Sections

Lightning Returns FFXIII: closing the loop

Friday, 22 February 2013 12:18 GMT By Dave Cook

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy 13 is the final chapter in the Fabula Nova Crystallis saga. Dave Cook speaks with director Motomu Toriyama to see if Square can deliver a fitting conclusion.

Motomu Toriyama

Toriyama is director of the Fabula Nova Crystallis saga, which began with Final Fantasy XIII. The first game launched in 2009 across Japan, and was met with a mixed-to-positive critical reaction.

The trilogy’s second entry – Final Fantasy XIII-2 focused on the concept of time travel, and placed Serah’s search for her sister Lightning as a key plot point.

Toriyama confirmed to VG247 that Square-Enix may compile all three games into one re-pack if fan demand is high enough.

I interviewed Toriyama about the history of the Final Fantasy series, including his work on Final Fantasy VII’s most iconic moments, such as the romance between Cloud and Aeris. Fans simply need to check it out here.

I’m a member of the Final Fantasy XIII sympathisers club, and I’m not afraid to say it.

The first 30 hours of the game are perhaps the longest battle tutorial in existence, but once you descended to the roaming plains of Gran Pulse the game grew epic in scope. For many players though, Hope’s grating attitude and the plot’s linear progression saw them bailing long before the pay-off.

I enjoyed the game, but I still pined for the days where I could explore sprawling world maps at my leisure. There was nothing in there that could match my fond memories of roaming the ocean floor in search of Emerald Weapon, or discovering the village of Wutai long before the story directed me there.

Final Fantasy XIII-2 opened things up considerably by comparison with its time-travelling yarn, and again, I actually enjoyed it. This is a love affair that started when Final Fantasy VII first launched, and while the series has stumbled at points, I keep on returning to it with open arms. I’m firmly a fan.

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII is the concluding chapter of the trilogy, and it also takes a fairly linear approach. The emergence of Skyrim has showed that RPGs can still offer broad worlds full of limitless freedom to explore, so it’s little wonder that fans of the genre have become jaded by Square’s attempts to fence players in.

As ever, I’m willing to give any game the benefit of the doubt, and I was keen to learn more about how Square tackled the lofty challenge of rounding off Lightning’s story, and why it chose the format it did. The plot focuses on the pink-haired hero 13 days before the end of the world. Morale is low, armageddon looms and time is running out.

Trapped in the city of Luxerion, Lightning – thanks to her efforts in defending the goddess Etro in Final Fantasy XIII-2 – has been bestowed with the title of ‘Liberator’, a divine guardian who will cleanse the souls of humans in the world’s final days and lead them to a more prosperous existence. It’s a bleak, desperate tale, far removed from the giggles and schmaltz of Square’s previous instalment.

“In the ending of Final Fantasy XIII-2, Gran Pulse – the world that Lightning and her friends inhabit – merged with Valhalla, the world of death”, Toriyama told me. “Lethal Chaos energy flowed from Valhalla into Gran Pulse as a result of this merging, thus beginning the deterioration of Gran Pulse into oblivion.

“At this point, the correct flow of time ceased and people stopped ageing. The collapse of the world continued steadily over several hundred years, until only a single tiny continent remained. People created a new civilisation on this continent and it came to be known as “Nova Chrysalia”.

The world has been split into four continents this time. Luxerion is the only major location revealed so far, and it’s a holy city where humans meander aimlessly, essentially waiting to die. It’s littered with gothic architecture wrapped up in a dark colour palette. Toriyama explained that the grim tone is supposed to symbolise what he called the, “Strong awareness of death in a world that has lost its concept of mortality.”

With the fate of humanity on Lightning’s shoulders, this repsonsibility will reveal a more emotive site to her typically po-faced exterior. If that wasn’t enough, the very people she’s saving believe she’s actually the harbinger of the apocalypse, due to facts that have become long-muddied in legend.

“The role of the Liberator is to cleanse people’s souls and lead them to a peaceful existence in a new world,” Toriyama continued. “However, some people think that this act is very much like killing them and view the Liberator as a cursed and sinister being.

“This all occurs against a backdrop of several cults and religious organisations, venerating the deities in the face of an impending apocalypse, turning upon Lightning and becoming tied up in the developing incident.”

This misconception makes Lightning a target for several fanatical groups who hold different beliefs about what the end of the world will bring. Not long after arriving in Luxerion, an attempt is made on her life, triggering the core plot. With foes everywhere, Square needs a solid battle mechanic and from the sound of it, the studio won’t disappoint.

“The battle system further develops the tactical elements of the Active Time Battle system from Final Fantasy XIII and XIII-2, while changing the basic setup to be more action based”, Toriyama explained. “The battle system makes Lightning the sole player character and lets you control her directly.

“You can set up to three ‘battle styles’ for Lightning to use in combat, and each of these styles allows her to perform the different roles from the paradigm shift system in the previous titles, all on her own. The ATB gauge is different for each style, meaning the player will watch three different gauges on screen during battles.”

The result sounds like something more rhythmic than before. It seems like it will require immense focus and attention to how each of the three ATB bars are progressing during battle. But that’s not all, because Lightning’s outfit also changes up her stats and abilities, which sounds loosely similar to the Dressphere system in Final Fantasy X-2 or the ‘Job’ mechanic from the series’ classic entries.

Toryiama explained the format, “The game will also have many other costumes available in addition to the Liberator’s outfit. These costumes form a central pillar of the battle style system, and affect the player’s combat power and abilities.

“It goes without saying that you can pair the different clothing options with a myriad of swords and shields to form many combinations, and you can also simply and easily make subtle adjustments to the colours of the different pieces of each costume – meaning that every player will be able to create a version of Lightning to suit their tastes.”

But with all concluding chapters – be it the finale of a long-running TV show or movie series – Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII has a lot of plot strands to tie up, and a responsibility to loyal fans in delivering a satisfying conclusion. Between the game’s returning characters and its darker plot, Toriyama is confident Square can deliver.

“The main cast of Final Fantasy XIII and XIII-2 will of course appear again in Lightning Returns. In much the same way as Lightning herself, most of them feel responsibility for the world and they continue to live out their existences in the build-up to the apocalypse.

“This is in no way limited to the returning main characters, but over the long days of anguish, the mental scars that they bear have come to cloud their hearts in a deep and impenetrable darkness. During the story Lightning will interact with her old comrades in many different ways in order to lift this darkness.

“The concept behind the design of Lighting Returns is that it will be the concluding chapter of the Lightning Saga; and so unlike in the previous title, there will not be multiple possible endings created from differently branching interpretations of history, but instead the story will lead to the one true ending.”

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII is slated for a blanket ‘Q3 2013′ release on PS3 and Xbox 360. We’ll have more on the game as it happens. Let us know what you make of the game and Toriyama’s discussion below.

Latest

  • Xbox Live issues under investigation

    Can’t sign into Xbox Live? Microsoft is on the case. Xbox 360 and Xbox One users report being unable to sign in to Xbox Live. Microsoft is already aware of and working on the problem. “Our team is hard at work right now trying to get this resolved. Thank you for staying patient while we […]

  • Make money from your non-Valve mods with Steam Workshop

    Valve has opened the money-making side of Steam Workshop to third-party titles, giving enterprising modders more ways to make money. Steam now hosts curated Workshops for Dungeon Defenders: Eternity and Chivalry: Medieval Warfare, the first non-Valve games to support the scheme. What that means is that community members can create, vote on and eventually even […]

  • Check out DmC: Devil May Cry’s new manual lock-on

    DmC: Devil may Cry developer Ninja Theory has released a video showing off the new, controversial lock-on mode. The new manual lock-on is causing quite a stir, although its reception is probably better than the white-wigged Dante who makes fans even more upset than the original makeover. “The primary purpose of this video is to […]

  • Dragon Quest Heroes looks pretty fun

    Dragon Quest Heroes is yet another Omega Force take on an existing property – like Hyrule Warriors or the One Piece games. And it looks pretty sweet. We haven’t heard much from Dragon Quest Heroes here in the west because it hasn’t been confirmed for release outside Japan. This isn’t terribly surprising as we still […]

  • Square Enix to reveal new PS4 game this weekend

    Square Enix is doing something pretty mysterious right now. The Final Fantasy publisher is teasing something called Project Code Z. The project, which Square Enix is tweeting about in Japanese, English and German, is due for reveal at Tokaigi 2015 on Saturday. It’s a PS4 game, but that’s all we know. There’s a website you […]

