideas, it’s better for their work and it would make the public happier.

    • I think most people were expecting FFXIII to be so perfect as to fill some pathetic void in their lives.

      Instead, it’s just enjoyable, but I get the impression that FFXIII probably entered someone’s home at nights, murdered their dogs and molested their console.

    • Well, the way I see it, the game was advertised as RPG, people expected RPG, people got Olympic level marathon game.

      Not sure but if I wanted to play RPG, I wouldn’t buy a sports game.

  • Sounds like the difference between FF10 and FF12. The difference being I beat FF10 in about a week of nonstop playing and took months or more to get around to beating FF12.

    FF13 looks to be in the former category, so I guess FF15 will be another snoozefest. A shame.

    Maybe in another 8 or so years when the PS4 rolls around, FF16 will be the next one worth playing after 13.

  • drunkspiderman667 says:

    fuck all you stupid douche bags, theres nothing wrong with ff13 design. rpgs are about story and character interaction. and while ff13 has story the character interaction is quite non-existent.

    its still better than most wrpgs, im sorry but i dont fall for the choice bull shit. and to all you world map, town, and open world whores STFU. its nothing like a interactive movie wtf are u on. the combat and moving through the world (YES THE FUCKING WORLD) makes it far from that.

    ive almost beaten this game and i can tell you the reason why they dont include “town” or a world map is because its not needed for storyline purposes. no one could survive on gran pulse its full of very dangerous monsters. this is like the whole point of why cocoon exists you fucking weeboo idiots.

  • XIII is just fucked up movie with a minigame battle, nuff said.

    thx 2 you, toriyama.

    personally i dont think the story was THAT BAD, but still no better than even X.

    Toriyama, i would be glad if you step down from that fakken prestigious chair and give it to the more suitable one. thank you

  • This is a case of (most probably “Agile”) software development gone wrong. Program manager pressures developers to implement the most important features first (ie, story), and to leave other features for later (ie, mini games, towns, more npcs, etc).

    Developers gives in and build the game architecture without taking into account (ie, stub subsystems, classes and function hooks) the additional features.

    When they’re finally want to implement the mini games and extra towns, they find the game architecture to be too rigid to change.

    While I believe Square Enix has some of the most creative story tellers/game designers in the world, I think their (current) software development processes are far behind game companies like Bioware.

  • if toriyama was talking about the battle engine, I’m more than statisfied with the ones from Crisis Core and Dissidia (FF7 isn’t my favourite, but I think is the best Squeenix has made since FF 9). I just hope Agito doesn’t become the PSP combo breaker.

      • I know about that, but I’m kind of disappointed with how the main series has evolved. Denying the FF7 remake and the Chrono sequel contradicts Squeenix’s need for cashing in more money… what the hell are they smoking now?

  • Well I’m a long time fan of the series and I was bashing on the game before playing because of all the things i read/saw/heard about it and now when I have it I must admit that it is not what expected but still one hell of a good looking game, its like they really made one hell of an engine and now we’re just gonna have to wait for the real deal to come out.

    The game is all about great graphics and no loading times so its all in one hell of a ride. It reminds me much of FFVI where you have the characters splitting up all the time (but without choosing party members). 10 first hours of the game is just pushing the X button and walking a straight path. I cant understand how ANY gamer would like that (if you’re not SUPER casual).

    They really did a great job with character growth but not in an RPG-way. It feels just as if they made a movie/tv-show and wanted you to be involved through the fillers.

    I very much enjoy it as an experience but not so much as a game. Great battle system but it just take too long to get into the “hardcore-mode”. Its not for a fan but rather for newcomers.

  • sheesh seriously I liked ff13..a breath of fresh change from a system stereotype.. if you like it buy it, if not rent it…or don’t bother at all..I rarely let reviews affect my game purchase decisions…I read them reviews and weigh in on it..but most of the time if a game pleases my eyes and I like the way it plays out (there’s youtube and tons of other sources anyways for game references) so you guys can bash ff13 for all it is and yet turn out to be hypocrites since you still bought the game and played it..(that alone has earned SE money) an RPG can range from a linear story telling game (like MGS4) or an action packed game like GOW3 or RE5…or can be both…to each his own taste…you don’t like ff13? will your bashing change anything? no? by not buying the game yes you can change…but for every person who doesn’t buy the game, another new guy will fill his shoes…so what’s the point? I suggest you guys just enjoy it..

  • There is no such thing as a JRPG That name is fake. look into the truth and you will see that they are IAG’s (interactive anime games) to even call it a rpg is an insult to the great emo in the sky.

  • After being sucked into the whole, “oh its sooooo bad of a game because it’s linear” mindset I decided to risk it and buy it. Turns out it’s really enjoyable and has a great cast. It’s just as linear as X was, which wasn’t so bad, and the battles are a ton of fun. So far I’d give a B+.

