Final Fantasy 16 has “fully AI-driven” party members in battle

Clive looks to the horizon in Final Fantasy 16
(Image credit: Square Enix)

While Final Fantasy 16 features "fully AI-driven" characters in battle, the familiar sense of party camaraderie you get from other mainline games remains intact.

That comes from Final Fantasy 16 producer Naoki Yoshida, who tells GamesRadar+ that spreading out battle controls across multiple party members could end up hindering the action or making it more complicated, which is why you'll "solely" be controlling Clive.

"In battle, you have these characters that will be fully AI-driven," Yoshida shares. "But that doesn't mean that they will just be there in battle – there will be party banter, they will be accompanying Clive along this journey, and you'll have party members enter the party and leave the party, and different people come in depending on where you are in the story. 

"These characters will play big roles in the story and have their own arcs themselves. And so it's not just... basically having someone help you in battle, it's having party members participating in Clive's journey."

Final Fantasy 16's Domination trailer certainly seemed to downplay the full party system we've traditionally seen in Final Fantasy games, but when we asked about that Yoshida was quick to clear the air about what a single playable protagonist in Clive Rosfield means for the game.

Yoshida tells us that the team didn't want to overload the players with too much information in the trailer, so the focus remains on Clive and his role in battle. Yoshida also stresses, though, that the protagonist is not alone in his journey and that he has companions that accompany him throughout the story. 

"Clive has a massive amount of unique abilities in his fully customisable arsenal," Yoshida says. "We wanted players to master these and customise these to the point where they can use them fluidly and stylishly. But, by spreading out battle controls, out across multiple party members, it can end up hindering the action – or just making things more complicated. And that's why we decided we'd rather have players focus solely on just controlling Clive."

Want to read more about the battle system? Check out our big Final Fantasy 16 interview with Naoki Yoshida.

Deputy News Editor

Iain joins the GamesRadar team as Deputy News Editor following stints at PCGamesN and PocketGamer.Biz, with some freelance for Kotaku UK, RockPaperShotgun, and VG24/7 thrown in for good measure. When not helping Ali run the news team, he can be found digging into communities for stories – the sillier the better. When he isn’t pillaging the depths of Final Fantasy 14 for a swanky new hat, you’ll find him amassing an army of Pokemon plushies.