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Welcome to the Caves of Narshe, a site providing detailed guides, information, fanart and fanfiction related to Square's classic Final Fantasy games (and let's not forget, Chrono Trigger too!). We hope you enjoy your visit.

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Latest News

Final Fantasy IX Released for PlayStation 4


Final Fantasy IX
Last night, a European rating for Final Fantasy IX on PlayStation 4 appeared on the PEGI site, stoking rumors of the game getting a worldwide re-release. Today, at the pre-Tokyo Game Show PlayStation conference, those rumors were quickly confirmed, with the game being released worldwide today.

This release of the game is based upon the Windows/Steam version released last year, which is itself based on the earlier mobile port. That means you can expect higher-resolution FMV and models, as well as all the other upgrades in those previous releases. It also appears that you can expect to be locked into the game's original 4:3 aspect ratio.

Until the 26th, the game will be listed at $16.79, after which it will rise to its standard price of $20.99. Packaged with the download will be a Final Fantasy IX dashboard theme and eight themed PSN avatars. Possibly worth it if you're not a PC gamer, as it remains a great game; for me, I just kind of want the theme without buying the game again.

Source: Gematsu

Distant Worlds Adds Special Carnegie Hall Performance


Distant Worlds
We hope you've had a chance to enjoy our Regalia Playlist Championship already -- and if not, get over there and check it out! For those of you (us!) in the greater New York City area who want even more FF music in your life, Distant Worlds has added a special one-night-only performance at Carnegie Hall, with Nobuo Uematsu in attendance. There will in fact be two performances, one at 2pm and another at 8pm, on January 13, 2018. The Distant Worlds site promises the concert will feature the ensembles' new arrangements of Opening ~ Bombing Mission (FFVII), The Oath (FFVIII), and Somnus (FFXV); there's no hinting yet whether the concert will feature any surprises. Tickets go on sale in just over a week, September 12 at 11am; my guess is they'll move fast, so best keep an eye out if you're interested!

Source: Distant Worlds Official Site
Posted in: North America

Climb In: The Regalia Playlist Championship Only on CoN!


Caves of Narshe Site News
Way, way back, back in the day, a hundred years, it seems that way, CoN did the "Final Fantasy Music CoNtest." Really, though, we last did a smackdown here at CoN to pick the best Final Fantasy music seven years ago, and it was a smash. But, there have been several more games in the main Final Fantasy series since then, and we figure it's high time to take a shot at it again, especially in light of the series' 30th anniversary and CoN's 20th anniversary this year.

So, here's the setup: Noctis and friends from Final Fantasy XV have a pretty serious sound system in their car, the Regalia. So many musical options that there's no telling what to play next, so they're going to need some help figuring out what's best. And that's where we come in, by visiting https://regalia.cavesofnarshe.com/ (or on Facebook).

The Regalia Playlist

Starting now, and running through the end of September, everyone out there with a CoN account can pick fifteen songs from Final Fantasy to make up their own preferred playlist. You'll be able to pick from every single numbered entry in the series, including the MMOs, with a couple bonus games that CoN covers to boot (Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy Tactics, of course). At the end of September, we'll compile everyone's selections into a 64-song knockout tournament by which we'll determine the best songs from the last thirty years for Noctis to load up as he travels across Eos.

We can discuss the knockout when we get there, so let's dive a little more in to the nomination process starting now. As I mentioned, everyone with a CoN account can go to https://regalia.cavesofnarshe.com/ or the tab on our Facebook page to nominate fifteen songs. They're organized by game, and every one has a listen link so you can familiarize yourself with the song again if you can't quite remember it by name. You can click and drag or doubleclick to add a song to your list (or tap if you're on your tablet), and click or tap the trash can to remove it from the list. You can also click and drag to reorder your list as you make it, but once you submit with the green checkmark, you're locked in.

List the songs in your preferred order, because higher rankings are worth more when we do the seeding. The song you pick for the number one slot is worth 15 ranking points, and the song you choose at #15 is worth just one. Our tournament seedings will be based on the overall ranking points earned by every person's picks, so make sure you give the highest spots in your list to the songs you most badly want to see in the tournament.

Around October 1, we'll shut down the nomination process and take some time to rank all the songs that got nominated to come up with a final bracket of 64. After that, the voting will begin and you all will have the opportunity to vote your favorite nominees to the top. At the end of it all, we'll have a brand-spanking-new 2017 version of the best Final Fantasy song of all time. Or close enough.