    • X had dungeons with puzzles in them and multiple paths. X had towns and npcs with quests and secret unlockables. X let you change your party whenever you wanted.
      Comparing this game to X is like comparing the original megaman to megaman X. Sure, they’re both similar but ‘X’ is clearly superior in every possible way.

  • red candle says:

    Square Enix: “Next Final Fantasy will be an RPG Again” ….OK no shit what else would it be? Am I missing something? I’m not buying XIII after learning that the game is pretty much a straight path and that the developers said they were too lazy to include towns.

    • They weren’t too lazy to make towns because there are towns in the game….they look amazing too…they just don’t let you roam freely through all of it….so it’s not like they didn’t make them. (I been playing the game for a good while now).

      • Disguising a dungeon as a town doesn’t make it a town. If you can’t buy shit from stores, take quests from people, and use the various facilities, then it isn’t a town.
        Mass Effect pretty much proved this guy is full of shit, not to mention even tales of vesperia managed to shove in tons of towns into a current gen console. Eternal Sonata was similar in that it was linear as shit, but had a good battle system, music and presentation just like this game. But even ES had towns in them, and you could BACK TRACK, GO OFF PATH, and EXPLORE DUNGEONS WITH PUZZLES IN THEM.

  • And now we wait five more years for FFXV. (FFXIV doesn’t count-its a MMORPG)I didn’t play FFXI for that reason. I’m one of those people that doesn’t like to “Pay To Play” SUE ME!

  • So after playing through the game once already and now moving onto a second round to see if I can play out my characters a bit differently, evaluate different elements of the game. . . all in all soak in more I shall give my first impression.

    This game is no where as terrible as people seem to make it out to be. And you can rage, etc etc, but I had lower expectations for this game than it itself came out to be. It was no FFVII, but it also was not a X-2 or my least favorite (proper as I see it) FF which is XII. A bit too linear in many elements, I think Motomu hit off exactly what I want to see in the next FF. I honestly believe he got most of what he was aiming for right. This game actually gave me faith in a series and genre I was beginning to despise. Dragon Age and stuff is fine, but the characters and such of JRPG games have always appealed to me due to growing up with them.

    Linear yes. 2 character combat quite honestly sucks. Hope made me wish I could keep characters permanently dead. But it all worked out and showed improvements. Oh and in regards to the article as a whole. . . the first thing I noticed. A relation between Bioware and Square Enix. I’m sorry, I can’t compare SE and Bioware. Similar games, different strategy/focus/characters/scenarios/etc.

    • I liked Final Fantasy X-2, it as fun, cheesy and had a laugh with itself; the fan-service got a bit much, but that balanced out with the great fun battle system, which was fast paced and had good tactics too, even if the gun-mage was utterly useless and you always ended up with one alchemist ;cos they’re a little overpowered. It wasn’t an epic story, and the characters where at times annoying, but it was an enjoyable ride which had you laughing and face-palming in a good way the whole way; and itching for the next big battle because they where so much fun. And as such, I would disagree with your review, and continue to believe that the game isn’t good. I’ll admit I’ve not reached the elusive ‘one day of your life wasted before you can have any fun’ mark, but I find the battle system is good, but not goo enough to keep me interested; the humour is sparse and horrible, and the story is nothing amazingly special if you compare it to ‘story focused games.’ There’s nothing that keeps me interested for that long, and maybe it will all get better, but I still don’t want to spend 20 hours of my life for it to; I could just play a game which starts out fun, and continues to be so.

      • That’s a simple. . . to each his or her own.
        X-2 is usually the brunt of many sad jokes in my friend circles. It provided a new edge of game play that I feel did find it’s way into XIII unlike XII. I know a few folks who liked XII in terms of combat system because of the flexibility as they saw it. I still do prefer the combat roles of X-2 over the new synergist/medic/commando/ravager/etc roles of XIII.
        I suppose you can say that there is the full out day spent doing nothing. I didn’t see that, maybe you are a bit slower (Hate me more for insulting you if you wish). I got through the grindfest of the game in a mere 16 hours. That’s really very little compared to most RPGs these days. I felt XII was a lot more cumbersome. And as far as I am concerned, it’s about moving forward. XIII is advancement from XII. Though at the same time I agree with my best friend who said, “This game feels like test run. They needed to scrap most of it at the end and redo a large part of it. Probably put off selling it for another 6 months and it could have brought a lot more to the table”
        So for now, I’ll disagree with your review too.

  • I’m about 30 hours into the american version of the game. So far it’s been great. It’s no linear than parts of FFX and I enjoyed FFX. The story is good (I don’t know what kind of story some of you are expecting). The environments look amazing. Chapter 11 has a huge open area that looks like it will take me a while to explore. It’s not that they can’t make freely explorable towns in FFXIII….I think they just wanted to do something massive with it and they just didn’t have the time. FFXIII is nowhere near as bad as some of you guys say.