  • Tetris has crowned its first known western Grand Master

    Tetris fans have a new western champion. Tetris is one of those gaming obsessions that goes much deeper than you might expect. For example, did you know that some versions of the game assess your performance and over you the chance to become a “grand master”? Turns out that’s a thing, and according to Polygon […]

  • Ken Levine’s next game teased as “sci-fi-ish” small, open-world RPG

    A series of tweets from BioShock creator Ken Levine has shed a sliver of light upon his next project. According to Levine he and his team are considering something a bit sci-fi and contemplating first-person mode. The team is developing the game for PC with a large in scope, expandable, systems-based narrative where more can […]

  • Become a lynx in new Shelter 2 trailer

    Shelter 2 casts players in the role of a lynx, which makes for quite a different experience to the badger of the first game. The first Shelter game had you evading predators, but in the second, you becomes one yourself. That doesn’t mean there are no dangers to face, of course. Judging by the trailer […]

  • Why King of Fighters 13 isn’t coming back to Evo

    Evo, the premiere western fighting game tournament, has dropped support for a few previously favoured titles. King of Fighters 13 had a loyal following, but isn’t featured in the Evo 2015 line-up. “Many things go into what games makes it to Evo, but the most obvious one is, ‘Is the community playing this game?’” Evo […]

  • An average Evolve match takes less than ten minutes

    Evolve players are pretty quick at hunting each other down. Evolve developer Turtle Rock has released an infographic brimming with statistics garnered from its recent beta test. One of the key takeaways is that all three monsters, and all four classes, are working as intended – their performance in game matches Turtle Rock’s designs. If […]

  • Super Mario Amiibo can be pre-ordered on Nintendo UK, Mario and Peach sold out

    The latest set of Amiibo in the Super Mario series is now available for pre-purchase through the Nintendo UK Store. Each of the following sports a red base and will run you £10.99: Bowser, Luigi, Mario, Peach, Toad and Yoshi. It looks like Peach and Mario are both sold out, though. All six can be […]

  • The Music of League of Legends Vol. 1 free to download now

    League of Legends has excellent music, and now you can have it too. The Music of League of Legends Vol. 1 collects 15 tracks from the MOBA’s history, and is available for free. You can grab the music from iTunes, Google Play or via direct download. Tere’s an example track below to get you in […]

  • Super Bowl 49 update arrives on Madden NFL Mobile

    With Super Bowl 49 occurring this coming Sunday, February 1, EA Sports has updated Madden NFL Mobile with new feature enhancements and Super Bowl-themed Live Events. Updates include: League vs League Tournaments Obstacle Course Super Bowl Bonus Players Tom Brady and Richard Sherman Super Bowl Legends Super Bowl Moments Upgraded Auction House The Super Bowl […]

  • See Super Smash Bros.’ unused custom moves

    Super Smash Bros. was originally intended to have 16 custom moves per character. The final version of Super Smash Bros. only features 12 custom moves per fighter, but Nintendo left animations for some of the cut moves in place. A Youtuber called RED has dug these cut mvoes out of the brawler’s code, and displayed […]

  • The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt contains 16 hours of sex scene mo-cap data

    Sex is nothing new to the The Witcher games, and The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is no exception. In fact, it contains 16 hours of sex scene motion capture data. Giggity. There’s a reason for the bedroom dalliances though, as Geralt is a flesh and blood human, or a modified human at any rate, with […]

  • Here’s the launch trailer for Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy Remastered

    A launch trailer for Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy Remastered has been released after an Amazon listing was revealed for it over the weekend. Key upgrades include: High-definition Graphics — All of the in-game textures have been meticulously recreated in HD for mobile and desktop. Widescreen Support – A true widescreen (not cropped) view strengthens the game’s […]

  • The open beta for Battlefield Hardline will be dated tomorrow

    The exact dates as well as more information on the Battlefield Hardline open beta will be shared tomorrow. This is according to the latest blog post from developer Visceral Games. “We’ll share the exact dates and info on the Battlefield Hardline open beta tomorrow,” wrote Visceral boss Steve Papoutsis. “Stay tuned, thanks again, and keep […]

  • Upcoming Hearthstone patch to apply balance change to Undertaker

    An upcoming Hearthstone patch will apply a balance change to the Undertaker card, Blizzard has announced. After the release of Goblins vs Gnomes, Blizzard said it kept an “eye on the state of game balance” as more matches were played using the additional cards. Released with The Curse of Naxxramas, Undertaker is considered an overly […]

  • February Games with Gold offers up Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons

    The free games on offer in February via Xbox Live Games with Gold have been announced. Xbox Live Gold members on Xbox One can download #IDARB during February. Xbox 360 users can grab Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons from February 1-15, when it will be replaced by Sniper Elite V2 from February 16 -28. […]

  • Kinguin blames unidentified Russian for deactivated Far Cry 4 keys

    Third-party game key seller Kinguin is issuing refunds to those who found their games deactivated through Ubisoft’s Uplay service. Customers which purchased keys for Assassin’s Creed: Unity, Far Cry 4, The Crew and Watch Dogs are affected. Kinguin said 4,600 customer tickets were submitted over the last 72 hours and 35 out of 3,400 of […]

  • Video Unlimited to be re-branded as PlayStation Video starting in February

    Like Music Unlimited, Sony’s Video Unlimited service is being replaced and re-branded PlayStation Video. PlayStation Video will become part of PlayStation Network to streamline digital services for the over 64 million PSN users. PlayStation Video and PlayStation Music will be added to PSN which is already a destination point for the PlayStation Store, PlayStation Plus, […]

  • Spotify arrives on PlayStation Music this spring, Music Unlimited closing

    Spotify will launch on PlayStation Network this spring as part of a new music destination called PlayStation Music. PlayStation Music is a replacement for Music Unlimited, and those with a PSN account can link to Spotify which can be used just for music, or when playing games on PlayStation 4. Existing playlists from current Spotify […]

  • Closed beta for Alone in the Dark: Illumination starts tomorrow

    The private beta period for Alone in the Dark: Illumination starts on January 29. Those who pre-order the game via Steam, will automatically be included in the beta, enabling them to provide feedback on the first campaign in single-player mode. An additional beta period will be announced in the weeks leading up to launch. The […]

  • Majora’s Mask Special Edition New 3DS XL available once more on UK store

    UK residents who want to get their hands on the shiny Majora’s Mask Special Edition New 3DS XL can once again pre-purchase it through the Nintendo UK Store. If you want one, you better hurry because units will likely go rather fast. Only one per customer is allowed, and once you drop £209.99 on it, […]

  • Nintendo Q3: 1.9M New 3DS models sold, Wii U lifetime sales hit 9.2M

    New 3DS XL has sold 1.3 million units as of December 31, 2014, Nintendo announced in its Q3 financial results today. New 3DS moved 580,000 units by the end of the same period. Lifetime sales of both systems combined total a little under 1.9 million. Combined global sales for current 3DS models available in Europe […]

  • Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare’s exo zombies reanimate a familiar format

    Advanced Warfare’s exo suits manage to bring an undead format back to life. Dave Cook welcomes zombies back to Call of Duty. “The challenges start to spike early so seasoned zombie slayers needn’t worry about being coddled.” Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare’s first DLC went live this week, dropping four very solid maps for multiplayer […]

  • YouTube app and Maps will be removed from PS Vita

    Sony said that it will end support for the YouTube and Maps apps, as well as remove the “near” feature in an upcoming firmware update. Sony has revealed that a system update releasing in March will remove the Maps app and prevent the “near” feature from obtaining location address or display maps, making it redundant. […]

  • There is a Destiny loot cave Easter egg in Dying Light

    Dying Light is the latest game to take a jab at Destiny by having its own loot cave. Destiny’s infamous loot cave has been recreated in Dying Light, sort of. Of course the loot cave in Dying Light is only an Easter egg and doesn’t actually net you any loot. Instead, upon entering it, you […]

  • Resident Evil: Revelations 2 supports co-op in story mode, but only offline

    You can play the campaign of Resident Evil: Revelations 2 in co-op, but not online. 4gamer spoke to producers of Resident Evil: Revelations 2 and made out with a few details concerning story, setting and more. The site confirmed that while you will be able to switch between characters in the single player, and have […]

