Final Fantasy XV was officially announced only three years ago, at E3 2013, but fans have been waiting for the game since the announcement of its previous incarnation – Final Fantasy Versus XIII – at E3 2006. Director Hajime Tabata talked about satisfying both new fans and those who have waiting a long time for Versus XIII during a chat released by the British retailer Game.
There were a number of points in Final Fantasy XV that were very different to any other project I’ve ever worked on. One of the really special considerations about Final Fantasy XV, was because it was initially announced as a different game, Final Fantasy Versus XIII, and there are people who have been waiting for that since when it was first announced, and you’ve got to take that into account, what those players are looking for in the game. But at the same time, you’ve got new players becoming interested when it became XV.
You’ve gotta work towards the needs of both of those different fan groups. It’s a strange experience – a different feeling to any other game I’ve made, because even though it’s a tricky thing working towards both of these groups’ expectations, on the other hand, I feel I’ve been supported by these fans right through development, and it’s very strange, but it’s a very nice thing, though.
Tabata-san also talked about the difference between working on handheld games, which formed the majority of his career prior to moving on to the Final Fantasy XV project, and a big console release.
There is a big difference; when you’re making a handheld game, it’s a very personal experience for a single player, within avery limited field. You have got all-sorts of conditions around what you can and can’t do, and restrictions about how the game is made.
Then, compared to that, a full-scale home console game, that really takes away all those limitations – You have got freedom to do the best possible thing at the biggest scale you can, with everything Square Enix can do.
The goals you set yourself, whilst making different types of games are very different.
Interestingly, we hear that Tabata-san’s experience with Final Fantasy game started with the very first Final Fantasy, which he played and finished, even if he did not play every single chapter of the series.
You can watch the full interview below, and read our own latest interview with Tabata-san here.