  • I prefer Eternal Sonata over Final Fantasy XIII.

    I’ve ordered on the internet both at the same day and I must say, I’d find Eternal Sonata’s storyline interesting. Amazing enviroments, likeable characters, fun gameplay, and epic soundtrack. An underrated game for sure.

  • WHY OH WHY do they care so much about graphics quality as to ruin the rest of the game? Seriously, graphics is SO overrated. RPGs can be played with (or without) any kind of computers/consoles, regardless of graphics. People have their priorities wrong it seems.

    What would you prefer, the actual FFXII, or a hypothetical good FXIII with non-HD graphics?


    Not able to produce towns? mini games? along a complex story and graphics??

    There are way older games who accomplished all those and more in their time; there’s no reason why a so hyped up game like FFXIII couldn’t have those things.

  • Keep your eyes out for The Last Story. It’s designed by studio Mistwalker founded by Hironobu Sakaguchi the creator of Final Fantasy. I’m hoping this will be the next generation of Final (the Last) Fantasy (Story).

    I myself enjoyed more of the Final Fantasy titles that came out during the NES years. FFIV felt much more fantasy-rpg oriented and I liked that a lot. FFVII had a bit of both thrown in, the story and rpg element, and that played out great. FFX had a nice story with awesome cut-scene and was pretty linear and driven by the story and that wasn’t bad either but the whole `rpg’ was lacking.

    You can tell I’m pretty old fashion when it comes to game. I rather play blocky pixel rpg if there is story AND rpg element true to its root. State of the art cut-scene and latest graphic is a bonus but kindly welcomed.

  • Problem: there are greater expectations with the series being on PS3.

    If Toriyama couldn’t do that, then they should have never bothered making FFXIII. He definitely misjudged the expectations that fans had for the game, leaving a potentially bitter memory of how the console series would end…

  • Pfff sounds like excuses to be lazy…

    after all the hype I ain’t too impressed with FFXIII. Don’t get me wrong I’m still enjoying it but not loving it.
    Mass Effect 2 a wicked game.

  • I’m 20 hrs in and don’t have a problem with the linearity. Its all story driven and they are on the run. Anyway, how often do you have a mid or end game character in an rpg and say, hey I’ll go back to the first dungeon and whack a few slimes. The shops at the saves are fine too, other games have done that.

    I’m getting more into the combat system, although I don’t really like it.

    What I don’t like is that, although you can have three in a party, almost all of the 20 hrs so far have had two and you can’t pick the leader. When they meet a third char, they tend to split the party again, or switch to a team of two! AAAARRGH!

      • Your right Tri-Ace did developer the games while Square Enix help Publish the game it seems they are lazy enough to admit they didn’t bother to ask Tri-Ace for any help developing HD counsel games considering they have the experience.

        • TehBoringOne says:

          Which only comes to further show that Toriyama and his gang are a bunch of useless imbeciles that wasted FIVE YEARS worth of development, and who knows how many millions of dollars only to produce an on rails Non RPG with RPG elements…

          But remember… The next Final Fantasy WILL BE an RPG…

          Excuse me while I go laugh my ass off…

  • I don’t understand how everyone likes FFX so much. It was complete melodramatic, “moving”, emo garbage, that had no challenges until the very end where you could do the monster arena.

  • I can’t Play JRPG’s any more just because the fact they are being called RPG’s. I want a role in my story. I want my fucking choices to matter and effect the story. But I can’t do that In JRPG’s. If I do play one I have to change my fucking mindset and tell myself I’m playing something completely different. But you see I remember when your choices DID matter in a JRPG. Now I’m usually playing Bioware’s games when I want a RPG. I’m not complaining they are fucking god’s at what they do it’s just that I miss the time when JRPG’s were like that.

    OH yeah

    “I call it a bento box system, where you have all of the different little things in there. So we had minigames or towns were you were able to talk to all of the townspeople. But with the HD console you’re not really able to do that because it takes so long to develop.”

    Bull Fucking Shit. Those guy’s are always saying how they have such massive games and they can’t fit it all on the xbox and they say it takes to long to put the things that made FF great in their games yet Bioware is capable? On the Xbox no less? This bastard need’s to be shot. Like now. He’s holding the company back from actually making some truly epic games.

  • Maybe it wouldn’t have taken them so long if they didn’t suddenly rewrote the white engine which was PS3 only engine to the crystal engine that could be used on PS3, X360, Wii and PC (rather strange since some few months before they licensed the U3 engine for multi games).
    Or it would have gone faster if they simply didn’t start to develop the X360 version aswell and would have concentrated their forces on the PS3.
    Still even though they created a game with absolutly no bugs at all thanks to all the time they spend, oh wait shit.

  • Personally I love the new FF. Not having towns didn’t really bothered me, and the linear stuff is just a joke there are so many linear games out there I don’t see the point of focusing on this one, not that there is any trouble in being linear as long it is enjoyable.

