Today Square Enix announced the collaboration with the Taiwanese developer Xpec (which previously worked on smaller games like Shrek Forever After and Kung Fu Panda for Activision) on Final Fantasy XV at the Taipei Game Show, also showing the super-cute cat cam, used to explore an work-in-progress environment of the game.
During the stage event Game Director Hajime Tabata, Xpec CEO Xu Jinlong and Chairman Aaron Hsu went into more detail on what the partnership between Square Enix and the studio from the nearby island-nation entails.
Tabata-san mentioned that Final Fantasy XV is a very large project, making a wide range of development partnerships necessary. Xpec has been asked to work on the game because of their high level of technology.
Jinlong explained that the Xpec staff is very proud to work on the game, and there are many within the team that are big fans of the series, so this job is like a dream come true. He also added that he’d love to show more about their work, but unfortunately they cannot, because they’re in charge of part of the second half of the game.
The only part they could show was the freezing train scene, a tease of which was shown during the Jump Festa trailer, and that was developed jointly between the Square Enix internal team and Xpec.
The cat cam is actually a proposal made in jest by Xpec to Square Enix, devised after seeing the dog cam showed off at Jump Festa. The Xpec staff feels that implementing the cat cam would be better because cats can reach many otherwise inaccessible places easily, and Tabata-san (probably joking) said that he’d consider it after returning home.
The event was definitely funny, and the folks at Xpec definitely seemed very enthusiastic about their work. It’ll be interesting to see if the input from many different sources from outside Japan (it’s worth mentioning, for instance, that the Lead Game Designer responsible for the open world is from Malaysia, and has been injecting his culture into the game), will give the Final Fantasy series that breath of fresh air that might bring it to the next level.