Loads of Square News
In a recent interview Square conducted, the company revealed the following facts about Final Fantasy X:
~ Development for Final Fantasy X was only begun this past October (wasn't the game supposedly already in development during Final Fantasy IX's development period?), but was already being planned as early as last summer.
~ Tidus and Yuna, the two main characters, will feature motion captured animation from Japanese actors at a TV station. The animation will be programmed into the characters so they can express their feelings through their facial features.
~ In a departure from Cloud and Squall, Tidus will be a lot more charming and outgoing.
~ The screenshots that have been released so far of Final Fantasy X have been actual game play images, not CG movies.
~ Every important element to Final Fantasy X's theme can be found in the picture of Tidus standing in the ocean.
~ Tidus' sword is water based and can transform into different shapes.
~ The symbol painted on Tidus' shorts shows his membership to some sort of organization his father was also a member of.
~ Yuna is a kind and friendly summoner and will be some sort of savior. She will use magic staves to fight, and an undisclosed character will use a Blitzball as their weapon.
~ All battles will take place in the field and there should be little distinction between the battle screen, map screen, and field screen. Boss battles may be a different story, however.
~ Cid, the chocobos, and the airship will also make an appearance in Final Fantasy X, though the Chocobos will sport a more mature look.
~ Final Fantasy X goes back to three characters for use in battle, though you should be able to call other characters in your party for help.
~ The camera will not be player controllable, but Yusuka Naora, the Art Director, has assured that the camera will always be at the best angles to see what's going on.
~ Even though the real time graphics are amazing, Final Fantasy X will still use CG movies for half of the events, as they are more effective for large scale cinemas.
~ Summoners are to the world of Final Fantasy X like pop idols are to the Japanese.
~ Yuna will be the only summoner in your party, and Tidus appears to be her bodyguard.
~ Tetsuya Nomura, the character designer, reported that he purposefully drew Yuna to look Asian. Final Fantasy X draws a lot of influences from Southeast Asia. X will not have a futuristic look like Final Fantasy VII and VIII did. Tidus, however, doesn't fit in with the Asian look, as he does not belong to this world. He is unfamiliar with common place things and often says "What's that?"
~ Blitzball will be a mini-game in Final Fantasy X, but will be an integral part of the storyline.
~ Battles will still be random encounters.
~ Limit Break-like moves will exist.
~ Certain events can only be triggered based on the choices you make. Romance seems to figure prominently in this.
~ Chocobos will once again be featured as transportation.
Final Fantasy X should ship in two seperate packages when it releases in July. One package will contain one DVD-ROM, while the other will have two. The second version is described as being a "high visual and high audio" product and will likely support anamorphic HDTV and Dolby Digital 5.1. Meaning that the 2 disc set is graphically and aurally superior.
So far, Square still has five more unannounced titles under development. Sources speculate that two are sports titles, an online strategy sim game, and an online RPG for the PlayStation 2, in addition to a new handheld RPG.
In a recent Bloomberg Japan interview with Nintendo President Hiroshi Yamauchi, the man was highly opinionated on just about everything, the biggest shock being he refuses to deal w/Square, even though the RPG giant has announced serious interest in the Game Boy Advance. Guess he's still pissed about Final Fantasy VII going to the PlayStation and not the N64.
A final number has been reached on Square's budget for Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within. The film cost $137 million to make, and this is without any promo or ad costs, meaning Columbia Pictures is having to foot the bill for marketing the film. The final cut is 96 minutes long and cost Square about $1.43 million per minute/$23,785 per second. Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within is set to open in theaters July 13th.