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Final Fantasy XVI Preview – An Interview With Naoki Yoshida On Eikons, Boss Fights, And When We’ll See More


Sq. Enix debuted a brand new Ultimate Fantasy XVI trailer throughout a latest PlayStation State of Play. It was our largest look but on the upcoming RPG and the trailer revealed that Ultimate Fantasy XVI is due out someday in the course of the summer season of subsequent yr. 

Recreation Informer spoke with the sport’s producer, Naoki Yoshida, who can be the director of Ultimate Fantasy XIV, about this new “Dominance” FFXVI trailer, together with the franchise’s return to a extra medieval setting, Eikons, boss fights, and far more. 

Recreation Informer: Ultimate Fantasy has a historical past of experimenting with totally different fight methods in new mainline entries and Ultimate Fantasy XVI appears to be doing the identical, with in all probability the heaviest emphasis on motion within the mainline collection but. How did the crew arrive on this fashion of fight, and what’s it like seeing it come to life by the use of fight director Ryota Suzuki (a designer whose credit embody Satan Might Cry 5, Dragon’s Dogma, and Marvel vs. Capcom 2)?

Naoki Yoshida: You requested me in regards to the path with the fight system and so to reply that, so as to contribute to the general evolution of the Ultimate Fantasy collection, we determined that quite than constructing on previous Ultimate Fantasy battle methods, that we as an alternative shift our focus to one among real-time motion. And so, as soon as we had that idea down, that we had been going to go on this path, it made it straightforward for our director and our battle director, Ryota Suzuki, to take the reins and convey one thing that was actually action-focused. 

For the battle system, we’ve not solely given the principle character, Clive, an arsenal of highly effective assaults and skills primarily based off of those conventional Ultimate Fantasy summons, however we’re permitting him to cycle via these assaults in real-time, to deal these assaults in real-time. [This allows] for highly effective mixtures and clean, trendy gameplay that each appears to be like and feels nice. 

An instance of that is such as you noticed in that [Dominance] trailer the place you will have one of many Garuda skills the place you elevate the enemy up into the air after which whereas within the air, Clive can change to Titan and use one of many Titan skills to pound the enemy to the bottom. This type of seamless switching and swapping of actions and chaining them collectively to create these distinctive mixtures … are all as much as the gamers’ totally different playstyles. There’s numerous room for customizing these kinds of builds that Clive has and the participant discovering a construct that matches their playstyle is likely one of the enjoyable issues in regards to the motion system we have now. 

A variety of our builders in our improvement crew in [Creative Business Unit III] didn’t have any expertise creating an motion sport. It was very difficult for us. And to have the immensely gifted motion veteran Ryota Suzuki  be a part of our crew, that has seen our improvement progress, simply from the battle methods to the animation and every part that he’s just about touched his arms on, reworked and develop into one thing past what we believed it may have been. We’re actually, actually completely satisfied to have him and we’re blessed.

GI: All through the trailer, there are a selection of well being bars on the highest of the display screen, each in human vs human fights and Eikon vs Eikon battles. What’s occurring with these, and are they meant to be harking back to combating video games? 

Yoshida: Relating to the well being bars and the UI, I noticed plenty of feedback on social media after the trailer launched about how the UI is sort of harking back to a combating sport. After we began growing the sport, and we had our “Clive versus smaller enemies” or our “Eikon versus Eikon” battles, once we had been first growing them we did them with nearly no UI on the display screen in any respect. However we discovered that via taking part in this that it was just a bit bit too little data – we wanted extra data. That stated, we did not need the display screen cluttered and so after plenty of forwards and backwards and making an attempt plenty of various things, we got here to the design…within the trailer, and that it simply occurs to appear like a combating sport is simply one thing that ended up occurring. 

The general sport design for these Eikon versus Eikon battles, nonetheless, is supposed to be distinctive and in reality, we don’t really use the identical actual system twice. Every battle is totally distinctive in its playstyle and so we’re doing one thing that’s sort of loopy. 

For instance, possibly one Eikon versus Eikon battle, you probably have Eikon A versus Eikon B, that battle shall be harking back to a 3D shooter. Whereas one other Eikon versus a distinct Eikon, it’s extra like a professional wrestling match, after which possibly even a 3rd with one Eikon versus one other Eikon will rework a complete space right into a battlefield. And so once more, we didn’t reuse these methods and every one among these Eikon versus Eikon battles is exclusive and can change with every battle. Due to that, and since the battles are so totally different in nature, the UI has to vary for every battle. And so you will notice slight variations within the UI between these battles. Nevertheless, we ended up having to chop plenty of that from the trailer as a result of it finally ends up being story spoilers and we didn’t need to have that. 

Then you definately ask, “nicely when you’ve hidden a number of the UI, why didn’t you conceal all the UI like these HP bars? Why did you allow these?” and that was just because when you take away all the HP bars and all the UI, then folks begin saying, “oh, that’s simply pre-rendered, that’s not operating in real-time.” We wished to indicate that what you noticed within the trailer was in real-time so we decided to go away slightly little bit of that UI in. 

GI: A variety of gamers are excited in regards to the prospect of a single-player Ultimate Fantasy from the builders behind FFXIV. What learnings, mechanics and methods, and storytelling strategies, if any, from FFXIV can followers anticipate to indicate up in a roundabout way in FFXVI? 

