Final Fantasy XVI previews are out in the wild, and we think the next mainline entry in the legendary series is shaping up to be an absolute banger. There's a bunch of new information about the world of Valisthea floating about in the ether, but of particular interest were some comments made by director Hiroshi Takai and producer Naoki Yoshida, better known as Yoshi-P to all the Final Fantasy XIV fans out there.
During a roundtable discussion with the press, as relayed by IGN, it was revealed that the world of Final Fantasy XVI will consist of multiple maps, some smaller, others massive, with Takai noting that "we have - I think - four zones that are about two kilometers by two kilometers." You will return to each throughout the course of your adventure and to one in particular, The Hideaway, as it serves as a hub area for the player.
Takai drops the bombshell that might cause long-time fans to wince, stating, "we didn't create any [hidden dungeons or maps] because we wanted players to focus more on the main scenario and not have this feeling that you have to go to this area and clear this area." It seems like Takai reconsiders this statement before adding, "however, there are areas that I guess players could consider dungeons. They're off the field, and you go deep down, but those are all connected in some way to the story. And they're all expertly crafted dungeons. We created these as great places, we want players to go there and so we're going to give reasons for players to go there. We didn't want to create something that most players may not even find.”
So the jury is kind of out on what exactly constitutes an optional dungeon, but Yoshida is quick to point out that "the one thing is that as you hear this answer and you're thinking, oh, and so there's not many places you can explore,” he said. “There are a lot of areas that you can explore. So don't worry about that.”
Look forward to discovering more about Final Fantasy XVI's side content in the coming weeks, as it seems we will learn much more in April. We also learned that a demo of the game will be available prior to launch.
Do Takai's comments make you nervous? It sounds like there will be dungeons to explore, the distinction being they are instead tied to the game's central quest line. Define the term "optional dungeon" and remember that Final Fantasy is constantly reinventing itself in the comments section below.
As long as there are superbosses like ultima weapon and plenty of side quests it should be fine.
To me the maps sound similar to what they tried in FF12 without the loading screen between each area.
As someone who loves to explore optional stuff in games it's a shame but I guess if the main story itself has more than enough to explore it's not too bad
I hope it's not as linear as FF13 for example. This is the only ps5 exclusive game I'm looking forward to this year, so I really hope it lands well. The large amount of qtes is my biggest concern from all the previews I read so far. Optimistic but cautious
Not having to worry about searching 100% of every area for fear of missing something actually appeals given how limited my play time is these days.
I’m one of those weirdos who really likes QTEs in narrative games. I feel it makes me focus and watch always, rather than allowing me to phase out a bit during cutscenes etc. gives a sense of tension too, in what might otherwise be complete lack of interaction. Never understood the hate they get really.
It seems like they put a lot of thought into the game rhythm and that is good to hear!
By the way my favorite new thing by far from this media blitz is Yoshida opening up to skill-up about how many Japanese developers don’t like “JRPG”as a term and basically find it racist and reductive.
I just wanted a female protagonist, or at least the choice, not this bro boy that’s forced upon us.
@scoobdoo Thanks to the FF13 trilogy there have been more female-led FF games in the last 15 years than male-led FF games. In fact, FF12 was arguably Ashe's story and FF10 was arguably Yuna's story even though they had male player characters.
I'm not saying you're wrong to want what you want, but FF is by no means a sausage-fest.
Sometimes you just gotta trust it will be good.
Lol I love how this man has to follow up anything the team says that can be, even the slightest bit, construed as a negative with a positive
It's only a slight bummer personally. I quite liked XVs approach where it let you discover the majority of the Royal Arms entirely on your own and in turn pushed you to explore the world for optional dungeons. I'm hoping to see something similar but smaller in scale since it isn't open world. It sounds like they're making good use of the areas surrounding the main path which they already said some are big and plentiful
the developers seem very scared. terified to add anything missable or chalenging that might impede the players progress, to the point where there is no more hidden side content and every boss encounter now has a very long stagger phase where the boss just sits there for half a minute pretending to be a punching bag. i wonder if they somehow missed elden ring, one of the best selling games ever that dared to do all the things this game seems to be avoiding like a plague.
@scoobdoo "Bro boy"? How old are you...lol
@thefourfoldroot1 Yep. There are so many great games these days. I don't mind if one of them doesn't require hours of exploring an open world in order to see every last thing.
I have Hogwarts plus expansions for Horizon and Elden Ring for that. I'm happy to let FF XVI change the pace in that regard.