    • If that’s the case, go “play” a visual novel. While storylines ARE important to JRPGs, what’s the point of actively playing the game if that’s all I’m looking forward to? I’m looking for an experience. Even if the story ends up being spectacular, if the presentation(which includes gameplay, graphics, and the general direction) and pacing isn’t handled well, it’ll end up being a mediocre storytelling medium and the storyline will be wasted. Story isn’t all that counts, at least not when movies and games are meant to do more than tell a story.

    • Yeah, it’s like a book in that regard, except it’s a really bad book that doesn’t get to the point, and when it finally does it’s underwhelming… Focusing on stories in games is a fail move, because games can’t have fantastic stories, it needs to stop for some game play to happen. Moreover, if this was a visual novel would you call the story good? Heck no!

  • destroyah3034 says:

    I’m not too sure why everyone keeps on bagging FF XII. It was the first truly open FF game on the PS2. If they could have added another 60+ hours of gameplay then it would have been perfect, since I thought it was too short. Graphically, towns were done well, considering the PS2s age and the battle system was sound with a mix of FF Tactics thrown in.

    It just irks me that Square Enix threw everything out for FF XIII that had worked for them before. Also Toriyama is full of shit. With the budget that Square Enix has, as well as the amount of money they get from gamers each time, they could have hired more graphic designers and engineers to take care of implementing towns and other open areas in HD. Other developers do this on the consoles and pcs just fine without SEs impressive cash flow.

    I won’t pick up another FF based game until they take care of the prick who is killing their creativity and artistic freedom.

    • i do agree, while Van’s character was really lacking that i keep on questioning why is he in the game, and main character at that (i resolved this issue, by deciding that i should view Ashe as the main character and try to have as small interaction with Van and Penelo as possible), it was a really entertaining RPG. And the amount of side quests and just grinding that you can do was almost overwhelming. If i have to bash on anything for FFXII, it was only for their choice of making Van, the first playable character or even a playable character, because if gives the idea that he’s somehow important and titular while he’s not. but the other character involved are quite decent if not rich in story.

    • Idk if you read the earlier article about SE laying people off or not. It seems that they obviously didn’t manage their money well and they are probably short staffed to make anything noteworthy. Personally I like FFXIII and my favorites before were IX, X, and VII.

      • TehBoringOne says:

        If they are understaffed and in an economic bind, then the logical thing to do would be to produce one or two smaller games with a carefully planned budget and high production values and then cash in and repeat the process until their situation stabilizes.

        But what do they do? “The next Final Fantasy will be an RPG again”

        Give me a fucking break. FFXIII was always marketed as an RPG. If they didn’t want to make an RPG, they should have said so from the very beginning.

  • RaspberryKisses says:

    20h in to the Final Fnatasy XIII and i love it. story is great and battles are fun…i don’t care about towns and linearity because it’s fun ,have a good story and this is all i need.

  • There are some reasons why I can understand why people felt let down, no fanfare, no open world explorations or extra boss dungeons but honestly i dont understand why this game got panned so hard. The story is good and once the battle system starts to expand the game play is awesome. sure it kinda sucks being on rails but the game is really enjoyable IMHO.

      • The story is better then some of the square enix games i’ve played, namely FFXII (Van had no reason being there or being the main character) and Star Ocean: Till the end of time (Hey guys we’re not real!). It requires alot of reading from the datalogs but i’m personally enjoying the story as i play through it.

        • @RaspberryKisses

          Great, only 20+ hours for the “real” game to begin.

          I don’t remember having to go through that on any of the games on 03:36 anon’s list.

          Even in Biowares Dragon Age it was only an hour and thirty minutes before the “real” story began and even then there was plenty to do.

          I’m not a hater I’m just tired of ppl like that weird chick in my class raving about something (anything with FF name) that actually died ages ago.

          I second that Namco-Bandai statement it will happen sooner or later.

        • @RespberryKisses: Grand Pulse only have 4 openings to 4 different areas. If you think that the central plains is large enough to trick you to think of it as a world map, think again. It is just another Calm land.

          To make it worst, the moment you leave Calm- *cough* Grand Pulse, you know your journey is coming to an end. LOL

        • snakeofoctober says:

          I think the datalogs are the laziest thing in the game. Seriously they are insulting. If the developer can’t find a way to actually work the story into the game while you are playing it then the story is shit or the director is incapable. I loved FF-X but this one is grating on me. I admit I am only in chapter 5 so maybe it gets better, but the datalog is a lazy way to tell the story, the battle is simplistic and takes no strategy (just cast libra and then autobattle,) the fact that you cant choose your own party leader or party when you have more than three characters is ridiculous, one of the last levels I played actually had the way lit up by pillars of light, this was to show the player where to go. The idiocy of this is that the same level is a FUCKING STRAIGHT LINE. The graphics are great, but so far everything else feels very mediocre. I hope it gets better. Maybe my problem is that I just beat Mass Effect 2 the day before this came out and that game was tons of fun.

