A Final Fantasy XII Interview

Square Enix answers some questions at an interview, and raises many more.

GamePro had the opportunity to interview some developers of Final Fantasy XII today, where the major questions of battle system and gameplay went largely unanswered. Nevertheless, some valuable information was divulged, including the fact that Final Fantasy XII will be exclusively offline. The developers who attended the interview were Hideo Minaba (art director), Akihiko Yoshida (character designer), and Isamu Kamikokuryo (3D map director) who is in charge of background art. Here are the highlights of the interview:

Opening Comment by Hideo Inaba: If you can summarize what to expect moving forward with the unraveling of Final Fantasy XII, I can say it will be much like how actor or actress is covered by media, revealing them from different points of view, almost making each report and each perspective scandalous.

Akihiko Yoshida: Just by looking at the still shots and the stuff showed yesterday, things may still be unclear and you're probably excited to see more. You'll start seeing why we've made the sacrifices we said we've made yesterday, for example the reduced polygon count for characters and the restrictions we had to face; you will be able to see why we made these sacrifices, and what kind of meaning they have in this game.

Isamu Kamikokuryo: The game has been a big challenge for us as we approached the limits of what the game console can handle. For example, there's a scene where you go through a large city teeming with people - our goal was to give users a realistic experience.

Q: In the poetic blurb on the website, it says that "trained skills are transferred onto stone." Is this pointing towards a system where you equip powers to train like Final Fantasy VII?

A: Each Final Fantasy has introduced a new system, and Final Fantasy XII will be no different. A nuance of such a system may be included in this series.

Q: Will this game feature free-form 3D?

A: Yes, you will be able to scan the area 360 degrees. You can even look up and look at the ceiling.

Q: I noticed a recent trend in Final Fantasy games for more effeminate characters.

Akihiko Yoshida: In the initial character design the character was more rugged. Hideo Minaba: Wasn't very hip.
Akihiko Yoshida: However as the game progressed, the character changed to fit the story and scenarios.

Q: I've noticed that airships play a more prominent role in the game compared to the previous series. Will they play a more key role in gameplay mechanics?

A: All we can say is that the airships will be used in many different places.

Q: Is this Ivalice the same Ivalice as in the Final Fantasy Tactics games?

A: Although we cannot get into Mr. Matsuno's (creator of Ogre Battle and Final Fantasy Tactics series) head, we know that he keeps in mind a different version of Ivalice from the previous games.

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