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Final Fantasy VII Released! For iOS!

Final Fantasy VII
If Square Enix were Apple, they would have had the HD Remake done when they announced it, and it would have just shown up in the PlayStation Network store during the presentation. What's really happened, though, is that an unannounced port of the newest PC version of Final Fantasy VII has appeared for iOS devices, at least in New Zealand; regular readers of CoN news will recall that iOS releases tend to start there and appear in other locales going westward over the next day or two.

The release trailer doesn't seem to make anything clear regarding how the game works. There are no visible touch controls shown in any of the clips, which are mostly clips of FMV cutscenes. However, Engadget reports that instead of reconfiguring the game to be more touch-friendly, the game will have a virtual joypad on screen. I personally suspect that the game will remain in the standard 4:3 ratio, leaving room on the sides of the screen for controls, at least for phones. If you've already gotten the game on your iOS device, perhaps you can fill us in - the New Zealand price has come in at $19.99, so I can't say that I'm up for it just yet.

This version of the game will include a few cheats by default, such as the ability to max our all character stats with the push of a button, and the ability to turn off random encounters. This will essentially allow the player to treat the game as a Final Fantasy VII slideshow if desired, with most of the gaming elements replaced with short bursts between cutscenes.

The game is supported only by iOS 8, and the hardware required appears to be of the iPhone 5s generation, meaning phones and tablets roughly two years old and newer. There's no indication of an Android version at this time.

Source: Engadget

Catching Up on Final Fantasy XV, Summer 2015 Edition

Final Fantasy XV
News really dries up when Death Penalty and I go a-travelin', does it not? Fear not, as I'm back now and he will be soon as well; however, don't forget that all of you out there are free to write news that we're missing!

The annual Gamescom conference was in Cologne, Germany last week, and as loyal readers will know, Hajime Tabata explained back in June that there would be no new Final Fantasy XV news until then. Storing things up for a couple months led to a news blowout on this hotly-anticipated game, as follows.

The biggest thing, of course, is the new trailer. Square Enix love their trailers, and with trailers like this who can blame them?

This trailer is a flashback to fifteen years before the intended timeline of the game, with emotional scenes between young Noctis and his father, King Regis.

Gamescom was also the location and time of the most recent Active Time Report, and it and the discussions around it formed the core of new Final Fantasy XV information for the summer. Among the sights, sounds, and tidbits released:
A girl who had previously briefly appeared in media released by the Nova Crystallis team, Lunafreya, was also confirmed at Gamescom to be Noctis' betrothed, an arranged royal marriage to ensure peace with Tenebrae. At the start of Final Fantasy XV, she and the king are presumed dead, but come on - we all know that's not gonna happen.

And, to bury the lede as I so love to do, not only did the team confirm the game will not slip to 2017, they also confirmed simultaneous worldwide release. How about that?

Source: Siliconera

Did You Hear There's a Final Fantasy VII Remake? The CoNcast Episode 32

Yeah, of course you heard, duh. And you probably heard also that there will be changes coming to the new version, and we're not yet sure what most of them are. So, the CoNcast Team jumped at the chance to do some supposition while we wait for something more visual or playable, and we recorded an episode with our thoughts. Listen now, to be sure you can point out all the ways in which we were wrong later.

Also listen to more talk about Four Job Fiesta, as I played my FJF run and streamed it to Twitch as we recorded. It was a trainwreck.

Source: The CoNcast on iTunes, The CoNcast Subscription Feed, This Episode

Load up on Dragon Quest Spinoffs Here

Dragon Quest
The Dragon Quest series rivals the flagship Final Fantasy for remakes, sequels, and spinoffs - hey, just see the last news I posted - and this week Square Enix announced a new one and published the first screenshots of another.

First, for Android and iOS, a new free-to-play RPG called "Dragon Quest of the Stars." There's not much for it save a new site in Japanese, but Siliconera reports that the game will feature the classic Dragon Quest behind-the-party combat view with generic buildable characters around star-shaped maps out in the universe. The game will be released yet this year in Japan, but no word about other locales as yet.

Also coming soon is Square Enix' take on the up-and-coming genre of "open world building games with licensed characters." We might have expected that to show up in the Final Fantasy universe, but not this time! Dragon Quest Builders puts the player in the world of the original Dragon Quest, with a big mallet and a charter to rebuild the kingdom. If it sounds like Minecraft, it looks it as well, as shown in these first-ever screenshots. You're not just building a world, though, you're also building safety for all of the citizens around you and also directly protecting them by fighting off creatures from the Dragon Quest universe. This game is intended for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and Vita, with no announced release date and no indication of release outside Japan.

Source: Siliconera, Polygon

All but Official: Dragon Quest VII and VIII Remakes to the West

Dragon Quest
At the Japan Expo that just wrapped in Paris - no, this isn't mistyped - Dragon Quest maestro Yuji Horii spoke with the assembled press. Among more mundane matters, Horii intimated that the recent 3DS remakes of Dragon Quest VII and VIII would be released "in French," a move that apparently caused his translator some consternation at the time.

This was clearly something that Horii simply wanted to leak for fun; there's no release date, no other particulars, and so on. However, this is good news for all Dragon Quest fans outside of Japan. Someone like Yuji Horii wouldn't make this comment if it weren't true, and if there is bound to be a French localization, there's zero chance that other languages are not on the table, especially English.

Source: Siliconera

Deus Ex Post-E3 Publicity, and What Makes a Deus Ex Game?

Square Enix
It's the kind of question much more commonly associated with the Final Fantasy series: what is it that makes a ___ game a ___ game? Since Square Enix oversees the fate of Deus Ex, I suppose it's appropriate to turn the discussion in that direction. Patrick Fortier, the director of gameplay for Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, spoke with the folks over at Polygon about precisely that. It turns out there are four essential ingredients to a Deus Ex game: stealth, combat, hacking, and social interaction. Those four things, of course, "all wrapped up into this tight rope of freedom and choice and consequences."

Fortier continued to suggest that while continuity with prior titles developed by different hands was a primary concern with Mankind Divided's immediate (and critically-acclaimed) predecessor, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, the team is looking to explore new possibilities -- and of course offer more gameplay options, more augmentations, and more narrative choices.

Multiple other interviews with other personnel working on the game have cropped up on several other videogame websites in the last couple days, saying almost the exact same things: the four pillars of Deus Ex, expanding possibilities for the franchise, and no-way-is-the-wrong-way when it comes to player-drive plot choices. Eidos Montreal and Square Enix are certainly barnstorming, and from the headlines the cumulative effect looks positive: "Deus Ex left me obsessing over cyborg oppression" ( and "Deus Ex: Mankind Divided is a better shooter than most actual shooters" (, to name just a few.

This wave of comments comes after a successful E3 presentation: while their demo initially at Sony's main event, its successful reboot showed not only that they were actually playing live (something that is not always the case for demos at events like this); it also showed that the game is darn beautiful. They also come, however, after a bit of heat from several quarters regarding the team's use of the now-trademarked term "mechanical apartheid." It must be added that several persons, connected with the game's development and with Eidos Montreal, have made strong and sensible responses to these critiques, saying that a vital part of the franchise has always been considering complex social questions in a sci-fi world that nonetheless has bearings on reality. But for now, "social justice" isn't listed as one of the "four pillars" of a Deus Ex title -- not yet, at least.

Source: Polygon, Kotaku UK
Posted in: Square-Enix News

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