  • Well, if it’s too much trouble for Enix to make things as they should, maybe it’ll be too much trouble for me go and buy that crap.

    In other less rude news:
    Really, a games graphic is not what makes it fun… in other words, makes GAMES, not interactive movies.

  • this game…. idk, i mean some scenes were….
    well it made me cringe
    eg. *rain pours* Vanille “i was trying to hold my tears back”
    … just….just fail!
    trust me there are more examples of failing to “move” the audience, ff fanboys plz try to justify this piece of crap

  • screwlicious says:

    lol Square Enix..do you have to be told THAT? Seriously, if it’s FF, it’s about story, (ridiculous) farming, tough bosses. personal challenges, etc. Without those, it’s not ‘FF’ anymore.

  • Despite being afraid to get it at first because of all these horrible reviews and stuff that’s been coming up on the net, I actually liked FFXIII.

    Exploring is pretty linear, and you would have to be brain dead or lazy to need the $40 guide book, but the gameplay itself, I enjoy.

    Except there is no PRELUDE or FANFARE anywhere.

  • Dunno what all the fuss is about: I liked X, XII and I’m enjoying XIII aswell.

    Some people are too closed-minded.

    They’ve boiled the game down to the most important components: storyline, character development, graphics and fighting.

    Fuck running about aimlessly in a world map, it’s just an illusion anyway. To progress in the game you’re still walking along one set path…

    • Having an opinion which doesn’t coincide with the majorit = Bad.

      I agree, overall FFXIII has been very enjoyable, to me atleast. Sure, having towns and more to explore would’ve been a major plus, but you can’t have your cake and eat it. (What the fuck does that even mean, awyway?)

      I didn’t see this much uproar when FFXII came, and it sucked, I didn’t even complete it.
      But to each his own.

      I think Vanille has downs.

    • Hexa, you hit the nail on the head and yet completely missed the point. It IS an illusion, and that’s EXACTLY why FF13 failed. As gamers, we like the illusion of choice. We depend on it.

      Western RPGs make their entire designs about this illusion. Despite all the branching choices you can make, you can still only move within the set parameters of what has been programmed. But the sheer volumes of choices makes the illusion very strong. This is also what sandbox games are built around by creating large, highly interactive game worlds.

      Most JRPGs tend to not be nearly as non-linear as Western games, but they usually at least make maps more than a straight line and include many diversions (which includes towns). They make it feel like you’re still making decisions.

      FF13 ruined that illusion. That illusion is key to the suspension of disbelief. If you’re the kind who just plays FF for the story, then you’re exactly who Square made this game for. They made it, basically, to be interactive movie. Every became linear from story to maps to even battles with their overly straightforward retake of the ATB system.

      They ruined the illusion of choice and it no longer feels like a game. You feel no longer like a participant. You can only feel as involved as someone watching a movie in a theater. By ruining the illusion, your choices feel like they don’t matter anymore.

    • Hexa, you hit the nail on the head and yet completely missed the point. It IS an illusion, and that’s EXACTLY why FF13 failed. As gamers, we like the illusion of choice. We depend on it.

      Western RPGs make their entire designs about this illusion. Despite all the branching choices you can make, you can still only move within the set parameters of what has been programmed. But the sheer volumes of choices makes the illusion very strong. This is also what sandbox games are built around by creating large, highly interactive game worlds.

      Most JRPGs tend to not be nearly as non-linear as Western games, but they usually at least make maps more than a straight line and include many diversions (which includes towns). They make it feel like you’re still making decisions.

      FF13 ruined that illusion. That illusion is key to the suspension of disbelief. If you’re the kind who just plays FF for the story, then you’re exactly who Square made this game for. They made it, basically, to be interactive movie. Every became linear from story to maps to even battles with their overly straightforward retake of the ATB system.

      They ruined the illusion of choice and it no longer feels like a game. You feel no longer like a participant. You can only feel as involved as someone watching a movie in a theater. By ruining the illusion, your choices feel like they don’t matter anymore.

      Not all JRPGs do this. In fact, most of them don’t. If they did, Japanese gamers wouldn’t have batted an eyelash when FF13 came out, but even they knew this game was far too linear compared to other gamers. The truth is that most JRPGs still have some way of upholding that illusion which, I think, all video games should have.

      If it doesn’t feel like I’m changing the world somehow, frankly, I’d rather just watch a movie. It may sound like I’m boiling it down to one element, but this is an element that makes games work.

      People harp on these points because if they don’t work, it doesn’t matter how good the other elements are. Nothing can make up for boring characters in a story-driven game. Nothing can make up for horrible fighting in a game genre where you have an encounter every 1-2 minutes, at most.

