Final Fantasy 15 / XV by Square Enix is currently in development for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, but the game was originally unveiled for Ps3 at E3 2006 under the name Final Fantasy Versus 13 / XIII, because it was at the time part of Fabula Nova Crystallis, a series of unrelated RPGs that, however, shared the same underlying mythology. Yes, Final Fantasy 15 has been in development for almost 10 years! What’s changed in the game in this time frame ? What’s different between the old PS3 beta and the PS4 / Xbox One current builds? Continue below to see how the game evolved during the last years with the official trailers and leaked images that show its long development cycle.
As we can read on Wikipedia, Final Fantasy Type-0 is an RPG published by Square Enix for the PSP and developed by the company’s 1st Production Department. The game was originally announced at E3 2006 with the name Final Fantasy Agito XIII for mobile cellphones, but even though the game no longer has “XIII” in its title, the final PSP game still uses the Fabula Nova Crystallis mythology.
Thanks to Dreams and anony we can archive some beta screens, videos and info from Final Fantasy Type 0: there are 14 playable characters in the final game, with a couple of non playable guests.
The pic above show kurasame, type 0 teacher as playable character. It seems that the guest plus one more were supposed to be playable in the beta version, even supposed to have their own dogde animations, but most likely cut for space problems, as type 0 is already packed with a lot of content. So, through hacking, it shows kurasame, Joker, Gilgamesh (not playable only has the name).
In the gamefaqs forum we can read that there is a FF Type 0 Artbook that has some unused content in it. Does anyone have some scans of the beta / unused content? Plus somewhere in the web there is art/model of phoenix as an unused summon (but we can’t find it).
In the released game, modders have found 3D models for summons that don’t appear in the game: Pandemona, Phoenix and Typhoon. There is also a hidden unused video which has live actors doing motion capture for the game. It’s not used in the game, and it has a blue overlay with three kanji, the first meaning “temporary”. It also has mono audio, unlike all other videos in the game.
If you notice more differences in the old beta screens and videos below, please let us know! Thanks to Dreams and anony for the contribution :)
Bandai‘s Wonderswan was an handheld system released exclusively in Japan in 1999. This console was especially sought after because around December 1999 Bandai struck a deal with Squaresoft to bring their games to the console. The first projects announced were the remake of the first three Final Fantasy, a chocobo game, Romancing SaGa and a port of Seiken Densetsu 2 (known as Secret of Mana in the west).
However not all of these games would seen a release at retail as Seiken Densetsu 2 was never seen again. Final Fantasy III shared the same destiny although it was shown on the official Squaresoft site: Final Fantasy III Wonderswan archieved site
This cancellation was especially notable because the Final Fantasy remakes , which were bundled with the system, were the biggest sellers on Wonderswan Color. Later, after a brief rumor on a possible remake on PlayStation 2, Final Fantasy 3 was unveiled as new 3D remake for Nintendo DS that eventually sold around 2 million units worldwide. This 3D remake, very different from the 2D remake proposed for Wonderswan, would be made available on PSP, iOS and Android years after the original DS release.
In 2007 Hiromichi Tanaka explained why the Wonderswan remake was canned:
When we developed FF3, the volume of content in the game was so huge that the cartridge was completely full, and when new platforms emerged, there simply wasn’t enough storage space available for an update of FF3, because that would have required new graphics, music and other content. There was also a difficulty with how much manpower it would take to remake all of that content.
The strange thing is that Final Fantasy I and II remakes and Final Fantasy IV were all deployed on a 4MB cartridge and Wonderswan theoretical biggest cartridge size was 16MB in fact a few games (even Squaresoft own Front Mission) were stored on 8MB cartridge, with Konami’s Beatmania being the only game weighting 16MB so storage space limitation is unlikely to be the main culprit.
It’s very likely that the shaking Wonderswan market in 2001/2002 (the system was discontinued by Bandai in 2003) along with the costs in developing a 2D remake sealed the fate of this project.
Final Fantasy XIII is an RPG developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in 2009 / 2010. First appearing at E3 2006, FF13 runs on the Crystal Tools engine, a seventh generation multiplatform game engine built by Square Enix for its games.
Toriyama, director of FFXIII, commented a bit on the differences between the PS2 and PS3 versions of the game. FFXIII was originally in development for the PS2, but underwent a platform change following May 2005.
There is apparently very little shared between the two versions. The graphical elements that were prepared for the PS2 couldn’t be used, explained Toriyama. “The areas that we kept are the Fabula Nova Crystallis world, the pieces of the mythology related to FFXIII, and the character details. On the other hand, the battle and gameplay systems were restarted from scratch when production moved to the PS3.”
The development staff also underwent some changes. “During development for the PS2, the staff was centered on the Final Fantasy X-2 team. However, in an effort to work with the new PS3 hardware, many new staff members are now taking part.”
As reported by Siliconera and Kotaku, according to art director Isamu Kamikokuryou, many additional areas that were functioning in an unreleased build, from Team Nora’s secret base, to Lightning’s home and even a zoo, were cut from the game owing to concerns about the game’s length and volume. Kamikokuryou additionally remarked that the volume of content cut was, in itself, enough to make another game. [Info from Wikipedia]
Zero7 noticed some beta differences in the early screens released (preserved in the gallery below):
Mock up HUD, completely changed in the final
Fang at one hour in? You cannot meet her so soon in the final
Snow had a slightly different coat
The black-haired girl has a different outfit
If you can notice more differences in the early screens and videos, please let us know!
Thanks to Robert Seddon, Zero7 and Anonymous for the contributions!
Final Fantasy 13 was released in 2009 for Playstation 3, but the first prototypes for the game were created on Ps2 even before FFXII release. In this page we can see some pics from the old-gen version that were recently published in two official japanese artbooks / guides.
Unfortunately, it seems that Square did only some early testing of the battle system before switching the development to the Ps3. Even the characters (Yuna and Rikku from FFX) are placeholders, but, interestingly, in the last screenshots they appear to be cell-shaded.