  • The Witcher 3 may have a permadeath “Insanity” mode

    Although not yet confirmed, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt developer CD Projekt RED is working on a difficulty mode dubbed “Insanity” that will delete your save if you die. During Monday’s Twitch stream, the developer took a few questions from the chat and we’ve got a bunch of answers. There are many interesting little bits […]

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition is the most successful launch for BioWare, based on sales

    Dragon Age: Inquisition is responsible for the most successful launch in developer BioWare’s history, according to EA. During last night’s EA Q3 2015 earnings call, the publisher said that Dragon Age: Inquisition was the most successful launch for developer BioWare. Today, we get a bit more detail. “In particular, Dragon Age: Inquisition had by far […]

  • Here’s a walkthrough of one mission from Far Cry 4 Hurk Deluxe DLC

    Far Cry 4′s latest DLC pack, Hurk Deluxe, seems like good fun, judging from this video. The Hurk Deluxe Pack was released today on all platforms. It comes with five new missions. The video below takes a look at the “Call of the Wild” mission. In the walkthrough you’ll get to see some of the […]

  • Battlefield Hardline beta date confirmed on Xbox Store

    The beta date for Battlefield Hardline has popped up on the Xbox Store, confirming the rumoured date. The listing for the Battlefield Hardline beta is available for anyone to see right now on the Xbox Store. Granted, it’s for Xbox 360, but unless EA is starting this beta early on Xbox 360, this will pretty […]

  • GTA player flies jets backwards in impressive stunts

    Doing stunts with jets in GTA 5 can be impressive, but it’s nothing like flying them backwards. Making videos of your jet stunts has become too mainstream. Which is why the latest video from YouTube channel GTA5Videos is all about defying that. The video below features some insane stunts mostly done by flying jets backwards, […]

  • CoD: Advanced Warfare balance patch out, System Hack nerfed, HBRa3 buffed

    The latest patch to Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is here with some major changes to game balance. Making good on the promise to nerf System Hack, developer Sledgehammer Games has released the latest patch to Advanced Warfare to do just that, and much more. The patch is out now on Xbox platforms, with PlayStation […]

50 Comments

  1. Zana

    Nice read, thanks. I know it’s not relevant in terms of marketing, but I think Square Enix should admit once and for all that this game is not for all FF fans, but for FFXIII and Lightning fans only. And they are more than some would want everyone to believe. They are just enjoying the games, not posting angry comments everywhere.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. salarta

    So, in this entry Lightning will wear bikinis, bunnysuits and maid outfits that rip when she’s hit, she’ll act utterly terrified of combat, she will say words like “poopy” and drool over guys at several points, people will ogle her and talk about her sex appeal moreso than any other aspect of her, and Hope will become the game’s resident otaku pervert for Lightning.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. Espers

    FFxiii was all about graphics and music of the next-gen console, like many of the FF fans, I bought it and was so excited to play it but alas when reaching the end of the first game, I was really disappointed by how weak the story is, yet S-E didn’t learn , they released FFXIII-2, it was an epic fail, never played it but saw a month ago for 17$ NEW !!! and I live in a country where PS3 games rarely see any price drop no matter how old the game gets.

    yet again S-E didn’t learn and now they released this, I know the graphics isn’t fully done yet in the trailer shown … but I am referring to the story … I can FEEL IT .. Lightning Returns is going to be an even bigger fail

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Espers

    besides it is just me, I do think there’s someone who’s gay behind this title … it is just a feeling

    #4 2 years ago
  5. Gnosis

    @5: …why should it matter?

    Don’t know. Just can’t get interested in a game, that’s purpose is basically to get a character back, that I completely dispize. No. Just no.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Beta

    @5 I’m sorry but why the hell does that even matter?

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Zohar

    Sorry SE but you lost me. If the best defense people can come up with for your game is “The first 20 hours are boring, repetitive and hardly bearable, but it gets really good after that!” then… well that’s not much of a defense now.

    I played up until the point where the game “opens up” and turned it off, never to return.

    The characters are all insufferable, the story had an absolutely incredible premise but basically collapsed into JRPG/anime nonsense very early on and the simple act of playing the game was uninvolved, repetitive and boring.

    Even the character skill progression mimics gameplay with it’s absolutely linear paths that branch off only occasionally and always make you work your way back to where you continue across the pre-set path.

    The XIII saga didn’t grab me at all and there’s absolutely no way I’d even consider buying the sequel or this Lightning Returns game.

    This is coming from a long-time FF fan. Heck, superfan. I’ve been adoring FF games since the SNES days. I love the classic style FF games just as much as I love the games that break the conventions, like X. I liked XII despite it’s flaws because the gameplay was fun and the story was at least a little engaging.

    FFXIII is a bad game and the fact that they’ve spent so many years beating this horse to death over the course of this entire console generation saddens me.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. deathm00n

    @8 And this is your opinion, nothing you said are actually BAD points. None of them are broken mechanics or anything like that. You don’t like it because it’s different from the other ones.

    For me XIII is the second best game of the series, only behind VIII.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. Darth-Bader

    I will be skipping this one as my way of making my opinion heard about SE, and people waiting for Versus probably should too.

    If people do not buy this game, maybe SE will reconsider its strategy with Final Fantasy and maybe look into the fans’ pleas. People did not “want to know if Lightning was happy at the end of FFXIII” like SE claims while promoting FFXIII-2 — I certainly did not. I felt like the story was done. Lightning was reunited with Serah at the end of FFXIII and the world is saved and we were all ready for the next Fabula Nova Crystallis game, and not an answer on whether Lightning was happy or not.

    Long rant, but my point I am done with FFXIII and will be skipping this one and look forward to a new, fresh Final Fantasy, whether Versus or a new main entry.

    #9 2 years ago
  10. Gnosis

    @10: I know, right? There was no real conflict left open. Nothing that would justify 2 sequels, that evolve around a completely different story. They just invented and forcibly implemented a new conflict, like: “Oh, you know what? All that you saw at the end of the first game wasn’t really there and is all wrong, because fuck it, the first game sold well!”

    #10 2 years ago
  11. deathm00n

    @10 “If people do not buy this game, maybe SE will reconsider its strategy with Final Fantasy and maybe look into the fans’ pleas.”
    Is there really a lot of complaining about the games? Because I think it sold well and who complains as always are the “fans” who want everything to be the same for ever and ever. I’m a fan of the series and I really think they are doing nothing wrong. If a series continues the same for ever it will get to a point where people get sick of it (happening to me with Assassin’s Creed) until the colapse of it. XIII was a shake up in the series, they changed a lot of things to atract people again, and they were successful.

    But the “fans” never see that what developers are doing is for keeping the games alive. They always need to complain about it. Well, at least until a few console-gen pass by and they get back to the game saying “omg this game was so good! how notalgic to play it again”.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Zohar

    @9 Thank you and yes all my opinion but I need to clarify one thing. I don’t dislike XIII because it’s not like the other games, and nostalgia has nothing to do with my reverence for the older games. I loved X and thoroughly enjoyed X-2. I played the balls off of VIII despite that one being regarded as something of a red-headed stepchild at the time. I liked XII also, except for some of the characters and the random loot stuff and certain balance choices they made with the gambit and license system (which they totally corrected with the International release).

    I dislike XIII because the gameplay is poor. It in no way compares to the depth of any other FF game made since Final Fantasy VI. The vast majority of the game consists of being funneled down linear paths, auto-battling your way from one cutscene to the next. If the story and characters were really, -really-, good then that’s forgivable.

    Example: Asura’s Wrath… hardly even a game, poor God of War style combat, amazing cutscenes, characters and just balls-out fantastic events happening all the time. A joy to watch it unfold.

    Unfortunately for XIII, the story opens with an awesome premise inside the first couple of hours and quickly crumbles into a painfully uninspired theme park ride through the cliches and tropes of late ’90s anime/JRPG conventions. The only barely enjoyable character in that game was Sahz.

    Final Fantasy XIII represents the only game I’ve ever actively tried to sit down and play to completion to find -some- enjoyment in, and failed. It sits on my PS3 and I have no desire to return to it. The fact that this is a main entry in my favorite game series of all time, a series that I have followed and adored through childhood and into adulthood and have always enjoyed… it’s genuinely upsetting.

