What Direction Do You Want to See Final Fantasy Go In?

Vivi-Gamer

Well-known member
Joined
May 5, 2007
Messages
379
Gil
1,759
Gold Points
6
Community Tokens
0
Hi Ladies & Gents,

With the Last Remains of Final Fantasy XV approaching, I'm left looking forward and wondering what direction the next FF could take. With this, you have to take into account the gaming climate that FF is in - I don't think we could expect it to indulge in a Retro 16-Bit adventure like Octopath Traveller for example. But it makes me wonder what are the demands and expectations of the series?

Final Fantasy was known as the series that really pushed the demands of the games consoles to the max - each game during the PS1 era made massive technological strides really set the standard for production values within the industry. I feel recent FF's have fell short of that demand, which I don't think is completely fair to judge considering just how much bigger games have gotten in recent years.

Art Direction:
I wonder, could a Final Fantasy every break away from having realistic character models again? Most other big JRPG's this generation have had an Anime/Cell-Shaded design too them and most have been pretty successful (Dragon Quest XI, Persona 5, Ni No Kuni 2, Tales of Beseria). But it seems every since it's had the capability Final Fantasy has always strived for realistic character models - Thinking from X onwards here. I personally would love to see more creature based races within Final Fantasy and experiencing something like IX's Condi Petie where you enter a new location which has it's own unique way of life, I feel XIII & XV's realistic Art design just didn't accommodate to have green goblin like creatures or Hippos in dungarees.

When it comes to genre, I am pretty open. I've been happy with FF's approach from Medieval designs to full on Sci-fi. I think the key thing I want is to be surprised, see unique locations and monsters and ravel in it's creativity.

I don't want to pin-point a genre, but I'd be more interested to see a more historical based FF, like having a world set before an industrial age and being more rural - I usually like stories within modern timezones or Sci-Fi more but after seeing how imaginative they we're with IX, I would expect another typical Tolkien knock-off. if I we're to just reference FF, I'd say something similar to V & IX in tone.

A world with actual towns to explore & Scenario Scenes:
This is something I feel Final Fantasy hasn't gotten right in some time and that Is having actual locations with an identity. XIII & XV both suffered from the lack of having meaningful locations to explore. XIII was very narrow in direction and XV has a massive landscape with next to nothing in it. Funnily enough Lighting Returns actually does this fairly well, with board open environments, rich in detail - The downside is due to LR's gameplay structure that there isn't much in like of scenario writing - beyond the 5 chapters of each location broken up by them generic sidequests.

I think if anything I want to see more locations that offer a different culture and way of life, like I mentioned before. I think X's Luca is a perfect example of this. You arrive in the location and you're instantly get caught up in the locations drama with the Blitzball Tournament. It's so exciting and I love how that unique gameplay structure takes over throughout your time there. But while there you also get downtime moments when you can just explore and hear the buzz around the tournament. Add in story elements like Aurons sudden appearance and revelation to tie in the main plot more and you've just got an engaging part of the experience.

There are countless examples of this like IX's festival Hunt or VII's Gold Saucer Mini-games, but if not integrating mini-games I also love it when JRPG's use a location to explore and give depth to one of the party members - Thinking of VII's Red XIII in how he explores the dungeon of his hometown and learns the truth about his father. The worst thing I cannot stand is arriving at an environment and then nothing happening, which was the majority of my experience with XII - Like arriving in Jahara and no event happening.

Battle System:

Could FF ever go back to being turn-based? I honestly don't see why not, as many contemporary JRPG's have done the very same. Once again it comes down to FF's modern presence of being this more realistic JRPG in wanting to offer a combat system which utilises real time elements better. I am in the minority that actually like XIII's combat system, I'm in no way saying it was perfect but I found swapping the parties role during battle being core to the system always kept me engaged. I think I'd like to see this expanded more, but without XIII-2's monster/Pokémon gimmick. Just give me 3 party members that I am able to switch on the fly by cycling with L1 & R1 buttons and the ability to swap roles with L2 & I'd be pretty happy.

World Map:
I've covered how I want more interesting locations than XIII & XV but I think an important part of the experience is the world itself too. I honestly would be happy with a World Map again, I think Dragon Quest has tackled this well (Still yet to play DQXI) in having the locations presented more as icons that you then enter. I know many other games are really expanding this notion of an open world but if XV is anything to go by I'm guessing this is still a challenge for S-E's FF division. Playing XV has really put me off the idea of massive open landscapes within minimal activity, I'm more interested in exploring the actually environments than the world map per say. That said, if the world map had locations accessible upon exploring or only from a vehicle I'd be open to that.

