Square Enix Cancels Final Fantasy Agito+

Square Enix had been deep into the development cycle for the PlayStation Vita’s Final Fantasy Agito+, though the company has just announced that the game has been cancelled.

All development on the game has abruptly halted, which is following a delay that would have released the game in January of next year. Square Enix has not provided details regarding why this game was cancelled, although it seems it may be something that is out of Square Enix’s control.

Problems persisted with the development of a PlayStation Vita version of the game, and Square Enix required some updates from Sony in order to fix them. Perhaps Sony changed their mind and decided this particular version of the game isn’t worth it?

Final Fantasy Agito is a prequel to Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, and for fans like myself who enjoyed that game it would be really cool to play this at some point.

I Can Confirm That Motion Blur In Final Fantasy Type-0 HD Has Been Reduced

I made it pretty clear that the motion blur that was featured in Final Fantasy Type-0 HD was pretty ridiculous, with backgrounds looking like complete fuzz with even generally steady camera movement.

Earlier today the devs revealed that they would be releasing a patch that addresses this issue, and, sure enough, when I booted up my PlayStation 4 I received an update file to download. After everything was settled, I went into a mission in the game to see if this update really addressed the issue.

Final Fantasy Type-0 HD Motion Blur Reduction

After testing out it out for several minutes in different locations, I can confirm that the motion blur has been reduced. It’s definitely still there, but it’s now at a point that is much more bearable. The screenshot I provided above is me swinging the camera around full tilt, and while you can definitely see some blur, previously you wouldn’t have been able to even make out what the background was.

This may all seem like a very minor issue to make a big deal out of, but, honestly, it only seemed like a big deal to me because I’ve never really experienced a game with such a strange technical flaw. Regardless, the devs knew enough to make things right, and now moving around in the game won’t make any one queasy!

Final Fantasy Type-0 HD Headed For Steam

This year’s underrated Final Fantasy game will be getting a port for Steam later this year.

The former console exclusive game, Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, is making its way to Steam, Square Enix has confirmed.

While no details were revealed regarding whether or not this port would contain any new content, it will more than likely just be a straight port similar to how the Final Fantasy XIII games were treated. Plus, seeing as there are still people that don’t own a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One, that means even more people get to try out this underrated game.

But, for God’s sake, do something about that damn motion blur!

SOURCE: Final Fantasy Twitter Account

Condemn O.R. Condone – Final Fantasy Type-0 HD (PlayStation 4)

Technical issues aside, Final Fantasy Type-0 HD is one of the best entries that the series has seen in years.

The Final Fantasy series has always been along the lines of a PG-13 fantasy, with loads of melodrama and action but little to no blood to be found at all. Seeing as the series has been sinking over the last several years, a new direction was taken in the form of Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, the first game in the series to get an M rating for sometimes brutal depictions of blood and gore. This of course was originally only released in Japan on the PSP, but thankfully it has now been remastered for current generation consoles. Is this a bold new step that the series desperately needed? Lets find out.

Type-0 HD is set in a war-torn land called Orience, which is divided into four nations referred to as Crystal States. Each nation has crystals of power that act as their national emblems, which all have unique characteristics like controlling magic or dragons. Due to their being these crystals of power, there is a necessity for each nation to have an academy to research and protect their nation’s crystal. This game focuses on a class of students called Class Zero, which consists of students who are the cream of the crop. They were called in to fend off invading forces from taking over their crystal and then fighting back in this war of nations.

Seeing as you are following the exploits of an entire class of students, the game will allow you to take control of 14 different characters in and out of battle. Each of these characters bring with them a variety of different skillsets and mechanics, making the game’s fast-paced combat always feel fresh and exciting. Your classmates wield things like cards, guns, swords, spears and more while also having a variety of magic attacks to cast when the going gets tough. You will control one character at a time while two other AI-operated characters help you out like the Kingdom Hearts series, though the game lets you swap out for one pf the other 11 characters with just a push of a button. Certain characters will be better in certain situations, so it’s always necessary to utilize all of your classmates to ensure they level up and are always ready to battle.