Yoshida: So Ultimate Fantasy XIV was designed as an MMORPG from the bottom up whereas Ultimate Fantasy XVI has been designed as a single-player sport from the bottom up, so from the get-go, you’re going to have utterly totally different design ideas. MMORPGs, as you understand, are all in regards to the lengthy haul – you’re stringing collectively experiences over an prolonged time frame to take care of that person base. 

Single-player video games, then again, are much more about that, I assume you would say, immediate gratification. They’re speedy, they hit you with pleasure. That pleasure is concentrated right into a smaller package deal. So with that in thoughts, you may think about that no less than system-wise, Ultimate Fantasy XIV received’t have influenced Ultimate Fantasy XVI that a lot. Nevertheless, that stated, some of the distinctive issues about Ultimate Fantasy XIV is the sort of connection that the event crew has with the neighborhood, [and] the quantity of communication that goes forwards and backwards between the event crew and the neighborhood. Previously 11 years, interacting with the neighborhood has given us plenty of very, very precious data on what you understand followers need and anticipate from the collection. And so having this 11-year information base, that has helped us and has allowed us to place a few of these concepts in and incorporate these concepts into the event of Ultimate Fantasy XVI. 

GI: Mainline Ultimate Fantasy video games of late have skewed extra towards trendy timelines, with heavy emphasis on the combination of tech with magic, however FFXVI appears to be like decidedly extra medieval, or basic FF. How did the crew arrive at this setting and time interval when growing the sport? 

Yoshida: The reply to that’s really sort of easy: it simply occurs to be that plenty of the core members in [Creative Business Unit III] actually loved these basic Ultimate Fantasies in addition to that basic medieval European fantasy really feel – myself included – and we wished to create a sport that had that feeling. When creating this sport, we wished to take that look, that medieval European basic fantasy look, and meld that with our personal distinctive concept that we had, after which take all of that and attempt to specific that with the present degree of expertise and make one thing that’s actually, actually thrilling. 

As you understand, the Ultimate Fantasy collection is sort of well-known, or notorious, for being totally different with every entry within the collection. That stated, after performing some latest person analysis, we discovered that plenty of the customers had been discovering that plenty of the latest Ultimate Fantasy [games] had been sort of turning into static in that imaginative and prescient so we wished to make use of this as a possibility to step again from that and check out one thing totally different; not only for us, however considering to the way forward for Ultimate Fantasy and forthcoming tasks, we wished to attempt one thing totally different and possibly present that yeah, the collection can go in several instructions quite than specializing in one.

Whereas we simply launched our second trailer, we’re presently already engaged on readying a 3rd trailer for launch this fall. In that trailer, we hope to pay attention slightly bit extra on the world and the lore and the storyline, and hopefully deliver slightly bit extra of that data to gamers, exhibiting what the story goes to be like, what the narrative goes to be like, and the way that’s going to suit into the world. 

GI: You’re clearly a really busy individual with FFXIV, however now you’re producing FFXVI. What’s it like engaged on a brand new single-player mainline FF and what’s it like having Inventive Enterprise Unit III lead the mission? 

Yoshida: It doesn’t actually matter what sort of mission I’m on. Being the top of any sport or any mission, the stress is at all times immense. There’s at all times lots of people and cash concerned in it. As you understand, on Ultimate Fantasy XIV, I’m each producer and director. Nevertheless, this time on XVI, I’m solely producer. So simply in that sense, it’s plenty of weight off my shoulders. 

Ultimate Fantasy XVI being the latest entry within the collection signifies that all eyes are going to be on us as everybody just about is on the market scrambling to determine simply what sort of sport it is going to be, and plenty of that stress goes on to the director. And so once more, with all of that stress falling not on the producer, however falling extra on, like I stated, the director, Hiroshi Takai, or the battle director, Ryota Suzuki, or our inventive director and situation author, Kazutoyo Maehiro, and even falling on me being the localization director and serving to out with the world lore and issues like that, there’s plenty of stress that falls to us. And as producer, it’s my job to see that this stress doesn’t get an excessive amount of for these folks which might be working beneath me. Having the ability to come and do these kinds of interviews and discuss with the media and be sure that the necessary data will get on the market in order that burden doesn’t fall on the crew. It’s one thing I can do, once more, to take that burden away from them and for me, that’s lots simpler than being director. 

Once more, I used to be extraordinarily honored when the corporate got here to me and [Creative Business Unit III] and requested us to helm the latest numbered Ultimate Fantasy. However once more, that chance would have by no means been doable if it weren’t for the time that we spent on Ultimate Fantasy XIV and the voice of the customers and the voice of the media that’s lined us. So I’d prefer to thank them for granting us this chance to create the latest Ultimate Fantasy. 

For extra about Ultimate Fantasy XVI, take a look at the Dominance trailer and admire the attractive landscapes in these new screenshots. After that, examine how I’m excited for the Kaiju-style fights it seems to be giving us, after which take a look at Recreation Informer’s rating of each mainline Ultimate Fantasy sport. 

What’s the factor you’re most enthusiastic about in Ultimate Fantasy XVI?

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