News game Final Fantasy 16: inspirations from the Game of Thrones series, a more “violent” game… Square Enix confides
Published on 04/11/2022 at 17:20
In the wake of the broadcast of the Final Fantasy XVI trailer entitled Ambition, producer Naoki Yoshida, translation director Michael-Christopher Koji Fox and creative director Hiroshi Takai returned in detail to many aspects of the title.
“There are a lot of Game of Thrones fans on the development team” “It doesn’t feel natural with modern graphics capabilities”
“There are a lot of Game of Thrones fans on the development team”
Thing promised, thing due. After broadcast from the third trailer of Final Fantasy XVI, creative director Hiroshi Takai and producer Naoki Yoshida had promised to reveal new information during their press tour. A commitment kept since our colleagues from IGN today published a long interview with these two personalities as well as that of the director of translation Michael-Christopher Koji Fox. An interview that goes into detail on the lore of the game, the lack of inclusiveness but also on its similarities with fantasy behemoths like Game of Thrones and The Witcher. It’s Michael-Christopher Koji Fox who talks about it
With both series being so important, I guess it’s hard to make a medieval high-fantasy game these days without drawing at least a few comparisons to Game of Thrones and The Witcher. And while we’re aiming for something that we hope can stand on its own, the truth is that there are a lot of Game of Thrones fans on the development team, so you’ll find a few examples of similarity in narrative themes and character design. However, most of the time, these similarities don’t go beyond a few outward characteristics, be it appearance or characterization.
On this subject, he very rightly adds that many creations are inspired by many media such as games, films or even manga, especially during the first phases of development: “When you describe the way you would like a certain sequence or, it’s just more effective to say “like this scene in so and so” and work from there to give it a life of its own”.
“It doesn’t feel natural with modern graphics capabilities”
If the comparison with Game of Thrones can be surprising at first glance, it is also perhaps for the more “realistic” artistic touch carried by Hiroshi Takai which gives the feeling of dealing with a more violent game than its predecessors. In any case, it is the first Final Fantasy which could be classified as mature (16 years and older). An initiative justified by history according to the creative director:
During the early stages of development, we decided that we would not tell a juvenile story. We considered the age range of players who should be our core audience, but also our increased ability to represent things, in multiple senses of the word. You say it’s a more “violent” direction, but the key point here is that we didn’t just want to make things more extreme, we wanted to show things in a more realistic and natural way.
Moreover, it is interesting to underline the phrase “our increased capacity to represent things”. In fact, Final Fantasy XVI is the first opus in the series to be developed for the PlayStation 5. What to benefit from a more efficient console than before whose graphics would underline the gap between the tone of the story and its representation :
The world of Final Fantasy XVI is torn apart by endless wars between nations, so we inevitably had to include combat scenes. And if a character doesn’t splatter blood after hitting someone with a sword, it feels unnatural with modern graphics capabilities, creating an even stronger sense of dissonance.
In any case, we will have to wait until next summer to immerse ourselves in the world, darker or not, of Valisthéa. If the release date has not yet been specified by Square Enix, it is Naoki Yoshida himself who mentioned wanting to share it before the end of the year.
About Final Fantasy XVI