Final Fantasy 15: Developer Explains Balancing Cutscenes With Gameplay

If it doesn’t need to be a cutscene, don’t make it one. Simple.

Posted By | On 05th, Apr. 2015 Under News | Follow This Author @@Martintoney2012

Final Fantasy 15

Square Enix own a rather impressive subsidiary that goes by the name of Visual Works. Visual Works have one job and one job only, that is to work on, create and finalise the cinematic movie sequences in the Final Fantasy, Deus Ex and Hitman series. Speaking recently with the director of Visual Works, Kazuyuki Ikumori, Siliconera has been told that their job is all about striking the right balance between gameplay and cutscenes in Final Fantasy 15.

Ikumori said, “It seems like out of all the Final Fantasy titles, this one will be the most action oriented. I think it’s going to end up being a pretty good balance. It’s going to depend on the story and what we need to get across to tell it. We’re going to try to focus on real time as much as possible, but depending on the story if there are things we cannot express or visualize with real time graphics, like huge armies fighting each other or a world being destroyed, that may not look as good with real time graphics compared to a CGI movie. ”

But what gamers don’t want to see, is a game that has cinematic sequences like Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of The Patriots, which were extremely and for some players,  a little boring. Seeming to understand that not everything should be CG, Ikumori said “In those instances, we’re going to look at what is necessary and what we’re trying to invoke in the player. If it’s better to do as a movie or if it is only possible to do as a movie, we’ll go with a CGI movie. If we feel it is better to do real time we’re going to focus on real time. We’re going to try to balance this as much as possible. ”

Final Fantasy 15 does not have a release date yet but it’s most likely coming out next year. For more on the game, check out our full preview and the differences between the PS4 and Xbox One versions.

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  • Nintendo Fan 4 Lif3

    I loved the cutscenes of MGS4. People are just too impatient. It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey.

    • LightningFarron19

      Dude, there was a cutscene in MGS4 that was an hour long. MGS4’s cutscenes took it too far and it’s story was a headache.

      FF10 and FF13 might have been heavy on the cutscenes, but they still had gameplay and combat that made up for it.

    • Nintendo Fan 4 Lif3

      That cutscene is at the end of the game it’d not that big a deal. You play plenty of time even minus cutscenes before beating the game. Cutscenes let you even interact a little if you wish. It’s not that bad. I’m used to cut scenes in games. It actually feels more odd playing games without normal cutscenes like the Bioshock games.

    • Xengre

      Have you tried Xenosaga series yet? If you like CG they produce top tier Hollywood level CG and its MUCH longer than what you see in MGS4. Great series, especially Episode 1, imo.

    • Nintendo Fan 4 Lif3

      No I actually I never got to I didn’t own a PS2 back in the day. I do plan to play Xenoblade Chronicles and X though and the supposed remake of Xenosaga that Katsuhiro Harada has hinted at. I’m sure I’ll love it 🙂

    • Xengre

      Xenoblade Chronicles is amazing. I finish games much faster then most but due to the open nature of Xenoblade Chronicles and all the quests/stuff to explore/etc. I have put over 40 hours in and I would estimate I am roughly 1/3rd through the game. If you buy it I recommend buying it to legally play the game on emulator and then play it on PC emulator at a higher resolution and with the HD texture pack (google it) as it makes the game look immensely better. I have loved what I have played so far of Xenoblade but had to put it on the side due to how much content it has (trying to do every quest I can in one play through, etc.) until I have more time so I can play it over extended periods.

      Xenosaga 1 is, arguably, the best of the series and Eps 2/3 really change because a core staff member left development during Xenosaga II when the company cut the game to 3 titles vs the 6 it was originally intended to be (why, I’m not sure since Xenosaga 1 did pretty well in sales at 1.7m). Still, Xenosaga II and III are decent even though it is overwhelmingly obvious there are cuts to story/character development across the board. Definitely recommend playing it at some point. No point in an HD version if you play it via emulator and own the games/console because of the options PCSX2 allow you to have high resolution + anti-aliasing to make the game look very good.

      Btw, Xenosga 1, alone, has like , at least, 15 hours of CG (the company claimed 30 and it might be true). MGS4 runs about 6-8. Crazy.