    #12 2 years ago
  13. deathm00n

    @13 But you said you played until the part it opens up and stopped, if you are being literal then you did not even see the Cieth Stone Missions right? These are where the gameplay shows how it really is, not just auto battling everything. You have to change battle members to get the right combination of class paradigms, and in battle change between paradigms a lot. After you reach Taejin’s Tower if you just used auto-battle all the time you are pretty fucked in this point. I agree that auto-battle is a valid point of criticism, it really dumbs down the gameplay. But the Paradigms system makes up for it in my opinion.

    After 1 year with the game I still play it and I’m far from 100%. When you finish the story you just completed half of the game. So yes, if you don’t like the battle system you will probably just end the history.

    #13 2 years ago
  14. Darth-Bader

    @12, are you really asking if there’s a lot of complaining about FFXIII?

    #14 2 years ago
  15. deathm00n

    @15 Yes and I want to see evidence that there’s a lot of complaining. Not just some random fan forum where people complain. If the game was really this awful, then they would have stopped at XIII. Developers aren’t dumb. If it sells it means people bought it. If it still sells today (and it does) it means people like it.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. Gnosis

    @16: Is it surprising that XIII sold well? Not really. The game is called friggin Final Fantasy and it was the first one ever to be released for the “new” consoles. Of course ppl will buy it. It sold well, because ppl expected a good game, since (at least at that time) Final Fantasy had a good reputation. But riddle me this: if so many ppl thought that XIII was that good and wanted a sequel, then why did XIII-2 sell so badly compared to other games in the series?

    #16 2 years ago
  17. Darth-Bader

    ^ this.

    #17 2 years ago
  18. markus080

    I am disappointed in this preview. From other previews I have read (namely 1up and finalfantasynetwork) the concept behind this game seems to be 1) more action-oriented gameplay and 2) a constantly moving and changing world with freedom to explore and choose how you will spend your time in game with an element of time management. None of this was mentioned in your preview. It does not sound like a linear game at all, and I am actually looking forward to this after reading those previews.

    #18 2 years ago
  19. Clupula

    I actually really enjoyed the cast and characters of XIII, with the exception of Hope, who I had Vaan-levels of hatred for until about the halfway point of the game. Lightning is probably my favorite protagonist, though, out of the entire series. XIII is my third favorite out of all of them (after IX and X).

    All I know is that it was a huge improvement over the self-playing shitfest that was XII.

    #19 2 years ago
  20. Clupula

    Also, using auto-battle is weak. I used it for the very first battle and then switched it off in the options for the rest of the game.

    #20 2 years ago
  21. Dave Cook

    @19 MORE linear than the world map format of older FF games. That’s actually what I said :)

    #21 2 years ago
  22. Beta

    I rather enjoyed FF XIII, after it finally got going gameplay and story wise. I really don’t think it needed 2 sequels though, it was fine the way it was.

    #22 2 years ago
  23. Clupula

    @8 – See I hated the gameplay of XII and found absolutely nothing engaging about it. Every character not named Balthier and Dr. Cid completely lacked personality and the story could barely even be called one. I mean they actually whipped out the evil twin cliche!

    I had actually been hoping Dr. Cid would have pulled a Kefka, because Vayne was about as interesting a villain as a cardboard cutout. Jihl in XIII was more interesting than he was and she isn’t even in half of that game!

    #23 2 years ago
  24. Clupula

    Not to mention, in XII, you could hide in a corner and let the AI fight bosses for you. There was a boss, I distinctly remember falling asleep during, and when I woke up, we had beaten it. That is NOT how gameplay should be done.

    #24 2 years ago
  25. markus080

    @ 17: I may be wrong, but i think XIII-2 probably sold as much as crisis core or DoC, and I don’t think many thought that VII was a bad game. Sure, the final fantasy brand sells itself, but a terrible game would have tanked at 3-4 million like RE6. Yes, there were many that disliked the game, but also a fair number who liked it like me. I haven’t played XIII-2 so I can’t comment, but I will be pre-ordering this.

    #25 2 years ago
  26. Dave Cook

    @24 Penelo added nothing to the table. That said I thoroughly enjoyed FFXII. I racked up over 120 hours by the end when I should have been studying at university :/

    #26 2 years ago
  27. Clupula

    Yeah, X-2, Dirge of Cerberus, and XIII-2 all sold only a fraction of their initial games. There’s always a drop-off in stuff like this.

    #27 2 years ago
  28. Clupula

    @27 – XII is another game like DmC. I remember every single person in the gaming press going on about how it was what the series needed, but it is VERY rare for me to find fans who enjoyed it.

    #28 2 years ago
  29. Dave Cook

    @29 Besides me of course ;)

    I’m not blind to its many faults though, but I overlooked them as a fan. I just told myself that something better had to be around the next corner. For me that was Gran Pulse.

    #29 2 years ago
  30. Clupula

    @30 No, I meant XII, not XIII. The gaming press were pretty harsh to XIII. I liked XIII, but hated XII. I remember XII being treated like the second coming.

    #30 2 years ago
  31. markus080

    @ 22 So its linear because it does not have a world map? I can get that many final fantasy stalwarts swear by the world map, but XII was not any less linear than earlier titles with a world map. This game sounds like its going to be open world-ish, the only limiting thing being the time management. But still, so few games other than Majora’s Mask have been willing to experiment with this, its about time another MM-like game came along.

    #31 2 years ago
  32. Gnosis

    @26: You can’t compare a main FF game that was released on two big home consoles with spin-offs that were released on only one console and a handheld. Aside from that, DoC was a shooter and, correct me if I’m wrong, but I’d guess that what ppl like about FF games is that they’re JRPGs. Crisis Core simply suffered the fate of PSP, which at that time was crushed by way more popular DS. I can imagine that it would’ve sold way better, if it was released on a PS2 or DS.

    I’m not trying to bash on XIII here. I thought it was “ok”. During the years and thanx to an insane amount of bullshit in JRPGs I’ve learned just to ignore most of the annoying parts of the games, as long as they’re not too annoying (it was XIII-2 that just fuckin murdered the series for me), but one game was imo more than enough. That’s all.

    #32 2 years ago
  33. markus080

    @ 24, Ashe had personality, did she not? Before XII came along, most final fantasy girls could either fall into the kind/motherly cathegory or the spunky/cheerful type.

    #33 2 years ago
  34. Clupula

    @34 – Ashe had so much personality that I often forget what her name even was and just refer to her as “Short Skirt Princess.”

    #34 2 years ago
  35. Clupula

    It’s Vaan (whose name I remember because it’s seared onto my brain with hatred), The Rikku Cosplayer, Short Skirt Princess, Cliche Twin Guy, Bunny Girl, Billy Quizboy Fancylad, and Balthier is how I remember the cast.

    #35 2 years ago
  36. markus080

    @ 36: How is Vaan anymore (or less) annoying than say tidus? They are all the same naive/optimistic/hero-type. But the highlight of the game for me was the mark hunting/questing system. OF course you are entitled to your own opinion, I am not forcing you to like the game.

    #36 2 years ago
  37. Clupula

    Are you kidding? Vaan was this annoying twee little douchenozzle who ran around without a shirt and bothered everybody he met about being a sky pirate every four seconds, like he was a 5 year old who just saw Harry Potter and wanted to be a wizard.

    His character was completely useless in every way, shape, or form.

    If they had simply cut him out of the game completely, it wouldn’t have mattered.

    Tidus on the other hand, was sure, optimistic and dressed like a Hot Topic exploded on him, but otherwise, he was also a guy completely out of his element, discovering the world at the same time we were, and just wanting to get back home. I never minded Tidus, at all. I cared about him wanting Yuna to be able to be free from her destiny.

    The only problem I had with FFX was blitzball. If I wanted to play a sport, I’d buy a Madden game.

    #37 2 years ago
  38. salarta

    I think people should skip this game if for no other reason than because Toriyama has repeatedly shown that he is a complete hack with absolutely no respect for already existing IPs, openly lies about content and intentions to suit his needs, and has shown absolutely no indication or desire of trying to actually treat the IPs better and be a better writer and director. The closest he has come so far is giving a bit more of what people actually want with FF13-2 (as I hear; I’m never touching that game), but given how high-profile FF13 was and the level of negativity and criticism toward it, it’s far more likely that someone of higher authority than Toriyama made him make those changes.

