View Full Version : An Interview with Tabata about the Final Fantasy XV Demo and Mixed-Media Approach

04-03-2016, 01:35 AM

The good people over at Siliconera (http://www.siliconera.com/2016/04/01/final-fantasy-director-reaching-new-fans-behind-platinum-demo/) were able to catch up and interview Director of Final Fantasy XV Hajime Tabata after last week's Final Fantasy XV Uncovered event about the platinum demo and the mixed-media approach toward the release. Check it out!

Final Fantasy XV has a mix of media with the Brotherhood: Final Fantasy XV anime and CG film, Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV.
Hajime Tabata, Director: The reason we took on this mass media approach with mixed media outlets for the Final Fantasy XV universe is we wanted to give new fans who havenít experienced Final Fantasy in the past a way to experience it not just through the games. Also to give traditional fans who have played the series other ways to experience the full Final Fantasy XV universe and really enjoy it. And itís not necessarily a spin-off from a game. Each one is independent and can stand out on their own. You donít have to experience one to understand another one. Thatís the approach weíve taken.

Platinum Demo: Final Fantasy XV has a modified combat system compared to Episode Duscae. Players can switch between four different of attacks on the fly using the d-pad. Noctis can jump from using heavy, but slow weapons like the Toy Hammer or Broadsword to combo weapons like the Toy Sword. Can you tell us how switching weapons will allow players to take on different attacker roles in the game?

In Final Fantasy XVís combo system, when you change weapons youíre essentially changing roles. Depending on what weapon youíre using youíre going to change the role and combat style. Instead of changing characters youíre doing it with weapons, but since itís in such a shorter time span and since itís action based combat itís very quick you might not necessarily realize it, but you are changing roles as you change weapons.

But, there are weapons where you will get a full experience and it feels like youíre taking on a different combat role with a character.

After the first demo, there was fan feedback about the hit and run tactics players can use in Final Fantasy XV. Players were invisible when they were using cover. There are also waiting periods that take players out of the action when Noctis warps away from battle and hangs on his sword to recover HP while his friends are getting pummeled. How has this feedback been taken in for the completed game?

[Laughs] I think it comes down to player choice. Itís up to you as a player to decide if you want to stick with your buddies and try to tough it out or do you want to retreat, recover some HP and then go back in. Itís up to you.

In terms of hanging, it is part of strategy. If you want to recover this gives you a chance to get your forces back together, but there are going to be enemies who will be far away and they can still hit you. There is a deeper level of strategy and there wonít just be enemies that canít reach you if youíre hanging.

You might have realized this playing the Platinum Demo, but with the Warp Strike the further you are away from the enemy the bigger damage multiplier you get. It is hard to stagger the Iron Giant, but if you are at a great distance, use a Warp Strike, and are successful at hitting it you are going to stagger him with one hit. The system we incorporated with the Platinum Demo and going forward is this hit and run system with Noct and his companions. His companions my hit, then heíll hit, and then heíll retreat or his companions will retreat. Itís a constant back and forth.

In terms of the cover feature where enemies not being able to find you in Episode Duscae it was because the enemy AI wasnít fully incorporated. It has been improved upon to match the rest of the game system.

Why did you go with a whimsical direction and making young Noctis the protagonist in Platinum Demo: Final Fantasy XV? Itís a striking contrast to the core Final Fantasy XV game.

It was pretty Disney-like, right? Itís because unlike the previous demo which gave you a glimpse of the full game our goals with this demo is completely different. The title gives you a hint. Platinum Demo is the main title and Final Fantasy XV is actually the subtitle. Of course, weíve made it with the hope that Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy XV fans will give it a try.

Since we are providing this as a free demo we thought it would be an opportunity for people who arenít familiar with Final Fantasy to try it out. In order to do that, we had Platinum Demo up top and incorporated game features that arenít so driven to appeal to a broader audience.

For people interested into the whole Final Fantasy XV franchise you get a glimpse of who Noct was as a child and what he was thinking. Once you play the full game youíll have a better background of who he was and a stronger connection with him in the full game. Also because we wanted to give Carbuncle as fans. Anyone who tries the demo will get Carbuncle and thatís a huge benefit in itself.

Final Fantasy XV will be out for Playstation 4 and XBOX One September 30th, 2016. Feel free to stop by siliconera (http://www.siliconera.com/2016/04/01/final-fantasy-director-reaching-new-fans-behind-platinum-demo/)and let them know how grateful we are for this interview! What are you thoughts about what Tabata went into?

04-03-2016, 12:29 PM
Good god, I can see how fans will mis-analyze terms like "independent" again and talk about the status of canonicity because they don't get that stories like The Hobbit are also independent from the Lord of the Rings in those terms but still canonical.