Hey, did you know that we're reaching ten full years since Final Fantasy XIII was released? Doesn't time fly? Well now that I've thrown you into a state of existential despair, let me remind you that the date of 3rd March 2020 draws ever inexorably near. This means in just over three months' time, you will be able to hand over actual money to the retailer of your choice to get your hands on (part 1 at least of) the Final Fantasy VII Remake. Perhaps not so coincidentally, many of Square Enix's most recognisable senior names and figures from the Lightning trilogy are back for this remake.
Glory to mankind! Four months following the release of Final Fantasy XIV's critically acclaimed Shadowbringers expansion comes Patch 5.1: Vows of Virtue, Deeds of Cruelty, the long-awaited collaboration with NieR Automata. For players of the game who wish to revel in NieR creator Yoko Taro's brand of madness, or desire to knock heads with Alexander Ultimate (the next in the series of hyper-challenging fights for hardcore raiders), there are plenty of machines to pick a fight with come the 29th October.
With six months to go until (this first volume?) of the Final Fantasy VII Remake hits physical and digital store shelves for the PlayStation 4, Square Enix opens this year's Tokyo Games Show with a new trailer for their coveted next big release.
All major conferences for this year's E3 have wrapped up and amidst the dying fervour, the dust begins to quietly settle. Of Square Enix's showings, Final Fantasy VII Remake certainly garnered the brunt of the attention, but we would be remiss to leave out a catalogue of other announcements and games that were showed off over the course of the last couple of days. So let this article be a useful primer of information on everything else from Marvel's Avengers to the anticipated Final Fantasy VIII Remastered.
The Paris Fanfest for Final Fantasy XIV is in town and with it another keynote to outline the content that can be expected for the MMORPG's third expansion, Shadowbringers, not to be confused with Stormblood when abbreviated, because...wait, why have they done that? That just adds unnecessary confusion...
The first key point is the expansion will be available on the 2nd July this year. If you pre-order from the 6th February, you can participate in the expansion's early access period from the 28th June, providing the servers do not buckle the moment everyone attempts to queue in.
It is almost time to close off the Xehanort saga once and for all. As promised, the full Tokyo Game Show trailer for Kingdom Hearts III is available and grants us an expanded look into the world of Big Hero 6 and the film's protagonists you will be fighting with, from Hiro to Go Go to Baymax. Also revealed is the official boxart for the game, which covers the entire ensemble cast of heroes spanning from across the entirety of the franchise thus far.
Square-Enix want to make it up to Nintendo console fans. For too long they've been starved of Final Fantasy releases and with the exploding popularity of the Nintendo Switch and the very recent success of Octopath Traveler, perhaps now is the time to once again bless Nintendo with a considerable catalogue of ports. These range from core mainline entries to a few lesser known spin-off titles.
Does anyone remember The Last Remnant? It released in 2008 exclusively for the Xbox 360 (and PC shortly after) and was one of the very few HD JRPGs actually released by Square Enix during the previous generation. While the game is now no longer available on Steam, a remastered version for PlayStation 4 was announced and is scheduled to release digitally on the 6th of December this year in western territories.
Fans of the Tales of series may already know that long time series producer, Hideo Baba, left Bandai Namco following Tales of Zestiria to found and lead a new development studio under Square Enix's wing. The new Studio Istolia is currently working on a brand new original fantasy RPG tentatively titled Project Prelude Rune for the PlayStation 4 and as of this year's Tokyo Game Show, finally demonstrated a short sample of what the game and its main protagonist will look like.
For those of you unaware, Left Alive is a survival action shooter worked on by veteran leads such as Toshifumi Nabeshima (of Armored Core fame); Takayuki Yanase, who designed many mechs over the years, such as the ones in Mobile Suit Gundam 00 and Ghost in the Shell: Arise; and Yoji Shinkawa, whose distinctive artwork is recognised by many a fan of the Metal Gear Solid games. It serves as a spiritual successor to the Front Mission games, exchanging tactical RPG gameplay for a tactical shooter affair.
Though we have known for a while that Big Hero 6 will be one of the playable worlds in Kingdom Hearts III along with fellow newcomers such as Tangled, Toy Story, Monsters Inc and Frozen, we've yet to actually see any footage of this world until now. With the Tokyo Game Show just around the corner, Square Enix Japan have released a new short teaser trailer. In it we are introduced to Hiro and Baymax of the film, other characters in the game's other worlds and of course, the overarching villains of the entire franchise.
E3 season is upon us. For many, this is a momentous occasion. An annual ritual like no other. A period of sheer glee where we can bask in child-like wonder and speculate on what Santa Claus will bring come his next visit. Few companies inspire this essence of wondrous nirvana like Square Enix, a company with a history of igniting pure, unadulterated excitement while barely saying anything of substance. Square Enix can drive a fan crazy like few other major corporations can, besides maybe Apple. So unsurprisingly, when they announced in the run-up to this year's E3 that they have a press conference for the first time since 2015, auspiciously touting it "the next chapter is about to begin", expectations soared.