    I also think the obsession with Toriyama doing time travel based mechanics in FF13-2 and 3rd Birthday strongly suggests that Toriyama would really like to ruin the Chrono series too, so thank god Squeenix considers that IP too risky.

    I have absolutely zero faith in Squeenix making anything worthwhile where he’s involved, and 3rd Birthday proved to me that Squeenix has neither the integrity nor the class to make respectable spinoffs and sequels of great older IPs. I was a hardcore Squaresoft fan, I bought and enjoyed the few things since 2003 that were worth a damn (FF12 among them), but right now the only thing that ever surprises me is Squeenix making a game that treats their IPs with dignity and respect. There are no depths I do not think they will sink to if they think it will make them a few extra pennies, and it’s all thanks to Toriyama’s work. Aside from Tomb Raider (which is really Crystal Dynamics), he is the sole thread linking every Squeenix project I have ever loathed with a passion in the past ten years.

    #38 2 years ago
  39. Clupula

    I’ll be buying it day one. Might buy two to make up for your lack of a sale.

    #39 2 years ago
  40. markus080

    @ 33: I get your point. And thanks for the civil reply. I recognize XIII had its faults, and I was quite put off by the time-travel concept in XIII-2 so I gave it a miss, but I don’t want to penalise what might be a good game based on my dislike for the previous one. That is, I am hoping it will be a good game.

    #40 2 years ago
  41. Zohar

    @38: Right on brother. I think Square Enix as a company right now has a lot of problems, primarily being that there is no distinct visionary leader that is passionate about doing right by their main IPs. Nomura has been babying Versus for how many years now? That thing was announced early on in the PS3 life-cycle and we’re now still left hoping that -maybe- it’ll show up on the PS4? I doubt that thing is any more of a “game” than it is trailer fodder built upon empty promises. OK we can joke about Yamauchi taking 6 years to make a Gran Turismo game, but this BS with Versus is unforgivable.

    Then they show up at the Sony event and basically re-run a tech demo that’s almost a year old, and announce that they will announce a new FF game at E3. WTF?! It’s actually a perfect juxtaposition that details exactly what is wrong with SE. Tons of devs show up and show -real- games, -real- IP and announce -real- products. Then SE shows up, drops the FF name and walks off stage after showing essentially nothing. They are arrogant. They are comfortable hammering out FFXIII sequels that are poorly rated and follow up what is widely considered to be among the worst FF games ever produced because, inexplicably, they manage to sell enough copies.

    Meanwhile they have nothing to else to show us as a company other than a failed MMO launch, another by-the-book Kingdom Hearts game, an HD re-release of FFX (that’s been in “development” for years but we know almost nothing about due to a complete media blackout) and Versus XIII which has been in “development” since 2005 and announced in 2006. That’s SEVEN years ago they announced this game! Oh and I guess you can say The Unfinished Swan, assuming that’s actually a thing, and some mobile games.

    How am I supposed to be in any way excited or trusting of anything this company says, and why should I care about any product they “announce” when their track record is so abysmal and the only “big” games they’ve released during this console generation are terrible? They don’t say JACK SHIT about their games, don’t release products that are in-line with the quality, consistency and regularity that Square fans are used to anymore. Instead they put out press releases boasting that characters in their vaporware Versus XIII game will be wearing outfits designed by a real life Japanese fashion designer and tweet pictures of cologne based on a character from a game that PRACTICALLY DOESN’T EXIST! Square… NO ONE GIVES A SHIT ABOUT THIS TIE-IN MERCHANDISING GARBAGE!

    Let me re-iterate this to put this into perspective for our younger audiences. In the same amount of time that Final Fantasy Versus XIII has been in development Squaresoft produced Final Fantasy V, VI, VII, VIII and IX. In 9 years Squaresoft produced 5 of the greatest games of all time and basically defined and re-defined the JRPG genre across multiple gaming platforms WHILE making the utterly massive transition from simple 2D SNES sprites to the fully 3D and cinematic PS1 platform.

    Here’s another one for you. FFX went into development in 1999 and was released in 2001. 2 years to make a great game from scratch on a new platform using something completely new to FF at the time – fully voiced characters. FFX HD for PS3 and Vita was announced in 2011. It has officially taken SquareEnix longer to make an up-ressed PORT of FFX than it took them to conceive and develop the game FROM SCRATCH!

    There are people such as myself that can basically define their adolescence and personal journey through gaming history by their experiences with these spectacular examples of gaming nirvana. Now Square can just barely manage to fart out a wholly unsatisfying single FF game during the course of an entire console generation while making empty promises that will never be fulfilled. Gamers that are too young to have played or enjoyed the SNES>PS1 era of Squaresoft will never understand just how soul-crushing the current state of Square is today.

    Something is seriously broken at SE and I’m afraid they will basically never recover and continue to become an increasingly irrelevant company as far as in-house IP goes.

    #41 2 years ago
  42. Dave Cook

    Easy answer for the above mate: gamers demand a high level of technical quality these days or they turn their noses up at games. This drives production costs into the stratosphere and games take longer to make.

    #42 2 years ago
  43. Digital Bamboo

    I’ve been putting off playing FFXIII for a long time, and I’m honestly not even looking forward to it after all the criticisms I’ve heard, which is a shame, because I’ve been a pretty big fan since VI on the SNES. Beat VII(3 times), VIII, IX & X, (pretended X-2 didn’t exist) and was amoung the few who thought XII was one of the best FF games of all.

    I’ll take the plunge one of these days, but I’ll keep an emergency copy of Chrono Trigger on standby, just in case I need a good rinse afterwards.

    #43 2 years ago
  44. salarta

    @41: If Versus doesn’t come out within a couple years of the PS4 launch, it’s safe to call it the new Duke Nukem Forever. The problems plaguing Versus are different though, because while Duke Nukem Forever suffered from the team constantly redoing their work over any incremental change in graphics, Versus is suffering from their team getting hijacked to work on other projects. By the time they’re allowed to actually get back to Versus, things have changed enough to warrant redesigning a lot of elements.

    Though frankly, I’m glad Versus hasn’t come out yet. Being called Versus 13 makes it out to be an offshoot or a lesser to FF13, but Versus actually deserves to be called a main Final Fantasy while FF13 does not. Toriyama tried to gut the soul of the Final Fantasy series by making FF13 out to be all about mech “gods” and a primarily science fiction atmosphere (going to natural places does not make it not science fiction, otherwise Star Wars and Pitch Black are not science fiction), while Versus has actual magic and actual gods. I don’t care how “good” people consider FF13 in its own rights, as a supposed Final Fantasy game, the whole FF13 run is the absolute worst of anything they’ve made. Even non-mainline spinoffs had more of a right to be called FF13 than what became FF13. If I ever buy Final Fantasy games again, which will probably never happen given Squeenix’s refusal to completely undo 3rd Birthday, I’ll be proud of the gap in my collection where FF13 should have been.

    In terms of Squeenix’s PS4 announcement showing, I’m actually pleased with what they did. I think that’s because I have no positive expectations for the company anymore; games like FF13, 3rd Birthday, FFX-2 and FF4:TA destroyed my faith in them. I sincerely expected to see Toriyama take the stage to announce a 4th Birthday, an FFX-3, show off Lightning Returns, or worst case scenario announce that he was going to ruin the Chrono series or FF6 just like he’s ruined everything else he’s touched. Compared to the possibility of that, seeing a year old tech demo and a very vague announcement about a future announcement of a Final Fantasy game is pretty good to me. That doesn’t mean it isn’t pretty sad and pathetic for the company; it says a lot when a presentation from Squeenix with outdated tech and vague promises makes for the best news I’ve heard out of Squeenix in nearly half a decade, but it’s still much, much better than what I expected to see them pull.

    Correction though, The Unfinished Swan isn’t associated with Squeenix.

    #44 2 years ago
  45. salarta

    @42: People say that gamers expect a high level of technical quality, but I do not think that’s really true. It might get more people to buy it, yes, but it’s nowhere near the strong level of focus as it was back in earlier generations. People will talk about how good graphics look, but it’s almost never the whole reason they buy the game. Nippon Ichi has been around for quite a while using graphics that aren’t so highly intense, and the Blazblue series (though I’ve stopped with it for my own fan-based reasons) has been very successful, so much so that Arc System Works got hired by Atlus for that Persona fighting game.