The Regalia CoNtest

Once we have our 64 candidates based on your submissions, the contest starts! You'll have a couple weeks to look over the 64 top tracks, and pick what you think the top five will be. People who make those picks will be graded for accuracy once all of the votes have been tallied and we have our winner. We'll compare each person's guesses to the final results, and the top three most accurate players will win prizes:
  1. A signed set of illustrations from Final Fantasy VI through Final Fantasy X by Sarah Childs at Gyzra Ink
  2. A Gyzra Final Fantasy VI illustration plus a bottle of Wiz' Energizing Elixir from Jones Soda
  3. A Gyzra Final Fantasy VI illustration
These prints are no longer available, nor is the soda, so this is the only place you're likely to ever get your hands on them!

If you've got any questions, let us know now so we can make sure your picks get in. You'll get the chance to start voting in the tournament and making your feelings known about each matchup starting in October, so let's get started! Also let us know if you see song names that are not accurate or awkward - there're over 1700 of them in there so odds are we messed some up along the way!

Final Fantasy XV Art Book Announced


Final Fantasy XV
Obviously Final Fantasy XV wasn't everyone's cup of tea, but by and large it has been a pretty significant success. Likewise, the style of the game might not have been for everyone, particularly those wishing for a return to medieval or early-industrial fantasy, but you can't really argue that it wasn't a pretty game.

With that in mind, Square Enix have announced a special art book filled with concept art and design progression from the game, for which you can get a preview over at Siliconera. The book will have 220 pages of art, and will come in two editions - a standard edition for $49, and a limited edition for $169 that is printed in a larger format and includes two glicee prints. There was also an even-more-limited run of 500 in which the prints would be signed by members of the Final Fantasy XV art team, but it looks like that one's already sold through.

The books are set to ship in December of this year.

Secret of Mana Remade for Sony and Steam


Here's one out of left field: Secret of Mana, also known as Seiken Densetsu 2, is suddenly getting a PlayStation 4, Vita, and Steam remake. It's going to redo the original game using rendered 3D objects, add in voiceover in (at least) Japanese and English, a re-arranged new recording of the musical score, and more. The game will be released worldwide this coming February 15.

As usual, Square Enix are doing some unique preorder bonuses; preorders on the PlayStation store will include two sets of skins for Randi, Primm, and Popoi as well as a set of PSN avatars. On Steam, orders made between now and the end of the first week of release will get the costumes and a desktop wallpaper image. In Japan, a collector's edition will be available that will include the game, a pop-up art book, a music CD, and figurines of the main characters; orders from Amazon Japan will include a copy of the original 1993 instruction manual. No word yet on whether either of those two options will be available in the West.

At the time of writing, the English website appears to be down, but you can see more at the Japanese site now.

See below for a minute-long trailer showing some of the 3D modeling and a snippet of the English voice work!


Source: Gematsu

The Remaining Final Fantasy XV Gamescom News


Final Fantasy XV
More Final Fantasy XV stuff from Gamescom, not just the announcement of a Windows/Steam version! First off, it must be noted that Hajime Tabata confirmed, with no ambiguity, that he would not be working on a Final Fantasy XV sequel. As we've already seen, the XV universe has been set up to expand using smaller pieces rather than a standalone game. The episodic DLC for the non-Noctics members of the party reflect that perspective, with the Ignis episode coming at the end of the year. The new multiplayer mode that is coming soon, called "Comrades," does the same thing by filling in a storyline gap without needing to use the main players. I'm not sure that this tack will appease fans whose main complaint seems to be the way the final third of the game played out vis-a-vis the storyline, but I think it's more likely to work than a standalone sequel would.

The other two pieces of XV news from Gamescom don't actually expand the universe in large ways, though they are standalone titles in-universe. The first is the already-announced VR fishing game; titled Monsters of the Deep; while there's no new information about the game as yet, pre-orders have begun and Tabata did bring it up at Gamescom, so it's clear that the game is in fact on the way. Additionally, a new Pocket Edition of the game was announced for release on mobile devices and as a Windows 10 app; it's coming this fall and will be a sort of episodic "de-make" of the core game. From the trailer and screenshots released, it does appear to be a weird little chibi retelling of the game's plot, and the game's mechanics seem to be intact but quite simplified. The first episode will be a free download, with the remaining nine available to purchase on an as-yet-unnanounced schedule. I suspect that the overall purchase price will be too high to justify not simply waiting to get it on Steam, but who knows?