    • Nintendo Fan 4 Lif3

      So do I. I play different kinds of games, not just limiting myself to one genre or type, so I tend to finish games quickly knowing how a game works. I’ve heard that you’d need 80 or even 100 just to do everything. and then X will be 3 times that. I already have New 3DS, plus I don’t have Wii Remotes anymore they died just last year, so New 3DS would actually be my best bet. Probably won’t get a Wii Remote Plus anytime soon. Yeah the amount of content in recent RPG’s is so overwhelming. Wow they cut 3 games out that’s insane. I can see why the guy left. It’s too bad. Perhaps after doing the HD remakes they can spur 3 more games to fill the gap. I’m guessing the issue was ownership of IP, which of course eventually fell to Bandai Namco owning the rights. B-b-but..I like it on big screen. I’m sure-the emulator probably wouldn’t run high on my PC anyway it can’t even handle high end settings or at least look photo realistic for the most part. That sounds enticing. Playing Nintendo games growing up I got used to seeing CGI quickly. I get people wanna have more play time but it’s also nice to sit back and enjoy the view.

    • Xengre

      Yeah, I play everything but sports/racing (which I only play with friends/family).

      I’m totally looking forward to X. The only game/franchise I know that has, without doubt, more gameplay/content is the Tales of series (particularly Tales of Abyss) and Disgaea.

      If you own the game and have a decent PC then you could just use an Xbox/PS/Logitech controller to play it, doesn’t need Wii Remote (I use a Logitech). I only keep mentioning owning the game and console simply for legal reasons.

      I don’t know the issue, but yeah three games got cut. Sad, honestly, I feel it could have possibly had the potential to compete with any other major series after the first 2 games that would have been out (following the original 6 game setup) to build up a fanbase and then continued, assuming quality kept or exceeded the first game.

      Provide your specs and I can give you an idea of how it may perform. You don’t need a monster PC but you will need a decent CPU/GPU and adequate amount of RAM for the textures. Tell if you have an SSD or a 5400rpm/7200rpm HDD, too.

      Xenosaga 1 definitely gives you view time. It also does a lot of stuff that, effectively, got dropped from the 2nd game onward which is sad as it offered so much. Story wise, it is comparable if not had the potential to compete with Star Wars which is commendable. This got heavily scrapped but it is still a decent series. Just be warned that your stuff doesn’t really carry over, a few unlockables (nothin relevant like .//hack series) each game and Xenosaga III has probably the most pathetic boss fights in an RPG I have ever experienced, next to FFX to the point you probably wont ever die in the game outside of… ironically one mid-game boss battle which is probably the hardest boss fight in the series and its mandatory (church boss battle). Lots of side things like investing money (choosing what to invest in via emails, etc. and how it impacts things), tons of side quests, mini-games (fully developed card game even more so then FF card games), mech battle arcade game (think Gundamn), a neat secret door side quest, a super mech side quest, ultimate weapon for KOS-MOS, and so much crap that simply does not exist in later games. Oh, music is pretty great in all three, though best in Episode I, imo. I could go on and on, but I shall spare you.

    • Nintendo Fan 4 Lif3

      I’ve been dying to play the Tales Of games also. Particularly the Symphonia Collection on PS3. I don’t even have a mouse atm been looking for one for a while now. Yeah I don’t like pirating. I guess being it was a PS2 exclusive it didn’t meet the budget to stay exclusive and Monolith Soft refused to develop for anything else at the time so they cut down the amount of games conversely. I believe it’s Intel Core i7 2.5 GHZ I can over clock to 3. Nvidia 840M not sure how fast it is. Have 1 TB HDD but it’s nearly have full or getting there. 8 GB RAM. Don’t know the speed. I personally don’t feel right playing a game not on the orginal system it came out on plus controls would feel weird. I’ve tried emulators before and it’s hard to map keyboard for good setup and don’t really have controllers specify for that and my laptop is only a 15.6 inch. Don’t even know if it connects to a TV. Original copy is very rare I doubt I’ll find it even for lower than $60. Probably better off getting Pandora’s Tower or The Last Story at a better bargain. What games I’ve played I can play sometimes above 30 but I never reach or stay at 60 it fluctuates. Star Wars? My interest has just piqued. Every RPG I’ve played I nearly didn’t beat because the boss fights were ridiculous particularly the Kingdom Hearts ReMiX 1.5 and 2.5 so good it won’t be too stressful but an easy boss is just as mind boggling I like a challenge. Sounds like it’s filled to the brim. I’d get lost in that world for hours. Most time I ever spent on a game was 200+ hours and that was Skyward Sword dunno if the Xenosaga games or even new Zelda will top that. Love game soundtracks. Yes I shall discover more on my own ; ) what we need is for Bandai Namco to start a Xenosaga PS4 remaster.

    • Xengre

      No where near as bad as Xenosaga series, though. Then again I love both Xenosaga (1, not so much the other two because developer screwed it up but it was alright) and MGS and their stories, etc. Xenosaga CG, though, was a master piece.


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