There are lot of questions circulating Final Fantasy 16. After the recent gameplay demo at PlayStation’s State of Play, fans have a lot of questions about the combat and party systems, Eikon battles, and more.
Our friends at Game Informer sat down with the game’s producer, Naoki Yoshida (who is also the director of Final Fantasy 14), to discuss some of the details that fans are curious about. In the interview Yoshida discusses the direction of the combat system, Eikon battles, the look and feel of the game, and more.
Always a question with a new Final Fantasy, the art direction of the game seemed to be more akin to “classic” Final Fantasy rather than some of the more modern takes including Final Fantasy 7 Remake. Yoshida confirms this is the case:
The answer to that is actually kind of simple: it just happens to be that a lot of the core members in [Creative Business Unit III] really enjoyed those classic Final Fantasies as well as that classic medieval European fantasy feel – myself included – and we wanted to create a game that had that feeling. When creating this game, we wanted to take that look, that medieval European classic fantasy look, and meld that with our own unique idea that we had, and then take all of that and try to express that with the current level of technology and make something that is really, really exciting.
As you know, the Final Fantasy series is kind of famous, or infamous, for being different with each entry in the series. That said, after doing some recent user research, we found that a lot of the users were finding that a lot of the recent Final Fantasy [games] were kind of becoming static in that vision so we wanted to use this as an opportunity to step back from that and try something different; not just for us, but thinking to the future of Final Fantasy and forthcoming projects, we wanted to try something different and maybe show that yeah, the series can go in different directions rather than focusing on one.
Yoshida also expounds on the design for the combat system and why they brought on Ryota Suzuki (Devil May Cry 5, Marvel vs. Capcom 2):
You asked me about the direction with the combat system and so to answer that, in order to contribute to the overall evolution of the Final Fantasy series, we decided that rather than building on past Final Fantasy battle systems, that we instead shift our focus to one of real-time action. And so, once we had that concept down, that we were going to go in this direction, it made it easy for our director and our battle director, Ryota Suzuki, to take the reins and bring something that was truly action-focused.
For the battle system, we’ve not only given the main character, Clive, an arsenal of powerful attacks and abilities based off of these traditional Final Fantasy summons, but we’re allowing him to cycle through those attacks in real-time, to deal those attacks in real-time. [This allows] for powerful combinations and smooth, stylish gameplay that both looks and feels great.
It seems that Final Fantasy 16 is going to be an entirely new direction for the series which can be positive or negative depending upon your viewpoint. Personally I love the return to a more “classic” Final Fantasy look and feel. Though I am concerned about the combat system and how that integrates with the party.
That said I’m more positive on this entry than I have been recently so I remain very optimistic!