It has been almost 10 long years since Final Fantasy XV was first announced to the world - nearly a whole decade for fans to wait and wonder about where the game will take the long-running series. Originally, it was under a different name – Final Fantasy Versus XIII and was supposed to be an exclusive title for the PS3.
Even early in the title’s development, it was perceived that the scale of the project felt like it would not just be an entry into the sub-series, but a fully-fledged main numbered title. That was eventually proven true at E3 2013, although fans have found their dedication to the main Final Fantasy series tested by such a long wait, and a demo that was included as a bonus with early copies of Final Fantasy Type-0 did not keep many truly satisfied. The wait will soon be over, however, as it has been announced that the game will arrive later this year, along with a new CG movie, anime series, and demo.
Kinda Funny Games’ Greg Miller and Tim Gettys hosted a very special event in Los Angeles yesterday, revealing that the game will release on September 30 for both PS4 and Xbox One. A clear highlight of the spectacle was a brand new trailer for Final Fantasy XV dubbed ‘Reclaim The Throne’. It showcased never-before-seen gameplay of the beautiful open world, unique creatures, combat, and the first real taste of the game’s storyline featuring protagonist Prince Noctis. The trailer is predictably epic and should have fans picking apart every last detail they can find. It hinted at new features, such as camping, along with a touching version of the song ‘Stand by Me’ performed by Florence + the Machine.
It turns out that the ‘Uncovered’ event had a lot more to reveal than just a date, though. For starters, there will be a Platinum Demo. Available now as a free download from the PSN and Xbox store, the demo serves as a prologue for Final Fantasy XV, featuring a glimpse into the final game that whisks players away to a fragmented dreamscape of Noctis, in a storyline only playable in the demo. Those that complete it will unlock exclusive DLC for the full game at launch.
It seems Square Enix is fully aware that waiting such a long time for Final Fantasy XV may have actually dulled the excitement fans may have had for it. The hype machine will be working its way up to full speed within the next six months. A brand new anime series entitled Brotherhood is one of the first cogs in that machine. Consisting of five standalone episodes, it will delve into the friendships between crown prince Noctis and his comrades building up towards the main game’s adventure. The first episode is available to stream on YouTube now for free, with the rest of the series to follow in due time.
Not content with just a spin-off series, Square Enix has also teamed with Sony Pictures to produce a feature length CG movie. Expect kingdoms at war, royal relationships tested and epic battles all setting the stage for Final Fantasy XV’s main plot. The movie features Sean Bean (Lord of the Rings) as Regis, King of Lucis, Lena Headey (Game of Thrones) as Luna, the princess who has been entrusted to deliver the royal ring of Lucis to Prince Noctis, and Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad), voicing Nyx. The movie will be released digitally worldwide before the game’s launch.
As if that wasn’t enough, Justice Monsters Five was also announced. This will actually be a mini-game in Final Fantasy XV but it will also be released soon for mobile devices. It’s a pinball game that throws together the franchises iconic monsters with role-playing elements. It will be available for free for iOS, Android, and even Windows 10 devices.
You wait so long for a game’s release date, and you end up getting every kind of tie-in you can think of. With a movie, series, mobile game and demo, there is so much for Final Fantasy fans to take in. Perhaps it will even be enough to distract everyone from the possibility that we could be waiting another decade for that Final Fantasy VII remake.
Final Fantasy XV will be available September 30 for Xbox One and PS4.