Head honcho of Square Enix Yoichi Wada has admitted that he has no idea where the Final Fantasy series should go from here. Accepting that the latest instalment in the long running RPG saga, Final Fantasy XIII, was met with a mixed reception, Wada said that the series might have to change dramatically in the future if it’s to stay relevant.
“When it comes to the customers’ reaction to the quality of the game, some value it highly and some are not very happy with it,” Wada said in an interview with Gamasutra.
“I think this is a product that was able to meet the expectations for those who know Final Fantasy,” he said. “There are all kinds of games around in the market today. Should Final Fantasy become a new type of the game or should Final Fantasy not become a new type of game?
“The customers have different opinions. It’s very difficult to determine which way it should go.”
Final Fantasy XIII released earlier this year on the Xbox 360 and the PS3, making this the first multiplatform entry in the main series. It was criticized for being too restrictive and too linear, for having a rigid progression, and for having a battle system that took away from any player participation. While there was a sizeable majority of gamers who like Final Fantasy XIII, most people are known to have expressed their dissatisfaction with the title. The schizophrenic title has the lowest Metascore for any main instalment in the series.
However, Wada was quick to add that the game has sold 5 million copies already, and that it looks to sell many more in the years ahead.
“Looking at the numbers alone, it is pretty good, because we were able to release the latest Final Fantasy in all three markets of Japan, United States and Europe in a very short period of time, and we were able to reach 5 million units rapidly – and I think this product will grow further.”
Let’s just hope that the next title in the series will be more properly able to realise the potential hidden away in Final Fantasy XIII. There’s a very good game hidden away in there somewhere. It just needs to be nurtured and developed properly now.