There you were, whistling a tune and marking the days off of your calendar in big marker-pen Xs, when like a bolt of lightning straight from Ramuh’s sceptre, Square Enix announce the release of FFXV has been delayed from Sep 30th another two months, to November 29th. FF geeks around the world took that hard.
We’ve already been waiting for ten years, but these extra two months meant re-shuffling our autumn schedules. Director Hajime Tabata said that the game was complete, but the finishing touches were still to be applied. The varnish that would make FFXV shine, he insisted, was worth the wait. Having worked so hard on the game he and his team felt it was only right to make FFXV the best it could be for worldwide release, rather than releasing a day-one patch. Apparently Tabata and co would only be enjoying three hours sleep some nights. You hope that’s true because you’re climbing the walls waiting for this game. Before you read on subscribe to our newsletter here to get updates on all things geeky.
So whether we like it or not, we must wait. FFVII, an absolute seminal classic, was (in)famously heavily delayed and VII turned out to be an immense and celebrated game – a masterpiece of storytelling, a JRPG with just the right dose of Western influence, with top of the range PSX console tech which produced that unforgettable FF title. The similarities are there with FFXV; a character driven story, the 2016 archetype of a AAA RPG borne from the far east with a western flavour, with graphics so beautiful and gameplay so absorbing that I think we’re in for another blockbuster.
So far we’ve seen more trailers and gameplay videos than we might have expected.
The open world nature of XV is an absolute appetite-whetter. Watching YouTube videos drooling in torrents at the prospect of the multitude of side-quests and monster hunts, chocobos, mini-games, warping around enemy dropships of magitek soldiers fucking them up, or sneaking around enemy bases slitting throats like Solid Snake then jumping on a turret and shooting the place up, the huge and intimidating optional ‘boss’ fights like Catoblepas, Behemoth and Malboro, a tale of warring nations and gargantuan summons storming in like ultimate badasses and tearing everyone a new arsehole… Going to need something to dry my keyboard.
Even if you’re not a drooling FF fan of olde, XV is going to have what it takes to attract you, the new market.
- XV is an action-RPG, it’s not the turn-based combat of yesteryear that some gamers were put off by, even back when it was more prevalent. RPGs and gaming as a whole has moved even further away from turn-based combat since the heyday of FFVII and VIII … and possibly IX and X if we’re feeling generous, or high. Remember turn-based combat? You’re nearly 30. A large portion of the gaming community wasn’t even born then, so throwing out a turn-based FFXV would never have drawn new fans or made enough money. It’s a logical step in the FF franchise and having played Episode Duscae it’s really exciting.
- But Square Enix haven’t stopped there, they’ve gone nuclear and have released Brotherhood an FFXV Universe anime which illuminates the backstories and bond between the four main characters who we follow in the game – they’re more than just four lads on a road trip. Each episode focuses on the pasts of one of the four protagonists, Prince Noctis, his advisor Ignis, his bodyguard Gladiolus and his proletariat pal Prompto. The latter of which you slip into immediate disdain for, like some whiny kid on an airplane who won’t shut up, until that is you watch the Brotherhood series, see his episode and cut him some slack; some. Genuinely, if you haven’t watch Brotherhood, check it out it’s ace.
- Square Enix have also released Kingsglaive, a high budget CGI Movie starring Aaron Paul of Heisenberg fame, Sean Bean the veteran and Lena Headey of Got. Kingsglaive focuses on the betrayal of The Kingdom of Lucis by the Niflheim Empire which sets up the plot for the FFXV game itself. Kingsglaive is huge and requires a post of its own. But again, it’s very good and well worth a watch.
And so the excitement simmers down once more. Your calendar catches your eye, you pick up the marker-pen and make today’s X with withdrawal-shake fingers and fantasise about the noise the letter box makes as the postman delivers your pre-ordered FFXV at the end of November. The wait begins, again.
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