Final Fantasy 14For your enjoyment:
What platforms is Final Fantasy 14 coming to?
Currently the game is confirmed for PlayStation 3 and Windows PC. An Xbox 360 version isn't official, but Square Enix is considering the possibility that it could.
What do we know about the setting and the story?
It takes place on an all-new Final Fantasy world known as "Eorzea." Though it does share some monsters and races from Final Fantasy XI, they're not direct representations and have been altered in multiple ways that make them unique to Eorzea. The similarities in races will allow experienced Final Fantasy XI players to create a new Final Fantasy 14 character that looks somewhat comparable.
Does it have a direct connection to Final Fantasy XI?
In some ways, yes it does. Not only does it share the same development team as the FF11, but the game will also allow players to create a character that is similar to their current Final Fantasy XI. Square Enix has also revealed to IGN that it is currently finding a solution that will let you transfer your character's names from Final Fantasy XI to Final Fantasy 14.
What is the combat system like?
The development team won't say, but it did confirm to us that... Additionally, the heavy team-play aspect of FF11 has been deemphasized, and now exploration and battle is said to be more balanced between solo and team play.
How does the leveling system work?
Square Enix is cagey about how characters advance, but it has confirmed with IGN that growth is not based on experience and that it will work on a different system entirely.
What about jobs?
Jobs will return in Final Fantasy 14, but they will be much different than the job system present in Final Fantasy XI.
How important are the weapons?
Weapons are very important and have a heavy influence on your character and how they succeed in the game world. Square Enix says to look closely at the official Final Fantasy 14 logo for hints and hidden meanings about how the game will work.
What hidden meanings?
Square Enix told us that when it approached Amano to do the logo art for Final Fantasy 14, that weapons were very important and to think of the concept of a "wheel." Specifically, a wheel of adventurers that has their weapon in front of them and an exposed backside -- which leaves each adventurer to rely heavily on their comrades and their friends. Let the speculation begin.
Anything else about the weapons?
The team let slip to us that choosing weapons for specific tasks one day versus another could affect how your character develops.
How much of the first trailer is in-game versus pre-rendered?
The debut trailer is actually a mixture of real-time in-game footage and pre-rendered wizardry. The combat scene in particular was created using the in-game engine.
What languages will the game available in?
The same as Final Fantasy XI: Japanese, English, French and German. Final Fantasy 14 will also be released simultaneously in all regions that use those languages.
Will the PlayOnline service be used for Final Fantasy 14?
No. Square Enix told us that the reason it is ditching the PlayOnline system is because it was originally meant as an all-in-one solution to house multiple content types. But as PlayOnline has offered less content over the years, the need for the next online Final Fantasy to us PO is moot. Whatever new service (if any) is used, PC and PlayStation 3 users will still be able to play with each other on the same servers, and Square Enix also confirmed with IGN that you can sign in with a universal ID on either system to pick up where you left off if you own both.
Who's Working on the Game?
It is produced by Hiromichi Tanaka (Final Fantasy I, II, III, and IX) and directed by Nobuaki Komoto (Final Fantasy IX, XI), with art direction by Akihiko Yoshida (Vagrant Story, Final Fantasy XII) and a musical score from Nobuo Uematsu (Most Final Fantasies ever). Yoaka Amano has designed the logo and is pulling additional art duties as well.
Uematsu only did a few tracks in Final Fantasy XI, how much is he doing for XIV?
Square Enix revealed to IGN that Uematsu will be doing all the music for Final Fantasy 14 and that it will be composed in a range of different styles and genres.
What modern day MMOs have influenced the design and direction of Final Fantasy 14?
In addition to the team's original work on Final Fantasy XI, World of Warcraft, Age of Conan and Warhammer Online have been three recent games that have had some pull, but the Final Fantasy XI community's feedback has been the most important factor in its design.
Are Chocobos back?
Yes, they will return. But Square Enix has told IGN that it is looking at using them in a completely different way than they were used in Final Fantasy XI (where they were used as riding steeds).
When is it coming out and when is the beta?
The game will come out in 2010, and after Final Fantasy XIII which is scheduled for spring of the same year. Beta plans are still being finalized, but that the plan is to have a longer beta period than that of Final Fantasy XI (which had a beta of about 3-4 months).