      And you can’t make up for destroying the illusion of choice in a medium build around interacting.

    • Fuck the graphics and just give us stick figures, it’s just an illusion anyway.

      Fuck immersive world, it’s just an illusion anyway.

      Fuck video games, they’re not real anyway.

      See where I’m going with this? Video games that are set out to be immersive HAVE to be good at crafting an illusionary experience that people are not aware of. That’s what made the previous FF games good. Did you get lost? A little bit, but it wasn’t a maze(aside from the dungeons) and having that extra freedom of movement, illusion or not, was still more enjoyable than walking from point A to point B literally in a straight line.

      • To add to above, getting lost and doing things on my own pace also made the game have more of a personal connection with me. I’m not saying this isn’t possible with FFXIII, but there were many moments in the older FF games where thing happened during my travel from a dungeon to a town and I loved that experience. FFXIII isn’t horrible by any means but it just totally lost that feeling of the game being any sort of an “adventure”.

    • They removed the world development, seeing the world you’re inevitably going to save makes it a lot more rewarding when you do save it; if your view of the world is a long corridor, as beautiful as it may be, then there’s no reason to care about it, and thus no reason to care about continuing. Plus the story-line and graphics aren’t why I play games, for that there are books and movies. The fighting system is good, and the characters are alright, though a too over the top to take serious, and the game is way too melodramatic to be a laugh, but that’s the way with most JRPGs now-a-days so I’ll accept it; but if it’s just fighting you’re playing the game for then it gets boring fast, and thus doesn’t work. I need some NPCs to fight for, some dead ends in my dungeon to make me feel it’s getting the better of me, and some villages with little secrets that make you feel you’re doing something else; illusion or not, it’s important.

    • notanother4non says:

      I agree, FFX and FFXII were great and enjoyable games with great storylines and character design. I’m sure I’ll enjoy FFXIII as soon as I get some free time.
      Kids these days argue and comment on things they don’t understand.

  • EndymionFighter says:

    Well, I’ve played the game, and despite the linearity of it, I found it to be a nice experience. It was indeed story-driven instead of sandbox style, and was an interesting change to say the least.

    I do wish we got a rebuild of FFVII though… I want to see Knights of Round in full glorious PS3 HD.

    • I do not concur, while it was certainly a good game, and a memorable one for what it did graphic-wise, I still like FFXII better.

      Also, I seem to be among the minority that likes and cherishes FFIX

    • ffx is not the best ff ever but it had the best ff romance
      ppl might say ffvii is the best but it was the first world acclaimed jrpg and had the best backgrounds story
      ffviii had the best battle system
      ffxi was the only mmo for the ff series but now comes ffxiv
      ffxiii has the best graphics thus far but is the worst when it comes to gameplay

      • @4:05 MoMoGi

        I feel appalled that you didn’t mention FFXII, as, in my humble opinion, had the best balance of characters [the most likeable to me], and a deep story driven mainly by political hardships rather than romantic ones.

        Also, the player controlled Vann but he was only a vessel through which the player experiences the story, but the story does not revolve around him, as opposed to Tidus and his ego-centrism of [This is my story]

      • Draw in viii was horrendous, the game was excellent in spite of that though, also great end vid.

        The sphere grid was fantastic, as was materia in vii.

        xii was great for 30 hrs, then you realise the game is playing itself and just lose interest.

        For me its down to how many time I’ve replayed them – vii, x, vi, viii. ix, x2, xii and i – iii are below these.

    • i didn’t find X to be a rewarding experience. after all the fake laughing from tidus and yuna(last straw), i pretty much lost interest. I gamesharked it at that point and skipped all leveling and stuff just to see if the story went anywhere. i was disappointed. the concept might have been good, but the execution was bad imho.
      -realistic family issues.(protag hates daddy)
      -sentimental plot (knowing death is inevitably near.)
      -mature characters (he has a girl and actually admits to liking her.)
      -has realistic beliefs (has deities and rituals.)
      -bad voice acting.(“ha ha ha ha ha” FTL)
      -told a serious story through the mouth of a child. (this aint MGS, but if it had the same serious tone, it could have been great.)
      -stupid protag. (i don’t like when protag is always having to be led around by smarter characters like auron and lulu.)

      I’m sure there are two sides of every argument. this is the against side. maybe if i played this game when i was 5 years younger, it would have been the world to me. but i was past the impressionable age of youth when i gave it a go.

      i think square/ENIX should make SOME games that target an older demographic. (17-30) after all i was about 14 when i played FF7. most followers of the franchise are well into the 20’s and 30’s. maybe they should catch up with their loyal fans. I’m just sayin.

      • Wow, where to start with your comment.