But I have to be honest, I really don't mind X's approach, which doesn't have a World Map, but has interesting landscape locations set between locations, this never bothered me at all. I think XII also did really well at this (Even if the game had too many of them), especially in how you would use Chocobo's on the landscapes.

Sidequests/Mini-games:
Of course this would tie into the world itself but the key point I wanted to mention here was that I want there to be more than just Monster Hunts! Don't get me wrong the concept is fine but I expect something more than just the typical Go to location A. Beat monster B, gain reward C - I high hopes for XV as in it's demo it highlighted a great scenario where you track and plan how to take down t he monster, this was great! This was also the only monster mission like it in the game... I'd be happy with a Coliseum Battle ground to cover all that action.

But when it comes to actual sidequests, I want something that extends beyond the games initial mechanics - Blitzball, Chocobo Hot & Cold, Triple Triad anything that broadens the range of the games appeal and offers the players unique rewards.

I might take some time putting my input into the suggestions, but if you have ideas for what you want to see in the next FF installment please feel free to state so!

DLC:
If it were up to me I'd say flat out NO! I'm getting constantly frustrated with the notion of DLC's integrating in modern games. I don't care for cosmetic tat but buying unique weapons you can't earn (Or Fairly without a massive grind) does irritate me. But the bigger picture is story driven DLC and XV really crushed it's experience with this by withholding important story content out of the initial experience.

If I had to accommodate for narrative DLC I'd try approach more spin off tales with less vital characters - Like say the Turks in VII, i'd be happy to explore them as characters but not withhold details from the main plot within their scenario but even thinking about it now making relevant content for people to buy into is hard without making it relevant - I certainly don't want them wasting time on cross-over episodes like they did in XV... when they couldn't even finish there main focus of a second Season Pass.
 
Last edited:

Kain's_Lance

FFXpert
Joined
Nov 13, 2009
Messages
1
Gil
219
Gold Points
0
Community Tokens
0
I sometimes get the feeling like Final Fantasy is dying. In terms of game play they keep making excellent strides in battle systems, but the scenario writers seem out of ideas. XV had a decent idea for its story, but the actual story was related gameplay was like 5 hours. Sometimes the only story related content in a chapter was a letter from Luna or a 2 minute conversation with Gentiana. XIII tried to do some character building within the overarching story, but the characters were boring to begin with. XIII and XV had good ideas for a story but they were incredibly short and heavily padded for playtime. So, going forward, I also want to see more towns, meaningful NPC's, good character arcs, and a good, deep story that I can't stop thinking about. And weapons! Christ, I had the Ultima blade for Noctis in like chapter 5, if it even took that long and never got anything better. Sure, some of the greatswords were slightly stronger but not better overall. But really, I can look past all of that if I just had a decent story.
 

Vivi-Gamer

Well-known member
Joined
May 5, 2007
Messages
379
Gil
1,759
Gold Points
6
Community Tokens
0
I too have my doubts... I adore FF6-10, but have to face facts that Final Fantasy X was nearly 20 years ago... … That's a lot to sink in there alone!

I think this is also part to what is annoying me about the focus on a Final Fantasy VII REMAKE, I get it, but I just want to see S-E on top form again with a new FF (XVI). I want them to be inspiring once again like they we're among the PS1 generation and be noted as the grand spectacle that was FINAL FANTASY. Even if it doesn't reach that scale, I really just want to see where this series is going next and the focus on this FF7 Remake hinders that. If there isn't a separate division within S-E working on 'Final Fantasy XVI I'm going to get rather impatient in waiting for 3 Episodes of the Final Fantasy Remake to be done.

Also, I agree with you on your opinions on XV, it was very padded, to the point where I was actually excited to see the story pick-up pace after Chapter 9... sadly after Chapter 13 the story felt to bottlenecked in comparison to before - That I was confused on how they abandoned the importance of visiting the Ancestor's Tombs for power as the main focus of the adventure and further disappointments with Ravus and so on.

I also, agree on weapons, there was something so exciting about arriving at a new shop and raiding the Weapons shop for better gear, or earning Ultimate Weapons through excelling at the game, it's something I have noticed upon my first playthrough of Final Fantasy V.
 
