Final Fantasy XIII and Versus XIII - new trailers report

Another Square Enix event, and two more trailers appear - both substantially including footage we've seen before. Somehow we're not complaining yet, however, since they both look so interesting and portend very engrossing games.

The Final Fantasy XIII trailer was, in fact, quite different and expanded from prior versions. The story of the game's world became clearer after we had the chance to watch it. The world of FFXIII is broken into two areas: Cocoon, what seems to be a small, closed planet - as the trailer says, "society locked in a small cocoon" - and Pulse, an area below. People in Cocoon live using the power of the Crystals. Technology and magic have merged, as you'll remember if you've read about the game before, and it seems Cocoon uses this power to keep the problems out. However, it's revealed that the people of Cocoon kick out those who don't fit, and force them to go to Pulse. Lightning, the female protagonist of the game we've seen several times, "was chosen to end the world", presumably Cocoon. We now can presume that the hooded prisoners on the train where she fights soldiers are Cocoon citizens being deported to Pulse. A "cruel truth" is hidden by their exile, the trailer explains.

The battle scene didn't show us anything we hadn't seen before, unfortunately, and we're still not sure what's going on there... except that we did notice that Lightning fired off a weapon or attack that caused a bubble of slowed-down time. This would be particularly significant if the game returns to a form of the Active Time Battles we've seen before in most of the series for the past 16 years. We did see a car morph into a monster, which sounds weird (and, hell, is kind of weird) but everybody likes Transformers, so we'll just accept it for now.

The next part of the trailer showcases another character - a blonde-haired male that we know next to nothing about. He also appears to be fighting the soldiers, however, and also summoning Shiva, the female ice spirit from FF (Ifrit, the male fire sprit, shows up elsewhere in the trailer, too.) These two summoned monsters are a blend of magical creatures and machines, and in fact as has been previously reported, Shiva transforms into a motorcycle. Ice pathways are created through the air, and the blonde male travels across them at high speeds, firing what appears to be a bazooka at enemy soldiers who drop into the city from airships, along with mechs.