FFXIII Director: Missing Elements Like Towns Will Return
For Final Fantasy fans, this is an interview you'll want to read. FFXIII director Motomu Toriyama sheds a lot of light on the latest installment and the future of the franchise.
Gamasutra caught up with Toriyama at this year's Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, and they really wanted to focus on the strong feedback - both positive and negative - concerning FFXIII. Obviously, one of the biggest fan complaints centers on the lack of towns, one of the franchise's staples in the past. Toriyama says this is due to his own strengths, the challenging production process for high-definition consoles, and production of the Crystal Tools engine. We've heard this before but Toriyama is saying it again:
"In the Final Fantasys on previous 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."
The game was already going to take a long time to develop and if they had included "all those other aspects," we would've been waiting a lot longer. Instead, they decided to simply focus on "what was truly important to the game" and work to emphasize them. Okay, we get this, but would it be illogical to assume that now that Square-Enix has a handle on things, maybe stuff like towns could return for the next entry? No, not illogical at all. Added Toriyama:
"Now that we have that base technology... The next time you see a Final Fantasy, we might be able to pack in more of those elements that existed in the past. And I also think that a game doesn't need to have all of those items in the future. We can create additional downloadable content for people to add, too. It doesn't have to come with that game itself."
Well, we're pretty sure you can't make towns downloadable but we understand his meaning. Toriyama finishes by saying it's the role of the director "to decide what we can accomplish" in a set amount of time and the good news is that the next title they make "will have those elements, and the improvements to those elements" they spoke about in the interview. FFXIII began it's life very early on in this generation, remember. Few, if any, developers had a firm grasp of the PS3's complex architecture. Therefore, Toriyama's explanation does make a bit of sense...but it still may not be enough for the hardcore FF faithful. We'll see how they react.
Related Game(s): Final Fantasy XIII
3/11/2010 10:48:11 AM Ben Dutka