Theatrhythm: Curtain Call is making a splash with its large tracklist and new game modes, so it's no surprise that this week's announcements are also building interest. The Western release date is now confirmed to be September 16th of this year, a shade over four months away. Possibly even bigger news for you guys waiting for it is the fact that apparently the Collector's Edition, including special packaging, a 3DS case, a lot of music and some collectible cards, will have a limited edition of only 5000. This edition is only available through Square Enix' online store, but it's not clear if that number is only for the United States or all of North America. If you want it, you better get your preorder in immediately.
We've mentioned a couple times already that E3 is on the way; Square is giving a mixed bag before it starts, though. Starting with the bright side, there's a new trailer for Kingdom Hearts 2.5 HD Remix. Sure, it's just a trailer, albeit with the official release date (December 2, 2014), but Kingdom Hearts fans will be most intrigued by the end: it's the most specific confirmation yet that Kingdom Hearts 3 is in development, and it talks a bit about what might be included. A couple comments at Kotaku imply that there are a couple frames of what appear to be HD versions of Dream Drop Distance, too.
OK, time for the downside of the E3 news, sorry. The next Famitsu has an interview with Shinji Hashimoto that explicitly states that there will be nothing for either Kingdom Hearts III or Final Fantasy XV at the show this year. In development, sure. Anything worth showing to fans? Apparently not!
Source: Square Enix, Kotaku
Without even an announcement of a release date, Final Fantasy III was released on Steam for PC yesterday. The game came in at $15.99, which seems like a pretty decent price (though I'll probably wait for it to drop below ten dollars, personally).
For more information on the details of the game, check out our newspost from earlier this month.
Source: Official Final Fantasy Facebook
Theatrhythm: Curtain Call was released in Japan about a month ago, and is coming to the West later this year (no specifics on the date just yet). Square Enix, though, has confirmed the list of 127 new songs we'll see for the sequel, with 109 being part of the initial game purchase. In addition, every song but one from the original game, both on-cart and DLC, will also be available to Curtain Call.
The most interesting thing about this news is that the game will be branching out beyond the core numbered series this time around. Final Fantasy Tactics, Mystic Quest, Crisis Core, Advent Children, SaGa, Dissidia, and even more Square games will have available tracks at launch - of course, even more games and tracks are likely to appear down the road as future DLC.
Check out the full list below and let us know what you think is missing in the comments.
It's been a while since I did a Distant Worlds update - I suspect it's because I'm still a little bitter for not pulling the trigger and going myself last October! The concert series well known by Final Fantasy fans worldwide has some new information to share this month, though, and some of the news is sure to be particularly interesting to CoN readers.
There are three Distant Worlds concerts on the books for this year at the moment; for our South American readers, two dates in Chile are scheduled for May 31 and June 1 in Rancagua and Santiago respectively.
On August 24, a special performance will take place in Chicago, a favorite destination for the Distant Worlds crowd - not only will Arnie Roth and Nobuo Uematsu be in attendance, they will also be performing solos during the set, and the setlist will focus on Final Fantasy VI in honor of its 20th anniversary. Dancing Mad, the Opera, and a never-heard arrangement of character themes are confirmed to be part of the new setlist.
The final date for 2014 at the moment returns to Toronto, with a performance at the Sony Centre. Roth and Uematsu will attend this show as well, though they won't perform and the setlist apparently will be more typical than the FF6-centric one in Chicago a few months earlier.
The new spinoff of Distant Worlds will debut this weekend, though, also in Chicagoland. It's called A New World, and it will be performed in smaller venues and conventions with a thirteen-member ensemble. In all the performances scheduled so far, both Arnie Roth and Nobuo Uematsu will be in attendance and will perform as well, with Roth on violin and Uematsu on keyboard. The series starts this Friday at Anime Central in Rosemont, IL, with a 4pm show on the 16th and a 1pm matinee on the 17th. After that, the show moves to Omaha for two shows on this Sunday, the 18th of May, and a pair of Montreal shows in August. All arrangements will be new to suit the new ensemble, so even folks who have seen Distant Worlds will get to experience something new.
If you line up a visit to any of these shows, make sure to give us a report after!
Source: Final Fantasy: Distant Worlds, Final Fantasy: A New World
As of now, there's a listing on Steam for Final Fantasy III. One might cock his or her eyebrow a bit at this news, but it's kind of a big deal. Kotaku reports that the game appears to be a port of the PSP version, and the screenshots look as if they've done some up-res work to polish the visuals. In fact, I would go so far as to say that the screenshots look absolutely lovely and that this bodes well for the care they plan to take with this port overall.
Being on Steam, the game will also get an achievement system laid into the gameplay, and will have Steam Cloud support for cloud storage of saved games and user settings for portability. The listing also advertises controller support, which seems like a no-brainer but will certainly improve the game's playability.
There's no release date and no price point yet, but it seems reasonable to think that a realm of $20.00 or so could be the target, with the less-advanced ports of Final Fantasy VII and VIII listing at $13.00 right now. This game's release could even be a precursor to a release of Final Fantasy IV 3D, given that the DS version was developed by the same team as III; additionally, both games have had similar iOS and Android releases that would likely make a port to Windows easier. Like I said, this could be pretty big news for fans of classic and less-exposed Final Fantasy games!
Source: Kotaku, Steam
We're making a slight change from our usual game-focussed news postings today to give you a brief nugget about Sony and Square Enix finances. Wall Street Journal, eat your heart out:
Sony has announced that it has sold all of its 9.52 million shares in Square Enix to SMBC Nikko Securities, in a deal reportedly worth ¥15.3 billion. That's approximately $150 million, or £89 million. Sony has not given a reason for the sale; but it's reasonable to assume that this has been done as part of Sony's current financially-motivated reforms, which also include plans to sell off the VAIO computing arm and restructure its TV division. Sony hasn't been faring well recently, financially speaking, and the boost this deal will give to its fiscal report will probably please its shareholders.
There's no indication as yet that this will have any impact on Square Enix's output or the release platforms of its games. Sony's previous 8.25% stake didn't prevent games such as Final Fantasy XIII being released on rival platforms, so it's unlikely that PlayStation platforms will be losing out now either.
Source: Eurogamer, Forbes