News from November 2014
Though it's already a bit late in the day, we want to let you all know that Square Enix has hit the cyber Monday thing pretty hard, and a whole lot of stuff on their online store is on sale! This includes a lot of hard copies as well as digital downloads.
A few of the titles included are Deus Ex: Human Revolution, FFXV: A Realm Reborn, FFX/FFX-2 HD (also the collector's edition), FFVII, FFVIII, Thief, Tomb Raider, Theatrhythm: Curtain Call, Dissidia, FFXIII, FFXIII-2, and more. Happy pickings!
Source: Square Enix Online Store
Posted in: Square-Enix News
Well, that's pretty much the gist of it, I guess. It's not an unknown phenomenon for game franchises to have periodicals in their names, produced by their publishers; apparently Persona has already gotten the same treatment.
The first all-Final Fantasy, all-the-time magazine will be out sometime in December in Japan and will be dated as "Winter 2014," implying that it will be a quarterly magazine if published on a schedule; it's possible that it will instead be a "whenever we feel like it" sort of thing from Squenix as well.
The real question is, will these magazines have any news that isn't covered by Famitsu or its brethren well in advance? The first issue purports to have info on Type-0 HD, G-Bike, and the new mobile games, so we shall see.
As is their way, the Distant Worlds team releases a massive burst of concert information about once a quarter. Now is that time. It makes for a long news post. Now is that time as well!
Our last post talked about the upcoming shows in Toronto and New Jersey - I didn't realize until now, though, that the first of the New Jersey set of shows will actually be the centennial show for the traveling performance. That might make those tickets a bit more precious.
The new announcement for Distant Worlds this time around is to fill the gap between the New Jersey shows and the previously-announced pair of St. Louis concerts. I'm excited about this one because it's April 24 in Boston, the current (approximate) headquarters of CoN. Tickets go on sale on December 3, and I'm really hoping to snag some.
Also from our last post, we noted that A New World, the chamber music series, was wrapping up its season in Europe. What was then the final show for 2014 is still next week in Paris. But now, they've booked a new date for December 12 in Houston at Rice University. They'll also start 2015 with two February shows in St. Paul, Minnesota and one at the University of Michigan. It seems like it's potentially easier to arrange the chamber style of A New World than it is a full orchestra like Distant Worlds, so I wouldn't be surprised to see a lot more dates showing up in our next update.
Good luck to those going for tickets! Don't take mine.
Source: Distant Worlds, A New World
There's been a surprising amount of console and PC news from Square Enix as of late, from PC re-releases of games to new platforms and release windows for newer games. You might have even thought that the previous deluge of mobile games was going to slow down a bit, but if so, today's news proves you naive!
At a minimum for next calendar year, there will be two Final Fantasy-branded games, as well as what looks to be a helper app, available for iOS and Android. All three titles will be free to play with a microtransaction layer, though it remains to be seen what portions will be behind a paywall.
Crystal of Time looks to be the more traditional-style Final Fantasy game at the moment, with what appears to be a modified ATB battle setup that looks like it has a gesture-based wheel to select commands, which could be quite cool. As you might surmise from the name, time travel plays a major role. The art style is different from what we've seen recently for Square Enix' mobile games, but looks good to me so far.
Brave Exvius is a different take, a combination between Squenix and a Japanese mobile game developer called Alim. There appears to be less information about this game, but based on the early screenshots, my concern is that it might be a bit like a gussied-up All the Bravest, given the large number of party members, the presence of classic Final Fantasy protagonists fighting at once, and the vertical orientation of the gameplay. Hopefully future information will allay those fears.
The helper app looks to be a portal from which people can keep tabs on Squenix' new products and marketing events, as well as a storefront with digital content available for download. One special feature already announced is a Triple Triad game, though there's no indication if this is an in-app purchase, has online components, or anything beyond the name.
While the titles only appear in Japanese at the moment, the mobile strategy for Squenix clearly defines worldwide releases in multiple languages on similar timelines whenever possible. We can assume that Western releases will also be in 2015.
Final Fantasy XV is obviously going to be a high-res game. We're fully in the current generation now and there's no possible excuse otherwise. However, we hadn't seen it as such, and that's a shame.
Not now, though - last week, Square Enix released a 1080p version of what we'd previously seen, and if you liked the direction it was going before you should really love it now. Of course, this video's on the web, and therefore the resolution you really get is going to be a function of your internet and viewing device capabilities, but it does look pretty impressive maxed out and fullscreened on my machine.
It looks to me like the framerate could still use a bit of work, and while the main features such as characters, backgrounds, vehicles, and monsters look phenomenal, some of the smaller assets like grasses still have some refinement to go. Even unfinished, this is probably worth checking out to see what all those years have been doing!
Do you have more money than you know what to do with? Are you one of those lucky Square Enix fans with a significant other who is also a lucky Square Enix fan? The holidays are coming up, and to reinforce that fact, Squenix is updating their merchandise line with a boatload of pretty-pricey swag to wear on your person.
This might sound like I'm mocking, and to a small extent I suppose I am, but the jewelry and baubles worn by Final Fantasy characters has always been something that interested me, particularly in the cases where it illustrated something about the character's personality. Somewhere I even have a cheap knockoff of Griever that I got back in college, and if I had the disposable income for such a thing I might be tempted to partake in these new official designs as well.
Anyway, the interesting stuff is the merch and the prices, right? A lot of the silver pieces have yet to be released, but there are some cool ones. For $190, you can pick up a pendant that echoes the cog design of Cloud's gauntlets. For only $120, you can get a silver Cactuar or a silhouette of a Monster Octopus-style Chocobo. If you're more into the newer games, you can also get a L'Cie emblem or Serah's engagement pendant. And, since Square Enix have merchandising deals with other IPs, you can even spend a cool three hundred bucks to get yourself a Batman, Superman, or Wonder Woman pendant, or even more for Raiden's emblem from Metal Gear Rising.
There's quite a bit more that I didn't mention, including a Shinra tie clip that I would totally wear if someone bought it for me (and if I ever had to wear neckties). If you're interested or just curious like I was, check out the link below.
Source: Square Enix Products | Jewelry
Posted in: Square-Enix News
Satisfying the desires of many Nintendo gamers, a re-release of Nintendo 64's The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask was confirmed as an upcoming title on the 3DS. There aren't many details around the re-release as of yet, but when Ocarina of Time was re-released in the same vein, it featured improved graphics, bug fixes, and a new, more difficult gameplay mode. Perhaps we can expect the same from Majora's Mask?
I personally am thrilled about the news. I'm hoping that it doesn't get upgraded to the upcoming "New" 3DS, because it'd be great to have this available on the system I currently own. I never got around to playing Majora's Mask back when I owned an N64, instead pretty much stopping at Ocarina - I'd love to be able to play a game that I've heard is really good. What does everybody think of this news?
Posted in: Gaming Industry News