The presentation of gameplay is much more action-focused than in previous games in the series, as the game is actually split up into a series of missions that you are graded on depending on how well you do. While some of these missions can take up to an hour to complete, everything is always moving quickly and is packed with action. The game speeds up these battles even more by introducing what are called killsights, which allow you to instantly kill or severely damage an enemy when your lock-on ring lights up. To give these missions even more of an arcade-like feel, you will constantly be given the option to take on a challenge that will grant you more points if you succeed or result in your immediate death if you fail. You can even sacrifice one of your classmates to summon an insanely powerful Eidolon like Ifrit or Shiva, who can deal massive amounts of damage that is always a blast to dish out.

To keep the game’s war theme front and center you will occasionally take part in RTS-like battles, meaning that you will be commanding groups of troops as they protect their own base and try to take out the enemy’s base. While it’s definitely basic in terms of what a typical RTS game will offer, I felt it worked well with the game’s theme and was a nice change of pace compared to the standard action-heavy gameplay. It also helps that these segments are relatively short and end with your character invading the enemy base to take out the enemy commander in the game’s standard gameplay. However, if you still find that you’re not a fan of these segments the game allows you to skip them entirely, so it’s a win-win situation.

While Type-0 HD is a much more streamlined experience compared to what has come before in the series, it still has all of the hallmarks that you would expect from a Final Fantasy game. Your school acts as the game’s central hub; which contains things like a chocobo farm, a lounge, item shops and more that are all filled with students that you can speak with. There’s even an open-world map for you to explore that contains new towns to check out and hidden areas that contain worthwhile rewards at the end of them.

Final Fantasy Type-0 HD

The catch, though, is that each of your actions outside of main missions take up a set amount of time for completing them. It’s not like in Majora’s Mask where the clock is always ticking, but certain activities will take away a certain amount from your time once you have completed them. Once you are out of time you are forced to continue on with the story until the next gap of free time becomes available for side stuff. I actually really liked this time restriction, as it allowed me enough time to get a good amount of side quests done while also ensuring that the plot kept moving along, as well.

What really kept me interested in the game’s narrative wasn’t really the story itself (it’s pretty standard war stuff) but the game’s characters. It isn’t easy to juggle a cast that contains 14 characters, but this one manages to give them each just enough screen time for you to care about them. Seeing as this game is set in the middle of a huge war the characters have to deal with some pretty intense stuff, which leads to a lot of emotional situations that make you relate to them and care for them even more. It also helps that the voice acting and dialogue is mostly really solid, though there are a couple of characters with terrible voice acting and dialogue that made me want to slap them whenever they came on screen. Still, 12 out of 14 isn’t a bad record!

Unfortunately, it’s the technical side of things where this game really comes up short and brings things down a notch or two. Seeing as this was originally a PSP game that released in 2011 that is being updated for home consoles in 2015 there are a lot of issues that are much more apparent now. Many of the game’s levels and towns have a very similar look and feel to them, with some areas having really low textures. While the character models of Class Zero have all received a graphical overhaul most of the side characters did not receive the same treatment. In scenes where both types of characters are together it just looks plain silly. I also can’t let a relatively minor but no less obnoxious motion blur effect that is present in the game off the hook, as moving the camera around even a little bit makes it look like you’re moving around in a tornado.

I was also expecting a bit more maturity in both the story and characters with the M-rating that the game got. While the game kicks off with a jaw-dropping scene containing someone slowly dying and begging for life, there are also many light-hearted and goofy things throughout the game that kind of clashes with that theme. The aforementioned couple of annoying characters in Class Zero add to this, but there are also those incredibly-annoying Kupos chiming in constantly with that ear-grating voice, and side characters that are so over-the-top and unrealistic that jarringly take you out of the doom and gloom scenario that is set by the game’s incredible intro. I wouldn’t expect the series to drop these lighter elements entirely, but toning down a few of them would have been welcomed.

