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Final Fantasy VI
The CoNcast gang digresses immediately in this episode, becoming waylaid by the simple fact that one person is playing Skyrim and two more are playing Bioshock Infinite. Recovering a bit, I then elect to thoroughly entertain everyone by talking about the progress being made in the new Final Fantasy VI content. Finally, we each take a stab at the myriad circumstances that brought us to the Final Fantasy series and also to CoN, inspired by this recent forum topic.
This one was a tricky one to edit, let me tell you! We had to shave out almost 40% of the entire recording to get to a runtime that wouldn't induce tears in our listeners. However, it does give us a lot of fodder if we ever want to have an outtakes show, so there's that.
Source: The CoNcast Subscription Feed, The CoNcast on iTunes
For all the folks still hoping for a 3D remake of Final Fantasy V and Final Fantasy VI, in the vein of Final Fantasy IV DS, there's another bit of bad news now. Apparently, last week, a Square Enix Japan member asked Squenix' Shinji Hashimoto directly when we could expect to see those games announced, and the answer wasn't good.
To quote Siliconera's translation, Hashimoto responded: "As for FF5 and 6, there are technical problems; presently these are also undecided."
Now, of course, that doesn't mean never. In fact, as Siliconera reports, it probably means something more uplifting: in order for Squenix to know that there are technical problems, the odds are that they must have at least looked into the opportunity, and they might have even gotten so far as to try a few things in the FF4DS engine. Or, of course, it could mean that Hashimoto is blowing smoke and that answer is just a way of brushing off the question and the company has no interest in making the games. You can let your own gaming-related paranoia level be the judge.
Slated for July 3, Square Enix are releasing in Japan a "remastered" version of the Final Fantasy IV Soundtrack. Later in the year, similar albums will be released for Final Fantasy V and Final Fantasy VI. There's not much detail beyond that so far, which naturally leaves some questions. The first question might well be the tracklist - will these albums be a full OST, which would require a few CDs, or is it a single-CD "best of" compilation as some other albums have been in the past? Second, though, and possibly more important, is "what on earth does a remaster of a SNES soundtrack entail?"
Given that these albums are explicitly called remasters, and not anything like the piano collections or orchestral arrangements that have been done in the past, it would seem that these new albums will still be chiptunes as they were originally, but perhaps that the chips used to make the tunes will be of a more modern variety than twenty years ago, creating the opportunity for more realistic synthesized sounds.
If you want to find out, you'll need to import, most likely - Squenix are not currently speaking of any Western release for any of these albums.
Starting today, the North American PSN store has a series of Final Fantasy games half off. Which games, you might ask? Well, a bucket of them. You can get a version of every numbered Final Fantasy game up through IX (not including III, which never has had a Sony release). Most of the games are the PS One versions, including Origins, Anthology, and the three released originally for the first PlayStation. Final Fantasy IV's PSP version is included, as is Tactics: War of the Lions. Rounding out the set are three games from the Dissidia series.
This sale is 50% off the top and will be running for two weeks. The game selection is a little different than the European-region sale that we, uh, forgot to post about until right now. That sale's over, though. Sorry about that.
Source: US PlayStation Blog
In Square Enix' illustrious history of countdown clocks and teaser sites, few things might be more interesting than one potentially offering new releases of Final Fantasy V and VI, even if those releases are for iOS. We talked about that possibility a few weeks back, and the internet in general seemed to take it as a foregone conclusion. Some folks even were leaning towards the notion that these releases might be brand-new, never-before-seen 3D treatments of those two games in the vein of the Final Fantasy IV just released.
The liklihood of new iOS re-releases now seems to be much more likely, as Siliconera noticed a new teaser page on the Japanese Square Enix site today with sprites silhouetted in the classic red gradient linked to Final Fantasy VI and the numbers "1.17." The larger sprites are quite clearly Final Fantasy VI Behemoths, while on the right, the smaller sprites are a bit more ambiguous, though it seems like they are probably Final Fantasy VI sprites (even though they don't look like a perfect match to anything that I can see). They could also be Final Fantasy V sprites, as the top one looks quite a bit like Bartz. Additionally, it seems like this page might reference the "All the Bravest" mark that Squenix trademarked last year, but it's still unclear why. (Thanks, laszlow, for that reminder!)
It should also be noted, though it's obvious, that these are in fact sprites. Would Square Enix use sprite art for a game they're about to release in 3D? Well, I wouldn't, if it were me. But we all know that sometimes Squenix have... interesting ways of going about their marketing. Either way, it looks like we only have about a day from the time of this posting to wait and see, as 17 January is only about thirty-six hours away in Akihabara.
Source: Siliconera, Square Enix Japan Teaser Site
As part of the celebration for the Final Fantasy 25th Anniversary, Square Enix brought in a wide array of artists to create an album celebrating the music of the series up to now. This is not exactly new news, though I believe we missed it in tidbits around the time that it was announced in October. The album was released last week, though, and to promote it a bit more, Square Enix Music posted this medley video to YouTube earlier this week, with samples of a large number of the tracks.
There's a lot of variety on show in this video, and it really makes for some fresh takes on some of the Final Fantasy music that we've heard for many, many years. It's piqued my interest, so I took some time to try to find some English-language shops that sell the double disc; while AmaCoN looked a bit pricey, I found that another of our shop affiliates, Play Asia, has the set for $35.00 including free shipping. If the video makes you want this for Christmas or... New Year's (?), hit that link right away.
Source: Square Enix YouTube, Destructoid
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