The Pre-E3 Kingdom Hearts Orchestra World Tour concert in Los Angeles was last night, after which Square Enix announced that Kingdom Hearts III finally had a release date. Unfortunately for CoN readers looking to get the game under their Christmas tree or other denominational holiday apparatus, that date is not going to be in 2018. However, it won't be that much more of a wait - Asia will get the game on January 25 for both PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, and North America and Europe will get it on January 29.
The announcement was shown in a new trailer exclusive to the concert, of which the highlight clearly must be Sora cooking with Remy from Pixar's Ratatouille. Tetsuya Nomura tweeted after the announcement that there would be more information and more trailers at E3 on the show floor; I expect that this new trailer will be among them.
They're still not doing a real standalone presser, having discontinued that practice after the 2015 version of E3, but for 2018 Square Enix will be doing a prerecorded broadcast on June 11, starting at 1pm Eastern time, or 6pm GMT. It will be broadcast over YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, Twitter, and a streaming network called Mixer that I've never actually heard of because I'm not young and/or cool. It will also be available via Square Enix' E3 microsite.
Beyond that, details are a bit thin so far. We know that the broadcast will be available in Japanese and English, and there will be no physical location to watch the stream in person at or near E3, with the company relying solely on the distributed stream. The company does not plan to pre-publish a list of games to be discussed, nor is there any word as to whether any of the major pressers will include any Squenix game information in advance. Of course, that leaves us plenty of room to speculate! I think it's a lock that we'll see much more new information around Kingdom Hearts III and Shadow of the Tomb Raider, quite likely that there will be some new content for Final Fantasy XIV, Final Fantasy XV, Dissidia NT and the ongoing mobile games discussed, and not out of the realm of possibility that we'll get announcements of some new mobile games or ports for immediate release. I doubt we'll get anything out of Final Fantasy VII, though.
It's time again for another Final Fantasy concert roundup, as Square Enix have just published another new set of dates to fill in some gaps in the year's slate. If you look back to our update in February, you'll see that there were already quite a few shows scheduled, starting with several for Distant Worlds - Paris this weekend, Vancouver and Cleveland in June, San Francisco in August, and North Carolina in October. On top of those, now you've got these 2018 options (and the start of 2019!):
- Houston, July 7
- Washington, DC, August 10
- Seattle, September 12 and 13
- Rochester, NY, September 25
- Boca Raton, FL, November 2 and 3
- Denver, May 2 and 3, 2019
If you've seen Distant Worlds many times or just want the smaller experience, we still have A New World. Boston's show is still tomorrow night, and until now the only other upcoming shows were in Europe, in Prague and Vienna. The new shows:
- Rosemont, IL, May 19 and 20
- Fort Worth, TX, June 9
- Washington, DC, August 12
- Philadelphia, September 21
- St. Paul, Minnesota, September 28
- Ann Arbor, Michigan, September 29
- Montclair, New Jersey, November 2
This looks like a really great lineup for the rest of the year. Nothing I'll be able to make it to myself, unfortunately, but I'm excited that they seem to really be branching out!
Source: Distant Worlds, A New World
Final Fantasy XIV, given its tenure and many expansions, naturally has a huge number of musical selections. Not all of them may be widely known due to the game's status as an MMO among many more single-player entries in the series, of course, and the recent Regalia Playlist Championship featured just one song from the game (and it failed to clear the first round due to a rough matchup).
But really, though, this is a game that, when I compiled tracks for Regalia, turned up three hundred and twenty individual tracks. That's a lot of options! And now, if you're heading to E3 this year, you can see a live orchestra play through a number of them at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. The concert is called "Eorzean Symphony," and will be played on June 15 and 16 at 8pm. Producer Naoki Yoshida, composer Masayoshi Soken, and featured vocalist Susan Calloway will be in attendance at both shows, with VIP tickets available to meet all three at $189 a ticket. Standard tickets start at $59.
If you prefer your concerts to be a little more European, though, and are planning a trip to Gamescom this summer, you will be able to take the relatively short trip from Cologne to Dortmund to see the same show August 24 and 25th.
We've got some new concert news coming up for 2018, and it's been a while since we've done a major update. So, buckle up and hope for some new concerts coming your way soon!
The newest announcement for Distant Worlds is Cleveland, in what I believe is a first for the series. Ohio fans, be on the lookout with tickets already on sale for the June show. The rest of the 2018 scheduled shows lay out like this:
- Paris, April 21 (Matinee and Evening Shows)
- Vancouver, June 1
- Cleveland, June 16
- San Francisco, August 4
- Durham, North Carolina, October 13
For A New World, we just got an announcement for a new show in Boston this week. Tickets are already on sale for the April 20th show, and VIP tickets are available. The rest of the year for the smaller chamber music series looks this way:
- Honolulu, March 4 at Kawaii Kon
- Quebec City, April 7
- Boston, April 20
- Prague, May 5
- Vienna, May 6
In what should be a predictable theme nowadays, Square Enix today announced that Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age will be released for Steam on Windows on February 1. The HD remake of the original Final Fantasy XII, released on PlayStation 2, first added new gameplay modes and a fast-forward feature, as well as reconciling some other updates between the original and the International Versions of the game. The PC version will take it a bit further, adding in some cheat options to make the game easier, as well as support for 60fps and ultra-wide 21:9 monitors.
Once the game is released, the game's producer and director will be taking to a YouTube livestream to walk through the PC version's new features and respond to players' comments pre-organized from Twitter. That will happen in the wee hours of February 2 for us in the Western Hemisphere.
I personally had waited a while to pick up this game, intending to grab it used at some point. Now that I know it will eventually end up on Steam sale, well, I might just wait a bit longer.