Even though everything moves at a much quicker pace, this game still has plenty of content for you to sink your teeth into. While the main story can be completed in around 25 hours there are plenty of side quests and missions to complete on different difficulties to keep you coming back for more. There’s also extensive amounts of lore that you will gradually unlock as the game progresses, which sheds some interesting light on the characters, the world and more. It’s not as long-winded as a typical game in the series, but I actually liked that as I’m the kind of person that would prefer a shorter game with higher-quality gameplay than a longer game with lower-quality gameplay.

While Final Fantasy Type-0 HD has its issues it’s still one of the better games in the Final Fantasy series to come around in a while. The game’s slightly-grittier tone mixed with the more action-oriented gameplay is a nice change of pace and offers plenty of new mechanics that work well within this franchise. However, the overall story and tone is inconsistent and the technical issues are too frequent to completely ignore. Even so, despite its shortcomings, Final Fantasy Type- 0 HD is definitely a game that fans of the series should check out, and it just might even bring on some new fans who are looking for a more easily-digestible experience.

RESPECTABLE

Final Fantasy XV: Episode Duscae 2.0 Coming Next Month To Original Demo Owners

The devs are addressing all of the feedback they got from the survey with an updated version of last month’s Episode Duscae.

When Final Fantasy XV: Episode Duscae came bundled with Final Fantasy Type-0 HD last month, fans were finally given their first taste of one of the most highly-anticipated games in years. They were also able to provide feedback to the developers by way of a survey, and the devs have taken that criticism to heart and will be releasing a new version of the demo next month.

During the latest Active Time Event broadcast, Final Fantasy XV‘s director Hajime Tabata addressed many of the complaints that fans had with the demo. He even shared several graphs that accurately and thoroughly conveyed results of the survey that many took part in, which you can check out at the bottom of this post.

The most interesting of these graphs are the average score that people gave this demo, with statistics being broken into North American, European and Japanese categories. North American gamers were the most generous of the 3 nations with an average score of 8.6, European gamers were in the middle with an average score of 8.3, and Japanese gamers were the most critical with an average score of 8.0.

Along with this information, Tabata also revealed that an updated demo of Episode Duscae (called Episode Duscae 2.0) will address many of the complaint received in the feedback survey. This demo will only be available to those who purchased Final Fantasy Type-0 HD and will include improvements like better targeting and camera systems, improved combat and the addition of a dodge roll move. They are also looking to improve the game’s framerate, though they are unsure if that will be addressed in the upcoming update. This new version of the demo will be available next month.

Be sure to check out the lengthy and funny video of Hajime Tabata and Akio Ofuji discussing Final Fantasy XV as well as the aforementioned graphs below. Final Fantasy XV is developed by Square Enix 1st Production Department and XPEC Entertainment for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. 

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Final Fantasy Type-0 HD Ships Over 1 Million Copies Worldwide

Type-0 HD is off to a very impressive start, though it has lot to owe to the bundled Final Fantasy XV demo.

Square Enix has revealed that their recent Final Fantasy Type-0 HD has shipped over 1 million copies worldwide since it launched in March.

While the game itself has gotten solid reviews, many of those sales were undoubtedly as result of initial copies of the game coming bundled with a demo of Final Fantasy XV. The demo, called Episode Duscae, lets players experience a few hours of gameplay that is truly impressive. It looks like Final Fantasy is finally getting back on the right track.

As for the actual game, I can’t really comment on its quality as I haven’t played it yet, but just from trailers and the plot synopsis it was something much more interesting than what the series has been coughing up lately.

Final Fantasy Type-0 HD is developed by HexaDrive and launched for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on March 17th, 2015.

The ‘Final Fantasy Type-0 HD’ Launch Trailer Has Arrived

God dammit this looks so much better than Final Fantasy XIII.

This week Final Fantasy fans will hopefully be getting a console Final Fantasy game that can finally remove the bad taste in their mouths left by the Final Fantasy XIII series. Final Fantasy Type-0 HD marks a new direction for the series, with a more mature story and pretty gruesome combat.

This launch trailer shows us much of what we have already seen (which is damn impressive, if you ask me!), but this one definitely gives you the full package. Give it a watch below. 

Final Fantasy Type-0 HD is developed by HexaDrive and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. It launches in the USA on 3/17/15, in Japan on 3/19/15 and in Europe on 3/20/15.