    The obsessive focus on high-quality graphics has more to do with a combination of companies trying to Hollywoodize games and companies thinking that the cock-waving game of who has the best graphics is as relevant today as it was a couple generations ago. Heck, the whole reason the PS4 seems so impressive isn’t really how good the graphics can be, it’s the new features like video capture, streaming games, and watching other people play. Not to mention the success of mobile and browser games; lower quality graphics, but more people play them due to availability and fun factor.

    Companies really need to learn to stop making interactive movies, and start making interactive video games.

    #45 2 years ago
  46. Cobra951

    @15 (deathm00n): For what it’s worth, I stayed away from XIII after loving XII. I was very happy they made XII feel more open and immediate than the previous games in the series, and I hoped Square (now Squeenix) would run much further with that ball. Instead, they went way backward with XIII, into claustrophobic linearity. Huge disappointment.

    #46 2 years ago
  47. salarta

    @46: I never beat FF12, but it had a lot of fun moments, using the terrain as part of your fighting tactic. Granted I still like turn-based combat and wish more RPGs still used it, but being able to use the environment was enjoyable.

    #47 2 years ago
  48. Cobra951

    @47: While I beat 12, I never did finish that ridiculous day-long battle with the optional super-boss (Yiazmat–had to look it up, as I had forgotten). There’s only so much torture I’ll endure for OCD-like completionism.

    #48 2 years ago
  49. Zohar

    @42 You’re right, but that doesn’t explain an eight year dev cycle on VS XIII. The transition from SNES to PS1 was arguably far more impactful on how games were made than PS2 to PS3. Most games have a 2-3 year dev cycle, and established dev studios with big publishers have pushed out multiple AAA franchises this gen with sequels and trilogies among them.

    My observation is that there are PR, managerial and staffing issues at SquarEnix. No functional publisher would announce a game then go dark on it for 7-8 years. Things like DNF and Aliens: CM come out of those pits of development hell.

    Then there’s the issue I stated before about SE lacking any kind of visionary leadership. They don’t have a Sakaguchi, Ken Levine, Cliffy B, Peter Molyneux, Hideo Kojima, Shinji Mikami, etc… and the result is they have people like Nomura who IMO knows how to design cool looking stuff but can’t launch a game to save his life and Toriyama who produced the most basic, boring, cliched, generic JRPG imaginable and called it Final Fantasy XIII.

    #49 2 years ago
  50. salarta

    @49: I think that a glaring internal problem with management is the core culprit. Maybe not the people themselves, but how they’ve been doing things. Management decides who gets promoted, what games get greenlit and ultimately how those games take shape, and the way they interact with employees affects how those employees perform and behave.

    I know I harp on 3rd Birthday a lot, but there’s a reason I do that: aside from it ruining a great IP which is always something I hate to see, every step of that game is like an embodiment of everything wrong with the company. Want to sell a game, reduce it to the lowest common denominator. Aya is a woman, so heavily emphasize her sex appeal and make her act weak and cowardly without men to make her tough (though to be fair, I don’t entirely blame Squeenix for making Aya act that way anymore because as the new Tomb Raider demonstrates, women want to be seen that way). Throughout the propaganda phase, lie about the contents of the game. Aya’s known for being strong and mature? Lie that she’ll be a “cool, mature woman” (Toriyama’s remark) then make her into a fragile little girl in an adult body. Scandal hits over the sexual bent of the clothing damage mechanic? Lie that it’s there for “realism,” then let Famitsu release monthly articles where the central focus is whatever new fetish costume is available for Aya to wear.

    Try to cover it all up with extremely high quality graphics and good gameplay (or so I hear), expect people to buy it in droves. And ultimately, when the game flops… do nothing. Don’t admit the direction you took was a mistake. Don’t try to make a new game starring Aya Brea that treats her right and makes up for what 3rd Birthday did. Just pretend the IP no longer exists. And it’s not like they didn’t have plans for Parasite Eve before 3rd Birthday released. During E3 2011, Parasite Eve was listed among the IPs they hoped to build up to greatness.

    All of that, ultimately, leads back to problems with management. Management decided who worked on 3rd Birthday. Management decided, ultimately, what sort of content would be “appropriate” for trying to sell the game. And it’s management that set a corporate atmosphere where openly lying to consumers about the product’s content and intentions is acceptable. I can complain about Toriyama a lot, because he is the reason for most of these projects sucking, but in the end it’s management that decided he deserved to work on these projects and that the direction he wanted to take them was perfectly fine.

    #50 2 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

  • Grinding three purples in Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel may crash your game [UPDATE]

    Update: Gearbox Software has announced there’s currently a hot-fix in place for Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel as a temporary solution to crashes caused with the DLC update. Until a permanent fix can be made, the hotfix should correct crashing issues. All will be fixed in the next major game update. Original Story A bug that snuck […]

  • Havoc maps up the tempo for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare

    Dave Cook dons his Exo suit to find the new Havok DLC maps a great change of pace for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. Given that Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare places great emphasis on verticality, it’s little wonder that Sledgehammer Games has designed the first of its four DLC map packs with elevation and […]

  • G2A responds to deactivated Far Cry 4 keys debacle

    G2A, one of the third-party sellers that were named in the ongoing episode of deactivated Far Cry 4 keys has decided to release a statement. G2A is a well known third-party key sellers online. Most users know it through its sponsorship deals with many YouTube and Twitch channels. The service sells keys both through its […]

  • Petroglyph’s Victory resurfaces with Korean co-developer

    End of Nations, Mytheon and Grey Goo developer Petroglyph Games seems to have salvaged a stalled project. Victory popped up back in early 2013 after Trion Worlds took End of Nations in-house. Petroglyph’s attempt to crowdfund the unusual strategy title ended in iniquity, but it vowed to do whatever it could to bring the game […]

  • Far Cry 4 Hurk Deluxe DLC now available

    Far Cry 4′s latest DLC pack adds new story missions and a pile of new weapons. Far Cry 4: Hurk Deluxe is now available on PC and Xbox platforms, and is rolling out to the PSN in line with local network updates. The pack bundles five story missions, including Yak Farm, Blood Ruby and Hurk’s […]

  • Yes, Resident Evil: Revelations 2 has microtransactions

    Resident Evil: Revelations 2 has microtransactions, but thankfully they’re not as outrageous as initial reports suggested. The subject of Resident Evil: Revelations 2′s microtransactions arose earlier today with reports filtering out of a European press event that you’ll be able to pay to keep playing after your character dies. The ramifications of this are pretty […]

  • Play mini-games to unlock Magicka 2 content

    Magicka 2 publisher Paradox Interactive has invited fans to earn in-game rewards by playing other games. The Magicka website will host various mini-games in the build up to Magicka 2′s launch later this year on PC and PS4. Playing these games controbutes to a community score total which will eventually unlock in-game content as well […]

  • Deactivated Far Cry 4 keys were purchased through Origin

    Far Cry 4 owners who found their games deactivated without warning may be surprised to learn where they came from. Many copies of Far Cry 4 purchased through third-party re-sellers have been deactivated without notice. Although resellers affected by the deactivations argued that they had made authorised purchases, Ubisoft has denied this. The publisher told […]

  • Will Assassin’s Creed visit Japan in 2016?