Last edited:

Dionysos

Βρεκεκεκὲξ κοὰξ κοάξ
Staff member
Administrator
Veteran
Joined
Jun 26, 2008
Messages
5,456
Location
Somewhere.
Gil
6,019
Gold Points
120
Community Tokens
104
FFXIV
Polyphemos Bromios
FFXIV Server
Lamia
I would absolutely love a Final Fantasy game set in world resembling antiquity.

FF games do occasionally reference classical mythology and ruins, but mostly for summons, monsters, and dungeons. Even when locations are named after places from ancient history or mythology, they tend to be dressed up to blend in with the setting of the world of the game.
I'd love to actually have a game set in a world which shares the aesthetics of, for example, ancient Greece. I see that they've kind of gone for a Graeco-Roman style (with a splash of Jesus...) for Episode Ardyn's prologue and flashbacks so maybe that's the closest we'll get.

I also agree that having a new mini-game as unique and memorable as Chocobo Racing, Chocobo Hot and Cold, Blitzball and Triple Triad, would be preferable.
We need a new sport... Behemoth matadors or something.
 

PeaceLoveArt

New member
Joined
Mar 25, 2019
Messages
23
Gil
8
Gold Points
0
Community Tokens
0
I would absolutely love a Final Fantasy game set in world resembling antiquity.

FF games do occasionally reference classical mythology and ruins, but mostly for summons, monsters, and dungeons. Even when locations are named after places from ancient history or mythology, they tend to be dressed up to blend in with the setting of the world of the game.
I'd love to actually have a game set in a world which shares the aesthetics of, for example, ancient Greece. I see that they've kind of gone for a Graeco-Roman style (with a splash of Jesus...) for Episode Ardyn's prologue and flashbacks so maybe that's the closest we'll get.

I also agree that having a new mini-game as unique and memorable as Chocobo Racing, Chocobo Hot and Cold, Blitzball and Triple Triad, would be preferable.
We need a new sport... Behemoth matadors or something.
I definitely like your idea. It would be interesting to see that because it would bring and take FF to new and challenging level.
 

JasonTandro

Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2019
Messages
29
Age
31
Location
Virginia, USA
Gil
77
Gold Points
0
Community Tokens
0
FFXIV
Jason Tandro @ Louisoix
Free Company
<ALONE>
Okay, so this topic, as well as it being 1 AM where I am, kind of sent my reply on a massive ride here, so I hid some of the wordier bits behind spoiler tags for general readbility.

I view Final Fantasy IV through Final Fantasy X as the Golden Age of Final Fantasy. Even though the XIII Trilogy was maligned I actually thought the sequels were genuinely great games. Final Fantasy XIV was the first MMO since Runescape that has hooked me and I think it is one of the best things the franchise has going for it right now. Final Fantasy XV was an 8 out of 10 for me, but I really think it was taking things in the right direction, and it just needed a bit of a push (or dare I say, another year of development time so they could have finished all the other content, such as the other continent they cut out). With the 7 Remake coming around, I am doubtful of seeing a Final Fantasy XVI for a number of years yet. I don't think it's unreasonable to expect us not to even hear mention of a Final Fantasy XVI until probably 5 or 6 years down the road. Then again Final Fantasy has always been willing to rest upon its laurels with re-releases and remasters.

Anyway, enough preamble and onto the question at hand. Where would I want the series to go?

Well the one major thing people keep going on about is the battle between fantasy medieval vs modern/ futuristic. Truth is that never really bothered me that much. My first FF was 6 which was less medieval and more industrial revolution and my second was FF8 which was about as close to actual modern day as we had until XV came out.

I don't so much mind what "time period" the game takes place in. What I want to see Final Fantasy do is to really focus on telling a single story again. While there are tons of great reasons to play every FF I mentioned, one of the things that has really hurt them all is their story approach.

FFXIII as a trilogy doesn't make much sense story-wise, and each game feels disconnected from each other.
FFXIV actually has a brilliant storyline, but as an MMO it branches around quite a bit and we don't get resolutions for plot threads until much later down the line, if ever.
FFXV took a lot of its time to tell the story, but through alternate medias and add-ons.

I'm not trying to turn this into a Jim Sterling rant here, but I think part of the problem with FF is the same problem the games industry as a whole is facing now. There's not a whole lot of money in a single player rpg game without a service model or microtransactions (or at least that's conventional wisdom, and then Bravely Default and Octopath Traveler come along...)