        First off, I love Final Fantasy X. I love it to this day. I love it even more than Final Fantasy VII (probably going to piss a lot of fan boys off). I think this game pretty much did everything right, while taking a lot of risks. Sure, the voice acting wasn’t to be desired, but think of it these two ways. 1) This was the first time Square Enix tried voice acting, so not a lot of experience there. And 2) When you have RPG voice acting, it’s not going to please everyone. Same thing with books becoming movies. People have their own way of picturing their voices. But if you can look past that, and I recommend you should, then you have a great story with very likeable and memorable characters.

        Personally I don’t understand why you made the example of maturity being having a girl and admit liking her. That’s not a sense of maturity, that’s a sense of confidence. Poor example. A great example of maturity is the Tidus character in general as the story carries on and concludes itself.

        And what the heck do you mean by the protagonist being stupid? How can you say that? He’s not stupid by choice at all. For example, how would you feel if I took you on a space ship, arrive at a new planet with life, and leave you there with nothing but the clothes on your back and a swift goodbye? Wouldn’t you feel a little confused, unaware of your surroundings, and just all-around ignorant? Tidus was in practically a new world, of course he’s not going to know what’s going on. And there was a reason for Square Enix choosing to do that. It’s called exposition. You learn with the character as the story goes on, giving a sense of reference. Of course there’s going to be characters that are going to be, say, “smarter” than him and in a sense, carrying him on his back. But Tidus made the toughest choice of any character I’ve seen in the Final Fantasy series. At one point in the game (SPOILER ALERT), he finds out that when they kill Yu Yevan, he fades away into nothing. Proof. Gone. But in the event that when he finds out, he decides to keep going and accept his fate that Auron and Jecht made themselves, just to make the world a better place again. AND THAT, my friends, is true bravery and maturity.

        So you people can say what you want about the ten installment of the Final Fantasy X series, it will not change or alter my understanding and appreciation of the Tidus character and the game itself. And if you can’t appreciate either of those things, that I just don’t understand your logic.

      • But then it wouldn’t be a JRPG. Didn’t you notice that the hero in every JRPG\anime\manga is in his teens? 15 being the usual number. It’s a cultrual thing you know. While the west made RPGs are always just different. I love FF and the like, and I loved Baldur’s Gate and Dragon Age so…each their own.

        • @anon 3:45
          I kinda see what you mean, but they seem to be trying so hard to break the mold on traditional jrpgs. the are fucking up the good stuff and leaving the boring stuff. i wish they would make a change for the better.

          @anon 3:31
          Microsoft thought that too, (no need for a console war here, guys.) but after sticking it to them for so long people turned to sony. i have decided not to buy xiii. i wont even try it. if they are not careful they could be in the same sad state as namco bandai, not able to afford to release stuff over seas.

        • TehBoringOne says:

          At Anon 18:24

          Think twice before calling me a hater. And when did I say VII was the pinnacle of the series? For me, the best Final Fantasies were VI, IX, V and IV. In that order. I don’t care what systems they were.

          I agree that the Spira universe was interesting, but the story in X was good at best, with a passable execution. X-2 was horrendous for me with its overly girly weirdness that did not appeal to me.

          And all of a sudden I’m refusing to try new things? Dude, there are far more interesting RPGs out there that oh, surprise… are better than the recent Final Fantasies… Like… I dunno, Mass Effect… Valkyria Chronicles, etc.

          And FFVII lovers are ruining the series? I’d say mindless maggots like YOU, who swallow everything with the name Final Fantasy strapped on ARE the reason the series has gone downhill. A lack of demand for quality is what has made Square Enix so arrogant in recent years at handling THAT series.

          All of a sudden, FFXIII is not an RPG… but the next will be… please…

        • Anon 18.24, are you crazy? FFVII fans are ruining the franchise? So, are you saying those fans are the only ones SE listens too? Then where is the FFVII remake they’ve been asking since forever? And why are their new games NOTHING like FFVII?

          FF X-2 had pretty decent sales, the producers just realized they couldn’t milk the same old material three times in a row.

          And i doubt anyone here likes the PS1 just because it is the PS1. The games made in that era didn’t only focus on making incredibly high res textures, but actually implemented inspired gameplay and story.
          This is the main reason why PS1 games are in general statistically better than more recent ones.

        • X-2 was actually a pretty good game; the english VA for Yuna ruined the music, but being that you’re on SKC, you probably know how to find the original versions of the songs.

          I personally loved X, and X-2 was just more of the same universe and back-story for that world. In my mind, there should have been more exploration of that universe, but it’s haters like you who made SE abandon their plans to do so.

          So the game opens with a J-pop concert, so Yuna’s fashion is a little obscure or risqué – so what?

          Again being that you’re on SKC, do you actually care if she showed some skin?

          If you ask me, it’s the VII fans that are ruining the series, not anything to do with the designers. Refusal to embrace or even try anything that wasn’t a PS1 release is hampering your enjoyment of anything else.

          Get over VII, and you might start enjoying yourself again.