    The next Assassin’s Creed game after Victory may finally bring ninja and assassins together. An Assassin’s Creed fan has spotted what certainly looks like a heavy hint that the next game after Victory will be set in Japan. Ubisoft forums member Cornik22 was looking through the Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag official art book when […]

  • Resident Evil HD modder aims to restore original, terrible voice acting

    Resident Evil and its early sequels are justifiably famous for their simply dire voice acting. Some Resident Evil fans feel they just can’t enjoy the experience of exploring Umbrella facilities if someone isn’t talking at them with absolutely no regard for pacing, content or tone. As a result, modder Bunny has stepped up to the […]

  • Record iPhone sales drive Apple to revenue spike

    The iPhone is still going strong – in fact, it’s selling better than ever. Apple has announced its financial results for the quarter ending December 27 2014, exceeding expectations with a 29.5% increase in revenues to $74.6 billion. This was a new record for the company. One of the key factors in this spike is […]

  • HoloLens has “mind-blowing” potential for games, says Microsoft CEO

    Microsoft’s VR wearable HoloLens is going to be great for games, according to CEO Satya Nadella. Speaking to investors, Nadella made Microsoft’s entertainment plans for the device explicit. “It’s also getting clearer how the games people love today will evolve to mind-blowing experiences in the future when designed for the mixed reality that Windows 10 […]

  • EA Q3: Battlefield 5 still on for holiday 2016, PGA Tour 15 spring release confirmed

    EA announced its financial results for its Q3 fiscal year 2015 quarter, ended December 31, 2014, noting total net revenue $1.13 billion in total net revenue compared to $808 million year-over-year. For the nine months ending December 31, total net revenue came in at $3.3 billion. Net revenues were up 39% and net income came […]

  • Players logged 113M single-player hours in Dragon Age: Inquisition, other EA games stats

    Ahead of its Q3 2015 earnings release, Electronic Arts has released a game infographic showing some interesting stats compiled through gameplay from October – December 2014. For FIFA 15, over 3.3 billion goals were made; 73 million knockouts occurred in EA SPORTS UFC; over 10 million families were created in The Sims 4; 113 million […]

  • Hyrule Warriors has shipped 1 million units worldwide

    Koei Tecmo has announced shipments of its Wii U hack and slash action title, Hyrule Warriors, has shipped one million units worldwide. The Omega Force-developed title was released in Japan on August 14 and in the west on September 26. Two packs of DLC for the game are slated for February alongside the version 1.5.0 […]

  • Xbox Games Store discounts Never Alone, Dragon Age: Inquisition, more

    This week’s deals available through the Xbox Games Store will be valid until February 2 with titles such as Battlefield 4, Dragon Age Inquisition, Never Alone, and Titanfall discounted. Discounted titles with an asterisk are for Xbox Live Gold members only. Xbox One Just Dance 2015* – 40% Another World* – 50% Never Alone* – […]

  • Say hello to Mortal Kombat X’s latest character: Reptile

    As promised, one of two character reveals this week for Mortal Kombat X has occurred: it’s the acid-spitting Reptile. Nice! Watch the video above. Mortal Kombat X is slated for release on April 14 and will be available on PC, PS3, PS4,Bxo 360 and Xbox One. Thanks, MrTGJelly (Trent).

  • Twisted fairy tale Woolfe: The Red Hood Diaries hits Steam Early Access

    Woolfe: The Red Hood Diaries, the successful Kickstarter from GRIN Studios, has launched on Steam Early Access. The PC title is described as a “cinematic fable featuring a vengeful Red Riding Hood,” who armed with an axe sets out on a quest to avenge the murder of her parents. Gameplay features action-platforming, combo-based hack ‘n […]

  • Dead or Alive 5: Last Round delayed to late March on Steam

    Koei Tecmo has announced it is delaying the PC release of Dead or Alive 5: Last Round to March. According to an updated listing on Steam (thanks, AGB), the fighter was delayed “in order to provide you with the best experience possible.” To apologize for the delay, Team Ninja will offer the Halloween 2013 Set, […]

  • Dragon’s Dogma Online will be F2P “no plans” for western release

    Dragon’s Dogma Online will be a free-to-play title for PC, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3. Set for release this year, Dragon’s Dogma Online has a lobby which will support up to 100 players, is open-world, and the executive producer is Hiroyuki Kobayashi. Players can form groups with up to four players or pawns while raids […]

  • Watch this release video for Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel DLC Lady Hammerlock

    The Lady Hammerlock DLC for Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel releases today on PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, and coinciding with the release is the launch trailer. In the Lady Hammerlock DLC, players are introduced and will be able to step into the shoes of Sir Hammerlock’s sister, Lady Aurelia the Baroness. The DLC will run […]

  • Free DLC for Tales of Zestiria takes place after main storyline

    Free DLC will be released in Japan for Tales of Zestiria, and while Bandai Namco has yet to state whether it will be released westward with the core game this summer, it’s an interesting slice of content. According to information from Jump posted by Siliconera, the DLC Alisha After Episode: What Is Reflected In The […]

  • This video of a Paris flat looks the real deal, but it’s all Unreal Engine 4

    I’m not entirely sure when, or how, this fella managed to sneak into my secret flat in Paris and film it, but since it’s out there I may as well share it with you. All joking aside, this video is rather amazing. It provides a virtual tour of a flat located in Paris; however, it’s […]

  • The Witness passes key development milestone, still no release date

    The Witness has seemingly come back from the dead. Creator Jonathan Blow has posted an update on the game’s development. Surely you still remember The Witness? Jonathan Blow’s follow-up to Braid, which was shown during the PlayStation 4 reveal event all the way back in February 2013? Well, today we got our first development update […]

  • You can now take selfies in World of Warcraft

    The latest patch to World of Warcraft has added a S.E.L.F.I.E. Camera to the game. And it does exactly what it sounds like it does. Patch 6.1 is currently being deployed to World of Warcraft’s Public Test Realms (PTR). There’s a massive list of patch notes, but the most pressing one, other than Twitter integration, […]

  • Hellblade: early gameplay and prototype footage revealed

    The latest developer diary for Hellblade is here with a look at some early gameplay prototypes and a peek at some polished areas. Hellblade developer Ninja Theory has revealed even more details of how game development works behind the scenes. The eighth part of this ongoing diary shows early gameplay footage along with some intriguing […]

  • Resident Evil Revelations 2: Raid mode offline-only on launch, more details

    Capcom has revealed a tonne of new details about Raid mode in Resident Evil: Revelations 2. Capcom has confirmed that Raid mode will launch with the first episode of Revelations 2 in February. You will be playing it offline only though, either solo or in split-screen co-op. As for the online portion, Capcom promised it […]

  • Watch the first 20 minutes of Life is Strange

    The first 20 minutes of Life is Strange have been posted online for anyone to watch. The opening 20 minutes of Life is Strange set the stage for what kind of game it is. The kind that you’ll probably like if you’re a fan of Telltale games. The video is courtesy of consolewarsofficial and you […]

  • Don’t blame Ubisoft for cancelling keys – blame the culture of overpriced games

    Publishers need to drop PC games prices in order to stem the flourishing grey market, says Matt Martin. “How are you going to sell me Far Cry 4 for £45 when I can pick up Far Cry, Far Cry 2, Far Cry 3, Far Cry: Blood Dragon and extra DLC for just £30?” Some players […]

  • Dragon’s Dogma Online is real, full reveal in this week’s Famitsu

    What’s been heavily-rumoured to be the next instalment in the Dragon’s Dogma franchise, Dragon’s Dogma Online, will be fully revealed this week. According to a recent post by Famitsu, the magazine’s upcoming weekly issue, which releases January 29, will contain a massive feature on Dragon’s Dogma Online. The magazine will dedicate 18 pages to all […]

  • Valve responds to recent Counter-Strike match-fixing scandal, bans offenders

    Valve has investigated the recent case of match-fixing involving two teams in the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive professional scene and decided to ban those involved from future tournaments. Recent allegations involving match-fixing between iBUYPOWER and NetcodeGuides.com – two of the professional teams that played in Cevo Season 5 – came to light. Valve has took notice […]

  • Having issues playing Grim Fandango Remastered on PS4? Sony is offering help

    Sony has offered a few steps to help those who are having issues with their pre-loaded PS4 installs of Grim Fandango Remastered. A few reports have started to appear online from users who’ve pre-ordered and pre-loaded Grim Fandango Remastered on their PS4 consoles. Sony has since posted a support thread on the official forums, to […]

  • Get Dragon Age: Inquisition for $36 and more in EA’s Xbox One sale

    Many EA digital games are being offered at considerable discounts on Xbox One right now. The latest EA sale is pretty good, offering sales on many AAA titles. It’s only available on Xbox One, with extra savings for Xbox Live Gold subscribers. The list below covers prices for Gold Subscribers. Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare […]

  • Grim Fandango Remastered reviews round-up, all the scores

    Grim Fandango Remastered is a classic game brought into the new generation, so it’s time for everyone to know how great it is. The reviews for Grim Fandango Remastered have started popping up and as per usual, we’ve collected a few of them below. Grim Fandango Remastered is, as the name suggests, a remastered version […]

  • The Witcher 3: latest build is 1080p on PS4, 900p on Xbox One

    The recent preview build of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt was running at full-HD resolution on PlayStation 4 and 900p on Xbox One. German website Gamestar attended the recent preview event for The Witcher 3 and examined the three versions that were on offer, PC, PS4 and Xbox One. Here’s the quote, courtesy of Google […]