I appreciate the honesty. It's hard to say how I feel about the lack of side dungeons without seeing how the exploration works in the first place. We got a good idea how combat will work based on the previews but exploration is still a mystery so I'll wait until more info is out before I decide I'd I like it or not.
I will say though finding optional dungeons has almost always excited me in RPGs of the past.
@thefourfoldroot1 Im with you here, QTE seem to be in place of general little cut scenes which like you, sometimes switch off as a lot of games these days (especially GOW Ragnarok) I feel have way too many cut scenes and due to that there is less input. QTE help me keep my focus a lot more and interest so for me these are a welcome addition.
It sounds like they’ve gone in the direction of Xenoblade and I couldn’t be happier!
tbh on it's own, I don't think a lack of optional side-areas is necessarily a big deal. Depends on how they tackle it: are you left mostly alone to explore environments as you see fit and complete side-quests, or does the game feel like FFX and FFXIII, where you're being herded from one story beat to the next?
@RadioHedgeFund I don't see the comparison, personally. Xenoblade games don't have a hub you return to throughout the game, and they're stuffed full of hidden areas and optional side bits. You can complete a Xenoblade game's story and not see, frankly, a ton of the areas it has to offer.
@scoobdoo yeah all of the FF characters look and sound the same... so damn boring
This game is sounding very similar to Witcher 3, which is a very good game to be compared to.
I say this as I am finally playing Witcher 3 for the first time on PS5. Wow, what an amazing game I have procrastinated to play! I’m honestly torn between Witcher 3 and Zelda BotW for the best game of their genre.
If FFXVI is a Final Fantasy version of what I have been experiencing with Geralt, I will be very happy.
@skyshot Elden Rings is a success. But 12 million sales is not up there as one of the best selling games ever.
I'd have to quit gaming if all games were like that, Elden Ring's too hard for me. Style is great, difficulty's beyond me, like it is for many.
I have a feeling developers might be looking at trophy percentages.
I always do side stuff and you'll regularly see games with about a 65% or so completing a game's main story and an average of about 8% or so of people completing side missions and even less than that for collectables.
They likely are tired of adding things so many don't bother with.
Or maybe I'm completely wrong!
Every piece of news I see about this game makes it less and less desirable for me. An old school fan that grew up on the games that defined and practically invented the JRPG genre.
No side quests? Hookers? Looks like an action game. And now Yoshi P is out here saying don't say JRPG?
This game is hardly an rpg at all. It's Definitely not a JRPG.
Oh well, Octopath is doing well, at least. That's a fun JRPG.
Still very nervous about this game. Lots of things looking really good but I just have a weird feeling about it all. Hope I'm wrong.
The fact they said the main quest is 35 hours and main + side quests and extras is around 70 ish means there will probably be more than enough to do to keep busy.
This one detail doesn't tell us that much, really. I can't think of most FF games, even the turn based ones that I really can think of "optional" dungeons. If it had them, it wasn't memorable if they had them.
But what worries me is the comment about wanting people to focus on the main scenario. I don't really care about optional well hidden dungeons with superbosses that you might miss. But I can't tell if they mean that's ALL that's missing, or if they mean there's really no side quest adventures, the whole thing is just a linear narrative railroad.
@NEStalgia The land of summoned monsters and sylvan cave are entirely optional in FFIV. same with bahamut's cave on the moon.
It's a nitpick since it's just for self imposed challenges, but you actually don't need to turn in the rat tail in the 1st game to level up your jobs. You can beat the game without doing that, making Bahamuts Cave and the dragon isles optional (not really a Dungeon tho)
Zone Eater in FF6
Crashed Gelnika in FF7
All of FF8 (joke)
There's always been optional Dungeons.
Unless they're talking about something like bonus content Dungeons from the remasters or something OP just for post game challenges.
@DrGonzo Good point. I don't think any of that is significant, and doesn't strike me as a problem in the design really. I'm more worried by his descriptions that they've basically removed sidequesting and the idea of areas that exist for the side quests as you just get railroaded from required objective to required objective, and every place that exists exists as a waystation you just get guided through.
@NEStalgia Yeah, sounds like the hallways problem from FF13.
I'm okay with this. No need to bury stuff you worked very hard to create.
@burning_as_souls Actually over 20 million.
@Shepherd_Tallon @thefourfoldroot1 Same here this is great news to me! As much as I'd love more secret dungeons, I just don't have as much time anymore.
Either way, June 2023 can't get here soon enough for me.
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