Square Enix have released a brand new gameplay trailer for Final Fantasy XV during the Tokyo Games Show, showing off plenty of the new open world gameplay. Neither the traditional turn-based combat, or Final Fantasy XIII’s weird hybrid mix are returning, with Square opting for a new, real-time combat style and free roaming exploration.
Square have yet to detail any storyline so far for Final Fantasy XV but its clear that they are trying to take the series in quite a different direction. Tetsuya Nomrua, the lead man behind the Kingdom Hearts series has worked on FFXV so far and the influences are clear to see, with FFXV adopting a combat system very similar to that of Kingdom Hearts. Tetsuya has since announced that he is leaving the project to continue with Kingdom Hearts but its unlikely to affect anything at this stage.
You can see in the trailer that FFXV features large, free roaming environments and the combat flows much more naturally, with characters able to fight at will. Whether the car featured in the trailer will be a main part of the game, or perhaps other forms of transport, remains to be seen but it seems that Square are certainly trying to create a large, open world. It’s also not too clear yet whether the characters shown in the trailer will be the main party or if others will be joining. I’d certainly hope to see some more varied and dynamic characters than those shown off here and, preferably, the ability to customize the party as in most other Final Fantasy titles.
The Final Fantasy series has been seeing somewhat of a decline over recent years, with many fans disliking FFXIII altogether. In contrast, Square’s newest MMO Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn has been seeing huge success, and Bravely Default on the Nintendo 3DS proved to be phenomenally popular. It always seemed like Square have struggled to find exactly what kind of game they want to make next in the series, though the blame cant be laid entirely with them. I’ve seen so many different fans protest that they want a return to the old style FF games, but just as many complain that they feel turn-based combat is too old now and want something new. Square might not be sure these days what kind of games to make, but it certainly seems like the fans aren’t all that sure themselves either.
Regardless, Final Fantasy XV looks interesting so far and has a number of big names within Square Enix working on it so I personally remain hopeful that it will be a strong title in the series and also perhaps move things on a little into the next-gen. There’s no word of a release date so far but a playable demo will apparently be included with Final Fantasy Type-0 HD which releases in March 2015. Final Fantasy XV will be available for the PS4 and Xbox One.
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