I would really just love to see a game focus on a single self-contained story. Make the story wild and out there, with a general plot structure that can be understood and finnicky lore details that nobody can understand. That's what made the series we know and love. But don't drown me in add-ons, sequels and alternative media. Final Fantasy's formula isn't really what's getting stale to me, it's how they're telling their stories. How you basically need a flow chart to understand any given title or series.

But if I'd had my dream scenario, any of the following would probably make for interesting stories:

+ A Final Fantasy that gives us a lot of world-hopping like we had in games like FFIV and FFV. Multiple overworlds, connected stories and so forth. Perhaps even a full on space adventure, so long as that would be uniquely FF and not, say, step on any Star Ocean shoes.

+ A game that has a small-but-detailed world setup, like Lightning Returns. I would really like to see how FF keeps its grand scale when its limited to a small area (and I think LR accomplished it beautifully tbh).

+ A game that's like a primal age of Final Fantasy. Sort of an FF prehistory. I mean you could always just play the Stone Age in Chrono Trigger to be fair...

+ Any game which has more psychological horror elements to it. You might say that's a weird request, but I think FF has done a very good job at making its games creepy when it wants to flex that muscle. It might be fun to have an FF with an overtly creepy feeling to it (like the FF7 Sephiroth scenes, the Lunar Base in FF8 or, again, Lightning Returns's whole vibe but done throughout a whole game).

Yes, these are a bit odd, but I think that's kind of what's wonderful about the series. Every one of us loves the game for a reason that is uniquely ours.
 

Vivi-Gamer

Well-known member
Joined
May 5, 2007
Messages
379
Gil
1,759
Gold Points
6
Community Tokens
0
@JasonTandro - I agree with you on many points, while Lightning Returns has many problems, I think it did a great job of making each environment feel distinctive - I'd love to see an FF World with towns as details as each LR location. Just have landscapes zones spread inbetween them like in XII and I'd say the jobs a good'un.

Also, on the notion of Multiple OverWorlds, leaving the games established area and venturing into the unknown is always exciting and the games that do this always make me giddy - Heck, even finally leaving Midgar in VII managed to catch them feels.

And heavily agree on making the game self-contained! While I actually did enjoy the Kingsglaive movie, it didn't compensate for the lack of actual places within XV. Also Kingsglaive set up a lot of promise for characters like Ravus & Luna which I don't think were fully realised within the main game (I've heard Episode Ignis does Ravus more justice... but I have not played it yet.), This could be purely due to the movie and the game having to isolated development cycles. The same with Brotherhood, I liked the background of all the main characters shown, but the problem is that during the main game they have no individual scenario that really explores their characters - Like in VII how Red XIII learns of his fathers courage or Cid's involvement with Shinra's rocket research in Rocket Town, the game gives time for characters to breath in dedicated locations and I missed this heavily in XII, XIII & XV! I think like you said though, we live in a generation where the consumer gets their game in bits... I absolutely detest it but it's sadly the way the industry is going.
 

ZaXo Ken'Ichi

Disciple of Vivi
Veteran
Joined
Jun 9, 2008
Messages
532
Location
Behind you...
Gil
2,504
Gold Points
0
Community Tokens
10
As much as I love a lot of the older games, I think people often give them far too much credit. That's not to say that the more modern games are better; just that I think people treat a lot of the older games as if they're masterfully built in every way. The most common failing of the series is that it rarely balances for strategy/skill with the mechanics. You usually get loads of options, but a few select ones vastly overpower the others in a way that trivializes the challenge presented to you.

As such, I really don't care what direction they take the series in, as long as they make a well balanced RPG for once. Sure, I have preferences. Yes, I would prefer a turn-based game with ATB gauges and a world map. Sure I would personally prefer something like another steampunk title, or maybe something that feels more cartoon fantasy like FFIX again. Sure I would like it if they toned down the anime inspirations for a bit, and focused on something a bit more grounded and less melodramatic for a game or two.

But ultimately what matters to me most is getting a game where I actually have reason to interface with the mechanics. There's no reason why I should have to do a 'no random battles' run of FFVII just to find a level of challenge that can't just be bested by spamming Attack and Cure. There's no reason why by the end, all of the base level spells and -ra level spells have to be pointless menu clutter. There's no reason why equipment has to near-universally amount to 'buy the stuff at the next shop because it's more or less always an objective upgrade over what you have'. Yes, I originally got into J-RPGs because they were huge, expansive, story dense games that dwarfed everything else in terms of scope. But now that such scope is the norm for many other genres, what I crave most is to actually get a Final Fantasy that pushes a few deep, well thought out mechanics to their absolute limits.
 
Top