Finally, in the main game, we're getting a bestiary and chapter select option in the near future as a free update, which will be handy for new players and people looking to re-play alike (of course, both of those should have been available from launch, but such is life).

Source: Siliconera, Polygon

Final Fantasy XV on the Way to Steam


Final Fantasy XV
Final Fantasy XV is, predictably, now on the way to Windows PCs worldwide early in 2018. The release was announced today at Gamescom in Germany, and without a specific release date; however, the game is looking to be an upgrade in various visual and aural ways, leveraging NVIDIA GameWorks technology:
  • 4K textures, scalable up to 8K in config
  • Enhanced fluid, fire, and smoke effects
  • Enhanced hair and fur effects
  • Dynamic shadows on models
  • Better grass and foliage animation
  • HDR lighting and improved environmental lighting
The PC version will also have the capability to put Noctis into first-person mode, as well, both in and out of battle.

For some reason, it will have the subtitle "Windows Edition" applied when released on Steam next year. It's going to take a serious, serious rig to max this game out, so start your building plans now.

Source: Siliconera

Dissidia NT Release Dates Announced


Dissida: Final Fantasy
The worldwide port of the Japanese arcade Dissidia has been officially announced for release in Square Enix' three main territories as of today. Japan, Europe, and North America will all see the game in January of 2018, with the former seeing the game on January 11 and the latter two getting it on January 30. As is typical for major Squenix releases these days, there will be several bundle tiers available for purchase.

While they vary somewhat from region to region, they fall into pretty standard categories. The Ultimate edition will be available only from Square Enix directly, and will include a Steelbook, an art book, a figurine, soundtrack, the Season Pass, et cetera. There will also be versions that have a randomzied Steelbook case, featuring one of three designs each with a different set of Dissidia fighters. The digital copies available will offer up a free alternate skin for Warrior of Light, a mini-soundtrack in digital format, and the Season Pass (in the higher tier of digital purchase). In Europe, the digital packages appear to contain a code to get Cloud's Nail Bat and a PS4 dashboard theme.

I'm still not in the closed beta. Anyone else get word that they got in?

Source: Gematsu

Dissidia NT Closed Beta August 26 - September 4


Dissida: Final Fantasy
Gematsu reports this morning that a closed beta for Dissidia NT, the home console version of the Japanese arcade entry to the fighting game series, will get a closed beta on PlayStation 4 for both North American and European users later this month. Specifically, noon Eastern on August 26 through noon again on September 4.

Featuring a limited lineup of fourteen characters - the lead characters of each game, generally - the beta will feature three-on-three battles in some selection of the game's battle arenas, and will also contain at least some of the final game's summon lineup.

This is going to be a closed beta, of course. Some folks should be receiving a code to get in already, it appears, though the criteria for getting one of the instant-in codes is naturally not public. There is a lottery to try to get a code, though, if you don't have one - all you need is a Square Enix account. I entered the lottery myself just a few minutes ago, and you can do the same at the links below.

In other news, it was also announced that Jecht, coming soon to the arcade version, will be part of the console release package on day one of next year's release.

Source: Gematsu, NA Beta Signup, EU Beta Signup

New Dragon Quest, Old Dragon Quest from the Summer Festival


Dragon Quest
In Tokyo this weekend, Square Enix held a Dragon Quest Summer Festival. Sounds like a pretty good time, I suppose, but there were some new releases announced for the DQ series that are the focus of this particular post.

First, the new: a sequel to Dragon Quest Builders is already in development. There's no release window yet, but there is some gameplay footage early on. Some of the big enhancements over the first game already announced include the ability to build three times higher and deeper than in the original, swimming ability, a hang-glider feature to safely descend from high spots, and four-person multiplayer. The storyline appears to include the big bad from Dragon Quest II in some way, which makes sense as the original game takes place in the world of the first Dragon Quest, albeit on an alternate timeline from canon.

Speaking of Dragon Quest II, though, it's one of three games (including the first and third) now scheduled for release on digital distribution for the Nintendo 3DS and PlayStation 4 in Japan. I and II will be released on August 10, and III will follow before the end of August. No idea which versions of the games will be released, as in Japan they were released for Famicom, Super Famicom, and Game Boy Color in quick succession, and also no idea whether we'll get them in the US either.

Source: Gematsu

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Caves of Narshe Version 6
©1997–2017 Josh Alvies (Rangers51)

All fanfiction and fanart (including original artwork in forum avatars) is property of the original authors. Some graphics property of Square Enix.