We had the opportunity to visit Square Enix's offices in Tokyo today to get a glimpse of several new games for the first time. We've already posted coverage of new next-generation RPG The Last Remnant and news about the future of the Star Ocean series. But here we bring you the rest of the slate of new titles, including the Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles series and the future of the FF's most popular mascot, the Chocobo.
The presentation began with this statement from Yoichi Wada, president of Square Enix: "Since two years ago, we have seen releases of new game machines one after another. Consequently the gaming market has acquired wider userbase... the titles to be announced today are solutions that Square Enix has developed to answer the world market, existing fans and players of all generations. Creators of new generation games have challenged the new generation machines for all types of players."
Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles for DS and Wii
Akitoshi Kazwazu, the executive producer of the Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles games, came out to present the DS and Wii games that make up the latest iterations of the series.
Ring of Fates, the DS title, came first. "Like the predecessor [for GameCube] the positive aspect is everyone can play together, and DS communication ability can be used," Kawazu opined. "In the previous game, the core players of Final Fantasy have found some unsatisfactory points, so in this new title we have added some more interesting story. And it can be enjoyed as a real action RPG." What we know of the story so far is pretty basic, however - it follows the tale of fraternal twins, a boy and a girl, who hunt for a crystal. They will learn truths by searching for it, of course.
After this, a movie of the title played. It began with images of a Crimson Moon and a large crystal. From there, it moved forward to a long demo of the game - there's a single player mode. Action-RPG style fighting in a dungeon. This seamlessly moved into a demo of the multiplayer, which allows you to fight with three friends (for a total of four players).
A variety of typical RPG locales flew by - a castle/dungeon, snow, forest and a firey lava cave. Magical block puzzles are also on deck. The bottom screen of the DS showed some sort of magical gems rotating on there - likely to do with the magic system. The video wrapped up with a turtle boss battle in a beautiful waterfall area.
After the demo of the DS game concluded, Director Toshiyuki Itahana came out to talk about Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers for the Nintendo Wii.
The footage was one of the most exciting surprises at the Square Enix presentation. Unlike the DS game and the GameCube predecessor, FFCC for Wii features normally-proprotioned characters that actually look (basically) like regular people. The brief movie depicted a teen running through a town on an island in the sky, with plenty of airships flying around, and fighting monsters. It was impossible to get an impression of the gameplay or the story, but we can confidently say the game looks as good or better than FFXII for the PS2 did. According to Itahana, the game "capitalizes on the unique features of Wii" but he didn't say how, unfortunately.