Final Fantasy 16 PS5
Image: Push Square

It sounds like Final Fantasy XVI director Hiroshi Takai has been left thoroughly impressed by the PS5. In a new interview over on the PlayStation Blog, Takai talks about the advantages of developing for Sony's current-gen console, and although this isn't the first time we've seen such praise, his answers shed a little more light on what the team could do with its PS5 exclusive.

"The two main things that struck me were the size of the memory and the speed of the SSD. I’ve worked with a lot of different hardware over the years, and many have failed to strike the right balance between the capabilities of the hardware and the size of the memory," Takai explains. "However, the PS5 is different — it comes with enough memory installed to take full advantage of the hardware."

He continues: "As for the SSD, as we were building the game, I was simply blown away by how fast it was."

Now, obviously, this is an interview on the platform's official blog, and it's coming from a guy who's been working on a Sony-backed project for years — of course it's going to be positive. But Takai does go into some additional detail with regards to development.

According to the director, Final Fantasy XVI features some incredibly granular assets, both environmentally and with the character models — and all of these assets are given depth with high quality lighting effects. "It’s really resource-intensive just to render these models on screen, and the lighting and shadow effects are then layered on top of that. We’re only able to do this thanks to the size of the PS5’s memory," says Takai.

"Clive, the protagonist of FFXVI, can unleash a wide range of attacks, and the animations and effects for them can all fit in the memory, too. And the way that the game seamlessly flows between resource-intensive gameplay to equally intensive cutscenes and back again wouldn’t be possible if it wasn’t for the speed of the SSD," he concludes.

Based on everything we've seen so far — including our own hands on with the game earlier in the year — Final Fantasy XVI looks absolutely immaculate. On a presentational level, it might well be up there with what we'd expect from Sony's first party PlayStation Studios. And it's hard to reach that level of graphical prowess unless you're targeting a specific platform — a console that the team knows inside out.

What we're getting from Takai is that Final Fantasy XVI exists as it does because it's a PS5 exclusive. We already know, for example, that Sony had a hand in the game's development by having its own engineers assist with its optimisation.

Hopefully the developer's efforts are even more apparent when the action RPG releases on 22nd June.