        • TehBoringOne says:

          I was a loyal fan. My childhood and teenage years, up to my mid 20s had Final Fantasy as one of the best RPG series. The last one I enjoyed to a good extent was 10, and even then, I had many gripes with it. 8, I never found the chance to play… But then they started with the badly done cash-ins or cash-ins that I didn’t feel interested in. 11 was an MMO, 10-2 was a horrendous pile of bubblegum shit, 12 I just started, but I can’t see it as a Final Fantasy, more like it should have a different name (and I’m liking it), the whole FF7 compilation, out of which, the only one was Crisis Core and now the godawful FF13…

          I’m sick of Final Fantasy. The designers themselves alienated me. I can’t stand the extreme sense of fashion in the character designs, the badly executed stories, but most of all, I just can’t stand the directors and producers…

    • Telekinesis says:

      FF10 was really good yeah.

      The problem for me with 13 wasn’t the “Linear” story path, since they have been around forever in FF. My problem was the complete lack of anything RPG’y. So hear’s hoping to FF15 being a good game.

    • Then you should like XIII it’s a lot like X, which I personally despise.

      I’m 15 hours into XIII and not enjoy it at all. I’ll complete it just because I’ve completed every other FF game, so I have to but again, yuck.

      • Story-driven? of course it’s story driven, it only has the story…
        I want a story-driven RPG because out of all it’s components, you remember the story. not because it’s the only component…

      • Personally I’m surprised this guy hasn’t already been fired. I’m not really into the franchise myself but if this guy is in charge of the next games development I’d be worried about the future of Square Enix overall

        • Anonymous says:

          No no no. The thing with MMORPGs is that you never get to play a role. You have quests, but everyone has the same quests. You can’t really not do the quests, because you can’t do much else without them.

          As far as “interacting with real people” yeah, you can, but… interaction in most of these games is limited to a few choice lines:

          “STFU n00b”

          “Whar kan i find teh stark fist of removal”

          “I’m looking for a +15 orc masher. Help plz”

          If that’s you idea of RP, I feel bad for you, really. There are better RP games out there, and you should probably try them. WRPGs are more role play than even MMOs.

        • Wow I can tell you know nothing about RPGs that aren’t of the pen and paper variety.

          MMOs really enhance the role playing aspect of RPGs because of the group interaction with other players. When you go out hunting with a few buddies, that is role playing right there. That is creating your own story. That is what is missing in games like Final Fantasy XIII. When you strip out the so-called non-essential elements like towns and exploration, you lose the ability to control your experience. And in JRPGs, it’s all about that experience, and not the static story that gets shoved down your throat.

        • MMOs seem to be a role-playing experience on the description, but with no real way to define your role it cannot be. You do the storyline of quest s or you don’t, that’s as much choice as you really have. Choosing black and white answers is not role-playing either; though I can’t think of an MMO which has that feature yet (I remember a few promising and then dying before beta, but that’s a different matter…

          Ultimately if you have a quest (let’s say orphanage attacked by hobgoblins), you have to be able to choose what to do on a sliding scale; from defend the orphanage no questions asked, demand payment, teach the orphans how to fight so they can help out, move the orphans to a nearby cave, leave the orphans to die, kill the orphans yourself and steal their belongings… etc. etc. And more than that you have to give the character a way to explain his actions, and interact with the orphans rather than just saving random orphans. And ofcourse a good DM will probably sprinkle a few more quests into the orphanage, although much smaller, or so you would assume.

          MMOs remove this as much as JRPGs, neither can be considered more or less role-playing; the few choices you make on your adventure do effect some things, like equipment, skills and other quests you can get, and the same is true of MMOs, so the two are as much a role-playing game as the other.

          Replacing your life however is not what a RPG is, RPGs are simply other lives you like to delve into and imagine, not replacing your own interactions, and in paper based often creating further interaction with your gaming buddies.

        • Isn’t that what Roleplay games are? You play the role of a character as an actor would with their character. Romeo wouldn’t shout “I am a shark! Suck my dick!” But he’d likely say “My life sucks wonderfully and wonderfully sucks.”

          MMOs allow you more freedom to explore and form your character however you want but isn’t it more of playing a class than a specific role? Kinda like giving Gordon Freeman skills attribute and let him the freedom to go kill the world rather than saving it.

        • Darkrockslizer says:

          anon @05:12,
          Nobody was talking about board game rpgs. I have played some, however.

          anon @05:40,
          my point was that your *gasp!* interactions with REAL PEOPLE (wow!) within MMOs can steal YEARS of people’s lives. It’s not a roleplay game anymore but a real life replacement for some.

          Like remember that article recently where parents starved their own child because of an MMO? Nuff said.

        • Agreed; an MMO has more capability to be an RPG because you yourself can take on a role and input your lines to interact with *gasp!* real people!

          Darkrockslizer thinks an RPG is a game where you have a predefined story and lines of dialogue are made for you, in a role that is already made.