  • Joystiq is likely to close – rumour

    AOL is rumoured to be closing its video game site, Joystiq. Re/code is reporting that AOL is likely to close its video game site Joystiq soon, according to “various sources.” The move is part of a company-wide restructuring that will affect Joystiq and other “under-performing content properties.” Joystiq is one of the most renowned sites […]

  • The Last of Us movie will be “pretty faithful” to the game

    The Last of Us will bring many of the same elements to the big screen as the small one, according to writer Neil Druckmann. Although The Last of Us will have to be adapted in various ways to make the transition from lengthy interactive adventure to cinema-friendly story arc, Druckmann is hoping to keep the […]

  • Microsoft is fixing Xbox One’s slow controllers

    Xbox One control pads have many charms, but quick start up is not one of them. The Xbox One controller currently takes up to five seconds to connect to your console after switching on, which is an eternity for someone with an attention span as short as mine. Luckily, Microsoft is working to fix this […]

  • Lucius 2 releases on Friday the 13th (of course)

    Lucius 2 has a really fitting release date. Lucius developer Shiver Games has produced a follow-up to the dark tale of an evil child, and it’s coming your way on February 13 – which just so happens to be a Friday. Lucius 2: The Prophecy will set you back $20, and release through Steam. As […]

  • Saints Row 4: Re-Elected PS4 recalled in Australia, incorrect content to blame

    Saints Row 4: Re-Elected has been recalled in Australia due to a mysterious manufacturing issue. An Australian PR representative said that the retail PS4 version of Saints Row 4: Re-Elected has “a serious manufacturing issue” and has been recalled nation-wide. Here’s what we were told (emphasis mine): “A manufacturing issue has caused an incorrectly classified […]

  • The Whispered World follow up now coming to PS4, too

    Deadalic’s gorgeous-looking adventure Silence has been confirmed for a fourth platform. Originally announced for Mac and PC with an Xbox One port one revealed at a later date, Silence is now on its way to PS4 as well. All versions are due later this year. Silence is Deadalic’s first multi-platform release and in my mind […]

  • Mythbusters to tackle DOOM this weekend

    DOOM is the subject of the next episode of Mythbusters. Having been airing for over ten years now, Mythbusters has pretty much run out of myths to bust, which is why we find ourselves in 2015 with an episode dedicating to answering the question “could DOOM be real?” Bethesda has rveealed that the January 31 […]

  • Destiny hosting a Bungie Bounty – go go go

    Destiny players have a chance to take down Bungie employees in return for one of the most exclusive vanity items in the game. Destiny’s Bungie Bounties usually feature guests from the community, and today’s event is no exception. Joining Bungie community manager David “Deej” Dague are several members of Bungie.org, the developer’s most staunch fan […]

  • Elite: Dangerous developer issues lay-offs

    Elite: Dangerous team Frontier Developments has had to let staff go. At least 15 staff have been laid off from the developer’s Halifax studio. According to an investor update, this decision will allow Frontier to focus its efforts at its primary studio in Cambridge, England. “With its business emphasis now on two major self-published franchises, […]

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition tavern songs free for a limited time

    Dragon Age: Inquisition tunes can be yours for the bargain price of zero cashmoney. The tavern songs from Dragon Age: Inquisition will be made available for purchase from various digital distributors sometime after February 9. Until then, though, you can have them for free – including their sheet music. To take advantage of this generous […]

  • Even the Five Nights at Freddy’s 3 teaser is frightening

    Five Nights at Freddy’s 3 is probably going to be just as tense and uncomfortable as its two prequels. This teaser for Five Nights at Freddy’s 3 is the first we’ve heard of the project since creator Scott Cawthon confirmed it is in the works. The third entry in the series is now up on […]

  • 6.6 million Xbox consoles shipped last quarter

    Xbox One and Xbox 360 console sales were strong last quarter, although Microsoft isn’t talking hard numbers yet. Microsoft shipped 6.6 million Xbox 360 and Xbox One consoles to retailers in the quarter ending December 31, the company revealed in its latest financial briefing. This figure wasn’t broken down by platform, and Microsoft didn’t supply […]

  • Homeworld Remastered Collection: five minutes of b-roll footage

    We may not have proper, uncut gameplay footage of the Homeworld Remastered Collection, but we have the next best thing. Homeworld Remastered Collection was confirmed to release on February 25. Gearbox has only showed a trailer, but no extended gameplay demos. There was however a b-roll video showing at PAX South, and we’ve embedded it […]

  • Grim Fandango Remastered looks sharp in these new screens

    Grim Fandango will come back from the dead with the Remastered edition, and it’s looking great. Grim Fandango Remastered has a few new screens available to prove that even old games can look stunning with the right remaster, especially ones with an already well-defined art style. Have a look at them below and get excited. […]

  • Battlefield Hardline: beta weapons, maps, modes, progression system and more

    The Battlefield Hardline beta will include a third new map and a new game mode, on top of what’s already announced. You may remember last week DICE started a community mission for all Battlefield 4 players. The goal was to reach 2 billion points playing Rush mode. That goal has been achieved and as a […]

  • Dying Light launch trailer is one last display of its forte

    The launch trailer for Dying Light is here one day ahead of the game’s release. Techland and Warner Bros. have put out the launch trailer for Dying Light. The trailer is a short reminder of the game’s main selling points: free-running, weapon crafting, drop-kicking zombies. Reviews should start to come out tomorrow for the game […]

  • Watch The Witcher 3 developers stream new gameplay on Twitch

    The Witcher 3 developer CD Projekt RED is hosting a Twitch live-stream to show off brand new gameplay footage and answer some fan questions. The live-stream will start at 7:00pm GMT, 2:00pm EST, 11:00am PST. It will show off plenty of new footage, some of which was shown only to the press so far. The […]

  • Finally, some screens for Final Fantasy 15

    Patience is a virtue and we finally have our hands on a few gameplay screens from Final Fantasy 15. There’s not a lot of them, but they show the impressive lighting and they’re all gameplay as far as I can tell, so take a look. There is no release date for Final Fantasy 15 as […]

  • Here’s 15 minutes of gameplay from The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt in 1080p

    The Witcher 3 has a new direct-feed, 1080p video available that’s 100% gameplay. Would you like some gameplay of The Witcher 3 in beautiful 1080p? Why, of course you would! The gameplay below shows combat, conversations, travelling. In short, it’s a small sample of everything the game will offer. If you’re looking to learn much […]

  • Two Mortal Kombat X characters to be revealed this week

    Mortal Kombat X will get not one, but two character reveals this week. Mortal Kombat creator Ed Boon has been at again on Twitter, teasing all kinds of reveals over the past few days. Firstly, Boon tweeted this image, which at first glance appears to show a character holding a bow. However, further examination by […]

  • Planetside 2 successfully claims the Guinness World Record for biggest FPS battle

    The Planetside 2 community has successfully organised an online battle involving over 1000 players, breaking the previous Guinness World Record. The event, which was organised by Planetside Battles was pitched to the community last week. 1,158 players have answered the call, smashing the record for “Most Players Online in an FPS Battle.” The previous 999 […]

  • Microsoft aiming for Xbox One-to-PC streaming to function while you watch TV

    Streaming Xbox One games to PC while you watch TV on the console through the HDMI pass-through is something Microsoft is hoping to achieve when the service launches with Windows 10. Microsoft’s Phil Spencer has been on Twitter answering fan questions following last week’s Windows 10 event. One interesting bit that came out of those […]

  • Everything we know about The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is sure to be one of the biggest RPGs of the year, due for release in May on PC, Xbox One and PS4. Delayed since its target release of 2015, CD Projekt Red’s latest game takes the series to a true open world environment, and charges the player with tracking […]

  • Battlefield Hardline beta date leaked – rumour

    According to an email sent to some YouTubers, the upcoming beta for Battlefield Hardline is scheduled for February 3. The date for the Battlefield Hardline beta is believed to be February 3. It comes from an email that’s been sent by Ronku to various YouTubers reminding them of the starting date, February 3. Ronku is […]

  • The history of The Witcher: beyond the Road With No Return

    We take a look at The Witcher franchise, from the original short stories to its blockbuster video games. The world was first introduced to Geralt through a set of short stories called The Witcher (English translation) written by author Andrzej Sapkowski. The first short story was published in the Polish fantasy and science fiction magazine […]